We live in a consumer-driven economy. Very few people purchase even a box of breakfast cereal without doing plenty of online research and pricing comparisons. Before you invest in anything for your home, you want to make sure the product is safe, fulfills your needs and, perhaps most importantly of all, you want to make sure you are getting a good value. Choosing control valves is really no different. At the end of the day, you want to ensure that you are selecting a product that is high quality, is economical and will get the job done for many years to come.
If you work in the water industry, you have probably seen your fair share of pipe leaks and bursts and leaking valves. Troubleshooting a valve is not as straightforward as it may sound to some. The problem at hand could be just a minor fix or, in a worst-case scenario, a disaster waiting to happen if not handled properly (and at times immediately). Valve systems are complex pieces of work. It can take hours to get to the root of the problem, and often, we reach out for help from external contractors and experts.
Whether you are the superintendent of quality control for your local water district or an operations manager for a federal department, your day-to-day responsibilities are critical. Not only are you tasked with facilitating the performance of your water system, but you also are often responsible for ensuring the right equipment is in place. Additionally, you are likely charged with holding others accountable for their tasks, such as the engineers responsible for product installation.
Like every piece of mechanical equipment we use, a control valve requires some maintenance. Because budgets are stretched and time is tight, it can be tempting to ignore checking on valves, which often are located in underground vaults and give years of operation without complaint, but eventually, like everything else, they will fail. This article looks at eight simple steps that, if undertaken occasionally, will help eliminate the valve failures that always seem to occur at the most inconvenient times.
If you are now the proud owner of a new pressure reducing valve or have just taken over a system that might have them installed—or you are just bringing one back online that has been out of service for repairs—then this checklist is for you.
You will need the following tools:
Diaphragm-operated automatic control valves (ACVs) require reasonably clean water to function effectively and reliably. Having a strainer upstream of the actual ACV is important, as is having a smaller strainer located at the inlet of the pilot system on the ACV.
Donnacona, Quebec, Canada, is an industrial town just west of Quebec City. The town’s water treatment plant was built in 1969 and has since undergone three major retrofits: new high-pressure pumps and an electrical upgrade in 1995; a filter bottoms change in 2000; and a river water intake upgrade in 2005. The plant includes conventional treatment for coagulation, sedimentation (pulsator), filtration (sand filters) and disinfection (Cl2). The raw water pumping station is 1.5 km away from the plant and includes two single-speed pumps.
The city of Modesto, Calif., is situated 90 miles east of San Francisco and has approximately 200,000 residents relying on 55 million gal of water per day. In 2006, the city took on a project to upgrade three water storage tanks that hold approximately 750,000 gal each.
After years of using motor-operated valves to fill water storage tanks, the city recognized that there were just too many problems.