Water main breaks are a common occurrence in many cities and towns across the United States. These breaks can cause significant disruption in water service, damage to pipe infrastructure, property damage, and even lead to serious health risks. As a result, it’s important to be aware of the potential risks associated with water main breaks and how to prevent them.
When a water main breaks, it can lead to serious safety concerns. These include a risk of hazards and electrocution from exposed gas or electrical lines, contamination of drinking water, and a risk of flooding and water damage. In addition, depending on the location of the break, it can also cause street closures and major traffic delays.
How Do Water Main Breaks Occur?
Water main breaks occur when a pipe carrying water to homes and businesses bursts or breaks due to a number of factors. These can include old age, corrosion, seismic activity, freezing temperatures, and even human error. When a pipe breaks, it can cause water to leak out and flood the area, damaging property and threatening the health and safety of those nearby.
Water Main Break Repair
The first step is to stop the water flow as quickly as possible. This can be done at the main water shutoff valve. Once the water is stopped, the location of the break must be identified. A crew may have to dig to get to the water line so they can plan the best repair.
Once the repair crew has identified the problem and determined the best solution, they can start the repair process.The repair can take anywhere from a few hours to days depending on the severity or location of the breaThis typically involves replacing or repairing the pipe, and may include digging a new trench or laying new piping. After the repair is completed, the crew will fill in the excavation area and restore the area to its original condition.
Preventing Water Main Breaks
Preventing water main breaks is critical for a water distribution system. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to prevent water main breaks and maintain a healthy water system.
Steps For Preventing Main Breaks
Pressure and Flow Monitoring
The most important step in preventing water main breaks is monitoring water pressure and flow. High pressure can cause pipes to expand, leading to leaks and eventual breaks, while low flow can cause sediment and debris to accumulate and eventually clog a pipe. To keep pressure levels in check, install a pressure regulator, which will maintain the pressure at optimal levels.
Pressure and flow monitoring systems use sensors to detect changes in pressure and flow over time, allowing operators and technicians to proactively identify potential problems before they become major issues.
In addition to regulating pressure, it’s important to maintain the pipes themselves. Regularly inspect pipes for signs of corrosion or wear and tear, and replace any damaged pipes as soon as possible. It’s also important to stay on top of any scheduled maintenance for your plumbing system.
You must also regularly flush your water main system. This helps remove any sediment or debris that can cause blockages and lead to a break.
An incorrectly installed pipe or valve can be a major cause of water main breaks. So, it is important to make sure that the pipes are installed properly. Make sure you are following all safety guidelines and using the correct materials when installing or repairing your water main system.
For underground water lines, it is also important to ensure that the surrounding soil is in good condition when pipes are being installed. If it is too dry or too wet, it can cause the pipes to become unstable. This can lead to a water main break.
Remote Monitoring Solutions for Water Distribution Systems
Remote pressure and flow monitoring provides a cost-effective solution for preventing main breaks and other associated damages in water systems. These sensors can be connected to the internet and send data to a monitoring system.
This data can be used to track changes in pressure or flow which can indicate an impending main break or other issue. By identifying these issues before they cause serious damage, water systems can be quickly and efficiently repaired, avoiding costly repairs and potential water contamination.
By having remote access to pressure and flow information, you can save time and money by eliminating the need to send technicians out to the field to investigate potential issues and take a comprehensive approach to preventative maintenance.
Reign RMC is a company that has everything you need in remote flow and pressure monitoring tools. Our smart solutions and innovative technologies provide data in real time, whenever and wherever you need it. Upgrade your water distribution system with our budget friendly technologies by calling or checking out our website today.