Brazilian city adopts Canadian solution
Engineers for the city of São Bernardo do Campo in Brazil found that the fluctuating demand for water at different times of the day was impacting on the main water supply pipelines, which would often leak or break. Mark Gimson, regional sales manager for Canadian manufacturer Singer Valve, explains how pressure-regulating valves have reduced water loss and cut maintenance costs.Sergio Mendonça, chief engineer of São Bernardo's water and sewage department, was troubled: how could he reduce the water losses of the municipality of São Bernardo do Campo by controlling the pressure and flow of its major pipelines? One consideration was that one source of São Bernardo do Campo's water supply is 120m above four residential suburbs.
During the day, water pressure was sufficient due to the high demand, but, at night, with reduced customer demand, the pressure would increase substantially. The main supply lines were manually closed, which meant they would often leak or break.
Mendonça contacted Singer Valve for information about its pressure-regulating valves. After hearing about São Bernardo's problem, Alejandro Duque, Singer's territory manager, introduced him to Singer's Pressure/Flow Control (PFC) valve.
Since March 2002, when São Bernardo installed five Singer PFC valves, Mendonça has been documenting the results and the savings. After two months, studies showed that water loss had been reduced by 15%; the economic savings were just as great. These savings continued even after one year.
Impressed with the results, Mendonça has specified Singer valves for other São Bernardo do Campo applications, "We have had zero line breaks and we have less maintenance," he said. "With Singer's PFC, we can keep the line open day and night regardless of flow.
"We reduced our overall maintenance budget by 68% and we recovered our investment in only 90 days."
"The PFC pilot is a simple, reliable device that you can easily maintain," says Brian Blann, president of Singer Valve. "Although it's used to solve water loss applications, the PFC is also ideal in maintaining pressure at a distant point without any electrical requirements because it functions 100% on hydraulics."
He added, "Although it's used to solve water loss applications, the PFC also maintains pressure at a distant point without any electrical requirements."