Have your pipes sprung a leak?
Commercial buildings are meant to accommodate hundreds or more people every day — imagine the amount of water being used in the facilities each day.
With that much usage, leaks aren’t exactly rare.
High traffic properties are especially prone to leaks:
- Shopping centres
- Apartment blocks
- Office towers
- and places of attraction such as the Melbourne Stadium
Don’t let money go down the drain. If you notice a lot of people using your toilets, you will want to make sure your plumbing systems are properly maintained. Let’s take a look at two of the most common plumbing problems before looking at ways to avoid or solve these issues.
High or low water pressure
Maintaining the right water pressure is especially important to property managers and real estate agents. One of the most common complaints property managers get from the tenants or employees is low water pressure. This does not mean that high water pressure is better — it can damage your pipes.
Faulty or inoperative shut-off valves
If your plumbing fixtures are rarely used, shut-off valves that are inoperative will become a problem. Shut-off valves are an essential part of plumbing safety. These shut-off valves are an important component of plumbing safety.
In the event that the valve breaks, the water flow will be stopped immediately. This gives space for repairs to be made. These valves are often completely neglected, making our jobs a lot harder than they need to be!
Paying for restorative services after water damage is often a depressing moment except there’s valid insurance. Areas with high traffic in a commercial building can experience extensive damage if there are no proper checks on fixtures and appliances. To avoid this condition, facility managers in high-use areas (commercial buildings in the list I have previously mentioned, which includes the conference venues in Melbourne) are avoiding plumbing and piping failures. Let’s share useful maintenance tips from the experts that can check plumbing leaks and water damages in commercial buildings.
Install Water Flow Sensors
While every sector of building maintenance goes digital, integrating plumbing systems with IoT solutions is beneficial. Facility managers can get alert on high-volume usage of water, and faults along pipelines. Generally, water leakages are prone to high traffic areas where excess pressure is exerted. As the water flow sensor detects a drop in pressure, it alerts the maintenance officer by sending automatic messages. So, preventing plumbing damages is easy with smart tools that detect faults early.
Sensors That Prevent Water Loss
Water flow IoT sensors are affordable, and they are ideal for commercial buildings. With an average capacity of sensing water flow rates of between 0.15 to 60 litres per minute, maintenance staff can reduce water loss. However, commercial buildings need internet connectivity to operate this device. As an innovative solution for plumbing systems, water flow sensors help to manage utility bills. The sensor uses soil moisture measurement tests to identify water leaks. Additionally, this device is handy for monitoring water pipes during extreme winter temperatures.
Backflow Prevention Testing
Some common problems of plumbing systems in commercial buildings include burst pipes and water contamination. With regular maintenance on backflow prevention systems as well as doing pipe relining on the parts that are faulty, the lifespan of plumbing systems in a commercial building will improve. Backflow prevention systems help to reduce the risk of water pollution through burst pipes. It’s a mechanical device for water supply systems that prevents backflow. Usually, plumbing engineers and inspectors test backflow prevention equipment for efficiency. However, a defective backflow prevention system malfunctions when water pressure level drops.
Track Leaks with Smart Water Meters
Install water meters and track your facility’s consumption rate. The usage tells how much energy bill will come to the property monthly. Also, temporary flow and submeters detect leaks easily. In smart commercial buildings, they use utility management software to track the excess output of water from plumbing lines. Unlike regular water meters, these smart meters work without attaching them to plumbing lines. Also, these meters work in real-time and use internet connectivity as smartphone apps.
Avoid Clogged Drains
Using a local plumber or a blocked drain specialist for commercial plumbingsystem maintenance is not cheap when the drains are clogged. As one of the most common plumbing issue in restaurants, clogged drains can lead to major repairs. After eating, most customers use the sink to freshen up. This high traffic area is likely to have plumbing fixture damages and cause disruptions in daily operations. Managers of cafes in commercial buildings should ask kitchen workers not to flush remains of solid food waste down the drain. Also, oil and grease from leftover foods should be kept in polythenerefuse bags. Even stuffing the office hand basins with food particles can damage its drain pipes.
Propane Tank Valves
Copper pipes are used to run pipe network from the base tank (with propane), and kitchen burners in commercial buildings. Usually, kitchen staff shuts the supply valves at the close of work daily. This area of the main control valve has high-traffic from the kitchen staff. Shutting the valve helps to reduce the risk of propane pipe leaks, and enhance safety. However, testing of gas lines and valves are part of preventive maintenance. The soap test is an ideal way of checking lets at joints, valves, and flanges along the supply pipes. According to plumbing codes, users must comply with guidelines for using propane tanks in commercial buildings.