City of Guelph Water Tower Maintenance

The Situation

In 2016, the City of Guelph removed one of two city water towers from service for routine maintenance. The goal was to limit the service outage to a three-month period and keep the maintenance costs as low as possible.


The Problems

1.    Water services are the largest costs for the City of Guelph, and service maintenance is a large portion of it. Thus, keeping cost as low as possible is an important factor.

2.    The project had to be completed in less than 3 months. Water outages can have large implications for organizations like hospitals or manufacturing that rely on water for their daily operations. The city needed to reduce the maintenance timeframe as much as possible in order to reduce the risk of a water service outage.

3.    It is difficult to maintain water pressure when large pieces of infrastructure are removed, like a water tower. Water pressure issues can significantly affect water service for local residents and businesses.


The Solution

Terepac gave voice to two fire hydrants by installing OneWater at critical monitoring points within the affected water zone. It was a key factor in solving all three problems.

1.    OneWater purchase price is typically 50% less when compared to existing water monitoring platforms and, since there is no ground excavation required, also significantly less to install. This was a large cost reduction for this project when compared to similar projects where water pressure monitoring was required.

2.    OneWater only required 30 mins of installation time per hydrant, compared to two full days for similar water pressure monitoring platforms. This reduced the project timeline by 1.5 days. Additionally, the two hydrants that were “given voice” remained in service while the installation took place.

3.    While OneWater was monitoring the city water services, it identified two water pressure anomalies. The hydrants then sent out an SMS alarm to a configurable smart phone number, alerting staff that there was an issue in the pressure zone.  These events also triggered high frequency transient data capture at 60 Hz. These notifications were sent to the proper city departments before any major leaks occurred.


The Feedback

“Everything worked very well including the two smart hydrants monitoring pressures.  The field trials were completed successfully, and reinforced our team’s confidence to proceed with the modified operational procedure required to service and maintain this critical piece of infrastructure. Thanks to all involved.”

- Matthew Phillips, DPA, P.Eng., Supervisor of Water Supply Operations, Water Services, Environmental Services, City of Guelph