Saving time and money – up to $1 million saved in maintenancePosted on January 1, 2012
The head maintenance plumber at a Queensland prison says the DELTA water treatment technology paid for itself within six months of installation.
Ross Kerle of Maryborough Correctional Centre says his team used to spend hours each week maintaining pipes corroded by water rich in minerals such as calcium and magnesium. For more than six years they constantly fixed pitted pipes and blocked valves in the 500-bed centre’s water supply system. They received daily phone calls from the prison’s kitchen when the water damaged elements on the fleet of big Rational Combi Ovens. And they replaced filters fortnightly to try and keep those vital steam-cooking ovens running smoothly.
“But now this technology has reduced our maintenance something vicious and the cost savings are astronomical dollar-wise,” Ross says. “Take the kitchen; we weren’t even getting two weeks out of some filters and now, after the installation, we’re getting four or five months out of them. It’s just saved thousands and thousands of dollars. I think over a 10-year period we’d be heading towards a million dollars saved in maintenance.”
Ross says his team also used to spend hours weekly flushing sludge from the heat exchanges of vacuum pumps controlling the centre’s sewerage system. Now, thanks to the DELTA water treatment technology, the exchanges are basically spotless and maintenance free. The unit’s also come up trumps in the centre’s dental clinic, making its reverse osmosis machine much more efficient.
The correctional centre fitted one of the innovative firm’s conditioners to the 100mm feed that carries water supply to the prison in a desperate bid to solve their costly maintenance problem.
It’s a decision that’s paid off, with scale and corrosion in pipes now virtually non-existent thanks to the 100% Australian made and manufactured technology. “Our high calcium and magnesium content in the water attracts other minerals to the iron, they’d settle in the pipes and eat through them,” Ross says. “But going through these magnetic ionisers frees these minerals up, stops the iron being positively charged and allows it all to flow through the pipes and lets the filters do their jobs. You could say it’s like grains of sand now compared to big rocks.”
Ross is so impressed by the results he’s witnessed first-hand at the correctional centre that he’s installed a DELTA unit at his own home. “The centre’s unit has gone way beyond our expectations and continues to do so,” he says. “For us, it’s money in the bank. And I’d say to anyone who is running a commercial property, well, you can’t be without one. That’s how important they are.”
It’s not just the plumbers who are happy with the totally maintenance-free DELTA unit. Ross reckons the prisoners have stopped complaining about water quality too. “We’ve had prisoners who’ve been inside long term, 20-plus years, coming up and telling us it’s the best water they’ve ever drunk,” Ross says. “They come up to us in the exercise yard and say ‘how good is this water!'”
Ross applauds Corrective Services officials for backing the DELTA technology. He says officials are now looking to automatically install DELTAwater solutions’ technology in any new prison built in the state or existing centres with water quality issues.