Who fixed a leak last week?
March 22, 2010

The EPA promotes an annual event called "Fix a Leak Week" which just elapsed for the year. The agency claims that more than a trillion gallons of water are lost to household leaks every year -- and those gallons mostly come from treated public water supplies. What's less well-known is that huge amounts of water are lost in public water-distribution systems, largely due to leaks in the water mains. These and other unaccounted losses are responsible for a 10% to 20% gap between water produced and water consumed in most American water systems.

One way to combat leaks and losses is to keep water mains in good condition. Combination air-release valves can help relieve pressure in lines caused by the accumulation of air and prevent the collapse of mains when transitory vacuums occur. These functions reduce the stress on the pipe, helping to reduce the chances that the pipe will burst or collapse catastrophically, or leak quietly.

March 2010
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last revised March 2010