There are almost 8.9 million fire hydrants dispersed across the United States, and the number continues to grow. So many of these hydrants are on active duty that some of them are bound to fault at some point, which calls for some good ol’ repair time.
Fire hydrants are essential underground utility outlets that are remarkable for firefighting efforts across American neighborhoods. But you might be wondering how something as sturdy as a fire hydrant might get damaged? Well, Bill’s Plumbing & Sewer in Evanston, IL, will tell you how!
What Damages Fire Hydrants?
Just as fender benders occur to cars, they are heavily dispensed upon poor fire hydrants. Car collisions are among the leading causes of damage to hydrants and can crack the utility or bend the feed shaft.
The climate isn’t that fair to hydrants either; the supply lines can freeze in winter. Depending on the type of hydrant installed in your neighborhoods, a wet-barrel hydrant will freeze, while a dry-barrel hydrant will manifest failed valves.
And then dogs – dogs relieving themselves copiously over hydrants. The acid content in their urine is another weathering agent and can rust valves over time without maintenance.
What is Entailed in a Fire Hydrant Repair?
- The first step is to determine the nature of the damage.
- The hydrant’s O-rings are inspected and replaced with new OEM parts if found damaged.
- The opening nut & stem attachments have to be degreased, cleaned, the lubricated on annual checks to ensure firefighters can easily use the hydrant in an emergency.
- Any surrounding construction work might shift the ground level around the hydrant. The utility has to be aligned to the altered ground level for safety issues when that happens. An extension kit is designed for this purpose.
- In the event of complete removal of the hydrant during a surface accident, the entire exposed unit is retrofitted with an OEM replacement.
How Can We Protect Fire Hydrants?
- Ensure the hydrant is painted the usual bright red for maximum visibility to motorists. For a more profound effect, use reflective paints for nighttime visibility.
- Conduct flow testing regularly to ensure any debris is cleared out. Open valves to the full range to release water in frigid temperatures to excise flow. The test also helps determine any leaks or damaged valves inside the hydrant.
- Ensure you have a fire hydrant repair kit on hand if you happen to be responsible for maintenance duty because hydrants suffer automobile damage most often in icy weather when traction on roads is the greatest issue.
Bill’s Plumbing & Sewer are your local plumbing experts in Evanston, IL, for fire hydrant repairs & maintenance. We also dabble in residential & commercial plumbing installation, repair, and maintenance across locations in Illinois.
Winters are a trying time for your plumbing and the municipal water lines, so never let your guard down to frozen or bursting pipes. If you need any pipes replaced in your residence or commercial establishment, we are the plumbers to call.
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