Revitalizing Campus Dormitory Plumbing

NASSCO Report – Revitalizing Campus Dormitory Plumbing with CIPP

In the heart of upstate New York, a state college faced a unique plumbing challenge that had plagued its dormitories for years. As the institution prepared for the upcoming school year, the pervasive bad smell emanating from certain dormitories became a pressing concern. Routine plumbing maintenance revealed that the aging sewer pipes, dating back to the 1970s, were in a state of disrepair. Cracks along the top of the pipes, structural weaknesses, and corrosion were identified as the culprits behind the persistent odor.

In a race against time, the college sought the expertise of NuFlow Services of Upstate New York. With less than a month before the start of the new school year and limited access to the affected pipes, traditional pipe replacement was not feasible. Instead, the team at NuFlow recommended cured-in-place pipe (CIPP) as the most effective and efficient solution to restore the pipes and eliminate the odor problem once and for all. The complex project, however, presented several critical challenges for the project.

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Time Constraints: The impending school year start date left very little time. The project had to be completed swiftly to avoid disruptions to the students and staff.

Complex Pipe Configuration: The sewer pipe layout in the affected buildings was intricate, making it challenging to implement a one-size-fits-all solution.

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Limited Access: Due to the nature of the project and the ongoing campus activities, access to the pipes was severely restricted, necessitating a minimally invasive approach.

Materials and Scheduling: Coordinating the delivery of materials and aligning schedules with the short production schedule further complicated the project production.

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To address the challenges, a comprehensive solution that combined innovative techniques and advanced equipment was devised.

Revitalizing Campus Dormitory Plumbing

First, a thorough and meticulous cleaning of the pipes using millers and jetting to remove debris and prepare for the lining process commenced. Next, three contained excavation areas for each of the buildings were identified to minimize destruction and limit the extent of the construction. Given the complex pipe configuration, a combination of CIPP lining methods was employed. This included a product with a single sluice and hybrid drum with a sluice attachment for the main lines, all cured using UV technology. Pull-in-place lining was used for the intricate lateral lines inside the buildings. Micro-robotic cutters were employed to reinstate the lines, ensuring that the renovated pipes functioned seamlessly.

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The team successfully revitalized a total of 990 ft of sewer lines within a challenging three-week timeframe thanks to CIPP, a variety of methods, and advanced equipment. As the completion date loomed, students began moving into the dormitories, relieved to find that odor problem had been resolved. The solution not only eliminated the bad smell, but resolved a long-standing problem and restored the sewer system to optimal working condition, ensuring a seamless start to the new school year.

Tom Bowman is the president of NuFlow Technologies and chair of NASSCO’s Lateral and Building Pipe Committee.

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