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What's the Purpose of the Water Tower?

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  • #16
    Re: What's the Purpose of the Water Tower?

    In Los Angeles with the canyons and hills on the west side of town it is not unusual to have water towers in the hills that can allow for water pressure in excess of 250 lbs. That is where you need to install several regulators to step down the pressure and always make sure you have a properly working relief valve. I have seen a car hit a fire hydrant in one of these high pressure areas and it's something you never forget.

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    • #17
      Re: What's the Purpose of the Water Tower?

      I was the Mayor of a small town and I can tell you this:
      1. The tower is owned by the city.
      2. They do get cleaned. Ours was on a regular schedule, We switched over to a "direct from the well pump" system when cleaning etc.
      3. The pressure varies. The further you are from the tower, the lower the pressure.
      4. Yes the water freezes, but enough draw keeps from freezing solid. Gets a little "hairy" on a 40 below zero night, tho.

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      • #18
        Re: What's the Purpose of the Water Tower?

        APHCO' I believe those wooden towers you saw on "Dirty Jobs" are for sprinkler systems.

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        • #19
          Re: What's the Purpose of the Water Tower?

          Makes sense.

          But, after the initial dump load is used up, where does sufficient water come from. Maybe they figure that by then the fire truck pumpers will have arrived.

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          • #20
            Re: What's the Purpose of the Water Tower?

            Here's the answer:

            http://www.cooperator.com/articles/2...nks/Page1.html

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            • #21
              Re: What's the Purpose of the Water Tower?

              This is my favorite water tower
              Click image for larger version

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              • #22
                Re: What's the Purpose of the Water Tower?

                Originally posted by APHCO View Post
                Can someone at Rigid find out if that is for domestic water or heating purposes? I bet it is an expansion tank for the hot water heating system.
                it is probably for there sprinkler system
                Charlie

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                • #23
                  Re: What's the Purpose of the Water Tower?

                  check it out.
                  Attached Files

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                  • #24
                    Re: What's the Purpose of the Water Tower?

                    Philadelphia has one of the oldest municipal water systems in the country.
                    In Atlantic City I remember some wooden water mains being taken out in the late 1970s when the first wave of casinos were being built.

                    AC gets its water from reservoirs on the mainland. No hills or mountains around them parts ya know, it's all flat ground.

                    NYC on the other hand doesn't need pumps to move water from its reservoirs , some of which are over 50 miles away. That's because just like out west they make use of the difference in elevation to provide the pressure to deliver the water and pressurize their water mains. By the time the water gets to NYC the pressure is over 300 PSI. By the time the water comes up to the surface from the distribution headers far below ground (over 100 feet), the pressure is still over 100 PSI.

                    The NYC Water Dept used to have an excellent web page all about the workings of their system. With detailed maps and cut-aways of the underground valve pits and distribution stations, etc. But since 9/11 they removed all that, to much information hanging out there where bad people could see it I guess.

                    Anyway, the approx. 60 mile long Tunnel #3 is nearing completion after nearly 40 years of construction (planning started before most of us were born in the 1950s). There is a show on Discovery called Sandhogs about the guys who work under the city building these tunnels.

                    The tanks on large buildings were the buildings water reserve and operated in the same way as a water tower you see around town. I've seen some of those older water tanks in the old hotels in Atlantic City when I was jobbing back in the early 70s, but they are all gone now. All torn down to make way for the casinos.


                    I think that the water company would own the tower, not a small city. If you get your water from American Water Company (their HQ is not far from me) provides water in about 30 states and parts of Canada.
                    Last edited by Bob D.; 04-18-2009, 10:49 PM.
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                    • #25
                      Re: What's the Purpose of the Water Tower?

                      Originally posted by myakka View Post
                      This is my favorite water tower
                      Click image for larger version

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ID:	6642

                      looks a little like a disused one in Mpls, where I grew up, that my friend and I always talked about buying and converting to a house.
                      This is my reminder to myself that no good will ever come from discussing politics or religion with anyone, ever.

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                      • #26
                        Re: What's the Purpose of the Water Tower?

                        What's the Purpose of the Water Tower?



                        So I never get thirsty cuz I'm special.
                        Northern Kentucky Plumbers Twitter Feed | Plumbing Videos

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                        • #27
                          Re: What's the Purpose of the Water Tower?

                          WHEN I WAS IN THE AIR FORCE ON BASE THEY SWITCH OVER ON FRIDAYS
                          AND RAN ON THE TOWER WATER ALL DAY THEN FRI. NITE THEY WOULD GO BACK TO THE CITY MAIN AND REFILL THE TOWER
                          JERRYMAC
                          E-MAILJERRYMAC777@GMAIL.COM
                          CALIF. LIC. PLBG,HEAT,DRAINS,ELECTRIC,WATER HEATER, BOILER, POOL AND SPA HEATER
                          FIRE SPRINKLER CONTRACTOR,
                          SINCE JAN. 1989

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                          • #28
                            Re: What's the Purpose of the Water Tower?

                            Originally posted by JERRYMAC View Post
                            WHEN I WAS IN THE AIR FORCE ON BASE THEY SWITCH OVER ON FRIDAYS
                            AND RAN ON THE TOWER WATER ALL DAY THEN FRI. NITE THEY WOULD GO BACK TO THE CITY MAIN AND REFILL THE TOWER

                            Ahh. For water quality reasons I'm sure.
                            Northern Kentucky Plumbers Twitter Feed | Plumbing Videos

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                            • #29
                              Re: What's the Purpose of the Water Tower?

                              Each local municipality has its own rules for the maintenance of its water towers. In our location the towers or tanks are drained, cleaned, and inspected by State Inspectors every three (3) years. Our city is on a "loop system". s The city by-passes each tower to other towers while this is done and no one even notices. Industrial site are notified as required by State Fire Marshall Regualtions for their fire sprinkler system useage. Those towers and tanks that are located on industrial sites are used for the sprinkler system for that industry or an industrial park. Usually an industrial sites first line of fire defense is city water pressure using hoses within the building at approximately 60-80 p.s.i. Then their fire sprinkler system which will kick in a pump system located at that facility to draw from the water tower, this will usually kick the pressure up to about 175 p.s.i. We used to have a statement that if the sprinkler system could not handle the fire then kiss the building good-bye. By the time the local fire department arrived the fire would be too engulfed for them to fight. Some industrial sites do have their tanks painted to look really nice.

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                              • #30
                                Re: What's the Purpose of the Water Tower?

                                One of the men in my son's Boy Scout Troop is the mannager of several buildings in NYC. He told us the tanks on the buildings are for the fire sprinkler system and have to be insulated (along with the pipes) to prevent freezing. On older buildings it's a real PITA.

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