5 questions you should ask yourself before buying a water treatment plant.

Posted on August 21, 2017

Thoroughness is necessary to carry out this type of project; therefore, some requirements should be taken into account when buying a drinking water treatment plant (DWTP).

1. For which types of applications do I need a DWTP?

Categorize the water according to drinking water quality standards depending on the final use.

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The water purification is a very important process since it provides ready-to consume water such as tap water or process water for industries and laboratories.

A water purification plant achieves 2 main objectives:

A) Improving the water quality from the supply source according to the final use requirements:

  • Domestic or urban use: water consumption in our diet, cleaning of our homes, clothes washing, hygiene and personal hygiene.
  • Industrial use: laboratories, energy sector, agri-food industry.
  • Agricultural and livestock uses.
  • In the less common cases, environmental and recreational uses such as swimming pools, street cleaning, public fountains, ornamental ponds, parks and gardens irrigation.
B) Having access to new drinking water sources, either by catching water from rivers and wells or even from rainwater collection.

There are many different treatments and combinations allowing the treatment of specific compounds and the water characteristics as a whole. Sectors such as the food, pharmaceutical or energy industries demand the highest quality levels, thus implying extreme caution in the production, monitoring and control of purified water.

The control is performed through several regulations and standards related to water quality depending on its final use. We highlight the following standards:

The RD 1620/2007 (Spanish Decree) for reused treated wastewater (not suitable for human consumption).

Reuse water for agricultural irrigation ISO 16075-1: 2015 (not suitable for human consumption).

Water for human consumption EU Directive 98/83/EC and Royal Decree 140/2003 (Spanish Decree)

Waters for the pharmaceutical industry and laboratories:

  • ASTM D1193 2011 Standard (American Society for Testing and Materials).
  • ISO Standard 3696 (International Organization for Standardization).
  • CLSI Standard NCCLS (Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute).
  • EP and USP Standards (European Pharmacopoeia and American Pharmacopoeia).

The WHO and the USEPA (United States Environmental Protection Agency) also provide recommendations for the water reuse and purification based on multiple experiences around the world.

2. How to know which treatment is the most suitable?

Consider the origin of raw water.

Until its collection, water acquires salts and mineral compounds as well as non-sedimentable substance and microbial life, giving its properties.

The safety of drinking water is guaranteed by checking the quality of inlet and outlet water.

A previous study is highly recommended to be carried out. This analytics has a very low cost compared to:

  • Knowledge of the process to perform.
  • Saving of investment costs.
  • Guarantee to achieve the required outlet water quality.

The characteristics from sampling depend on the objective pursued as well as the type of sample.

First, the water microbiological quality (presence of organic substances such as algae bacteria, fungi, yeast, etc.) and the water chemical quality (presence of minerals such as aluminum, mercury, lead, iron, fluoride chlorine, nitrites, nitrates ...) shall be assessed.

3. What type of impurities should I eliminate?

Consider the purpose of treated water.

PUR-FF-CA

As may be obvious, depending on the application given to the water, different parameters should be treated and regulations should be respected, as long as there is a regulation for the case study.

For example: water exclusively used for irrigation is benefited with a content rich in nitrates, whereas it must be much more controlled in a water for human consumption, which can alter the people health (fixation of oxygen in blood.)

However and in general terms, there are certain parameters which affect pipes and electromechanical equipment of the plant and will always undergo a treatment. Thus, we will focus primarily on aspects such as turbidity, microbial concentration or water alkalinity.

Salher® compact water purification plants (references and technical data sheets): https://www.salher.com/en/products/purification-and-water-reuse-systems/188-water-purification-treatment-plants

Salher® disinfection systems (references and technical data sheets): https://www.salher.com/en/products/purification-and-water-reuse-systems/201-disinfection-and-oxidation-systems

4. What is my consumption forecast ?

Identify the supply volume needed in the short, medium and long term as well as possible seasonal fluctuations.

PUR-MINI-RO

For a proper sizing of the purification treatment plant, it is essential to correctly calculate current and future consumption demand (short / medium term). There are some equipment such as membrane cartridge and GFRP prefabricated water tanks which enable to expand the DWTP.

In that way, the designer and manufacturer of the plant shall recommend the most appropriate equipment to the existing needs thanks to his experience and a good communication with the client.

Together with the analytics of the water to treat, they will have to determine the following parameters:

  • Daily flow and / or hour flow.
  • Peak flow.
  • Number of operational hours of the plant.
  • Level of plant automation.
  • Quality parameters of treated or final water.

5. Which maintenance needs will have the purification plant?

Integrate the cost of maintenance into the overall investment budget.

PUR-MAXI-RO

A maintenance budget is a good investment for the optimization of production costs.

It is therefore necessary to define the degree of preventive maintenance of our plant at the design stage. Thus, there is a wide range of possibilities from a complete automation for controls to a manual equipment cleaning and management, which will depend on the desired investment and the real possibilities of management and revision.

In any case, given the importance of maintaining the plant in good condition, it is advisable to always have, at least, a certain autonomy level and to limit the manual maintenance to visual checks, replenishment of consumables and specific checks of equipment.

So important will be, during the design phase, anticipating maintenance (programming, bypass, spare equipment ...) and the subsequent management and periodic review of the plant by the users during the operating phase

If you need assessment or more information, do not hesitate to contact us through this form or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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Wastewater treatment plant engineering – Liquid/solids separation equipment for industrial and municipal process applications – Surface waters – Groundwater – Water reuse – Drinking water – Hydrocarbon and oil water separation.

 
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