Sometimes water towers no longer function or may become too costly or old to maintain. When that happens, it’s time to call in the water tower demolition experts.
Modern water towers have been in use since the mid-19th century, and operate as local water sources during times of heightened demand. Water towers use hydrostatic pressure produced by the elevation of water to push the water into various distribution systems, so they can be used during power outages. However, eventually power is needed to pump water back into the water tower.
Reasons to Contact a Water Tower Demolition Expert
If a water tower is so useful, why would it need to be demolished? Today we’ll look at five reasons why a demolition contractor would demolish a water tower.
1) The Water Tower is No Longer Needed
The first and most common reason why a water tower is demolished is the tower is no longer needed. Reasons for that can be changes to the water distribution system, changes in population, or the creation of newer water reservoirs.
The Tower Removal Process
No matter the reason why a tower is no longer needed, the removal process tends to follow similar steps. Tower demolition differs from other building processes because of the unique constraints posed in taking down a tower.
The water tower may have hazardous materials, complex electronics that may require special care to remove, or present a risk that must be accounted for. Therefore, the first step is to assess any potential safety issued with a complete site survey.
The two common questions in a survey are:
- What precautions and techniques will be needed for the project?
- What legal issues must be managed, such as ownership, permits, or other regulations?
After the survey is complete, water tower demolition experts then move on to disassembly. During this phase the demolition company will preserve building elements that can be sold as scrap metal. This phase requires precision and expertise and often specialized equipment.
Each project will look different, but commonly the deconstruction phase will selectively remove elements of the structure, minimizing the impact on the surrounding environment.
2) New Technology Makes the Tower Obsolete
As with most equipment, new innovations can render older ones obsolete. Sometimes changes to a city’s water distribution and treatment network will mean that a water tower is no longer required to meet the area’s water needs.
Older towers have higher chances of failing inspection. When that happens, the tower must be removed to prevent any safety issues. An example of this happened in 2018 in Coal City, IL, where an old water tower was slated for demolition after failing to pass inspections twice due to the new technology implemented at the local water treatment plant.
3) Renovation of the Tower into a New Attraction
Sometimes local sentiment saves a tower from demolition, converting it into a new attraction. Architects have been enlisted to convert these structures into new uses, sometimes being converted into community spaces, such as restaurants or local attractions.
One example is Chateau d’Eau developed by BHAM design studio that converted a water tower in Belgium. It was coveted into a family home and attempted to preserve many of the existing elements, such as the concrete ceilings and stairs.
4) Demolition to Prevent Safety Issues
Often an aging or unused tower presents safety issues to the surrounding area, either due to its potential for collapse or unauthorized use by locals. In Brunswick County, two towers were slated for demolition by water tower demolition experts after not being used for several years.
Such structures have the potential to fail, especially when they are in remote locations and are not routinely visited by civic employees. There is also a threat of people climbing the tank and injuring themselves.
Other towers are simply no longer used and the land they are on can be converted into a new space. In Carolina Shores, a water tower was torn down and land development companies replaced it with a park.
5) Insufficient Pressure in the Pipelines
Another common reason why water towers are demolished is due to insufficient pressure in the pipelines resulting in the tower not being able to “float” or cycle between filling and draining. Normally a water tower drains during the day and is filled at night, but changes to water systems can make this no longer the case.
Demolition Services in the Western U.S.
Whatever the reason why a water tower must be demolished, water tower demolition experts are the ones you want to have on hand for your project. Elder Demolition offers a wide range of demolition services in Portland, Oregon, throughout the state and in Washington and Montana. Contact us today.