We are all trying to tackle the problem of wipes in the wastewater network which causes pump malfunctions, maintenance problems, etc.
Outside of communication efforts, the effect of which is minimal, does anyone have data on:
- quantifying the impact on operations (objectifying the number of troubleshooting incidents due to wipes...),
- simple technical solutions (so as to avoid having to implement physical screening),
- effective public awareness campaigns ?
Thanks again for your feedback.
The wastewater network should not collect toxic waste (oil, chemicals, fuels. ..) nor solid components such as wipes. Consumers don’t think they are doing the wrong thing by throwing them down the toilet because the packaging is almost always marked BIODEGRADABLE.
You need to take action at the source.
Regularly alert your customers to the problems caused by wipes and encourage them to dispose of them with their household garbage (message on the utility bill, municipal website…).
Regularly inspect the waste collected during cleaning of the network and pumping stations.
Increase awareness among local residents if there are a lot of wipes in the system.
Contact the manufacturers and encourage them to modify their packaging labels: wipes are biodegradable but only after several weeks…
Then there’s always specialized pump impellers for solid waste removal!
For pumps in wastewater network lift stations, if you have wipes, the best solution in an N impeller from Xylem. Here is a video link https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RiLcZv0FjLY
Actually the N-pump/impeller does not solve everything.
A little community awareness through the mailbox or on the utility bill works well too—otherwise a DIP system (direct in-line pump) appears to be better equipped to tackle this type of effluent, in theory anyway.
Indeed the "DIP" works pretty well for the wipes issue. But they still have a long way to go to ensure impermeability between the hydraulics and the motor and to provide decent performance.
Hello, I operate a small WWTP for a couple of small towns in Central WA State where we have been battling baby wipes for the last 6 years. We have a conveyance line which runs about 3 miles from one of the small towns to the WWTP. To help with screening before the wastewater enters said conveyance line we were using a finescreen. The problem with this was our finescreen was exposed to the elements (not in a building) and where I live there are extreme high temps and extreme low temps. So in the summer when temperatures are high, the baby wipes would dry so fast inside of the finescreen and become extremely hard essentially causing the finescreen to clog. Keep in mind I operate a small WWTP with an average daily flow of .15mgd with .06mgd coming from the town which utilizes our conveyance line, so my point is we receive such low flows that there would be long down times when the finescreen was not operating and that's when the wipes would harden and clog. So in the winter instead of drying and hardening, the wipes would freeze and harden (obviously) causing our finescreen to clog once again. After unplugging our finescreen every few days for months and months I finally decided to take it offline and utilize our backup manual barscreen. Well now, the problem with this is we are receiving so many baby wipes that either I, or my assistant operator, have to drive out to said barscreen and manually clean it no less than once a day. We have sent out multiple letters and gone to local daycares/business explaining the problems we're having with the wipes with no luck or cooperation. So after years of fighting this battle I decided to budget in a sewer chewer in replacement of our finescreen for this fiscal year. We are currently waiting for the temps to come above freezing to move forward with the installation of said sewer chewer. I will post and update when the work is complete. It's a never ending battle but keep fighting the good fight.
In Canada we have a Wipes problem. How to fix it? Changing peoples embedded habits is a hard process, though we do have the answer. www.cleanends.com provides an awesome solution to the problem. By allowing those that are trying to keep both Hygiene top priority as well as Caring About the Environment. Our lotion that can be dispensed on hands, kleenex, toilet paper or paper towel allows for a diverse set of awesome ways to care for your Eco-friendly and hygiene ways.
Clean Ends is the complete replacement for all wipes in a nature loving way. The kind of no-wipe, wipe.
To find more details go to www.cleanends.com
To find out about more issues from wipes. Make a google alert for wet wipes, baby wipes, flushable wipes, and hygiene wipes. These will give you daily updates of world news and issues that wipes are creating.
Barry Orr of London Ontario is another very smart resource to combat the wipes problem.
Metro Vancouver has done several tests with marketing and advertising to try rid their city of the issue.. I know that people do not want to be told not to do something without a alternative. Clean Ends is the alternative that replaces wipes.
Feel free to contact for further details at: