Condensate Pipe & Vault Assessment

Kutztown University Kutztown, PA



Kutztown University (KU), following a central steam plant and distribution piping replacement, sought to attain a condition assessment of its manhole vaults and condensate piping across campus, in order to allocate funds and prioritize projects to keep their system operating efficiently and reliably.

We were able to deliver a comprehensive solution, by surveying KU’s 40 manhole vaults and 2.5 miles of underground condensate piping both by visual assessment and via aerial infrared thermographics.

Solution Details

Site inspections documented structural, infiltration, safety, and insulation deficiencies. Aerial infrared thermographics identified undocumented expansion loops and revealed no significant leaks other than hot manholes resulting from a lack of proper pipe insulation.

After collection, as-built drawings were completed for every manhole. Each drawing contained 3D isometric, plan, and section views. We customized our facility condition assessment software to store condition information for each manhole, including photos and a prioritization matrix that weighted the condition of each manhole’s contents to establish a prioritized project schedule. We estimated repair costs, and called attention to those projects identified as “immediate” repairs.

Since the assessment, manholes having been identified as being in the poorest condition have had a more detailed structural survey completed to determine the extent of deterioration. Repair drawings have been prepared, including concrete patching and repair, galvanic protection to reinforcing steel, and improvements to prevent salt water from roadways from entering the manholes. 

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40 manhole vaults surveyed & assessed

48% of vaults had energy losses from water infiltration