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Wells Precast – Case Study

October 31, 2019
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In September of 2018, Wells Precast, a precast solutions provider in Albany, Minnesota had come to a crossroads with their efforts to deal with their slurry water generated from washing down their equipment. Their old filter press was no longer keeping up with their demand, and it was also in a separate building a few hundred yards from where their main wash-out location was. Maintenance lead David Brannen contacted Full Circle Water, and a site visit was scheduled.

The initial conversation centered around their average water usage. For each 10-hour work day, they were going through around 120 to 150 gallons per minute (GPM) of washout water. They were also concerned about the amount of downtime due to equipment maintenance. They wanted to eliminate downtime as much as possible and utilize as much of their existing infrastructure as possible.

Full Circle Water took this data, and proposed two 20-cubic-feet semi-automatic filter presses on mezzanines, with a mixer and a PH balancing skid. This provided a redundancy to eliminate downtime and easily accommodated their projected flow rates. With a little teamwork and ingenuity, a plan was also created to retrofit their existing weir system pits to accommodate the two filter presses.

“We ultimately chose to go with Full Circle water for two reasons,” Brannen said. “They were willing to fit their solution into our existing infrastructure, which the other companies weren’t willing to do. Also, we liked the idea of them being a local business, and we felt like we wanted to honor that.”

The manufacturing phase of the project took around two months to complete. During the course of the installation, we discovered that the screen that was going to be used to remove the aggregates from the water was not going to be substantial enough, so the team decided to order a small screw press. “We ended up having around 3 yards of aggregates a day, so the screen just wasn’t going to handle the workload,” Brannen said.

The equipment was installed over a period of a couple of weeks as we worked around Wells Precast’s current operations. “We appreciated that they met the projected timeline, and worked with us on our site preparation,” Brannen said.

Because Wells specializes in custom work using multiple colors, it is hard to reuse the water for mixing. Instead, it is re-used for wash-down and any surplus is pH balanced and goes back to the city. Regular maintenance includes dropping cakes on both of the presses each day, and a good wash-down every other day.

“It’s working good,” Brennan said when discussing the new Full Circle Water equipment. “It’s the right size solution for the space we have and our workload, and the quality of the water is unbelievable.”