Florida is a hot, sun, and temperature climate almost year round. That’s bad news for chlorine contact chambers, as maintenance costs get more expensive with the heat and UV eating up the chlorine.
Keeping chlorine chambers shaded would be greatly beneficial to keeping the UV rays and heat down, not just for saving on chlorine costs, but also for helping keep down the Trihalomethane (TTHM) count, as these carcinogens are strictly regulated in public water systems.
The folks at the waste water treatment plant in Bradenton, Florida were concerned about these costs and risks, and wanted to find a simple, cost effective solution for the problem. They asked Chuck Baxter, owner of J. Mosher Enterprises (previously owned by Jim Mosher), in Sarasota, to find them an answer. Mosher Enterprises provides industrial services, repairs, and custom products, catering to water treatment plants and other related industries.
After investigating what type of shade systems are available, Chuck wasn’t impressed with the choices available. The most common option used, are pool cage type enclosures. The screen is a bug screen material and not designed as a shade screen material. It rips and tears easily, and damages easily in storms. The frames are light weight box tubing, and are not repairable if damaged. Screening is held in place with rubber splines that get hard and rot after time. The box type enclosure restricts access to associated piping, valves, etc. So, a pool cage type enclosure wasn’t the most ideal answer.
“Shade balls” were supposed to be the latest, greatest thing, and were considered a good idea for very large uncontained areas, but now, it has been found, that the plastic leaches toxins into the water, which is not good. And, if a hurricane comes, there is no way to retrieve them, and cleaning them is impossible. So, the shade balls were not an answer either.
Tarp-type covers are also very limited, holding a lot of water and air, tear easily, as well as difficult and expensive to repair. They are not removable in case of hurricanes or other severe weather. Their permanent frames must be made from a large steel support structure. Not an ideal design for water plant applications. So, these were dismissed as an unsuitable choice as well.
As a very discriminate problem solver, Chuck went looking for a particular type of sunscreen protection system, something designed for just this type of application. It had to be a strong, but light weight screen material, both UV and Chlorine resistant. It had to be a breathable material, allowing it to float in the air and not become a wind sail. It had to utilize marine grade 316 stainless steel hardware, so as not to rust or corrode. The frame work had to utilize the existing aluminum railing system, so that no other type of special frame had to be made to support the screen. Last, but not least, the screen had to be removable, should a hurricane threaten.
This was a pretty tall order and wasn’t available from anyone, anywhere. No such high quality, sunscreen protection system existed and Chuck wasn’t going to settle for anything less. He decided to put together a package of the highest quality materials, those that suited the needs of the industry and offer it himself.
He contacted the best industrial screen material maker in the world, which happens to be right here in the good ol’ USA. Dewitt Fabric has been an American manufacturer of the finest fabric and screen material in the world since 1977. They manufacture the strongest UV and chemical resistant sunscreen fabric available. Made from a high quality UV resistant, polypropylene knit fabric, it will not fray or unravel if damaged, unlike cheaper woven-type materials. The black, 90% shade protection comes with a 1-year factory warranty from defects and purchasers can expect 5+ years of service.
Chuck has not designed “pool cage” type enclosures. His design hangs over the chambers, using an aluminum railing system, with the screen laced on with a marine grade, 316 stainless steel cable around the perimeter, like a trampoline, and grommet pinch pleats (GPP) as extra supports. Additional 316 marine grade stainless steel cable and hardware help support the center areas.
All hardware is 316 stainless steel, including the concrete anchors, snap clips, thimbles, and crimp clamps. Side curtains can be easily added for protection from lower angle sun entry, such as early morning and late day rays. As the screen is laced directly to the railings, it is also easily removable, if necessary.
The railing system utilizes the same industrial type of aluminum used by all facilities, so modifications and/or additions can be made easily, without disrupting existing railings.
Each screen system is custom made to fit the chamber’s existing hand rail system. If a rail is not already present, Chuck will design and install them, to provide a complete system installation.
Chuck does not “cut corners” in these systems and does not use any cheap materials, everything is top of the line. His screen system is much stronger and more cost effective than any pool cage type enclosure. It provides a great solution for putting shade on the chambers, without inhibiting access to any piping, valves or pumps. This sunscreen system also works well on sulfuric acid and other liquid-type storage tanks.
Pricing fees start at $6.25 per square foot, including installation. The initial cost for saving chlorine will pay for itself quickly, and will then remain as a cost-free investment for many more years.
Finally,—- a cost effective solution to shade and cool your chlorine contact chambers that will save you money and make you money.