System-Wide Valve Maintenance Program

Beginning today, Monday, November 10th, and continuing on a rotating schedule, crews with the Cape Fear Public Utility’s Water Quality Section will launch a valve exercise and identification program for its nearly 1,100 mile-long water system. As part of CFPUA’s commitment to reliably deliver drinking water, its crews will move throughout the entire system to check nearly 15,000 valves over the course of a three-year period.

The program benefits CFPUA and its customers in several ways. Exercising water valves is an important piece of preventative maintenance. CFPUA crews will test the valves, enabling our Operations team to identify malfunctioning ones and schedule their replacement, improving the infrastructure for everyone’s benefit. This work will especially pay off when a water main break occurs. When one happens, a system of reliable, working valves enables CFPUA crews to reduce the number of customers affected by a break, while cutting down on total repair response time.

Impacts to Service
There will be some minor impacts on service as the work moves through our system. The program work is being conducted during regular business hours to minimize inconvenience to residents in an area where the work is taking place. Those in a work area may also experience some slight discoloration and pressure fluctuations similar to those experienced with a water main break. The discoloration is merely due to the loosening of sediment in the mains. The water remains completely safe to drink. If you wish, you may run the water for a brief period of time until it runs clear.

For maps of where the work is currently being conducted, see the available maps. If you experience issues with your service and are in the mapped area, contact Mike McGill, Chief Communications Officer, at 910-332-6704.
Malfunctioning Valves & Repairs
When malfunctioning valves are found, they will be marked in our program for repair. Because a valve repair requires a service outage with a subsequent precautionary boil water advisory, repairs will be conducted when multiple valves are found in a defined area. This will minimize the impact on customers and increase efficiency. 48-hour notice will be given to customers before the repairs take place. Note: Service is not placed at risk if CFPUA crews know where 1 or 2 random broken valves are located. With 15,000 valves in the system, crews can work around the occasional malfunctioning valve.