Case Study: Preparing for an Upcoming Plant Outage

Every year, usually sometime between July and September, manufacturers across the country shut down their plants for a period of one to three weeks, during which important cleaning, maintenance, and component and system maintenance takes place to better meet both short- and long-term goals.

Careful planning and thorough communication are essential for a successful shutdown. Between cleaning, evaluating, testing, maintenance, repair, and replacement, there’s a lot to get done, so it’s important that the entire team is clear on processes and goals. Having a detailed plan for your plant outage maintenance period is just as important, as it will help in prioritizing and assigning tasks.

Recently, DFT® Inc. had the chance to visit one of our clients’ facilities in preparation for the company’s annual shutdown.

Valve and System Inspection


The client had recently installed a new WLC® Check Valve on a raw water intake. As part of our commitment to supporting customers long past valve delivery or installation, we maintain a wide network of valve experts in various regions across the country, and we were happy to be able to assist this client.

During the pre-shutdown visit, our expert inspected the client’s raw water intake WLC® valve and learned that its installation completely solved the client’s water hammer issue; the WLC valve replaced a swing check valve that had been causing problems for almost two years prior.

RELATED: What is Water Hammer?

Though the water hammer issue had been solved and the client had no other problems to report, our expert requested he be allowed to inspect other systems, and their valves, in other parts of their facility. During this impromptu extended inspection, our valve expert noticed something important.

DFT WLC Check valve

In a methane gas system with low flow by design, our team member discovered a potential issue: an 8-inch, 150-pound swing check valve was being used. This wasn’t an issue in and of itself, and it wasn’t causing issues for the client at the time, but it was still problematic; considering the low-flow nature of the system, an 8-inch valve was much too large and, if left as-is, it would eventually cause problems.

Our expert recommended a fix — in this case, a 4-inch Excalibur® Check Valve. The client ordered the recommended valve and scheduled its installation into their next shutdown, thereby preventing the risk of unnecessary downtime and expenditures.

Read Other Success Stories

As an industry-leading manufacturer of silent, spring-assisted check valves, we take pride in our dedication to superior customer service. With our vast network of regional experts on hand to make site visits as needed, we’ll always put in the extra time to ensure your systems run smoothly and reliably.

To learn more about our past work providing innovative valve solutions and valve manufacturing services for various industries, check out our other success stories.