Flow Management Devices


It is a well documented and researched fact, that there exist considerable amounts of air in municipal water pipelines. In fact, the entry, control, and release of air from pipelines are a major, though often, the hidden problem in pipelines used for water supply1.  Furthermore, air valves require regular maintenance, but in practice, this is rarely undertaken and there are numerous instances of their leaking and/or failing to operate correctly. In certain cases, the vibration of the valves during start-up or shut-down of pumps can cause air to be drawn into a pipeline – the exact opposite of what is intended1. Air also finds its way into our municipal water pipes through the enormous amount of repair work that is constantly being done on them and the aging infrastructure exacerbates the problem of ruptured water mains.

These billions of dollars of buried infrastructure (some more than 100 years old) normally serve us so well that they are overlooked, “out of sight, out of mind”. The backlog of repairs and replacement has been characterized by Ontario’s Ministry of Public Infrastructure Renewal as a ‘water infrastructure deficit’. The water infrastructure deficit in Ontario has been estimated by the Province’s own Expert Strategy Water Panel as between $30 and $40 billion. 2

The collection of published information and discussions with practitioners have revealed many issues related to this problem, but our focus is less on remedying the problem on the municipal side of the water supply and more so on the user side. However, it’s still important to understand the underlying reason how the problem of air in water pipes is created and the impact it ultimately has on the end user. When water efficiency is discussed it centers on installing water efficient fixtures, but this does not address the issue of air in water because it provides efficiency use after having passed the meter. We are concerned with the treatment of water efficiency before it is measured by the end user’s meter. To that end, we identify and are concerned with the key issue with air in water that has a direct impact on end users.


The Problem

Why is air a problem in pipelines? The collection of published information and discussions with practitioners have  revealed some of the following issues related to the presence of air in pipelines:

  • The presence of air changes the structure of flow turbulence and possibly the wall shear as well.1
  • Air bubbles introduce vertical momentum into the flow due to their buoyancy and may thus have significant effects on the flow field. 1
  • In hydraulic transients, the presence of large air pockets results in pressure waves that are strongly damped and deformed. However, it has also been found that small accumulations of air may have an adverse effect on pressure transients, actually enhancing the surge pressures experienced. 1
  • Air accumulation in a system may lead to disruption of the flow and such effects as blow-out or blow-back. For instance, air entrained at a hydraulic jump may not be able to move downstream with the flow and instead ‘blow-back’ through the jump. This can lead to vibration and structural damage and cause instabilities of the water surface. 1
  • Air can produce false readings on measuring devices. 1

The presence of air in your water pipeline changes the structure of water “flow turbulence” as it travels through the distribution infrastructure. Due to the entrapped air’s buoyancy, instabilities are introduced to the water surface’s vertical momentum. These instabilities cause deformities in the water flow field and adversely impacts turbulence, causing an increase in water velocity.



Why is air a problem in pipelines? Air can produce false readings on measuring devices1. Water meters have changed little since their beginning and have a major fault in their design –Simply put, air causes turbulence and ultimately this turbulent flow passes through your meter, producing inaccurate readings.

In other words, water meters cannot effectively measure turbulent water, so they end up measuring higher consumption than what you actually consume and thus you end up being overcharged for water that you haven’t actually used – what we call forced consumption.



We have access to flow management devices with patented technology that is customized for your environment and positively impacts the flow characteristics of water as it travels to and through your meter. By placing the FMD just downstream of your water meter, it uses this minuscule amount of air in conjunction with its oscillation process to reduce the turbulence by breaking the air into smaller particles.

By forcing your flow through the FMD there is an increase in Velocity downstream of the FMD (Venturi Effect increases the velocity of the water flow through the FMD to offset pressure changes); and Laminar Flow upstream of the meter. This fragmentation process reduces the turbulence, allowing the water meter reading to be more accurate and correcting your billable consumption resulting in lower utility charge.


Every FMD is custom engineered to the specifications of your existing water infrastructure. Our consultants will complete a Site Evaluation to procure the necessary data required for our analysis. This data will be reviewed by our technicians and they will direct manufacturing as to what is needed to provide your facility with its customized solution.

Water rates have grown, in many regions, by more than 100% over the last 10 years, significantly impacting your business’ bottom line.

Water rates have grown, in many regions, by more than 100% over the last 10 years, significantly impacting your business’ bottom line. Take control of your water cost with the FMD. The FMD is an innovative technology that has delivered savings up to 15% and has yielded return on investments between 6 months to 3 years.  Our FMDs have a 20 plus year life expectancy and most are warrantied for 10 years.

Features & Benefits for Your Buildings/Businesses :

  • Lower water bills
  • Rapid return on investment
  • Increased net operating income
  • Increase value of building
  • 10-year warranty
  • Savings are immediate
  • 20 Plus years Life expectancy