San Jose Water Among First to Install Zinc-coated Iron Pipe

A contractor for San Jose Water Company in San Jose, Calif., has taken delivery of more than 3,000 ft of zinc-coated iron pipe from AMERICAN Ductile Iron Pipe, making it among the nation’s first utilities to install zinc-coated pipe.

“Previous generations invested in the water system so we could enjoy reliable water service,” said Craig Giordano, San Jose Water Company’s vice president of engineering. “I believe that the use of zinc-coated ductile iron pipe is one way to provide long-lasting value.”

Like San Jose Water Company, more than 600 water utilities across America have iron water pipe that has been in continuous service since the late 1800s, when cast iron was the pipe material of choice. “In the mid-1900s, we introduced ductile iron pipe, an advancement that allowed us to make stronger pipe with more flexibility,” Gaston said. “Zinc is the latest revolution in iron pipe.”

“Utility customers should applaud this forward-thinking initiative by the utility, knowing that its pipe, with the added protection of zinc, will outlast any other pipe on the market,” said Maury D. Gaston, engineer and veteran water industry expert with AMERICAN Ductile Iron Pipe.

AMERICAN has sold zinc-coated pipe to customers overseas since the 1980s. “We’ve seen the benefits of this advanced pipe technology used in a variety of environments around the world,” Gaston said. “This product will serve San Jose Water Company well for generations to come.”

Zinc pipe, manufactured by applying a coating of zinc to the pipe’s outer surface, will be used to upgrade the utility’s system, which now consists largely of iron pipe, some of which has been in service for more than a century.

In addition to its long service life, ductile iron pipe with a cement-mortar lining inside is known for its sustainability. “Iron pipe is made from recycled iron and steel; requires less energy for pumping, and therefore is less expensive than plastic pipe to operate; and is the only pressure pipe to be SMaRT certified by the Institute for Market Transformation to Sustainability,” Gaston said.

San Jose Water Company is not alone in its need for upgrades and repairs to its water system. It is, however, among those setting the standard in making needed upgrades. “San Jose Water Company is a leader in the water industry,” Gaston said. “Zinc-coated ductile iron pipe is the right choice – the wise choice – and utility customers will benefit from it for decades to come.”

AMERICAN Ductile Iron Pipe is a division of AMERICAN Cast Iron Pipe, headquartered in Birmingham, Alabama. In addition to ductile iron pipe, the company manufactures spiral-welded steel pipe, valves and hydrants for the water works industry and steel pipe for the oil and gas industries. Its diversified product line also includes static castings and high performance fire pumps.

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