FPT50 Controller
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Weftec 2015 New Product Debut

Weftec 2015 New Product Debut

Waterline Controls Display

Waterline Controls will display our Custom Liquid Level Controls at booth #1794 the Weftec 2015 Chicago Show, starting on September 26th. There will be a demonstration unit operating at this year’s Weftec, the largest annual water quality exhibition in the world, along with a complete presentation of our full line of industry leading advanced water level control systems and sensors.

Weftec 2015

WEFTEC 2015 will be held at McCormick Place in Chicago, Ill., from September 26-30, 2015. With the latest cutting-edge technologies from more than 1,000 leading companies. Waterline Controls is proud to be represented at the largest annual water quality exhibition in the world.

Live Demonstrations

A simple demonstration unit will shows some of our advanced operations and the simplicity of use of the system. The WLC has been through rigorous testing, demonstrating a dependable minimum 15 year life cycle. The reliability is backed up with a 5 Year Limited Warranty.

We’ll work directly with you to get your custom build designed.

Don’t hesitate to learn more by stopping by Weftec booth #1794 any time during the show for a chat and demonstration. Our new compact systems have the ability to drastically change how water levels are controlled in industrial environments by both incorporation in OEM systems, eliminating a separate control system and adding reliability with almost no maintenance for a more accurate, reliable and economical solution than has been available anywhere until now. See you at the show!

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Cooling Towers found with Legionnaire's Disease in New York

Cooling Towers found with Legionnaire’s Disease in New York

New York City has announced that 2 more people have died from Legionnaire’s disease, bringing the casualty total to 10 so far, of the one hundred people infected in the South Bronx.New York Rooftop Water Tanks
Five separate cooling towers have so far been identified as being infected, since the outbreak started last month.
Even though New York Mayor, Bill de Blasio has said he was confident they have identified all sources of the current outbreak, he has also ordered all cooling towers in New York be inspected within the next 2 weeks. The logistical nightmare of this should keep inspectors quite busy for awhile. Anyone who owns or manages a building utilizing a cooling tower is required to test and if needed disinfect it. Those who do not do so will be subject to misdemeanor charges for failing to promptly comply.
The Mayor, in an attempt to settle those with public safety concerns said “I want to emphasize at the outset that the vast majority of buildings in New York City do not have these cooling towers.” He continued with details of the scope of the issue “They tend to be found in bigger, more modern buildings, but any building that does have one of these cooling towers will be subject to this order.”
Keeping a cooling tower safe and free from bacteria or other contaminants is very important. Cleanup requires soaking the cooling tower with chlorine for 16 hours, draining it, and then scrubbing it clean.
According to Rich Parker, the president of a cleaning company dispatched to the Opera House Hotel, “The water circulates wholly within the tower and does not come into contact with air conditioning units.”
“The air conditioning units is a whole separate water system.” He expressed confidence that the system was safe and that the cleaning was because they required it, not because there was any bacteria found or suspected at the Hotel.
Four cooling towers in the South Bronx tested positive for the bacteria and were fully cleaned already. Although Mayor de Blasio says he is confident that the disease cannot be spread through drinking water, cleaning specialist know that the bacteria can breed wherever there is standing warm water that has the possibility of being inhaled as a mist. According to certified water technologist Steven Serrano, as reported by NY1’s Erin Clarke “Legionella Pneumophila thrives in a temperature between 77 degrees all the way to 115.”
The outbreak once again reminds us upkeep and maintenance of your cooling tower is of the utmost importance. The damp and warm environment that the bacteria needs to thrive is found in cooling towers, which must be cleaned regularly to prevent the bacteria from taking root.
Dr. Jay Varma, Deputy Commissioner for Disease Control for the New York City Health Department says the city delayed creating the new regulation sooner, partly due to the trouble in identifying the cause, which he said can be difficult in many cases. He did not known how often cooling towers were the source of the disease. “The challenge is we don’t know where most infections normally come from,” he said.
Officials say they are confident that they have identified and addressed this outbreak, but have not yet determine specifically if the infected towers were the cause of the infections or if it was one or several that actually infected people, though the disease was found in at least 5 towers so far. the cleaning rush will now most likely cover up the actual spear of the disease, as many people may just clean them as a precaution while waiting for available personnel to test them. Once officials notice an increase in diagnoses an outbreak may already be underway. Legionella Pneumophila has an incubation period of up to 10 days, making tracking potentially quite difficult.
Cleaning your tower regularly and maintaining it properly is not just cost effective, but potentially life saving.

Cooling Tower Vs Chiller
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Identifying Water in Transit in Cooling Towers

Identifying Water in Transit in Cooling Towers

While our system is simple to use and install, some theories and terms can be good to review before proceeding. With this in mind, let’s talk about the ‘hidden’ water in a typical cooling tower system. The terms we will be talking about here are “Freeboard” and “Water in Transit”.
Freeboard – This is a civil engineering term used to describe the distance between the normal operating level of an environment and the space allowable to fill without overflowing any reservoir. For our purposes we will use this term to describe the distance between the minimum operating level (that is an acceptable level to allow all the other features and functions of the system to operate properly, such as pumps and valves and piping) and the overflow level (the point at which it dumps to waste and cannot be recovered).
Water In Transit – Describes the water moving through the system while it is operating, that has the potential to get back to the basin/holding tank and filling the freeboard.

Needed Calculations


How to calculate and evaluate freeboard and water in transit
The needed space can be calculated by measuring the water in transit in gallons and then figuring how much space is needed inside the basin/tank.

  1. Calculate the volume in the pipes by using the volume of a cylinder formula where the measurements are in feet.
  2. Multiple that cubic dimensions by 7.5 (since there are 7.48 gallons of water in a cubic foot).
  3. Calculate how much water is in every inch of the tank by using Length x Width x 0.0833 x 7.5 or using the volume formula where the height of 1” = 0.0833Ft.

The rule of thumb for cooling tower water in the system is one half of the GPM of the tower.


This is a good estimate and now it should be validated by setting a level in the tank as a minimum operating level and see if there is going to be enough freeboard to capture the water in transit. We all tend to want an extra 2 or 3 inches for whatever reason so add the space if you have it. This freeboard will be required to capture this water every time the system turns off. When or if the demand changes because someone adds more piping (equals more water in transit) or more water capacity in any form then the required freeboard changes in the same manner.

Dangers of Older Level Control Systems

Corrosion capacitive sensor

Corrosion on a capacitive sensor – typical after ! year

Just because the system is adding water it does not mean that the volume of water is increasing. The water that is being added is caused by the need to dump water or water evaporating, so water in is equal to water out. Typically, setting a water level in these types of environments should not be set up on a long term basis with a mechanical float switch of any sort, you should use a system like WaterLine Controls. The reason is because float switches are mechanical and set to operate at the minimum operating level but whenever the system is turned off the float switch is stressed in the opposite direction. This occurrence over time affects the set point but also has the potential for mechanics of some float switches to fail, allowing water to run freely into the tank and out the overflow.
With our WLC System there are no floats in the water, it is a sensor driven system where the water is free to move up and down the probes and this up and down movement has no effect on the probes since they do not move. Also, with a WLC system, there is the ability to send the sensor activation points to an automation system or BAC so the set points in the tank can been “seen” electronically and acted upon, if necessary – That cannot be accomplished with a mechanical float.

Some Real World Examples

Recently, we have been running into cases where the operator is replacing an old water level controller that either had water volume control issues in the past or the demand on the system has changed because someone has added volume requirement capacity. When they go to put a WLC unit in, or for that matter any level controller back in, every time the system turns off the cooling tower basin/holding tank overflows into the drains and the excess water then goes to waste.
We have been told many stories about these catastrophic float switch failures where companies lose tens of thousands of gallons of water and thousands of dollars. This next example is where the demand had changed and the level was dropped to accommodate the change. In this case the water was set in the original design to be an air barrier so as to force all the air through the fill material. When they lowered the level that barrier disappeared and air would now take the least path of resistance under the fill between the fill and the water level. More airflow along the bottom caused the fill to dry out since there was now more airflow across this area from lower resistance. This now caused all of those other issues related to dried out fill and poor air movement through the fill reducing efficiency. The only way to make this operate as designed is to add an external tank to capture the added water in transit.

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Fire Protection Water Tank Level Controller System

Fire Protection Water Tank Level Controller System

Fire SafetyYour Fire Protection System is dependent on assuring your water reserve requirements are met at all times:

You really need look no further than the revolutionary
Electronic Sensors and Solid State controllers from Waterline Controls

Fire Water TankTypical regulations usually include languarge such as:

Regardless of use, all tanks shall be equipped with a device that will ensure that the tank contains the designated amount of water for fire flow duration as determination by the fire department”

Water Storage Tanks are an integral part of fire protection systems and the use of an above ground water storage tank that is correctly sized for the application could make the difference in an emergency situation and may be required by local fire code as a secondary on-site water supply for automatic fire sprinkler systems also known as a break tank.  A break tank is a water tank providing suction to a fire pump, but the tank’s capacity or size is less than that required by the fire protection systems served.

50 ft. sensor wire
Sensor Low Voltage Raceway
TO AUTOMATION SYSTEM – 2 for each function plus
2 for fault conditions. (see truth table for BAS wire quantities)
AC Power Input
Internal Relays (N.O.)
are rated 30 amps
at 250VAC.
Low Level Alarm
* See written specification for more details.
* Contact the factory for Custom Sensor requirements.
Reference – BLACK
3″ Pipe Clamp
used as adjustment sleeve
4″ Slip Fitting
(Slip x Male NPT)
Maximum Operating Level
Minimum Operating Level
Low Alarm
Custom Fitting
Low Alarm – BROWN
Minimum Operating Level – WHITE
Maximum Operating Level – RED
5/8″ Equalizer
Vent Hole (2)
1. The 3″ PVC Pipe needs to be at least 2″ longer than the longest Sensor tip.
2. Adjustment occurs by moving the 3″ PVC Pipe up or down and tightening the
clamp so it rests on the Custom Fitting.
Operating range
4″ NTP
3″ PVC Pipe cut to length
4″ Threader into the tank
High Alarm
High Alarm – GREEN
High Level Alarm
Fill to
Reservoir or Tank
“Y” Strainer
110VAC activated valve
as specified
Service Level Control
Service Level Fill Control with Low and High Alarm
Low-Low Alarm
Low-Low Alarm – BLUE
Low-Low Level Alarm
or Temp (optional)
Internal alarm
with silencer switch
WLC 4000 Series
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Water Tank Level Controller High Water Alarm

Water Tank Level Controller High Water Alarm

Our water supply system and its infrastructure are intended to plan for the collection, storage, distribution and transmission, including treatment, of water for homes, commercial use for industry and irrigation, as well as for such public uses as fire fighting.

All of these uses require reserve water or a guaranteed supply of water to operate. The normal solution is a water holding tank at or near the place of intended use. In domestic supplies, this might be a municipal water tank or resovoir. Many municipal systems are required to keep a minimum of at least 30 days supply ‘banked’ in underground or above ground systems.  This aspect, along with several other aspects of water management falls under civil engineering services provided by the local county or city government in charge of managing the water systems.

Rooftop Water TanksMany rural areas are on private or local wells. In many residential areas with low yield wells (typically less than 5gpm but it is sometimes considered as a function of requirements) an elevated holding tank is a requirement. The long familiar sight of high rise inner city buildings with water tanks on the roof, in use today, provides high-rise residents the water from those tanks located on the roofs of the buildings. In addition to being a storage device the tank creates water pressure by gravity, which brings water to each apartment as needed. They can also potentially provide fire safety in those high rises by providing instant local access to water.


For most commercial and fire saftey systems the common storage solution is a holding tank. Both cooling towers for HVAC and storage tanks for fire supression must have a reliable system for regulating the water level. Amazingly, many safety systems still have old fashioned float type switches or early generation electric water level switches. The first forms of electric sensors did improve on the mechanical float switch, while introducing new problems to be learned and overcome, such as corrosion or deterioration of sensors rendering them inaccurate or useless. In the cases of power failure there are other issues with the loss of electricity itself at the site.


Potable water is the essence of life. Wasting it is not an option in our society today. Our work with local utilities shows how properly regulating water levels does indeed save water and money.

Recently, we added a Normally Closed (NC) relay to a high alarm and wired the well pump through the relay; when activated the relay would open and turn the pump off. This is a safety switch just in case the relay that operates the pump contacts fuses closed. We can custom fit almost any application.

Legal Requirements

A High Level Alarm or shutoff is a water conservation device to conserve water waste, damage from spillage, etc. In California, the law changed a year ago and now requires not only that all cooling tower systems have both a shutoff and an alarm, but must report to a BAS: “Open and closed circuit cooling tower installations must … be equipped with an overflow alarm to prevent overflow of the sump in case of makeup water valve failure….alarm shall send an audible signal or provide an alert via the energy management control system to the tower operator in case of sump overflow.”

Our integration with BAS, our UL listing and our rock solid reliability backed by our exclusive 100% guarantee is reason enough to employ Waterline products in all your water level management applications. When you realize the simplicity of maintenence, advanced state-of-the-art system operation and advanced microprocessor control finally gives you what you want at a cost that is exceptionally reasonable, you will wonder why you haven’t made the step up to waterline controls before.

Written by webtechs

Cooling Tower Utility Rebate Program.

Cooling Tower Utility Rebate Program.

Waterline Controls® is actively working to help set up rebate / incentive programs to help save water, and therefore money and natural resources. By helping local businesses set up accurate water level control systems less water is wasted and utility cost go down. By partnering with local utility services everyone benefits. Along with equipment rebates on needed test and control systems, included education and support allow this to work well with little complications or fuss.

Rebates for Waterline Controllers are now available from a new water conservation assistance program offered by the Seattle Public Utilities. We are proud to announce our partnership with this new incentive program in Seattle Washington, through Seattle Public Utilities, supported by local area WaterLine Controls® distributor FluidTEK.

This program is intended to help local Seattle businesses reduce water usage with help, education, support and rebates. Improving the monitoring and therefore reducing current water usage is a proven benefit of our Waterline systems, both economically and environmentally. A Cooling Tower Efficiency Manual has been produced by the utility that outlines the best ways for local businesses to use and save water. All participating businesses are asked to commit to the efficiency practices discussed.Seattle Public Utilities

Up to $7500 in total rebates are available per business.

These rebates are for the monitoring and control systems required to record and control water usage. Even without the rebates, the idea is sound and proven; waste less and save.

With our Electronic Sensors and Software driven Modular Solid State (of the art) Controllers, we are the perfect option to participate in this program. Our advanced and fully automated control system was used as the basis for the program’s evaluation process. With local Seattle HVAC parts and service supplier FluidTEK offering local support, you can’t lose. Support is also directly offed through the knowledgeable staff at SPU.

To sign up for this program, contact one of the water specialists at the SPU by calling (206) 343-8505.

SPU Flyer

Utility Rebate Program
If you are located in another part of country and want more information about Waterline Controls features, functions or its reliability, or would like to help make a program like this possible in your area, please contact Waterline Controls for assistance.
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Fountain Water Level Control and Sensors That Last

Fountain Water Level Control and Sensors That Last

Water FountainWater Fountains need to be accurately controlled to assure proper and continued function. The level of water required to keep the fountain from either running dry or overflowing is very important to monitor and maintain. Low water can cause pump damage or fountain failures, while floods from overflowing can be even more disastrous. We could help cover all that…and much more.

Fountains are usually in a public place, where you want the equipment out of sight…and touch, not in the view of onlookers, taking away from the experience. Our sensors can be located in an external static well to remove the sensing probe from sight.

You also need a safe system. Our sensors run on low voltage and low current. In fact, all of our products are ETL Listed to the industrial Controls UL Standard 508. You can check out our Fountain Systems here.

SensorsElectronic Liquid Level Control

What Kind of Sensor is the Best? Ask our customers!
We recently spoke with a fountain Contractor/Supplier in Los Angeles and got a great testimonial we thought we’d share.

He was telling us about a job he had been on recently…

Client Testimonial-

While attending to a fountain he had the chance to observe a Waterline electronic sensor. He was surprised by its appearance, thinking it look new, when he knew it was not. He said it had had our controller and sensor for 20 years and “it looks like it has never been in the water, it was so clean.” Ever seen the corrosion on conductivity probes or the pitting that occurs? Our sensors don’t suffer from that. We use a sensor that contains multiple stainless steel probes that are inserted into the liquid being measured.

We proudly told the contactor that here was the difference between our product and conductivity type probes. We told him that a 10 year old probe like the one he encountered can look almost brand new still. He went silent of a minute, and then exclaimed happily, “Wow, I never realized that until just now!”

Conductive Sensor

Corrosion on conductive sensor

Corrosion on a conductive sensor, typical after 1 year

Waterline Sensor

Waterline Controls Sensor

Even with bad water quality
tips of the probe look new!


You also need to control your water supply. Waterline controllers are designed to operate 110VAC solenoid valves and connect into a larger control panel to let the pool or fountain operator know what the water level controls are doing. Building Automation System– With BAS connection capability our revolutionary software driven solid state electronic controllers are the cutting edge for water level control. We have systems with High & Low Alarms and Low-Low Basin Heater Cut-off, for fool-proof operation. Testing is simple and intuitive, with just a push of a button.control (Duplicate)

The Sum is Greater Than the Parts

And some great parts they are. With little maintenance, low cost, long life and integrated firmware for hassle free operation, we think we have the only system you’ll ever need for keeping a beautiful and expensive water fountain running economically, safely and automatically for many, many years to come. Back that up with our industry leading 100% satisfaction guarantee and you simply can’t lose!

External Static Pipe
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Choosing the Right Water Level Sensor

Choosing the Right Water Level Sensor

Very basically, a water level sensor detects the level of water in a container. Our water level systems use Electronic Sensors for determining the volume of water in a tank. They can replace old systems with mechanical float switches and Capacitive, Conductive or Ultrasonic sensors.

There are lots of water level sensor systems available today. The challenge is in choosing the right system. You need ease of use. You’ll need to easily integrate with your existing systems. You need to monitor and, finally, control it.

It is important to select a water control sensor that has an intuitive monitoring system. Ours feature LED indicators and easy to use push button systems. If the sensor can work on autopilot, then you reduce the need for continuous manual monitoring. We say ours system is “so complete you don’t need to be there.” With our controllers and sensors you have a complete level detection and filling system which is fully automatic.

Durability is another important factor to consider in a water level sensor. We build systems so they can last for many decades. A modular design will also let you fix individual parts when needed, eliminating the need for a complete replacement. You will never have to replace the entire unit again, simply replace the appropriate part. This kind of design can substantially reduce the cost of maintenance and operation. We have a 100% satisfaction guarantee. If it doesn’t work we will take it back – period. This kind of guarantee shows we are very confident about the effectiveness of our system.

Made in the USASafety

Waterline systems utilize a low voltage, which avoids injuries and serious accidents. A low-voltage / low-amp system totally eliminates the possibility of electric shock. During installation and maintenance, you are safe from accidents due to high sensor voltages. Our sensors are listed to UL508 Standard by ETL.

Sensor Types

The types of sensor you see in today’s market are generally Mechanical, Capacitive, Conductive and Ultrasonic. All of these have many drawbacks, reliability issues, corrosive issues, voltage issues or cost and calibration issues. In an application that contains diesel or certain coolants we do recommend using mechanical float switches. We have developed our own magnetic reed switch that connects directly with our WLC Series controller when needed.

New Technology

Waterline Controls designed and created completely new electronic switch sensor that runs on software. In conjunction with our automatic controllers, with models designed for many markets and application, we offer a complete, simple, and reliable solid state electronic level control system that is also very cost effective.

Our water level sensors are built to last, withstanding harsh conditions, compensating for waves, and maintaining an accuracy within 1/8″ of operating range.
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Cooling Technology Institute’s Annual Conference in New Orleans

Cooling Technology Institute’s Annual Conference in New Orleans

At this CTI Annual Conference show I was there alone, but got to spend time with one of my Customers Tony Balliagues, a Canadian, that I ran into there. On this trip I realized how much I love the combined art and music you find in Orleans. And of course, the food is really good too; there is just no other place quite like it in the US.
Cooling Tower
26 technical papers were presented, along with sessions put on by the Water Treating Group (WT), the Performance and Technology Group (P&T) and the Engineering Standards and Maintenance Group (ES&M) of CTI. There was also a Water Treating Panel Discussion on Instrumentation and Control in Cooling Water Systems. Hey, that’s us!
The conference was billed to “consist of the industry’s top vendors”.
We enjoyed meeting several OEMs and are excited about working with them in the future. We got a great reception and will be working furiously to get back to all of those that requested more information or quotes. We hope to welcome many of you to our family soon. Thanks!
–Bill S.

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