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ACE DuraFlo® Nears Completion on $2.2 Million, 50,000 Foot
ePIPE® Project for Seattle Sheraton
Hosting Hotel Engineers Luncheon and Project Tour

March 5, 2008  - Built in 1982, the Seattle Sheraton Hotel and Towers is one of the largest and finest hotels in the Pacific Northwest featuring 840 guestrooms in their original 34 story tower.  After just 15 years of service, Engineering staff had started to face the difficult problem of recurrent pinhole leaks in their copper water system.  Cutting, patching and clamping leaks was the only line of defense for Engineering staff to keep the facility running, while owners (including Metropolitan Life and Starwood Hotels and Resorts) evaluated the problem and budgeted for possible solutions.  

Through his activity in the local hotel engineers association, Director of Engineering Scott Marshall learned of a non-intrusive technology that was being implemented by neighboring Seattle hotels to not only stop the pinhole leaks, but also prevent the recurrence of future corrosion damage.  After extensive review, the ACE DuraFlo ePIPE system was selected to resolve the problem, but with hot and cold mains, risers, branches and recirc serving 840 rooms, the challenge became how to restore some 50 thousand feet of pipe without sacrificing substantial revenue loss to the hotel!  

While summer tourism keeps the Sheraton operating near 100% capacity from April to September, the neighboring Washington State Trade and Convention center helps push occupancy into the 80 to 90% range through most of their winter “low season”.  Accordingly, ACE DuraFlo management tailored a 3 phased project to complete the entire project over 3 winter seasons (’05 to ’08) seldom needing more than 20 rooms from their inventory at a time.

“Not only has the ePIPE process allowed our original tower to operate at about 98% capacity during the project”, commented Marshall, “but the project has also been well managed and self contained, allowing my engineering staff to focus on much more constructive work including our new tower addition.”  

Prior to ePIPE restoration, the Seattle Sheraton was experiencing pinhole leaks on a weekly and sometimes daily basis.  The restored piping is now leak-free and corrosion protected.  

With the third and final phase coming to completion in March, ACE will be hosting a lunch meeting and field case study for the hotel engineering community on March 11th and 12th .  According to Murray Greenwood, Regional VP of ACE, “the focus of the session is to educate the engineering community about internal corrosion issues, to show first-hand the extent of the problem and to demonstrate how the Sheraton has put an end to their pinhole problem.”  According to Greenwood, copper corrosion is an issue that is poorly understood in the facilities operations industry and engineers typically have many misconceptions that can worsen the problem.  The incidence of pinholes is also more widely spread than people realize as demonstrated by ACE’s continual grown from its’ inception - not just in Seattle, but around the world.  

The latest corrosion research out of Virginia Tech  (for the AWWA Research Foundation) has shown a strong link between water treatment methods and the increase of non-uniform corrosion and pinhole leaks in copper piping for many ‘hotspots’ across the United States.  According to the study, the cost of pinhole leaks and pinhole leak prevention in the U.S. has grown to approximately $1 Billion annually, and Greenwood confirms that the problem seems to be accelerating.  “When we started this business in the 90’s, the typical age of a hotel property battling copper pinholes was about 15 to 20 years” explained Greenwood, “but today, we have a significant number of engineers calling us about hotels that are less than 10 years in service.”  ACE DuraFlo has ePIPE  contractors across the U.S. and in Europe, with people in numerous other countries looking to adopt the technology.  

About ACE DuraFlo Systems, ePIPE:  ACE DuraFlo Systems, LLC, provides pipe restoration products and services in the US, Canada and Europe. ACE DuraFlo's patented 'in-place' pipe restoration technology restores failing copper and encrusted galvanized piping systems to multiple code requirements without the extensive demolition and downtime that accompanies a traditional repipe. The process uses heated, compressed air within an existing piping system to dry and abrasively clean the interior of the piping.  Next, the inside surface of the pipe is lined with a proprietary epoxy barrier coating that protects the pipe wall from future corrosion.  The result is a multi-code compliant epoxy lined pipe called ePIPE®. ACE DuraFlo offers a complete solution for pinhole leaks and corrosion control for both commercial and residential plumbing systems. Information on ACE DuraFlo and ePIPE may be obtained by calling 888-775-0220 or visit:


ACE EnviroTech, Inc.
683 Strander Boulevard, #110
Tukwila, WA 98188

Contact: Murray Greenwood
(206) 579-5585 phone
(206) 260-3920 fax

Also See: The Regal Biltmore Discovers a Long-term Solution to the Problems Associated with Replacing a Piping System Within a Historical Building / Jan 2001
A Hidden Time Bomb - Corrosion of Piping Systems / The Causes of Corrosion in a Piping System, Traditional Repair Methods and the Modern System of Pipe Restoration / Jan 2000
Priyan Jayetileke, Director of Engineering at Vancouver’s 385 room, Four Seasons Hotel, Tackles Corrosion of Copper Water Lines Servicing the Hotel / Jan 2000

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