Sewertronics LED Light Curing Technology Amps Up Contractor’s Pipe Rehab Game

Pipe lining system with LED light curing technology proves to be a high-impact investment for New Jersey contractor

Sewertronics LED Light Curing Technology Amps Up Contractor’s Pipe Rehab Game

Luis Fanlo says his company can do two pipe lining jobs per day thanks to the Sewertronics SpeedyLight+ lining system’s LED light technology, which can cure liners at a rate of up to 3.3 feet per minute.

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Many contractors would think twice about spending roughly $200,000 on a pipe lining system. Luis Fanlo, owner of Arrow Sewer and Drain in Middlesex, New Jersey, isn’t one of them.

After Fanlo saw a demo of the SpeedyLight+ LED-cured pipe lining system from Sewertronics (a Poland-based company owned by Halma) earlier this year, he didn’t hesitate to seal a deal. And the veteran plumber and drain cleaner has been reaping the considerable productivity and financial benefits ever since.

“In two weeks, we made more money with the SpeedyLight+ system than what we paid for it,” says Fanlo, a self-confessed drain cleaning and pipe rehab technology hound. He founded the company in 2018, runs about 15 service trucks and employs 18 people while serving customers throughout New Jersey.

“We do about 2,000 feet of lining a month, mostly in 4- to 6-inch-diameter pipes,” he continues. “We may be relatively new to the lining industry, but we’re really pushing it.”

The company can do two pipe lining jobs per day, courtesy of the lining system’s LED light technology, which can cure liners at a rate of up to 3.3 feet per minute, depending on the pipe diameter. That’s up to five times faster than conventional curing techniques, according to Sewertronics.

“We’ve doubled our production and doubled our pipe lining revenue,” Fanlo says. “Customers love it because they can use their sewers in about an hour or so, compared to some lining systems that leave them without sewers for 10 or 12 hours while the liner cures.”

Strategic investments

Fanlo is no stranger to big expenditures. He stands squarely in the camp of you need to spend money to make money.

The company owns one Mud Dog hydroexcavation truck from Super Products, one Vactor 2100 combination sewer vacuum truck, Mini and Midi Miller drain cleaning machines from Picote Solutions (used mostly for prepping pipes before lining), pipe bursting equipment from Pow-R Mole Trenchless Solutions, and a LightRay pipe lining system from Perma-Liner Industries, to name only some of the company’s investments.

So after watching a demo of the SpeedyLight+ system at an open house sponsored by Pipeline Renewal Technologies, the North American distributor for Sewertronics, Fanlo wasn’t fazed by the price tag.

“I saw how this tech was going to make our lives easier and better and allow us to market our services to a much bigger customer base — all with just one tool,” he says.

The SpeedyLight+ system has expanded the market for the company’s pipe lining services in several ways. For starters, previously crews could only line 6-inch-diameter pipes, while the SpeedyLight+ system can line pipes from 2 to 24 inches in diameter. Furthermore, crews now can line pipes about 300 feet in length, about twice as long as before, Fanlo notes.

Those increased capabilities catapulted the company into a much larger market for lining pipes. For example, the business can now line pipes at chemical and processing plants that it couldn’t do before, Fanlo says.

“And we keep getting calls from engineering firms that ask us to bid on jobs because they know about our capabilities,” he adds.

The SpeedyLight+ system also navigates 45- and 90-degree bends (the latter only in pipes 4 inches or more in diameter), lines vertical as well as horizontal pipes, uses less energy than conventional curing methods, runs on standard electrical power sources and offers four different-sized curing heads for various pipe diameters.

Ripple effects boost business

Furthermore, the company obtains a lot of work from plumbing firms that simply can’t afford to invest in an expensive pipe lining system or just aren’t interested in entering the market, preferring instead to subcontract the work, Fanlo says.

In addition, doing pipe lining work for commercial customers helps Fanlo wedge his foot in the door to market the company’s numerous other services, such as drain cleaning, pipeline inspections and so forth, he says.

The system also provides a less-tangible benefit: Technicians are less nervous about lining pipes — and the odds of an installation error are dramatically reduced — courtesy of a camera, featuring a 150-degree field of vision, integrated into the curing head. This enables technicians to view the entire liner and ensure proper installation before curing begins, then monitor the curing process in real time.

“When you shoot a typical liner, you don’t know what it looks like at the end of the pipe until it cures and you camera it,” Fanlo says. “But with the SpeedyLight+ technology, you can push the cure head all the way to the end of the liner, where you want to start your cure, and view the installation prior to curing the liner.”

Furthermore, a wetted-out liner will not start curing until the LED lights start to heat it, so technicians aren’t under the gun to install liners within a specified amount of time.

“The liner won’t start to set up and cure until you hit the button,” Fanlo says. “Our guys used to be nervous about shooting liners — you’d cross your fingers and hope everything was good. But now there’s no guesswork and our guys are more excited to shoot liners because they have certainty.”

The bottom line: The SpeedyLight+ system is everything Fanlo hoped it would be.

“It has completely exceeded my expectations,” he says. “You couldn’t pay me to go back to the old way of lining.”


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