Western Engineering & Research Corporation > Services > Plumbing & Product Liability

I wanted to let you know how much I have enjoyed working with you over the years. You are a true professional and have made a rather difficult assignment so much better.

- Kristin C.

Finding the Source of the Failure

Testing of Plumbing Parts and Segregating Failure Points

Plumbing Parts Assessment

Western Engineering has been a forerunner in evaluating hoses and plumbing parts for failure.  We regularly serve small and large insurers needing to determine the cause of failure in such parts.  We can conduct pressure testing in our fully equipped laboratory and determine microscopic damage to valves, gaskets, threads and hose parts.  Western Engineering can live video conference lab exams to allow parties to participate with the exam without traveling to our laboratory.

Plumbing Failure

Various plumbing parts are used extensively in large buildings or high rises and it can be difficult to track down the exact mechanism that can be producing either sporadic or continuous leaks.  Sometimes it is the use of inferior parts or those that are incompatible with the water pH, the pressures and the turbulence within such parts.  We can help you determine whether the failure is caused by a defective part or the application where the part is used.

Dezincification and Metallurgical Analysis

Dezincification of brass is a common phenomenon leading to plumbing failures.  This occurs when the ratio of zinc to copper exceeds 30 percent.  This ratio is cheaper to make and will not fail for some time when in use.  However, dezincification occurs and eventually causes failure.  If many of your fittings contain high levels of zinc in the brass that you have installed, failure is likely to occur.  We can help with microscopic and metallurgical analysis.

Appliance and Part Defects

Western Engineering has worked with insurance companies and appliance manufacturers to determine what occurred to initiate a plumbing or equipment failure.  We can assist you to determine whether a specific part was defective, it was incompatible with the equipment demands, or poor workmanship may have lead to the failure.  We are able to accept large appliances in our laboratory and loading dock.

Point of Failure Simulation Testing

The photo at left shows a dryer fire simulation test where there is a buildup of lint within the dryer vent system.  Western Engineering is able to provide simulations of many factors and forces that cause damage.  We can measure at what force or pressure a failure may occur and determine the elements that are the weakest.  Contact us if you would like to conduct a simulation or test of your product.

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