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Repair, Rehabilitation or Replace


When an asset failure occurs, the choices for how to respond include:

  • Repair
  • Rehabilitate
  • Replace

The selection of repair, rehabilitation, or replacement involves a consideration of the feasibility of the options; the condition of the existing asset; the capital cost of each option; the operations and maintenance cost after the repair, rehabilitation, or replacement; the remaining useful life in each case; the decay pattern; asset criticality; energy use; and the impact on the level of service.

The cost factors (capital and O&MOperations and Maintenance) together with the information on useful lives provide valuable information regarding overall life cycle cost, while the condition, feasibility, level of service, and decay pattern provide insight into other reasons to pick one option over another. The overall risk of the asset might also drive the decision to replace or rehabilitate over repair.

High-risk assets are likely to be replaced, while low-risk assets are likely to be repaired. The assets in the moderate risk category actions range from monitoring to repairing or replacing the asset depending on whether the asset is moderate risk because it is likely to fail, because it will have a bad consequence, or both.

Rehabilitation plans –Jim Smith, Director, Infrastructure Planning, Louisville Water Company, Louisville, KY

Proactively replacing pipe – Kevin Campanella, P.E., Assistant Director of Asset Management, Department of Public Utilities, City of Columbus, OH