Plan proposed to increase water pressure

By Curtis Riggs | July 15, 2009

Francom seeking neighbors approval
CAREFREE – The Carefree Town Council earlier this month authorized Carefree Water Company General Manager Stan Francom to present a plan to increase water pressure to homeowners living near Mule Train Road and Serene Street.

Ten homeowners in the area have already asked for more water pressure. Francom is drafting a letter telling the residents the water company will install a 6-inch water line and a new valve from the east side of Mule Train to the west side of the road if all affected homeowners agree to the change. He estimates the project will cost between $5,000 and $6,000.

Francom initially sent a March letter about the issue to homeowners in the area.

The water company has already received one letter from a homeowner who opposes the plan and one from a homeowner who is willing to go along with the decision his neighbors make. Both came from Rocking Chair Road, which has higher water pressure than areas just to the north and west.

"Some people probably want to pay for this, but I don't think it’s right to ask everyone to pay for it," Francom said about not wanting to assess all Carefree Water Company customers for the costs of these improvements.

Francom is also investigating what it would cost residents to purchase individual pressure boosting stations for each home. His initial research turned up the Grundfos pump, which is compact, self contained and costs $575. Francom estimates the costs would be $1,500 by the time the pump is installed.

The irony of both plans pitched by Francom is the board of directors of the water company is also recommending homeowners install water pressure regulators because water pressure to the south and east is much higher than it is in this area. The regulators would cost between $220 and $325, including installation, according to Francom.

He admits this project is not a high priority in this tight budget year. He recommended placing the project on the "back burner" to see if there is money to cover it later in the year.

"If not then it should probably be delayed a year," he said.