At the construction site, there’s no fun and games because even a slight mistake can put the success of the project as well as the safety of the workers at risk. Having this in mind, it’s important to do whatever’s possible to reduce those risks, one solution being counting on the technology of underground utility locating.
Great for any project involving digging and excavation, be it for construction, archaeology, or even laying and installing new utility lines, this kind of technology with the help of specially designed cable locators is necessary as it’s essential in marking the exact position of invisible infrastructure, buried utility lines and all the wires, both used and unused, thus making the site safe from accidents and conflicts with your projects.
This is possible thanks to the variety of features the locators consist of, including the variety of frequencies they’re designed to work with, which is what makes them suitable for numerous applications and industries. Nowadays, it’s easy to find a locator that’s compact, lightweight and has superior performance with minimal power consumption so it makes for a great tool to have.
How to Use Cable Locator
To know how to use cable locators, it’s important to understand how they work. As they’re tools that consist of transmitters and receivers, it’s the transmitters which are AC generators that send the signal to the underground utilities resulting in an electromagnetic frequency detected by the receivers in the tools, then indicated on the LCD screen.
In other words, if you want to locate the underground infrastructures, including their lengths, you have to use the transmitter which then sends the frequency to the receiver and the information is seen on the screen of the tool. Such tools nowadays are designed to be user-friendly, however it’s best to get some training first to ensure the safety of workers and the equipment also or hire professionals for the job to have the peace of mind.
Now, while there are simpler types of locators, it’s advisable to acquire those working with multi-frequencies (both high and low) because they help tune in the transmitters’ frequencies based on the materials the underground lines are made from, unlike just having a high-frequency locator that wouldn’t provide that accurate readings since the frequency signal could get induced in additional lines than those you’re looking for, making them indistinguishable.
Moreover, it’s good to note these tools function in two modes, the active and the passive, but it’s the first that’s more accurate than the latter considering there’s more depth estimation and the ability of distinguishing the utilities in congested areas is higher.
What to Look for in Locators
There’s no doubt the range of cable locators is wide which could complicate your choice a little bit. To be able to avoid confusion it’s best to have specific assets in mind, well other than the price.
For instance, as mentioned getting one with multiple frequencies is the way to go, and so is one that’s designed for flexibility, that is one that has a variety of features and modes you can use, something that comes in handy especially when you work on sites different in their complexities.
Be sure to check the technical specifications of each and every cable locator you set your eye on, and don’t forget to check up on features such as the range, important to know for the distance when tracing signals, followed by accuracy so as to reduce the impact of signal distortions, as well as data logging.
The Benefits of Using Underground Utility Locating
Other than cutting down the risks of accidents, exposing the lives of workers to dangers, the use of cable locators certainly helps with eliminating considerable costs that result from accidents on the site.
For example, not knowing where the utility lines are underground would mean your project could come to a halt at any given time, so you’d have to pause for a considerable amount of time to have that fixed and the loss of time always makes for additional costs to deal with. Also, you might have to pay workers extra for this delay of the project.
Furthermore, you could easily damage some utility lines thus there’d be another unpredicted cost to take care of. Having in mind some locators can be of help even with locating pipelines, this is a reason more in favour of the use of such tools.
Just imagine what would happen unless you invest in locators; depending on the damage done with utility lines, you might end up putting the whole community at risk (yes, it’s not only you who’d get to deal with the consequences) so you’d have to prepare for countless complaints and even legal repercussions. Why go through all this when you can simply make use of advanced tools instead and avoid such stress?