Operations & Maintenance
To keep a micro hydropower system running efficiently over the course of its life requires proper maintenance. This maintenance includes not just the power system, but the structure of the dam as well.
Microhydro System and Dam Maintenance
Regularly scheduled maintenance of micro hydropower systems help make sure that the machinery is operating properly and generating as much power as it can. Local regulatory bodies and partners who are familiar with your dam can be
valuable long term partners for your project’s operation
Regular inspections and other required maintenance are required to keep your turbine operating as efficiently as safely as possible. Depending on the type of turbine installed, the conditions at your site, and seasonal changes
in the weather, maintenance needs will vary. Regular inspections can also help identify issues in the system before they become significant problems.
The structure of the dam itself must also be properly maintained and follow local and state safety regulations. Regular inspection and maintenance ensures that property and land downstream are safe from a potential dam failure,
and makes sure that your hydropower system is located on a stable and safe structure.
Dam Safety Requirements
Inspections and safety requirements are in place to protect you and your property, as well as everyone downstream. Whether or not your dam has a micro hydropower system, it is important that you are responsible for the safety and operations of your dam.
Know the ongoing regulations and certifications you need to follow to keep your system running. If your system contains a dam, know your local DEC Dam Safety Office contact. They can be a valuable resource for dam safety questions
Develop and implement regular inspections of the entire system, from the turbine and dam to the system’s connections in your home and to the grid. Keep a log to help track and notice any changes over time.
Stay Up to Date
Changes in the watershed can have an impact on your hydropower system, just like your system can have an impact downstream. As part of the watershed community, it can be helpful to stay up to date on how the watershed is changing, from human impacts like new construction and development, to new wildlife activity and weather events.
The DEC has many resources for dam owners to ensure the safety of their dams. Read more to see these online resources, including maintenance and inspection guidance, safety requirements, and other important information.
The latest articles on operational impact of microhydro power.