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Reduce Operating Cost with Reliability Centered Design/Maintenance Strategies

Sacramento, CA, USA
In Collaboration With
City of Sacramento

Government Champion

Operations and Maintenance departments at the Regional Facility


3 Million USD

Project Status

Operational since 2022

At a Glance

Use Reliability Centered Design/Maintenance to improve design, reduce labor and operating cost projections, and streamline maintenance and asset management during a major process expansion.

Problem Addressed

A regional wastewater treatment facility received new, stricter treatment and discharge requirements that required a major process expansion to meet. The secondary treatment facility needed to become a tertiary treatment facility. The water supply in California is fragile due to the desert climate, dense population drawing water from aquifers, and salt water intrusion, leading to stricter regulations across the state. In order to manage the cost of the expansion, the facility chose to use reliability strategies to improve design, optimize capital and operational expenditures, and streamline operations and maintenance.

Regional water treatment facility used/is using reliability strategies to address this/these challenge(s).


  1. Hundreds of reliability-based one-time opportunities for design improvements (80% implemented into design)
  2. Reduction of operating expense projections for expanded treatment process
  3. Improved spare parts management to ensure the right parts are available when needed
  4. Job plans, maintenance activities, SOPs and other operating documentation uploaded into CMMS prior to startup, so that the facility is ready to start tracking performance of assets and labor

Something Unique

Reliability Centered Design (RCD) is not typical in the water industry. This facility was forward-thinking in planning for asset management and long-value during the design phase. By recognizing that O&M costs are connected to design intent, this facility was able to reduce O&M cost projections and capital costs.

Who Should Consider?

Any facility considering process expansion, major upgrade, or overhaul should consider using Reliability Centered Design. It is effective for any size design project.

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