In your flume or weir, there are several different tools you could use to determine the depth of your flow. However, when it comes to ease of use, there are few better options than using a staff gauge. Unlike other flow measurement tools, no expertise is needed to read a staff gauge, meaning every one of your operators should be able to easily use this device.
Despite their simplicity, there are multiple ways you can get errors when reading a staff gauge, and examining these potential problems is the best way to ensure accurate flow depth measurements. Here are a few common causes of staff gauge errors in flumes and weirs that you should watch out for so that you can be certain your readings are correct.
Distance and Angle
Two of the biggest reasons you may be getting errors when reading your staff gauge is your distance from the gauge and the angle from which you are viewing this device. Let’s start by discussing distance.
On many staff gauges, the numerals will be very small, and if you or your operator are too far away from your gauge, it can be difficult to read these numerals correctly. If you find that your flow depth readings are inaccurate, try reducing your distance from the staff gauge when taking readings.
The angle at which you are reading the staff gauge can also influence your measurements. For instance, if you are high above the staff gauge, it may be hard to determine the exact water level. If possible, you should always be level with the staff gauge when taking your readings.
If you want to be sure you can take accurate readings using your staff gauge, you should consider the turbulence of your flow. When your flow is too turbulent, meaning there are a large number of surface waves, it can be hard to take accurate readings from a staff gauge with any type of consistency.
In systems with turbulent flows, you would need to install your staff gauge in a stilling well. A still well removes the excess turbulence while still providing an accurate representation of the depth of the flow.
Dirty Staff Gauges
One of the easiest fixes to staff gauge errors is making sure that your staff gauge is clean and readable. Over time, it’s likely that debris and dirt will accumulate on your staff gauge. It’s also possible that plant life will grow and block your staff gauge if your measuring flow outdoors. Obviously, all of these issues will make it difficult for you to read your gauge.
Make sure that your operators are regularly cleaning your staff gauge and clearing away biological growth so that they can quickly take readings.
A Primary Device for Your Staff Gauge
If you’re frequently seeing staff gauge errors when measuring flow depth, you should be able to take care of the problem quickly and easily, and if need a primary device such as a flume or a weir, you can shop with Tracom, FRP.
We are excited to offer our customers a range of fiberglass water management products, and we would be thrilled to work with you. Contact us today.