The Rainforest Cafe' in Houston, Texas requires a lot of specialized plumbing and hot water heaters to create dazzling special effects and keep the environment comfortable. The restaurant, located in the Katy Mills Mall, is an extravaganza of running water and a “conventional” plumbing system.

An extensive plumbing system keeps fish swimming, fog rolling, and waterfalls splashing. Features include:

  • Over 10,000 sq ft of copper tubing, used to transport both potable and aquarium water, as well as compressed air for animatronic creatures.
  • Four saltwater aquariums that house 150 tropical fish, use a pair of 5-hp pumps to circulate 500 gpm of water through its 12,000-gal system.
  • A fog system which uses two 1,000-psi, belt-driven, positive-displacement pumps to circulate its contents to various wet signs and waterfalls within the facility.
  • Five gas commercial water heaters furnish all of the restaurant’s equipment with ample quantities of hot water. Four of the 100-gal gas commercial water heaters are interlocked in a “manifold” piping arrangement in the restaurant’s mechanical room. Equalized, short pipe runs connecting each heater to the main supply line helps feed the various hot water appliances.

    Publication date: 07/30/2001