It is important to remember that no map will ever be completely accurate, especially in the initial stages. You should strive to make as good a map as possible the first time, within the limits of the information available, and then improve upon it. A good time to make any changes to a map is after assets have been dug up for a repair. At that time, any inaccuracies in location can be corrected. In addition, whenever new assets are installed, accurate locations can be obtained and added to the map. It is not recommended that assets be dug up for the sole purpose of locating them, unless there is a very compelling reason to do so. Instead, take your best guess at locations and revise as you learn more to keep the map as up to date and accurate as possible.

Additional information regarding internet-based mapping options can be found in Appendix A.

Some assets, such as pipes, will be mapped as described above while others, such as assets located in buildings, may not be mapped. In either case, the asset location should be added to the inventory file. Generally, the location will be a street name, street address, or building location such as pump house or treatment building. The addresses should be as specific as possible so that assets can be grouped together based on their location. It is important to be able to group assets by their category (i.e., all valves, all hydrants) and by their location (all assets on Main Street.) In this manner, the utility can answer various questions about its assets, such as: "If I replace the pipe on main street, what other assets are associated with that pipe that will also have to be replaced?" "If I replace a component in the treatment building, what other assets might be impacted?" Methods of including data in an inventory are discussed further in Section 3.8.