Regular maintenance is common. Your car needs to be serviced, your computer needs to be updated, and your heat exchanger needs proper maintenance.
Properly cleaning your plate and frame heat exchanger is very important. One main and important reason is efficiency. In order to keep the flow rates and pressure levels at the designed unit specifications and the heat transfer as optimal as possible the plates need to be clean. Over time, the various types of fluids that are run through the heat exchanger can start to develop process build up or scaling on the plates. This scaling reduces: flow rates, heat transfer and the efficiency of the heat exchanger.
Secondly, it’s not only important to have the plates clean, but to have the plates validated free of holes or cracks. Particularly in the food and beverage industry, cross contaminating in the products can be a very serious and costly issue. Having your plates serviced regularly helps to prevent disastrous issues that can occur when product cross contamination takes place. At DraCool, we provide our customers two options in detecting pin holes and cracks. After we thoroughly clean your plates from scale, we use a dye penetrant to locate and reveal any holes that may have developed over time. The second option is DraCool’s Plate Leak Test, it is a non-invasive method that can detect pin holes as small as five microns.
Lastly, opening up and servicing your heat exchanger, gives our technicians an opportunity to visually inspect the gaskets of each plate. As with any polymers, over time they can become hard, brittle and begin to break down. When this happens, it is possible for pieces of the gasket to break apart and enter the product, thus creating issues and causing the heat exchanger to be shut down. Depending on the application, it is important to at least open and inspect the heat exchanger, frame, plates and gaskets twice a year.