Brady Blog- Trends and Talk

Increasing the Effectiveness Of A Water Treatment Program

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

The goal of a good water treatment program should be to ensure that the water has constant contact with heat exchange surfaces and is free of biological fouling. Biological growth, scale deposition, and corrosion can force equipment to work harder because of reduced ability of the water to contact these surfaces. In order to increase the effectiveness of a water treatment plan, water treatment professionals recommend a dual alternating biocide program.

Oxidizing Biocides

Biocides are chemicals used to eliminate bacteria and algae found in cooling towers and other recirculating cooling systems. All biocides can be divided into two major classes- oxidizing and non-oxidizing. Each type of biocide approaches biological organisms in a different way.

Oxidizing biocides take a “shot gun” approach to destroying bacteria and biological growth. These biocides attack the cell structure of the organism to destroy the cell and ultimately kill the organism. Oxidizing biocides are effective because of the speed and nature of their approach and organisms are unable to build up a resistance to the chemicals used to treat the water.

However, there are a few drawbacks with the use of oxidizing biocides. These chemicals can increase the corrosiveness of water. Some oxidizing chemicals used in water treatment programs can also create undesirable byproducts that are bad for the environment.

All water treatment programs require consistent monitoring of water conditions and chemical levels. Oxidizing biocides can increase the need for observation because they can interact with other corrosion control chemicals used in the program, and render them less effective.

Non- Oxidizing Biocides

A non-oxidizing biocide attacks biological growth in a different way, by interrupting the organism’s metabolism, and effectively poisoning the cells to kill them. This class of biocides targets specific organisms and specific cellular processes, taking a “rifle” approach to treatment.

An added benefit of non-oxidizing biocides is that they can have little to no impact on other chemicals used to treat corrosion and scale. Unfortunately, due to the vast number of microorganisms that could exist in any recirculating cooling system, as a non-oxidizing biocide is used the organisms can become resistant to that particular chemical are not affected and continue to grow in the water and require the attention of a water treatment technician.

How Does A Dual Alternating Biocide Program Work?

Continuous use of one single biocide in a water treatment program can lead to resistant flora and damaging conditions in the water, making a dual alternating approach ideal to control the biological growth. In a dual alternating biocide program, both oxidizing and non-oxidizing biocides are fed into the system on an alternating slug dosage based off of the continued monitoring of water conditions. Often times, to increase the effectiveness of non-oxidizing biocides, a dispersant is added to loosen and penetrate bio-films attached to metal surfaces in a system which allows the biocide to be more effective.

If you are interested in learning more about a dual alternating biocide program and how it can improve water conditions in your facility’s cooling system, visit bradyservices.com/services or call (800) 849-1915.


Benefits of a Water Treatment Program

Friday, January 27, 2017

As a facility owner, you know that water plays a vital role in heating and cooling systems and process manufacturing. But, did you know that managing the quality of the water used in these systems is equally important? A water treatment program can help ensure your equipment continues to operate efficiently and safely for years to come.

Energy Efficiency

When the water used in cooling towers, air washers, steam boilers, and associated closed loop systems is left untreated, the results can be excessive microbiological growth, scaling, and corrosion in the equipment. This fouling creates a barrier on heat exchange services of your equipment that can interfere with the water’s ability to exchange heat, forcing the systems to work harder and increasing your facility’s energy costs.

Protecting Your Equipment

Corrosion can lead to irreversible damage of your equipment. It can cause pitting and rust that may bore holes and weaken the infrastructure.A water treatment technician will examine the equipment to determine the cause of corrosion and will treat the water to alleviate the issue. The technician will then monitor the corrosion rate to ensure it stays within the industry standard.

Safety

Uncontrolled microbiological growth in heating and cooling systems can cultivate potentially dangerous bacteria, such as legionella. This waterborne bacterium thrives in water between 75° and 115° and can be protected in a biofilm, making cooling towers ideal for growing the bacteria. Regular bacteria tests and treating the water can help ensure your facility does not develop or spread legionella.

To learn more about Brady’s water treatment program, and how it can help your facility, visit: bradyservices.com/services.html

 

 


Why is a Seasonal Preventative Maintenance Routine Necessary In The Boiler Room?

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Cooler months can put greater demands on your boiler room equipment, and as a plant operator, the change in seasons can be a helpful reminder to review boiler room efficiency and safety. A seasonal preventative maintenance routine can help ensure that your boilers are ready to handle the demand when temperatures drop.

Efficiency

The change in season is a good reminder that it’s time to perform a combustion analysis on your boiler. This verifies your air to fuel ratio is correct and helps ensure you are burning your fuels as efficiently as possible. When air temperatures change, the density of that air changes as well causing the fuel to air ratio to change leading to incomplete combustion, higher emissions, and unburned fuel going out your stack. It’s recommended that you perform a combustion analysis and have the system calibrated by a trained professional twice a year.

General Maintenance

Autumn is also the time to address the general maintenance in your boiler room. Regular maintenance now can help avoid thousands of dollars in damages and unexpected downtime later. A professional water treatment program will ensure your heat transfer surfaces are protected from scale build up and corrosion and ensure your system is operating as efficiently as possible.

If your boiler uses two fuel sources, are you prepared to make the switch from gas to oil? Checking your fuel oil pump, strainer and burner nozzle will ensure a trouble free start up when changing over to oil is necessary. This is also the time to make sure your fuel tank is full and ready for the switch.

A visual inspection of your boiler, feed-water or deaerator system should also be included when preparing for the fall. Finding small issues such as minor leaks on piping, valves and shells, or signs of electrical overheating can help prevent them from becoming larger problems. You should also be sure to check the gas regulator vents for insect nests that may have been built over the summer and inspect bird and insect screens on your air intake louvers for debris to ensure you are getting the proper amount of combustion air needed for your systems to function properly.

Safety

The change in temperature is also a good time for boiler safety device testing; recommended tests include, low water cutoff and flame failure detection devices. These safeties ensure adequate water levels in your boiler are maintained and shut the fuel system down if a low water event is detected. Other devices that should be checked by trained technicians include; airflow switches, operating or limit switches for pressure or temperature, and low / high gas pressure switches.

Performing a seasonal preventative maintenance routine can help ensure that your facility is ready to not only meet its demands as the temperature drops, but to do so safely and efficiently. If you’d like to learn more about Brady’s heating solutions and how they can benefit your facility, visit: http://www.bradyservices.com/brady-heating-solutions.html

 


Questions to Ask When Choosing a Boiler Service Provider

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Looking for a new boiler service provider? How do you select the right provider for you? Asking the right questions during your search can help you find a long term partner that can keep your facility running and efficient.

steam plantSafety First:  Compare service provider safety plans. What steps does the company take to ensure their technicians and your employees stay safe? Do they have a safety program that offers regular workplace safety training? How many days they have gone without an accident? Are they willing to abide by your facility’s boiler safety plan, or any specific safety policies and procedures that are unique to your facility?

Manufacturer’s Representative: Are any of service providers also a manufacturer’s representative?Having arelationship with the manufacturer gives these companies an advantage because they can stay up-to- date on the product line, and technicians can receive training on specialized and new pieces of equipment.

Technician Education and Experience: Are the technicians trained to work on your equipment? Did they receive training directly from the manufacturer or did they learn on the job? Technicians that receive training directly from the manufacturer are educated on special features on the equipment, and have access to the manufacturer for support and other resources.

Reliability: Selecting a boiler service provider can be a long term commitment. By choosing a provider with years of experience and ties to the community you will be more likely to select a partner that will be with you for years to come. Where is their closest office located? You may want to consider a company with an office within a 100-mile radius of your location for a quick response time if unscheduled service is needed. Will you have an assigned technician? Having the same technician for the majority of your scheduled preventative maintenance visits allows the technician to become familiar with your equipment, facility, and staff. How many of the provider’s technicians are trained to work on boilers and burners? The size of the heating service group is especially important to ensure there will be coverage to fulfill the requirements of the service agreement.

Preventative Maintenance Program: Now review the preventative maintenance agreements from each provider. Does each agreement have a clearly defined scope of work and a predetermined schedule? A clearly defined scope of work will establish the service expectations between you and the provider. Are there benefits to being a preventative maintenance customer? Will you get service priority or a special service rate if repair work is needed? Finding a service company that has benefits for their preventative maintenance customers can save you time and money when unscheduled service is required. Also ask about the provider’s approach to truck stock and parts availability. A stocked truck reduces the overall project time by avoiding the need to make multiple trips to your site with parts.

Pricing and Cost: How can you compare service providers when the cost of service can vary? Though a lower price on a service agreement may save you money at first, a higher quality provider can save you money in the long run. Service agreement pricing should always be compared to the level of experience, skill, and safety record of the boiler service provider. The consistency of the regularly scheduled preventative maintenance inspections need to meet the service recommendations of the equipment per the manufacturer, and the documentation of these visits should meet the needs of your facility and organization.

Referrals and References: How did you hear about the service provider? Were you referred by a colleague or through a professional association? What service providers are being used by businesses similar to yours? Often times when a provider does work for a specific type of facility- hospitals or schools for example, they are more in tune to the needs of the organization and their business objectives. Do they have a list of references? An experienced provider will present you with a list of clients with similar facilities and needs. By asking questions on the professionalism, performance, and customer service of a provider you can gain insight into how the service provider manages their business and supports their clients.

Doing a thorough analysis in each of these key areas before selecting a boiler service provider can help ensure that you select a long-term partner that can maintain a safe, and efficient service plan for your facility. 


Understanding the EarthWise design philosophy to improve building performance

Thursday, March 10, 2016

One of the goals of many building owners is to have an efficient and well run building that contributes to the overall business mission. They are concerned with life costs and system performance of one of the largest capital assets, the building’s HVAC system.

The Benefits of an EarthWise Design Approach

EarthWise systems are sustainable systems that deliver measureable, superior performance at a lower operating cost. An EarthWise system performs at the highest levels of energy efficiency, reduces emissions of all types to the lowest possible level, and has a documented, sustainable performance.

EarthWise system design allows an owner to utilize today’s efficient equipment designed to operate seamlessly within the HVAC system. The increased efficiency of refrigeration systems allows an owner to optimize air and water flows and lower pump and energy fan use. By optimizing the system flow owners can reduce the size of fans, piping, pumps and ductwork resulting in a lowered first cost for the project.

In addition to adding the obvious, more efficient, equipment like Trane’s CenTraVac chiller, owners can utilize new products like CDQ (Cool Dry Quiet), plenum fans, thermal storage, wireless zone systems and parallel fan powered VAV boxes.

The addition of new flexible, prepackaged control systems with intuitive interfaces allow owners to increase sustainability of the system by using proven, optimized control sequences. Interactive dashboards remove the mystery from system operation and allow building managers to document building performance and energy savings.

Exciting things are happening in the world of system design. Learn more about Trane’s EarthWise Ice-enhanced Chiller Plant or Trane’s EarthWise Variable Air Systems.