Tower Cleanliness & Filtration

Tower Cleanliness & Filtration

Routine cleaning and filtration are crucial to discouraging the fouling and biological growth which can thrive in a cooling tower. Work with your water treatment supplier to establish a cleaning schedule to keep your tower efficient and well maintained, and get their recommendation on optimal filter systems.

Cooling towers function as accidental air scrubbers. They pull in air to increase the air water contact interface as the water falls through the tower on its way back to the basin. The water is then re-circulated through the chiller, then back to the tower again. As this process continues, the cooling tower constantly captures any airborne debris drawn in through the tower.

Airborne Debris Clogs Cooling Towers

Filtration and regular cleaning are required to prevent the captured debris from clogging the filter and getting circulated and trapped in the heat exchanger. Any material building up in the heat exchanger will restrict water flow and cause process equipment to overheat and malfunction.

Local air quality has a big impact on cleaning requirements. Natural airborne particles like dust, pollen or smoke from forest fires can potentially increase the rate of contamination, as can industrial and automobile effluent.

Industrial and urban areas are often under construction, which increases the dust and dirt a tower will pull from the air. Trees and their pollen can greatly contribute to tower strainer fouling: Ask anyone who has cottonwood trees near their HVAC equipment. Kitchen and building exhaust can be pulled into the tower, concentrating the negative impact on the tower. Organic fouling can and will negatively affect the efficacy of biocides and contribute to a myriad of problems impacting efficiency.

Enlist Water Treatment Suppliers to Maintain Your Tower

Side stream filtration is useful for keeping the tower clean. Many types of side stream filters are commercially available, including sand filters, solid separators, and sweeper systems installed in the tower basin. Your water treatment technologist can provide advice on selecting the right filter for your system. Additionally, each tower manufacturer and ASHRAE 188 offers a preventative maintenance schedule.

Ignoring the impact of airborne particles is a recipe for higher operating costs and repair bills. Poor tower efficiency also creates an environment which is hospitable to bacteria, which further interferes with efficiency while also presenting a potential public and employee health risk.

Talk to Chemtex today to make sure your super-sized air scrubber is functioning at its best.