Closed Loop Water Treatment for HVAC Companies
Many heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems depend on functional closed loops for temperature control, water conservation and minimized wastage. An HVAC system must uphold the building's heating and cooling requirements year-round. However, closed loops can experience leaks, corrosion, pitting and bacterial contamination. These problems can lead to expensive shutdowns, repairs and utility bills.
To minimize harmful deposits and maintain performance, monitoring and treating your closed loop water is a must.
Why Is Water Treatment Important for Closed Loop Systems?
A closed loop retains water inside pipes to preserve quality and volume. It has a lower contamination risk than an open system due to minimal air exposure. However, that doesn't mean it's free of treatment and maintenance requirements.
Closed loops are prone to sludge and deposits without regular care, monitoring and upkeep. Black magnetic iron oxide deposits from mud are a common pollutant in closed loops. The particles gradually bind together and accumulate in various components of the system, including:
- Heat transfer surfaces
- Fan coils
- Heating or cooling coils
A low pH in the water can also be a cause for concern, often indicating microbiological growth or a leak in the system. Bacteria can also compromise heat transfer by coating part surfaces. That's why monitoring and adjusting the pH of your closed loop water is so important. Water testing and chemical treatment help prevent corrosion and deterioration of your closed loop's inner mechanisms.
Closed loop areas subjected to subfreezing temperatures are also at risk. Freezing liquid within the system can cause pipes to burst, leading to costly repairs and downtime. Your system may require a glycol solution to lower the freezing point and prevent pipe rupturing.
Closed loop systems may operate differently than open loops. Nonetheless, they still have a unique set of challenges that call for a comprehensive water treatment program. Once a closed loop begins operation, it's difficult to pinpoint corrosion until the system shows signs of failure. A customized plan can proactively manage corrosion, bacterial growth and other contaminants in your system, boosting its efficiency and life span.
What Does Closed Loop Water Treatment Entail?
While closed loop water treatment can vary depending on your system's requirements, it typically involves these processes.
1. Chemical Additives
At Chardon Labs, we use proprietary treatment chemicals to target dissolved solids in the system. Chemical treatment stimulates the following processes to reduce corrosion in closed loops:
- Regulating pH: Applying the proper chemicals can balance pH in the closed loop water, keeping it within the noncorrosive range. Managing pH levels can also address issues associated with colloidal iron.
- Removing oxygen: Chemicals remove oxygen from the water to help slow the spread of corrosion on metal surfaces.
- Passivating metal surfaces: Certain chemicals form protective films on metal closed loop surfaces, protecting them from corrosion.
2. Cleaning and Flushing
We've developed an effective cleaning and flushing system for closed loops to prevent corrosion, scale and leaks. Our process eliminates abrasive iron deposits and uses a biocide to decontaminate the system.
3. Glycol Solutions
Depending on your closed loop system's surrounding environment, it may require the addition of glycol. A glycol solution can protect fluids from freezing, prevent pipe bursts and maintain efficient water flow.
In most applications, we use ethylene glycol in closed loops to lower the freezing point to minus 60 degrees Fahrenheit. Ethylene breaks down slower and achieves a lower freezing point than propylene glycol. However, propylene is less toxic than ethylene, making it the glycol of choice where food processing or portable water contact is involved.
Keep in mind that glycol doesn't protect metal from corrosion. That's why we also add corrosion inhibitor chemicals to the glycol.
4. Continued Maintenance
Closed loop water treatment isn't a one-and-done operation. Your system will require ongoing monitoring and upkeep to remain free of foreign matter. In addition to our robust cleaning and chemical treatments, we perform essential maintenance tasks like filter changes, pH checks and conductivity testing.
We also use state-of-the-art monitoring devices to track your water status, such as:
- Conductivity and pH probes
- Biocide timers
- Shot feeders
Benefits of HVAC Closed Loop Water Treatment
From saving money to promoting more efficient operations, maintaining your closed loop system can bring an array of advantages. Here are some notable perks HVAC companies can reap from closed loop water treatment.
1. Lower Costs
By properly treating and maintaining your closed loop water, you can forgo the expenses of frequent malfunctions and servicing. Additionally, working with Chardon Labs can help you cut costs because we don't focus on selling chemicals — we emphasize selling clean systems.
As part of your personalized water treatment plan, you'll receive consistent treatments and maintenance at a fixed price. You'll never encounter hidden fees or surprise bills.
2. Increased Efficiency and Productivity
A well-maintained closed loop system translates to fewer shutdowns and repairs in your facility. Less maintenance allows for more uptime and productivity. Ultimately, your water system can see a longer service life with proper treatment.
3. Improved Health and Safety
Bacteria-contaminated water systems can pose health risks to those within the facility. By keeping your closed loop system clean and free of debris, you can promote safer and healthier conditions for you and others.
How to Know if Your Closed Loop System Needs Maintenance
A few factors can indicate that your closed loop system requires servicing. Here are some warning signs to look out for:
- Leaks: Leakage in your closed loop system is one of the clearest signs to call in a professional. Besides causing unnecessary water wastage, leaks can signify microbiologically influenced corrosion.
- Unexplained increase in your monthly bills: If you've noticed an increase in your water use and utility bills without cause, there could be an undiscovered leak somewhere in your system. Leaks can waste large amounts of water and drive up costs significantly.
- Water discoloration: If you spot heavy fouling or an abnormally dark color in your closed loop water, thorough cleaning and flushing are in order.
- Sticky valves: A sticking or stuck valve can result from a buildup of deposits. These deposits could be on the valve stem, inside the valve guide or both.
If you detect any of these signs in your closed loop system, you'll need an experienced water treatment provider to assist you.
Choose Chardon for HVAC Closed Loop Water Treatment
At Chardon Labs, our goal is to help you reduce costs and increase uptime. Our ISO-certified service technicians will handle each critical step of your closed loop water treatment process, including:
- A free evaluation of your system and its needs
- A tailored chemical treatment plan to prevent corrosion, scale and bacterial growth
- Cleaning and flushing
- Regular testing
- Continued maintenance at a fixed annual price
Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you.