09 Apr Protecting Chillers from Cottonwood
Spring time in the northern Mid-west brings with it so much work for facility engineers that there jsut isn’t enough time in the day. With daily temperature swings of 60 degrees common, snow one day and rain the next, planning can almost be a worthless exercise. Preventive maintenance in Spring is more of a joke than a reality. And just when you think you’re out of the Spring time rush, Cottonwood seeds start floating in the air, almost mocking all your hard work. Well facility engineers – it’s time to put cottonwood in its place.
For years it has been a battle to keep cottonwood out of your chiller’s coils or out of the water. In some cases cleaning cottonwood out of a chiller coil can be an all day long task because the long fibers of the seeds wrap anound and penetrate deep into the coil. Even once it’s clean the clog starts to reform almost immediately.
IT DOESN’T HAVE TO BE THIS WAY!
Purpose built cottonwood screening for chillers will keep them free of debris and funcitoning the way they are designed. When cleaning does need to occur it takes just minutes and you don’t risk damaging the coil fins. Just have RTUs at your facility – the screening works great for those too!
Why use a purpose built screen? Many facilities have tried using foam filter media, hogshair, polyester, and even window screening to make the chore of cleaning out cottonwood easier; however, these filters have some serious drawbacks. Thicker filter medias can be difficult to install, difficult to clean, and can be restrictive to airflow to the point of creating a new set of issues. Window screens are a cheap and readily available alternative, but even though this material is made to be outside it is not durable enough to withstand the beating it will take when installed on chillers.