Cooling Tower Maintenance Practices to Help You Save Energy

Industrial & Manufacturing Blog

Sound cooling tower maintenance practices are essential to ensure system health and efficient energy consumption. Many facilities concentrate on ensuring chiller efficiency, neglecting their cooling towers. The reason for this is that chillers use a lot more energy than cooling towers – up to five times more energy.

What most facility managers fail to realize is that chillers are more efficient when supplied with cool condensing water – which is supplied by the cooling tower. According to research, supplying condensing water that is a degree cooler increases chiller efficiency by 2-3%. When proper maintenance practices are not followed, condensing water temperatures rise, causing an increase in energy consumption.

Below are ten tips that can be implemented to keep your cooling tower working at optimal efficiency:

  1. Monitor the unit while in use to determine the normal operational baseline, so that you can tell when out-of-ordinary noises are produced.
  2. Before setting out to do any hands-on maintenance, ensure that the requisite lock-out procedures have been followed, and that motor switches have been disconnected to ensure safety.
  3. Inspect strainers and clean out any loose debris to ensure the system is kept clean. Accumulation of dirt and debris in cooling towers leads to proliferation of algae and mould. When these mix with warm water being fed into the tower, the result is an environment that encourages bacterial growth. This bacteria can then be aerosolised into the air and spread diseases such as Legionnaire's Disease.
  4. Examine the tower's water distribution system, looking out for any dry portions on the fill coil section. This prevents build-up of lime scales and increases system capacity. If the surface is not completely wetted, check whether there are clogs and/or cracks in the nozzles.
  5. Clean out the cold water basin by flushing out loose debris through the sump strainer of tower drain in order to prevent collection of dirt and ensure proper filtration. Alternatively, install basin sweeper piping along with your water filtration system, which functions as automated maintenance.
  6. Monitor the supplementary water supply to ensure that it remains at the pre-set level to combat air entrainment and conserve water.
  7. Regulate the bleed rate according to evaporation rates and water quality within your locale to prevent solid particle accumulation within recirculating water.
  8. Ensure the belt is maintained at the recommended tension for optimized performance on the belt drive system.
  9. Carry out routine checks on the oil levels, oil quality and the shaft alignment within the gear drive system. Use the manufacturers' recommendations as standards.
  10. Ensure the fan shaft bearings are lubricated at least every three months. You can also automate the process by fitting automatic bearing greasers, which will also eliminate the need for bearing maintenance.

Your cooling tower's maintenance needs will be dictated by the immediate surroundings of the tower as well as the status of the circulating water. With proper maintenance habits, you can reduce chiller system energy consumption and extend the lifespan of your equipment. For more information, contact companies like Breezewater Pty Ltd.


23 October 2015

General Contractors and Removing Lead, Asbestos and Other Toxins

When you work with a contractor to create your home, there are so many things you can do. However, when working with an older home, the first thing you need to address are any toxins in the home. Hi, my name is Katy, and a few years ago, I invested in a beautiful older home. It needed a lot of work, and I started right away. However, when I finally hired a contractor to help with an addition, he pointed out that I had overlooked the presence of mold and lead in the house, and he helped me mitigate those issues. If you have a home with toxins in it, I'm here to offer advice about working with a contractor. Thanks for reading!