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Cooling Corrective Actions
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The Evolution of the Maintenance Team
Over the past ten years I have noticed a change in maintenance and power plant operators. In the past I had customers working the boiler room who were retired Navy guys who gained experience working on steam ships. In addition, most of the operators had 20 plus years at the same job. They knew their plants and had specific roles to manage the water treatment programs. 

Times are changing. You don’t see anyone coming out of the Navy with steam experience, those ships are museums, and most plant operators are no longer dedicated to a single responsibility. They have a multitude of responsibilities around the entire facility and are pressed to find time to get the water tests done! Because of this shift, we see less operators with the experience and intrinsic knowledge to properly maintain and balance the water treatment program for their boilers and cooling towers.

This blog is for the next generation – the operators running the plants today.

Something is Out of Range – Now What?
So, you have become well versed in understanding your systems, grabbing water samples, running your prescribed tests, and logging the results into your log book (see below). So now what? How often do you run all your tests and have a perfect score? My guess is you have at least one out of range almost every time you test. Now comes the big question… what do you do about it? Do you know which corrective actions will bring that value back into range? Is the out of range value expected (meaning normal under current conditions such as a lag boiler coming online), has something gone wrong, or is the reading an anomaly? In any case, the out of range value must be addressed.



There are many conditions that can cause your readings to be out of range. However, you will often find that the cause is a common theme or known issue leading to a same problem on a particular system.

Experience is the Best Teacher
The best way to learn corrective actions is by doing. Sometimes only time and experience can teach you all the possibilities of the cause. However, we can help simplify this process and take some of the painful life learning out of the equation. When Watertech designs a water treatment program a comprehensive manual is provided along with a log sheet, specific parameters and a Control Chart (pic below) listing suggested corrective actions, should a value be out of range. In addition, we can provide a Cooling Tower Control Panel Alarm - Corrective Actions guide (pic below).  





These guides show you the most common causes of values out of range and help direct you to a possible solution. Although all the possible causes are not listed, this guide should help you 75% of the time. The remaining 25% will come with experience. 

A Real World Example
Below is an example of a value that was out of range and the problem that caused it. This low value was caught by the operator during his testing and was also detected through remote alarming. The graph depicts the drop in value which triggered the alarm. This is a reading for the active inhibitor (ED742) in a cooling tower. You can see the value take a steep decline in a matter of one to two days. 



Upon investigation, the pump had lost prime and was not pumping chemical. The operator was unsuccessful at re-priming the pump. He was advised to pull the head off the pump and found the diaphragm shaft had snapped off. This, my friends, is the anomaly! I have been in the business for over 27 years working on hundreds of chemical pumps. This is probably the 2nd broken shaft I have ever seen. Although the control chart would have directed the operator to check the pump for prime, it did not describe a broken shaft. You have now gained “Experience” (except in this case you may never witness this again)!



Learning corrective actions is a continuous process that can take years. How quickly you learn the cause will be determined by how often you have issues. If you do not have a Control Chart or any type of guide for this process, ask your water treatment company to provide one for you. The key is that you address the "out of range" values head-on and start learning your corrective actions right away. Testing and logging your results is great, but your true purpose starts when you are able to correct out of range conditions!

Want to learn more? Attend a Watertech Bootcamp where operators learn all the basics on cooling tower and boiler operations, testing and corrective actions with real life examples like the one shown above. Click WATERTECH UNIVERSITY for a list of upcoming events. 


  Jeff Freitag – Director of Sales, Watertech of America, Inc.
Jeff has been in the water treatment industry for almost 30 years and has a diverse background in water chemistry, pretreatment equipment, filtration, chemical feed and control, testing and monitoring, training, and consulting. He joined the Watertech team in 2000 and has held several positions before moving into his current role as Director of Sales. Some who know him call him “Jeff.” Most who have worked with him call him “The Water Guy.”

 
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Articles
Millipore Sigma Pro2 Dry Feeder Equipment Manuals 
Save up to 15% on energy costs. EndoTherm can be installed into ANY hydronic heating, process, and chilled loop system. 
Technical document with tips for reopening a building after closure. 
60 Seconds with Shayan Beg
Meet the Team – Employee spotlight: Shayan Beg, Territory Manager 
60 Seconds with Tom Koeppen
Meet the Team – Employee spotlight: Tom Koeppen, Territory Manager 
60 Seconds with Julie Kutil
Meet the Team – Employee spotlight: Julie Kutil, Customer Service Manager 
60 Seconds with Hmong Vang
Meet the Team – Employee spotlight: Hmong Vang - Applications Specialist 
60 Seconds with Jeff Bodendorfer
Meet the Team – Employee spotlight: Jeff Bodendorfer - Territory Manager 
60 Seconds with Karen Gavin
Meet the Team – Employee spotlight: Karen Gavin - Operations Manager 
60 Seconds with Kyle Pachowitz
Meet the Team – Employee spotlight: Kyle Pachowitz – Territory Manager / Healthcare Account Specialist 
60 Seconds with Liz Craig
Meet the Team – Employee spotlight: Liz Craig – Customer Service  
60 Seconds with Dave Kerr
Meet the Team – Employee spotlight: Dave Kerr – Applications Specialist. 
60 Seconds with Jason Waack
Meet the Team – Employee spotlight: Jason Waack – Territory Manager. 
An article from Water Conditioning & Purification that highlights various filtration media, their performance properties and best applications. 
60 Seconds with Jeff Freitag
Meet the Team – Employee spotlight: Jeff Freitag – Director of Sales. 
Tufts University School of Medicine found that more than 617,000 hospitalizations from 1991 to 2006 were related to three common opportunistic waterborne pathogens. 
60 Seconds with Jon Tiegs
Meet the Team – Employee spotlight: Jon Tiegs, Vice President. 
Download the annual surveys from the CDC's National Healthcare Safety Network. 
CMS says WMP's are necessary to be compliant. 
CMS Memo to State Survey Directors 
This toolkit is designed to help people understand which buildings and devices need a Legionella water management program to reduce the risk for Legionnaires’ disease. 
3 Key factors to consider when feeding an emulsion polymer. 
Legionaires' Disease – A problem for health care facilities. 
CWT Brochure
When you see CWT you have one of the industry’s best working for you. 
Certified Water Technologists Code of Ethics 
AWT Environmental Statement
AWT Environmental Statement The Association of Water Technologies (AWT) is an association of over 500 U.S. and international water treatment companies that provide water treatment programs for many diverse institutional, commercial and industrial water users. 
An article from Forbes addressing the importance of water to utility industry executives. 
A guide describing a process for assuring that building design intention matches actual energy consumption. 
Map of the U.S. identifying the hardness of water in milligrams per liter in specific locations. 
Guidelines to improve boiler performance allowing you to achieve more cost effective maintenance of a steam system. 
Five examples of how a plate heat exchanger can provide benefits for process heating applications. 
Legionella guide from the World Health Organization. 
Environmental Protection Agency rules governing large and small boilers used at area source facilities. 
Causes and solutions to fouling in heat exchangers.  
Strategies to optimize heat exchanger efficiency. 
Identifying problems that a good water management system can control. 
Boiler logging will reduce accidents, downtime, and equipment loss. 
Scale in boiler water systems is a very common issue. Consult with water treatment specialists to treat and prevent it.  
A list of instrument readings to be taken daily and recorded in your boiler log. 
Energy management basics that should be a part of your everyday checklist routine. 
Partial listing of sizing and installation highlights for steam pressure system safety valves. 
Guide to achieving 50% energy savings toward a net-zero energy building. 
A guide to understanding chemical water treatment in cooling and boiler water systems. 
A brief guide to better understanding boiler water conductivity. 
Information for proper fall shutdown of cooling equipment. 
Decrease your energy costs by using these proven effective guidelines. 
Solutions for water use and energy reduction in order to increase your bottom line and protect the environment. 
Ideas to limit water use in ethanol production utilizing a "reduce, reuse, recycle" frame of mind. 
Understanding our water footprint in order to better conserve water. 
Filtration using step-down particle retention can help reduce operating costs and achieve cleaner solutions. 
Innovative chemistries, optimization of systems and water conservation as these topics relate to scale, corrosion and microbiological prevention. 
Benefits of online benchmarking systems for facilities management. 
Knowing the cost of steam to improve your bottom line. 
Understanding energy metrics to limit energy use. 
New ways to save water in dairy processing. 
Energy reduction strategies for optimizing your bottom line. 
Five helpful tips for integrating environment, health and safety into company culture. 
Different selections of pumps for boiler water applications. 
Reduce your blowdown need to zero and cycle water without limit. 
Identifying key components of the boiler system and how water chemistry relates to Key Performance Indicators.  
Piping dead-legs, source of plant maintenance and safety incidents. 
Necessary steps that need to be taken prior to starting boilers after a lay-up period. 
Ice control and different ice formations in various types of cooling towers. 
Important connections and opportunities between water and energy. 
Guidelines for maintaining optimal water quality in evaporation cooling equipment. 
A checklist for monthly cooling tower maintenance. 
Table of conversion factors. 
10 ways that you can save time and money, prevent litigation and illness, and maybe even save a life as they relate to Legionella.  
Free cooling helps you reduce refrigeration energy consumption by using evaporative cooling equipment to produce chilled water in cool weather. 
Explaining the different types of boiler logs, what these logs can tell you, and who is all responsible for these logs. 
Benefits of using liquid polymers in water-treatment applications and accommodating their unique characteristics. 
Criteria you should consider when evaluating your next cooling tower purchase. 
Tips from Chemical Processing to make fullest use of its hot water, and thus cutting energy consumption. 
Part 1 - Describing some potentially catastrophic events that power and recovery boilers are prone to if not properly maintained. 
Part 2 - Describing some potentially catastrophic events that power and recovery boilers are prone to if not properly maintained. 
Part 3 - Describing some potentially catastrophic events that power and recovery boilers are prone to if not properly maintained. 
General water management guide for facility managers. 
Strategies for reducing energy savings in large office buildings by up to 50%. 
Sustainable and operational benefits of molded, HDPE cooling towers. 
Maintenance requirements to prevent scale from occurring in your boiler. 
Optimization efforts taken by several chemical manufacturers to reduce their water footprint.  
Understanding the key components of cooling towers and how to improve water efficiency. 
How to prevent/minimize Legionella in your water systems. 
Blogs
Improving condensate return can save on water, energy and chemicals. 
EndoTherm is an additive that is proven to reduce energy usage in heating and cooling closed loop recirculating systems.  
The Impact of Stagnant Water on Industrial and Potable Water Systems 
Why should water treatment automation be a top priority? 
Maximize the Potential of Pretreatment 
Happy 40th Anniversary Watertech! 
How to manage your boiler system when results are out of range.  
Give Thanks for Water 
5 Deaerator problems to watch for to help ensure high quality feed water. 
Learn how the salt you choose can have a significant impact on system performance. 
Filming agents prevent scale and corrosion by forming a protective layer on all metal surfaces. 
Tips to keep sensors clean and working effectively to help avoid operational challenges that are costly to correct.  
The number one threat to business development is access to fresh water. This has prompted more to seek careers in the water industry. 
How to manage your cooling system when results are out of range.  
Advancements and innovations in water treatment equipment and controllers make life easier, but more importantly, provide ways to achieve better and more accurate results. 
When boiler water turns to steam solids are left behind. Bottom blowdown and surface blowdown are two methods to reduce solids and help maintain your system. 
Side stream filtration is an important but often overlooked component of an effective cooling water treatment program. 
January is a great time to reassess business strategies and include some water treatment resolutions that could improve the health of your company. 
Biocides can be used for many applications including healthcare, food & beverage, industrial, and commercial. Choosing the proper disinfection technology is critical. 
Water and energy are very much interrelated and dependent upon one another, this co-dependency is called the Water-Energy Nexus. 
Are you considering a chemical-free, cooling water treatment solution? It is important to fully understand your system design and the unique characteristics of your application when making a decision. 
Being proactive and thorough in your approach to maintenance saves time and money in the long run.  
Canned Water for Kids (cW4K) is a great local charity that is making a global impact to help ensure all children have access to clean, safe drinking water. 
Ordering and receiving a glycol delivery should be a fairly straightforward and easy process; however, it takes some insight and planning to avoid complications.  
Making changes in how you use salt in your facility can help protect our fresh water resources, and potentially reduce your operating costs.  
Softeners are a critical component to the water treatment system. They help remove minerals to reduce scale and build-up in piping and heat transfer equipment. 
Sloppy sludge is a challenge in wastewater treatment. It pays to be informed on treatment equipment and how chemicals can impact this process. 
Having a team that has been trained in proper safety procedures and practices ensures not only their own safety, but also the safety of customers. 
The water characteristics of Waukesha’s existing water supply and Lake Michigan water are quite different and will require users to consider how they manage their boiler and cooling water water treatment.. 
Learning how to properly install and maintain your boiler conductivity electrode will help improve the performance of your boiler. 
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Have You Hugged Your Boiler Today?
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Industrial facilities use large amounts of fresh water. By reducing water usage, facilities also achieve reduced energy cost, chemical cost savings, and other benefits. 
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Sanitizers are required in food and beverage facilities. Choosing the right sanitizer can impact wastewater treatment.  
When a vendor relationship is built on trust, good communication, and a sincere investment in your business, it will drive meaningful value and a sustained competitive advantage. 
Choosing the right biocide saves money, by reducing downtime and maintenance costs, and increasing production efficiency.  
The time invested in preparation for cooling system start-up can pay big dividends later in the season. 
Proper preparation in the preseason is critical to ensure system efficiency, sustainability, and dependability. 
An effective employee training strategy can help employees be more productive, confident and boost moral. 
Bioaugmentation can be a game-changer for wastewater management, breaking down organic matter and cleaning up waste streams.  
A comparison of feedwater tanks and deaerators for storing and treating boiler feedwater. 
Waste-to-energy initiatives can greatly benefit communities by mitigating various environmental concerns like pathogen control, odor control, and groundwater contamination.  
A site audit can identify ways to reduce water, chemical, and energy usage.  
Watertech an Exhibitor at the 2016 WHEA Technical Exhibition
Watertech is an exhibitor at the 2016 WHEA Technical Exhibit in Green Bay 
Automation allows facility managers and water system operators to be more efficient.  
Driving down the cost of water through initiatives that reduce and recycle water is good for business and good for the environment.  
Lombardi Walk/Run To Tackle Cancer
Vince Lombardi Walk/Run to Tackle Cancer - Milwaukee 
Between the price volatility of water, a growing concern for freshwater supply, and the necessity of water use in production processes, maintenance, and human consumption, it can be difficult for business owners and facility managers to manage water use in a way that is both good for business and good for the environment.  
Are you showing your cooling tower the TLC it needs to be running at its peak performance efficiently? 
If proper care is not taken during the shutdown stage, these solids can settle out in drums and tubes and dry to a hard, tightly held deposit that could require chemical or severe mechanical cleaning. 
The CDP or Continuous Blowdown method of boiler layup consists of piping continuous surface blowdown from the operating boiler to the bottom of the stand-by boiler.  
Your water treatment specialist can help you determine what the maximum number of cycles is for your system. 
Your water treatment company can help you set surface blowdown conductivity control limits that maintain the dissolved solids in a safe, economical range. 
June 28th Symposium and Open House
On June 28th Watertech of America celebrated our first annual Symposium and Open House! 
Don’t be dissuaded by new regulations designed to reduce phosphorus in the Great Lakes Region watershed. Take a holistic wastewater management approach to meet discharge limits and keep you in regulatory compliance. 
Preferred method of performing the bottom blowdown. 
Increasing your feedwater temperature to above 180 degrees F will help reduce your chemical usage of oxygen scavenger, increase your efficiency and reduce thermal stress.  
Water treatment programs should maximize the frequency at which its water is cycled to prevent scaling.  
Hopefully you have been busy getting your cooling water systems ready for the demand of the coming months 
As the water evaporates in a cooling tower system, it leaves behind all of the dissolved solids that were present in the fresh makeup water used to replenish system losses 
What is a target temperature for your feedwater? 
It is well known that one of the greatest threats to the integrity of a steam system is corrosion due to the effects of dissolved oxygen. 
OSHA aligning their Hazard Communication System (HCS) with the UN's Globally Harmonized System (GHS) 
There are many people in the community that spend good parts of their day managing water. 
Before you fire up your boiler, there are some steps one should take to insure the boiler is functioning properly and efficiently. 
Shedding some light on the causes behind cooling water contamination 
Plant operators focus their attention on controlling scale and corrosion, but often neglect monitoring for microorganism growth and the accumulation of silt and other foulants.  
This blog, we will go deeper into discussion about each type of flocculants. 
Polymer flocculants, what are they? and what are they used for? 
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Running these membrane filter tests can keep your system running more efficiently 
Boiler plant operators are becoming increasingly aware of the importance of their steam condensate systems. 
Sampling for iron in condensate systems using the membrane filter procedure  
The damage caused by oxygen can be extensive and quite costly 
Mechanical deaeration and chemical deaeration are the methods for controlling this corrosion 
If you find you are using an excessive amount of oxygen-scavenging chemicals, you may want to investigate the performance of your deaerater (DA) or feedwater heater 
A properly operating deaerator is one of the most important pieces of equipment in a boiler room 
Deaerators play a vital role in the efficient production of steam, but you may find as time goes on their performance begins to decline. Here is a troubleshooting list that may be used to help identify the source of the decreased performance 
Accurate and easy monitoring of steam purity can help minimize the occurrence and degree of carryover and thus guarantee a trouble free operation.