The purpose of cooling towers is to dissipate heat from recirculating water used to cool air conditioners which is the reason why these cooling systems use a lot of water. The entire evaporative process results in extreme water loss and raised costs.
With the proper management of the recirculated water, the efficiency of the cooling tower can be improved. Have a look at these measures that industry can take in order to lower the water consumption and hence increase the efficiency of industrial cooling towers.
Increase the cycles of concentration
The number of times a cooling tower recycles water before dumping is called cycles of concentration, it is also known as blowdown. It can also be defined as the number of times fresh makeup water can be used in the tower before the dissolved minerals cycle up to an extent where they drop out of the solution. The quality of the makeup water and the water treatment regiment determines the actual number of cycles a cooling tower system can handle. Generally, a cycle of concentration of three is considered of minimum efficiency.
Take some significant steps to monitor and minimise chemical use in treatment systems. These strides reduce the potential for corrosion, scaling and biological growth and also allow the towers to operate safely at higher concentration ratios.
Reduce blowdown by careful monitoring and agreed-upon set points
Many operators increase blowdown water so as to minimise scaling and biological growth which results in water loss and also increases corrosion by lowering the pH. The water waste can be reduced by careful monitoring, establishing set points and adhering to them and, installing a conductivity meter.
Monitor water levels
Replace the ballcock-style fill valves that tend to leak and frequently get out of adjustment with more reliable fill valves. When the fill is too high, it becomes an additional source of water loss. When that happens, the strong airflow in the sump can set off choppiness on the water surface and water overflow. It is mandatory to keep checking the water level in the sump regularly to ensure that it is adequately below the overflow outlet to avoid excessive water use.
Install a conductivity controller to control blowdown automatically.
Conductivity is a prescribed extent of water’s ability to conduct electricity. In industrial cooling towers, conductivity indicates the amount of dissolved minerals in the water. Conductivity controller continually measures the conductivity, and it discharges water when the conductivity set point is exceeded.
Install flow meters on makeup and blowdown lines
Flow meters will help you check the ratio of makeup flow to blowdown flow and compare it with the ratio of conductivity of blowdown water and the makeup water. The proportions have to match the target cycles of concentration. If it isn’t so or somewhere around to matching then, check the tower for leaks or other unauthorised draw-off. When the system does not operate at or near your target cycles of concentration, check system components along with conductivity controller, makeup water fill valve and blowdown valve. It is essential to keep track of makeup and blowdown quantities, conductivity and cycles of concentration; it will help you see any performance degradation if it occurred.
Keep air handler coils well maintained.
The load increases on the chilled water system as the dirty or fouled coils try to maintain conditioned air setpoint temperatures. The added load increases the consumption of electricity and taxes the evaporative cooling process, thereby using more water.
Select your water treatment vendor carefully based on their commitment to conserving water
It is vital to select a vendor or industrial cooling tower manufacturer that understands how crucial water efficiency is and have a solid reputation of results in this area. Not every vendor is looking to cater a conservation-oriented client which would actually mean selling fewer chemicals. At towertech, we take care of your needs, get in touch with us to know more about our services. Ideally, a water treatment vendor must be selected based on the cost to treat makeup water and maintaining a cooling tower to the optimal recommended system water cycle of concentration.
These are a few measures you can take to reduce water loss from your industrial cooling tower system. Invest in systems that efficiently minimise water wastage and vendors that are ready to help you with their dedicated services.