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Technical Data Sheet

CLEANING OF CLOSED LOOP WATER SYSTEMS

FOR OIL, GREASE, AND IRON OXIDE REMOVAL

 

General

Prior to putting a new system into service or returning one to service after it has been repaired and/or contaminated with oil or grease, it must be cleaned to remove oil, grease, new pipe mill scale, and general rust accumulations.  Older systems generally do NOT contain oil.  They are, however, fouled with some hardness related scale, but mostly metal oxide corrosion by-products.  The latter range from soft, "mud-like" deposits to "hard, encrusted" iron oxide tubercules.  These contaminants can cause a wide variety of operating problems.  Oil can aggravate corrosion by hindering the ability of chemical corrosion inhibitors to function and by contributing to the formation of corrosion cells.  Scale deposits can retard heat transfer, restrict water flow, initiate formation of corrosion cells, and protect the corrosive actions at existing corrosion cells.  This leads to additional localized corrosion and subsequent leaks.  Scale deposits also hinder the protective action of corrosion inhibitors, and can provide a "protective home" for corrosive micro-organisms; particularly acid producing, sulfate reducing bacteria.  

Closed loop water systems are typically constructed of mild steel, copper, and brass metallurgies.  Some may contain galvanized steel, stainless steel, admiralty, and/or aluminum metallurgies.  Thus, highly alkaline "boil out" procedures typically prescribed by boiler manufacturer's operating manuals for "all steel" boilers are NOT acceptable.  Cleaning procedures based on strong, inhibited mineral acids can be risky for some metallurgies, are hazardous to handle, and are much more difficult to dispose of. The combination cleaning/passivation products and procedures described below function at pH neutral to mildly alkaline conditions, and have been found quite successful. 

For more, contact CSC Technology for a complete white paper.

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