Cooling Tower Drift
Is it “raining” around your cooling tower?
Are you experiencing high corrosion rates on steel structures near your cooling tower? Fan blade leading edge erosion? How about spots on cars or other vehicles near the cooling tower? If you are experiencing any of these symptoms as well as many others, you have a cooling tower drift problem.
So, what is drift? Drift is discrete water droplets entrained in the exit air leaving the cooling tower. Modern counterflow cooling towers are designed for very low drift rates (0.0005% of the circulating flow) but even these levels can be problematic at times. If you have an older tower, particularly a crossflow cooling tower, the design rate was likely 200 times higher. Design drift rates are just that and operating drift rates can be much higher. Some of the conditions that contribute to high drift rates include poor installation practices, poor cooling tower geometry, collapsing supports, high circulating water temperatures and number of others.
And what about Legionella. If the Legionella bacteria is present in your cooling tower it is present in the drift exiting the cooling tower. Drift droplets are respirable and this can add to the risks that nearby personnel are exposed to.
If you expect that you may have a drift problem, call us today for a visit from one of our Regional Technical Managers to help you determine a plan of action. Reducing drift is a key element in obtaining smooth operation of your cooling tower and reducing maintenance costs.