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Updated: September 8, 2016

Ten Tips For Using Glycol in Chillers and Chilled Water Systems

  1. Never use automotive anti-freeze
    Automotive antifreeze is formulated for engine cooling and can cause problems with flow rates/ pressures and reduced heat transfer.
  2. Only use inhibited glycol
    Uninhibited glycol and water mixtures are very corrosive. Inhibitors protect against corrosion, scale and rust and act as a pH buffer and a biocide. Never use less than 20% Glycol, this will ensure that an adequate quantity of inhibitors are present. Never over-mix – use only the glycol concentration necessary to protect the equipment.
  3. Don’t mix glycols
    Do NOT mix different types of glycol or different brands. Incompatibilities can lead to formula separation which clogs filters, strainers and pump suctions as well as reducing its transfer properties.
  4. Check your local environmental rules
    Check local regulations for rules surrounding glycols and antifreeze solutions. Ground structure, water table, drainage and disposal may be things to consider.
  5. How will glycol anti-freeze affect my system?
    A glycol solution is denser than water and does not offer the same level of thermal transfer as water. It will therefore produce a slightly reduced cooling capacity, increase pumping power consumption and increase the fluid temperature difference.
  6. Flowcool IG
    This is ethylene-based glycol and it is the standard process/industrial antifreeze additive. FlowCool IG can be used in any application where low toxicity is not a requirement.
  7. Flowcool-Plus & Flowcool FS
    These are propylene-based glycols; FlowCool FS has been tested by the National Sanitary Foundation. They are non-toxic and are the antifreeze additives of choice for applications in the food and beverage industry and where user contact is a frequent occurrence.
  8. Flowcool Bio
    This is a BIO-glycol which is derived from a sustainable source and is non-toxic, nonflammable, non-hazardous and biodegradable. It is the ideal solution for sites and applications where environmental concerns are paramount.
  9. What water to use
    Most systems use ordinary mains “tap” water. However applying the appropriate inhibitors and biocide is of vital importance to prevent chiller system damage. Using one of the “Pure” waters – distilled, demineralised, de-ionised or RO Water – will remove all the unpredictability associated with town mains water.
    WE RECOMMEND THE USE OF PURE WATER WITH A SUITABLE (MINIMUM 20%) INHIBITED GLYCOL MIX TO GIVE THE ULTIMATE SYSTEM PROTECTION.
  10. Chiller and system hygiene and fluid maintenance
    The chilled water system must be flushed, cleaned and sanitised prior to adding a new water/glycol solution.
    The water/glycol solution must be regularly sampled and tested to ensure there are no underlying or progressive contamination and/or corrosion issues arising.anitfreeze

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