ETC
electronic fluid treatment technology
T: 01329 836960

Typical Procedure

Just as effective chemical treatment depends upon knowledge, obtaining optimum effectiveness from Physical Water Conditioning (pwc) requires knowledge and experience as a number of factors need to be addressed.  Simply putting a treatment unit on the incoming or rising main may well give acceptable results in a small domestic dwelling but is likely to lead to customer dissatisfaction for any application larger.

As soon as water is treated it begins to revert back to how it was before.  Treated water held in a cold storage tank will maintain sufficient treatment over 3–4 days to still be effective in preventing hard scale formation. However, heat the water and the reversion process is accelerated.  Other causes of reversing treatment include pressure and turbulence.  This latter cause is not always easy to predict.  Centrifugal pumps are an obvious source of turbulence, others, such as tortuous pipework runs are not so obvious.

Spraying actions will also undo treatment, however, as they are often either the last action before going to drain or the water is re-circulated (and hence can be retreated) this may not matter.  An exception is a ball-cock valve, the usual route into a cold storage or break tank.  Here both storage and turbulence combine to reduce pwc effectiveness.

The most effective siting of pwc treatment units is just prior to the problem areas.  However, a balance must be made against the cost of this approach.  A skilled and experienced pwc Engineer will be able to weigh up the pros and cons of where best to site the units, to give a good level of treatment at the lowest cost.

Other important considerations will also need to be addressed, such as the effect of interference of the treatment field caused by other magnetic/electro-magnetic sources, the fluid velocity and the necessary time for the treatment to be fully completed, before scaling is likely to take place.

Just like the use of chemical treatment, (which itself is ineffective if applied incorrectly), the purchaser is paying for the applications knowledge and ability of the company and personnel applying treatment and not what is in the bottle.

To achieve optimum results it is necessary for the pwc application engineer to go through the physical and operational make-up of the system.  This is achieved either via a site survey with the system engineer or by analysing system layout from schematic drawings provided.  The objective is to identify problem areas and their causes, determine such variables as how often certain repair or maintenance actions need to be undertaken and most importantly how the client can establish a baseline and then measure the effectiveness against it.

This latter objective is most important as it is essential the client is able to determine the effectiveness of the treatment.  It can either be something very simple, (although disruptive), such as opening up the system and carrying out a visual inspection, to something more complex but easier to implement like fitting data logging equipment.