Condenser – Biodegradable Chemical Removes Water Scale

Tube face before Tube Tech clean Tube face prior to Tube Tech clean Tube face after Tube Tech clean Morning cleaning information

Environmentally safe chemical clean benefits petrochemical plant

In addition to their expertise in the high pressure water jetting industry Tube Tech also offers a host of other cleaning techniques including environmentally safe biodegradable chemical cleaning. A European petrochemical plant was concerned that the water scale within the small bore tubes of their condenser was becoming severe. Tube Tech was able to assess all of the challenges the contract presented and found the best solution.


  • Access to the condenser was limited which meant high pressure water jetting was not an option.
  • Tube Tech inspected the tubes using a video probe inspection system to decide which of their alternative cleaning systems would remove the scale.
  • The inspection results indicated that drilling/darting would only remove 85–90% of the scale and Tube Tech were determined to remove all of the scale.
  • Cleaning contractor and all the equipment used had to be offshore certified.


  • At their Essex base Tube Tech tested a new biodegradable chemical on a custom built condenser.
  • The chemical removed 100% of the scale and was then used on the fouled condenser at the petrochemical plant.
  • Video probe inspection results showed that following the Tube Tech clean the condenser tubes were ‘as new’.
  • The condenser was cleaned in less than 12 hours – a full shift earlier than expected.

Tube Tech Comment

Mike Watson, Technical and Managing Director: “We are always wary of using chemicals to clean heat transfer equipment as most chemicals will cause some damage to the equipment and/or the environment. On this occasion we were happy to use our biodegradable chemical as it was the best solution for the client and was completely safe both for the condenser and the environment. Our client was delighted with the speed and the result of the clean.”

Client Comment

“Tube Tech had estimated between two and five days to clean out the mixing vessel, depending on the thickness of the gel, so we were very pleased that the job was completed successfully in just three days, particularly as they were able to do the job without man entry and without incident.”

For more information or to discuss your cleaning challenge call us on +44 1268 786999 or e-mail, alternatively click here to fill out our contact form.

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