Koch Twisted Tube Heat Exchangers x 4 External (Shell Side) and Tube Side Cleaning

Rapid Mobilisation with multi-system approach succeeds where previous contractors failed



Having tried to clean its Koch twisted tube heat exchangers several times, this South African refinery required advanced cleaning techniques to remove both shell side and tube side fouling. Using a multi-system approach we were able to clean the twisted tube exchangers effectively, quickly and safely.




  • Tube Tech had a very short window in which to mobilise both equipment and technicians for this critical path project.
  • 4 x Koch Twisted Tube bundles each with 960 triangular pitch horizontal tubes
  • Client advised deposit was ferric oxide spread evenly across the tube side and blocking the shell side
  • Client requested a 90% production standard of clean to the internal and external surfaces
  • Twisted tube exchangers continually fouling since installation in 2008
  • Client had previously tried chemical and high pressure water jetting to remove fouling but all 5 attempts had failed to remove all deposits.





  • 24 technicians from Tube Tech mobilised to work day and night shifts
  • Multiple systems used included:
    • Remote control Tube Side water jetting systems with no hydraulic recoil using bespoke tips for twisted tubes
    • Micro Bore Shell JeTT™ system removed deposits from the entire shell side spaces by penetrating deep into the centre of the exchangers.
  • This critical path contract was successfully completed within the short timeframe specified by the client.


Tube Tech Comment


Martin Byford, Operations Director: “Our client was impressed with not only the success of our cleaning techniques but also our focused approach to safety on site. We are certain our client will see a dramatic increase in heat transfer from the twisted tube exchangers when the refinery starts up after shutdown.”


Client Comment


“We were really impressed with Tube Tech’s performance and how clean the bundles are – the cleanest we have seen them since their 2008 installation!”


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