When downtime is money, availability is everything. With a local service centre, field engineers, and authorized service providers in New Zealand, Alfa Laval has your heat exchanger repair, service and spare parts needs covered.
Maximize plate and frame heat exchanger performance and lifespan by letting the expert who built the equipment repair and maintain it. We have been servicing heat exchangers for more than 70 years. From our modern facilities strategically located near you, our skilled engineers in NZ provide maintenance, cleaning, reconditioning and regasketing services that prolong your heat cooler's service life and keep it up and running.
Contact us to speak with one of our Australian Alfa Laval Service and Pricing specialists.
Extend your plate heat exchanger’s lifespan and performance with the best cleaning procedure and chemicals
Keeping plate and frame heat exchangers clean is extremely important for process performance and an essential part of preventative maintenance. Cleaning should be done before complete fouling or process issues occur resulting in production losses or irreversible damages.
With our cleaning services, plate surfaces are restored to optimal condition, which lowers the maintenance costs and extends your equipment’s lifespan. And by saving energy, you can lower your operating cost as well.
Cleaning and reconditioning at NZ Service Centre keep your heat exchanger in top shape
If you’re looking for a heat exchanger cleaning company near you, you can send your plate heat exchanger to the fully equipped Alfa Laval NZ Service Centre in Hamilton near Auckland. Reconditioning refers to services performed to the plates inside the gasketed plate heat exchanger. Two of the most common reasons for decreased efficiency in heat exchangers are old gaskets that cause external leakage and deposits such as scaling, which lower the heat transfer and eventually clog the channels. By cleaning and reconditioning your heat exchanger, you can solve these problems.
Our cleaning procedure is best in class and carried out by fully trained service engineers. The service involves our experts removing gaskets and scaling with specialized tools and chemicals. They initially clean the plates with hydrojets to remove residue. While cleaning with abrasive methods and chemicals is common, Alfa Laval only uses carefully developed and environmentally sound chemicals. The plates are immersed in specially formulated chemical baths, with concentration and temperature carefully regulated for the gentle removal of deposits.
This prevents corrosion and creates an ideal surface for re-gasketing – without you having to handle the chemicals or waste. In addition, Alfa Laval engineers can thoroughly examine your heat exchangers, correcting any sealing problems or deformities. You can tailor your own package of services or choose a pre-defined one.
Alfa Laval plate heat exchanger cleaning and reconditioning procedure explained step by step
Upon arriving at the service centre, your heat exchanger plates are examined for major corrosion, erosion and deformities. Our technicians will determine whether the plates should be reconditioned or replaced.
We use an efficient, yet gentle, method to remove the gaskets using liquid nitrogen or caustic soda, which completely removes the gasket while leaving the groove intact, preventing plate damage.
The heat exchanger plates are initially cleaned with water to remove residue.
The plates are immersed in specially formulated chemical baths, whose concentration and temperature are carefully regulated for the gentle removal of deposits.
Crack and deformity detection
Each plate is sprayed with dye and then carefully inspected under UV light to find even the smallest defects.
We carefully regasket the plates using a strong, 2-part epoxy glue, which is far superior to the rubber based contact cement used by other service providers.
The plates are then placed in a curing skid and baked in an oven for 3-5 hours under compression.
When the heat exchanger is reassembled, a full hydrostatic pressure test is performed to ensure there is no leakage.
Finally, you'll receive a detailed heat exchanger service report, including the procedure documentation and recommendations based on your results.
Blue – the simple solution
Alfa Laval’s Blue reconditioning package is a fast cleaning service that can be used when the gaskets are undamaged. It is often used for interim service on clogged GPHEs that are normally reconditioned with our red package. The Blue Package includes a general inspection and hydrojet cleaning, as well as a limited amount of gasket maintenance. Used as a complement to our other packages, it offers a cost-effective way to boost plate heat exchanger performance.
Yellow – when less is more
Alfa Laval’s yellow reconditioning package is an economical option for GPHEs in gentler applications. It is generally used with GPHEs that do not operate at extreme temperatures or pressures, or with GPHEs in applications that do not involve aggressive chemicals or heavy fouling. The package includes thorough cleaning and inspection, but excludes crack detection. Gaskets are remounted by glue-free means or with optimised rubber flue for general applications. All plate heat exchangers reconditioned this way receive a warranty from Alfa Laval.
Red – for heavy demands
The red reconditioning package is a full service option for GPHEs in high demand situations. It is generally used with GPHEs in applications that involve aggressive chemicals and heavy fouling. In addition to cleaning and inspection, the package includes crack detection and the remounting of gaskets by flue-free means or with heat and chemical resistant glue. All gasketed plate and frame heat exchangers reconditioned this way receive a warranty from Alfa Laval.
Buy cleaning chemicals for your plate heat exchanger
Alfa Laval offers a range of cleaning agents and chemicals, specially designed and formulated to descale heat exchangers. Alfa Laval recommends specially developed non-toxic cleaning agents with low environmental impact. These have been thoroughly tested in our own laboratory to safeguard that gasket and heating surface materials are not affected. Don’t choose a no-name product which might damage your plates and gaskets. Our range includes highly effective acid- and caustic-based products for the removal of most types of fouling, including both soft and hard deposits. For ease of handling, powders are also available.
Gasket and plate replacement
Just as not all plate heat exchangers are created equal, neither are the replacement parts. Using lower cost, lower quality plates and gaskets can lead to decreased performance and increased costs.
Genuine Alfa Laval heat exchanger parts reduce your total cost of ownership and preserve the value of your equipment throughout its entire life cycle.
Genuine rubber gaskets
Genuine rubber gaskets ensure tighter seals, longer lifetime and more uptime for gasketed plate heat exchangers. Alfa Laval gaskets may contain up to 30% more polymer than other gaskets, which contributes to optimal sealing.
Non-genuine gaskets may use the same nominal designations as genuine Alfa Laval gaskets, but their material properties differ.
Don't be fooled by gaskets that are slightly thicker - thicker is not better. Incorrect thickness causes inaccurate tightening calculations, which may cause leakage and/or deformation and destruction of the complete plate pack. Don’t risk buying an inferior gasket. Contact us for a quote
Genuine Alfa Laval plates are made using single-step pressing. This ensures uniform plate strength and thickness over the entire plate, dramatically reducing the risk of fatigue cracking.
The correct material quality can make a huge difference to a process. Alfa Laval ensures that the correct material is specified according to its intended use. Contact us for a quote
In addition to supplying spare parts individually, we also offer complete spare plate packs. Plate packs often replace the most affected part of a plate heat exchanger. By installing a new plate pack, the heat exchanger function is restored without having to replace the entire heat exchanger. Contact us for a quote
Repair refers to services performed to the plate heat exchanger frame, and include inspection, refurbishment, replacement of connection linings, and replacement of bolts or other frame parts. While reconditioning plates must take place at one of our service centres, some frame repairs can be performed onsite. Contact us for a quote
Maintenance and trouble shooting
To increase the lifespan of your equipment, it is vital to follow the correct plate and frame heat exchanger and plate cooler maintenance procedure. By using intermediate cleaning services it's possible to prolong the intervals between reconditioning. However, full reconditioning is always necessary at a certain point.
The expected lifetime of your gaskets depends on your specific equipment and relevant application details, including temperature, gasket material, whether you use glued or non-glued gaskets, and how often you open your unit in the course of annual operation. The unique Alfa Laval GPredict tool allows our engineers to give you a detailed assessment of your gasket condition and leakage risk.
Use gentle methods to remove the gaskets using liquid nitrogen or caustic soda, which completely removes the gasket while leaving the groove intact, preventing plate damage. Some field methods of removing gaskets, including using propane torches or rotating wire brushes, can severely harm the plates.
Have you considered a Service Agreement
Alfa Laval Service Agreements are tailor-made service solutions that combine any of our services, based on your specific needs. To maximise your performance and reduce your operating costs, these agreements bring you peace of mind by minimising the risk of unexpected breakdowns. They also give you full control over your maintenance budget.
Alfa Laval assembly of gasketed plate heat exchanger
Watch the assembly of the world’s most modern gasketed plate heat exchanger. The animation shows the components of an industrial heat exchanger.
Alfa Laval developed several innovative solutions and unique features have been developed to ensure superior thermal efficiency, uncompromising mechanical reliability and greater ease of serviceability. With the next-generation gasketed plate heat exchanger our customers benefit from features like:
- Plates with CurveFlow™ distribution area, OmegaPort™ noncircular channel inlet/outlet, PowerArc™ plate pattern divider, offset gasket groove, ClipGrip™ gaskets, and five-point alignment.
- Bearing boxes on the tightening bolts with fixed bolt heads and lock washers.
- Keyhole bolt openings on the pressure retaining plates and a T-bar roller design on the moveable plate. All of these features are designed to save energy, increase uptime, reduce and simplify maintenance, and enable flexible configuration in case process conditions change.
Ten top tips for maintaining Gasketed Plate Heat Exchangers
- Make sure that the operating conditions (temperature and flow rates) comply with the design specifications.
- When starting up, vent the heat exchanger but open and close the valves slowly to avoid pressure surges and water hammer.
- Use upstream filters and strainers to remove particulate fouling and protect the heat exchanger.
- On a daily basis check for any changes in temperature or pressure and check for any signs of external leaks.
- On a regular basis keep the tightening bolts clean and well-lubricated.
- Use Performance Audit to avoid having to open the plate heat exchanger for inspection.
- Use Cleaning-in-Place (CIP) to avoid the need for opening the heat exchanger for cleaning.
- Always keep stand-by units clean and dry. If a heat exchanger is taken out of service, flush with freshwater and drain completely.
- Protect heat exchangers from water splash and rain. Avoid exposure to ultra violet rays and ozone generated from electrical sources.
- Only use genuine spare parts for guaranteed performance, reliability and equipment life. Maintain a stock of essential spare parts and follow the storage instructions.