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Refrigeration Troubleshooting

Updated: Nov 29, 2020

In fall of 2019, a coworker of Don Moore’s approached him with a problem: The Indiana food processing company where he was contracted was experiencing unwanted downtime. A cooling tunnel contained a coil that would freeze, resulting in production needing to be stalled to thaw the coil. This freezing also resulted in unwanted moisture, which could increase the risk of microbial contamination.


The client did not have an engineering department, and the issues had been ongoing for over six months, with the OEM unable to diagnose the issue. Eventually the company wished to move from one shift of production to three, but the frequent ceases in production made this goal difficult and less productive than it should be. Moore, however, brought in his 48 years of experience and was able to solve the issue with ease. “In the first 15 minutes that I was in the plant, we had identified the major problem,” Moore said.


The cooling tunnel design and installation had led to humid room air leaking into the plenum, resulting in a telltale ice pattern on the coils. Don immediately recognized that pattern, which led to quickly finding the sources of air ingress. The OEM service representative had been unable to identify the problem. After the plenum was adequately sealed, Don further tuned the system's product flow rate and temperature setpoint to optimize performance.


Following his assistance, the plant began the second and then third shift of production on their targeted days, and were able to run without stopping to defrost. Along with that, his help allowed them to minimize the microbial risk that comes with excess moisture.


Contact more expert guides like Don at Process Alliance. We can be reached by phone at 317-242-9293; by email at pa.info@pa-engineering.com; or on our website at https://www.pa-engineering.com/.


Contact more expert guides like Don at Process Alliance. We can be reached by phone at 317-242-9293; by email at pa.info@pa-engineering.com; or on our website at https://www.pa-engineering.com/.

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