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  • Bulging tank

    I have tanks that were made in China, glycol connections go in and out from the bottom. If I understand correctly there should be a vent at the top to release any trapped air. My tanks do not have these vents. Would no air vent cause my fv to bulge on the inside? 3 of my 6 tanks have large bumps on the inside and I don't know why.

  • #2
    Are you talking about a vent on the glycol jacket? No, there shouldn't be. I'm not sure how effectively you can purge the jackets with both ports at the bottom, maybe tilt the tanks if they're small enough.

    If you mean there's no blowoff and/or PRV on the tank itself, stop brewing and call a welder because you need both.
    Sent from my Microsoft Bob

    Beer is like porn. You can buy it, but it's more fun to make your own.
    seanterrill.com/category/brewing | twomilebrewing.com

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    • #3
      Pictures would help. "Bump" doesn't quite convey a metalworking process or structural defect. If you have glycol inlets and outlets at the bottom of jackets, then your tanks are made wrong. Probably not the only thing, either. Your glycol system should have air vents on high points, not your tanks. And your glycol system should have pressure relief/pressure limiting to 15psi = 1 bar. Poorly made tanks with a high pressure glycol system--like those meant to feed long pythons--are a bad combination. Could easily lead to your jackets being "inflated", compromising the integrity of your tanks. Hate to say the obvious, but you get what you pay for. Send some pictures and we can try to guess what you've got going on there.
      Phillip Kelm--Palau Brewing Company Manager--

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      • #4
        I already know my tanks are made wrong...they come from China and have numerous other issues. I have prvs on my tanks...I'm talking about inside the glycol jacket. By bulge I mean my inside walls look like the tank is about to implode but there aren't any vaccuums being created. There's no change to the outside wall so I figure that means pressure is being created inside the jackets. No way to tip my tanks. I know how a glycol system should be set up and mine is already done wrong, and not changing. I've talked to our chiller guy who has seen similar tanks but they have little prvs on the top of the jacket to release any trapped air/release pressure during temp changes. Has anybody had a similar problem or have any advice other than spending hundreds of thousands? No pictures right now...tanks are full.

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        • #5
          Well it sounds like you have bad tanks connected to a bad glycol system. So sure, you've likely got jackets expanding and making your tanks "bulge". Seen this many times before on both steam and glycol jacketed tanks. It's quite common on inferior equipment. Not much you can do except learn something from the mistake. Contrary to popular belief, the dimples on glycol or steam jackets are not there for turbulence or other such nonsense. Dimples are there to keep the jacket located against the tank wall. If those dimples are spaced too far, or the pressure exceeds design, or a dimple fails, then the two sheets separate and you get "bulging". It doesn't take much pressure to create massive forces when summed over large areas. Quite easy to deform the jackets, or the tank shell. As far as PRVs are concerned, they are almost never used on individual tanks' jackets. A single, quality relief valve would be sound design on the glycol system as a whole. Same for air vents; use one quality air vent on the system's high point if your glycol system design requires it. But never on each jacket. Good luck and keep your pressure down!
          Phillip Kelm--Palau Brewing Company Manager--

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          • #6
            Just want to throw this out there. If your tanks are bulging under the pressure from a glycol pump I wouldn't feel safe trying to put any carbonation pressure in them. Do you have a pressure gauge anywhere in the glycol loop?

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            • #7
              Throw them away and buy new ones or get them fixed as soon as possible.

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              • #8
                Thanks gitchegumee. I have learned from the owners mistake of buying all Chinese equipment and will just cross my fingers that nothing cracks.

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                • #9
                  Be gentle on thermal cycles. Use only the heat you need to get things clean and don't overkill on the temperature. Introduce warm water to cold tank slowly. In these cases, thermal stresses will induce those cracks you are afraid of. Also stay away from chlorides and other halogens that can cause your tanks to fail prematurely. And get your glycol pressure under control Those things should mitigate further damage. Best of luck!
                  Phillip Kelm--Palau Brewing Company Manager--

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