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Thread: CLT issues and chill water temp

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Abingdon, VA.
    Posts
    201

    CLT issues and chill water temp

    All,

    I have been having issues with my CLT. It's 15 bbl for a 7 bbl brewhouse. I also have an issue with knockout temps:

    1) CLT is piped at the end of my glycol line - all other tanks are performing fine - CLT has two jackets but the main supply and return lines are split, so there is only one line in (split in to two jackets) and one out (coming from 2 jackets) back to the supply loop. Glycol is cold coming in (feeling the inlet pipe) and to the bottom jacket. Glycol does not feel cold going to upper jacket and both return lines are not cold. I have replaced solenoid actuator and valve and have used a magnet to keep it on all the time. Seems no glycol is running through tank. Could there be a block in the jacket or the return valves? Why only one supply valve cold if so?

    2) in the summer my tap water temps are in the 70s and when I can get cold liquor it is about 36F. My knockouts are outrageous. I have a 20 plate thermaline heat ex and it seems to be working properly (not clogged) and I am satisfied with our CIP. We don't do any outrageously messy beers through it anyway. I am blending tap water with cold liqour to get beer to 70 (sometimes 50) and it takes at least all 15 bbls to do so. Seems ok given my temps, but is there room for improvement there? My chiller reservoir is too small (30 gal) to consider that option. In the winter when tap water is cold and CLT is working knockouts are fine.

    Any ideas, help?

    Thank you!

    Chris
    _______________________
    Chris Burcher, Wolf Hills
    Abingdon, VA

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Location
    Montana
    Posts
    26
    I would speculate that all the glycol is flowing to the lower jacket of your CLT since that is the path of least resistance. I had a similar issue on a few fermenters that had 2 jackets. My solution was to add a manual ball valve on the inlet to the bottom jacket and close it about halfway. That way the glycol was encouraged to go the upper jacket as well due to the restriction on the bottom inlet. Now I have good chilling in both upper and lower jackets.

    Good luck.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Abingdon, VA.
    Posts
    201
    thanks and good idea. i have a ball valve so am trying now. already seeing cold temps at upper inlet.
    _______________________
    Chris Burcher, Wolf Hills
    Abingdon, VA

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Abingdon, VA.
    Posts
    201
    not seeing any drop with mostly top jacket. I'm still guessing on an outlet or jacket blockage
    _______________________
    Chris Burcher, Wolf Hills
    Abingdon, VA

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Location
    Montana
    Posts
    26
    You may be right, but if you haven't done this already, try closing off the bottom jacket completely, run just the top jacket and see if you get good flow and chilled glycol coming out of the top jacket before you cut into any of your piping looking for a blockage. And you probably are already on top of this, but let the whole thing run for a while, if your glycol reservoir is just 30 gallons trying to cool a 15bbl CLT, it may take a while to see the cooling effect of the top jacket on the entire tank.

    Good luck, hope you get this sorted out.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Palau
    Posts
    1,948

    More ideas...

    ..."have used a magnet to keep it on all the time." How does that work? Doesn't sound right to me. Suspect that your solenoid coil is burnt. Feel warm? Make absolutely sure that you have a good coil, electrical power to it, and that the valve does indeed open. Something there sounds like it is inoperable. As a side note, you should be using no more than about 120% of knockout volume to cool. Any more is thermally inefficient. Your exchanger should be able to get you 80C water in your HLT. Any less is thermally inefficient. Good luck!
    Phillip Kelm--Palau Brewing Company Manager--

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Abingdon, VA.
    Posts
    201
    Thanks, Phillip - you have given me much sage advice over the years.

    Magnet is used to hold open the actuator all the time in case one fails. Just have to take it off so as not to overcool.

    Replaced the actuator solenoid and, yes, the last one did overheat and burn up. Wonder if the issues could be related?

    That's what gets me. With the inlet valves open I get cold glycol to tank, just not on the returns. I am guessing a blockage at the outlet valves or piping or (ugh) in the jacket itself.

    And I appreciate the 120%. I think we're getting that when the liquor is cold enough. THe tank has worked fine in the past except in the summer when blend tap water is warmer and/or the tank doesn't cool enough or quickly enough between batches.

    Chris
    _______________________
    Chris Burcher, Wolf Hills
    Abingdon, VA

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