While your cooling tower is down for maintenance and/or cleaning don’t forget about brushing chiller tubes and performing Eddy current testing. Also known as NDT (non-destructive testing).
Eddy current testing is designed to detect, identify and locate signs of weakening in the condenser and/or evaporator tubes, before any leaks or failures occur. Depending on the size, each chiller can contain hundreds of tubes that are constantly dealing with day-to-day mechanical stress.
Eddy Current testing identifies problems early to prevent unforeseen repairs. Unexpected failures can result in major repairs and/or replacements that require chiller downtime and can become an expensive burden. Moreover, leaks can also become a concern to the building’s surrounding area. As leaks occur, they are capable of releasing potentially hazardous refrigerants into the environment.
Ideally, Eddy current testing will occur approximately every 3 to 5 years, possibly more frequently if there is active damage occurring that should be monitored. Including eddy current testing into an annual inspection ensures that testing occurs with the proper regularity.
Many manufacturers recommend performing testing of evaporators every 5 and the condensers every 3 years.