Reducing Carbonic Acid Damage
If your condensate system is leaking, or experiencing high levels of corrosion, it's likely from carbonic acid. There are multiple strategies to control damage to your condensate system. One of the most effective methods is via a Select-Amine™. To learn more about protecting your condensate system, keep reading.
Carbonic Acid Attack
Carbonic acid attack is relatively common. It occurs when the carbon dioxide from the steam condenses with the condensate. This forms carbonic acid.
The carbon dioxide in this reaction comes from the thermal breakdown of carbonate alkalinity in the boiler feedwater. Alkalinity is naturally occurring in the makeup water. Since the condensate is essentially “pure” (has very low buffering ability), it doesn’t take much of this dissolved carbon dioxide to lower its pH. Left unchecked, condensate pH can drop to acidic levels and cause corrosion. The greater the makeup water alkalinity is, the more carbon dioxide there is in the steam. With a greater amount of carbon dioxide, there comes a greater potential for a carbonic acid attack.
This carbonic acid attack works to harm the condensate return system. You can tell if there has been carbonic acid attack by looking at the condensate lines themselves. If you see that there is grooving inside the piping, then you’ve likely had carbonic acid attack. This grooving will look like the pipe is thinning.
Protecting Your Condensate System
A successful treatment program will include the following:
- Neutralizing/filming amines;
- Pretreatment equipment; and
Treatment program monitoring.
The Select-AmineTM program is a combination of several amines. By mixing them correctly, our scientists can help create a uniform pH throughout your condensate system. As single components, these amines may not protect your entire system. Their individual distribution characteristics and acid neutralizing capacity vary. So, mixing them together yields superior, or “synergistic”, performance as compared to individual amines. Select-AmineTM is definitely a great choice if you’re looking to control the pH levels in your return lines.
Contact the Professionals
If you’re looking for a way to finally get your condensate corrosion under control, contact us today. We can work with your team to aid in selecting the right treatment for your application.