Hose and Tube Cleaning Equipment Information
Hose and tube cleaning equipment use nozzles, projectiles, specialized brushes and other means to clean or prepare the inner surfaces of industrial HVAC and process tubing, pipe, and hose. Hose and tube cleaning equipment is portable and can be carried or rolled to an application site. Typically, these cleaners can accommodate a range of sizes from 3/8” to 7” inner diameters.
Cleaning is necessary because transported medium can cause deposits which build up and cause obstructions. Over time, corrosion of the tubes can also be a cause of reduced tube efficiency or even tube failure. Tube cleaning products can remove unwanted deposits and buildup within many types of process equipment such as heat exchangers, boilers, fin fans and piping systems. They are also popular for the cleaning of tubes within HVAC chiller systems to improve efficiency.
Common applications are:
- HVAC chiller tube cleaning
- Surface condensers cleaning
- Boiler tube cleaning
- Heat exchanger tube cleaning
- General hose and pipe cleaning
There are three common types of hose and tube cleaning technologies. They include projectile cleaners, rotary tool cleaners, and water jetting cleaners.
Projectile cleaners use pneumatic or water pressure to launch a cleaning projectile through the tube. Projectiles consist of foam plugs, abrasive or grinding projectiles, brush projectiles, ball or sponge ball projectiles, projectiles with plastic fins or scrapers, projectiles with metal blades or scrapers. The launcher or launching gun has an adapter nozzle or ring to form a seal around the tube or hose end. A collector device is used at the other end of the tube or hose length to capture the projectiles.
Rotary tool tubing cleaning systems use a drill, air motor, or motorized gun to turn a shaft and rotary cleaning head. The rotary cleaning head is mounted on a rigid or flexible shaft. Rotary cleaning heads can utilize metal scrapers or cutting blades, drill bits, buffing tools, rollers, and wire or nylon brushes.
Water jetting cleaning systems direct high-pressure water through a nozzle mounted on a lance or gun too clean tubes.
Below are types of projectiles and rotary cleaning heads that are used for cleaning tubes and hoses.
Abrasive/Grinding - Projectiles consist of abrasive or grinding foam or plastic cylinders or plugs with abrasive grit distributed radially on the outer surface of the projectile. Abrasive or grinding projectiles are used to remove hard scale, rust, corrosion or other tenacious deposits.
Ball - Projectiles consist of ball or sponge ball projectiles, usually with variety of diameters. The balls create vortexes, which help the cleaning process.
Brush - Brush projectiles often consist of a section of wire or nylon brush with a twisted wire or metal core. Brush projectile can also consist of radial or cylindrical brushes on a dowel or plastic core.
Foam - Foam projectiles consist of foam cylinders or plugs. The type of foam durometer or openness used varies depending on the application.
Plastic Fins/Scrapers - Plastic fin or scraper projectiles consist of cylindrical plugs with plastic fins or scrapers. The plastic projectiles are less aggressive than metal bladed projectile, but more aggressive than foam projectiles.
Metal Blades/Scrapers - Metal fin or scraper projectiles consist of cylindrical plugs with metal blades or scrapers. The metal projectiles are more aggressive than plastic or foam projectiles.
Rotary Cleaning Heads
Abrasive/Grinder - The rotary cleaning head uses abrasive sleeves, pads, bonded abrasive points, flapwheels, honing stick or other specialty abrasive products to abrade debris away and clean the restricted tube.
Blade/Cutter - The rotary cutter or cutting head uses blades or to cut plugs or wall debris away and clean the restricted tube.
Brush - The rotary cutter or cutting head uses brushes to clean the tube or hose walls and reduce the restriction.
Roller - The rotary cutter or cutting head uses rollers to clean or open the tube or hose walls and reduce the restriction.
Scraper - The rotary cutter or cutting head uses scrapers to clean the tube or hose walls and reduce the restriction. Scrapers do not get loaded with gummy deposits as easily as brushes.