Food Service Equipment
Protecting Your Food Service Equipment
From Lime/Scale and Corrosion without using Chemicals, Added Maintenance or Additional Energy Cost
Food service equipment inundates the industry with service calls to repair water using food service equipment. A well enforced preventative maintenance program will help to ensure a more trouble-free operation of this type of equipment. Such a program will pay for itself over and over again by reducing costs, downtime and increasing profit margins. The majority of service calls are on ice machines, coffee makers, dishwashers, steamers, steam tables, etc., are water related and can most often be prevented with a properly sized and installed Ecoflow® Water Conditioner.
Minerals in water are naturally in solution; however, when water temperatures change they precipitate in the form of a hard, brittle scale that collects in the piping end on heat-transfer surfaces.
The insulating scale build-up reduces the efficiency of equipment, increases energy requirements and requires downtime for additional maintenance. Maintaining scale-free surfaces assures optimum heat-transfer coefficients, enabling the maximum utilization of food service equipment while reducing loss of business due to downtime.
Morrill Industries, Inc. Ecoflow® Water Filtration and Conditioning System
The Ecoflow® Water Conditioning System is designed to prevent lime/scale and can be a solution to these problems. When installed in-line, this unique piece of equipment will cause minerals to remain in suspension after breaking down the binders that hold hard water cluster together and adding a piezoelectric charge to each molecule, this takes place throughout the heat transfer process Instead of bonding together and forming scale they will flow through or settle at the low points of a system to be purged out.
There are numerous makes and models of ice machines that make ice cubes, small and large, ice flakes, or even ice snow; in reality their operation functions are all basically the same.
One of the most common problems with an ice machine of any brand or model is a malfunctioning solenoid valve, either the valve sticks open or closed. Scale will build up on the evaporation sheet which reduces efficiency; the minerals in the water may also create cloudy ice. Size and location of the Ecoflow® Unit is very important. Determine the line size coming to your ice machine (usually ½”, ¾” or 1”). Check the water flow rate of the ice machine running at 100% and select the Ecoflow® size that falls within the flow range. On water cooled machines, install the unit before the line tees and add the amount of water used to cool the condenser for the total gallons per minute needed. When two separate lines are used, a second Ecoflow® Unit will be necessary to condition each of the two feed lines.
Dish washing equipment, because of the temperatures related with it, is more susceptible to hard water problems than most other food service equipment. The heating element or steam heat exchanger tubes in a 180° F booster can become insulated with scale. This will result in an inefficient transfer of heat and an eventual burning out or rupturing of the element. The solenoid valve is another area where scale collects; causing problems with the valve sticking open, allowing fresh water to constantly flow into the machine, this valve also activates the soap and wetting agent to dispense. If the valve sticks closed, fresh water will not come into the machine; therefore dishes will not be rinsed properly. The piping and spray heads are problem areas that frequently plug up with scale, preventing proper dispersion of wash and rinse waters.
Hard water will also cause a larger amount of soap to be consumed. Soap has a tendency to engulf the minerals in the water; therefore increasing the need for more soap to dissolve in the water. The minerals will adhere to the glasses, silverware and dishes and when water dries and evaporates, these minerals then become water spots. Water spots eventually build up over a period of time, causing a very unsanitary appearance.
There are many different brands and models of commercial automatic dishwashers ranging from one stage to multiple stages. In a three stage model, the dishes are pre-rinsed in the first stage, washed in the second stage and finally rinsed in the third stage with 180° F water.
Proper sizing and location of the Ecoflow® Unit is important. All water to the dishwasher must be treated. Dishwashers have many different hook-ups, and it is important that 100% of the water is treated both hot and cold water entering the dishwasher. The entire dishwasher can be treated with one unit if it is placed before the water line tees off to the heater booster, otherwise two units should be used. Size the Ecoflow® Unit to maximum flow rate.
The main problem with coffee makers is scale plugging the lines and insulates heating coils very quickly because of the small tubing size and the constant heating of cold, hard water. Scale reduces the operating efficiency of the equipment and requires more energy to operate.
Premature heating element failure is another common problem with coffer makers due to extreme heat that is held in by scale build-up. Coffee Urns using a manual fill valve from a direct water line will require an Ecoflow® Model #EFR-0050-6 (6 GPM).
Steam cooking equipment, whether it be a steam cabinet, steam kettle or, steamer table all are very pronged to scale build up because particle precipitation at higher temperatures. This means the hardness (calcium) and all other impurities are left behind. These minerals collect and crystallize, creating and insulation between the heat medium and the water. The thicker the insulation, the longer it will take to produce steam which requires more energy. The Ecoflow® Water Conditioner controls this scale build-up and keeps equipment operating at maximum efficiency.
With the increase in temperatures with steam, it is highly recommended to use the Ecoflow® Model # EFR-0100-26 (26 GPM)
The chart above shows how scale buildup can be very costly in increased energy cost.
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