In the demanding field of mechanical seal repair, particularly within a chemical plant, challenges are part and parcel of the job. The complexities of mixer seals and the imperative for responsive service can determine the outcome of a project. At Flexaseal, we provide Seals. Systems. Solutions. At Your Speed. In this blog post, we’ll share a recent triumph that highlights our commitment to service, innovative solutions, and customer satisfaction.
The Challenge: A Leaking Mixer Tank Seal
In January 2023, a chemical plant approached us with a critical issue: a 50-gal mixer tank seal was leaking barrier fluid. This was no ordinary seal application; it was a glass-lined mixer tank and double seal that had been out of service for some time with obvious failure on the installed seal.
Day One: Initial Assessment
Upon arrival, we were met with several challenges:
- Unknown Shaft Condition: The condition of the shaft was unknown, and there was no access into the tank to support the shaft from dropping when the set screws on the seal were released.
- Glass-Lined Components: Since there were glass-lined components, extreme care had to be taken to prevent damage to the tank.
- Rust Build-Up: Lubrication was applied to the shaft and seal to loosen any rust, but it didn’t release the shaft from the seal.
After soaking the shaft in lubricant for 48 hours, we returned with a new plan.
A long reach, two-prong puller was used to fit through the seal chamber and reach the equipment. With the seal loose, we were able to slowly drop the shaft onto a foam pad, and the seal was sent to Vermont for repair. The process required careful handling and innovative thinking, as the equipment surrounding the seal and mixer shaft were fragile and costly. The use of foam pads to protect the tank and the indirect removal of the seal from the stuck shaft were essential steps in the solution.
Repair Process: Attention to Detail
When the seal was received in Vermont, the inspection process revealed damage to numerous components. The mechanical seal repair required:
- A new Inboard Mating Ring
- Primary Seal Rings
- Rework of the Inboard Spring Housing
- All new hardware and O-rings
The Mating Ring was observed to be damaged upon repair, but to keep the repair moving in a timely manner replacements were made while other components were polished and processed for reuse.
Reinstallation: Smooth and Seamless
Flexaseal returned to site for reinstallation. This time, the process was much smoother:
- Efficient Installation: The seal went on seamlessly, and the shaft was pulled close to where it needed to sit in the seal with an eye bolt and chain hoist.
- Perfect Alignment: The seal was bolted down, then the shaft was recoupled to the gearbox, pulling the shaft into place within the seal.
- Successful Testing: After completion, the customer was able to test it with no external leakage when barrier fluid was applied.
Conclusion: Flexaseal’s Commitment to Excellence
This project at the chemical plant is a testament to Flexaseal’s dedication to providing top-notch mechanical seal repair, especially for mixer seals. Our responsive service ensures that even the most complex challenges are met with innovation and precision. We pride ourselves on delivering Seals. Systems. Solutions. At Your Speed.
Whether you’re in the oil and gas, pulp and paper, power generation, chemicals, pharmaceuticals, or any other industry, you can trust Flexaseal’s expertise and commitment to quality. We’re here to help you keep your rotating equipment running smoothly and efficiently.
Feel free to contact us for more information on our products and services. We’re always here to assist you!