Listed below are some commonly asked questions and answers regarding the Ultra Clean Technologies Cleaning System. The most important factor when using the system is to exercise common sense at all times. If there is any chance a projectile may become lost in the system, do not attempt to fire one into the HTP (hose, tube or pipe).
1. How do you remove a wedged projectile that is obviously too large for the line?
Pour some water or spray a little WD40 down the HTP and operate the pneumatic launcher, without a projectile, from the other end and blow the projectile out. The water or WD40 will loosen the wedged projectile and allow it to continue its course. Make sure that the fluid you are using to lubricate and soften the projectile is compatible with the HTP application.
2. How do you remove a projectile that is stuck due to a restriction?
Place the launcher at the other end of the HTP and, without a projectile, fire the unit. This should remove the wedged projectile. Providing the restriction is not too great, fire a smaller projectile through to complete the cleaning process. If the restriction is too large, dismantling will need to occur.
3. What happens when access to the HTP is limited to one end (i.e., area is too small for the unit)?
Make sure the HTP is consistent in diameter for the full length. Fire the launcher without a projectile to make sure it is not blocked and there is good airflow. Fire a smaller than recommended projectile. If comfortable, use the recommended size. If after this process the projectile becomes lodged, fire the unit from the other end by using a flexible hose, tube or adapter. Continue to clean with a smaller projectile.
4. What happens if the projectile will not expel from the nozzle?
If the projectile does not expel from the nozzle, remove the nozzle with the projectile, turn and place the outlet of the nozzle onto the air hole on the launcher and depress the trigger. Make sure it is pointed in a safe direction prior to firing. Then select a smaller projectile or correct nozzle.
5. Why would a projectile break up?
If a projectile emerges from the HTP and is broken up, it is an indication that the internal wall of the HTP is damaged. Dip the projectile in water and then fire through. If the projectile still appears shredded, it confirms this fact. The water adds a friction modifier as in some cases the HTP can become extremely dry, which in turn tends to shred the projectile. There could also be a sharp object such as a burr inside the pipe or tube. Hydraulic hose may have a broken wire protruding through the hose wall.
6. Can projectiles be washed and reused?
Depending on the application - yes. It depends on the cleanliness standard of the industry in which you are operating. Reusing the projectiles in the medical, food and beverage or hydraulic applications would not be recommended. In areas such as large condensers with many tubes, washing and reusing the projectiles may reduce costs.
7. Can projectiles damage the internal surface of the application?
Ultra Clean and abrasive projectiles will not damage the surface, however, grinding projectiles may cause some scratching.
8. How do you clean a clogged HTP?
There isn't a fast method for clearing a clogged HTP prior to cleaning with the system. Blow some air through to see if you have a passage. Once this has been established, send though a smaller than recommended projectile and upon its exit gradually increase the projectile size. If at the outset the contamination build-up is too great to obtain a passage through with air, a chemical may be introduced to soften the contamination. Once this has been established, continue in the normal way with the system.
9. Does changing the length of the projectile alter the performance?
In the case of a projectile not being able to enter the HTP, the length can be trimmed. It is important that the length is greater than the width so the projectile does not tumble.
10. Will the projectile go through 90, 180 or 360 degree bends?
Yes. Ultra Clean and abrasive projectiles will negotiate sweeping bends and the Ultra Clean projectiles will handle tight bends.
11. How far will the projectile travel in the HTP?
In past demonstrations, the projectile will travel thousands of feet depending on the ID of HTP and the pressure and volume of your gas source. As long as there is sufficient volume of air behind the projectile, it will keep traveling through the HTP.
12. Will the projectile clean out mud, slurry and moisture from the line?
Yes. This can be achieved using an Ultra Clean projectile, although, if the build-up has hardened; it will probably require an abrasive or grinding projectile.
13. Will the projectile go through couplings or hose to tube to hose?
Yes. Select the right nozzle to suit the coupling then select the correct Ultra Clean projectile and fire through the line.
14. Will the projectile go through valves?
Yes, however, this will only occur with full port ball and gate valves and similar designs. The projectile will not go through a non-return valve or butterfly valve or one of similar design.
15. Will the projectile go through a tee?
Yes. There are some important rules when dealing with a tee section. The projectile must be fired into the cross section while at the same time blocking one end of the cross section. Next either reverse the blocked end on the cross section or open both ends of the cross section and block the tube going into the cross section.
16. Will the system clean a tube that branches into a tube (similar to a Y)?
Yes, providing the unit is operated down one end of the Y (with the other sealed) and then down the other end of the Y.
17. Will the system clean a tube that branches into two and then back into one?
No unless there is a method of blocking off the branch line.
18. Will the system clean a tube that has fins inside?
No, the tube must have a consistent ID throughout. The projectile will simply jam onto the fin.
19. Will the system clean HTP if there are significant reductions and expansions (i.e., 20mm to 50mm to 20mm)?
No, the HTP must be disassembled into the three sections to clean.
20. Will the system clean a tee if the cross section is larger than the pipe going into the cross section?
The projectile must be fired into the pipe going into the tee that is smaller than the cross section.
21. Will the system clean HTP that is knotted, coiled or clamp joined with couplings or different configurations?
Yes. The projectile will travel through any configuration such as knots, but the hose must not be kinked more than 40% to 60% (depending on whether it is hose, tube or pipe). If it is kinked too much, the projectile will stop at that point and the launcher will need to be fired from the other end using air only to remove the projectile from the end it entered.
22. Will the system clean a tube that has been flattened by about 40% to 60% along the duration of the tube?
Yes providing the restriction is not too great. This will depend on the size of the tube and the projectile. The smaller the tube, the less tolerance there will be. Also the constriction cannot occur at the beginning of the tube where the projectile is entering. The projectile must already be in the tube to cope with this condition. A coupling projectile would be our recommendation depending on the type of internal contamination.
23. What should you do if a projectile will not enter into a copper tube?
When copper tube is cut, the end is often burred or the opening is compressed from the cutting process. It is important the tube or pipe is square cut and deburred accordingly.
24. What happens if the tube or pipe has a wall that is too thick for the nozzle?
Try using a hose nozzle and insert it into the tube or pipe rather than over it and use the appropriate projectile for the application.
25. Will the CE System clean a pipe or tube that has a lot of tees or bleeders on it?
Yes providing they can all be sealed off and the projectile will enter the tee the correct way every time.
26. What happens when the nozzle doesn't fit the particular application?
If the HTP does not accommodate a standard nozzle, try the next sized smaller nozzle. Insert the recommended projectile to suit the HTP, but before firing into the HTP, fire it through the nozzle only to ensure it comes out of the nozzle. (Make sure the pneumatic launcher is pointed in a safe direction).
27. What is the reason for firing a projectile from the nozzle without the HTP?
To make sure an oversized projectile will initially leave the nozzle. This does not mean it will go through the HTP.
28. Can the Launcher be operated at a higher pressure?
Yes, normal operating pressure is 80 psi to 140 psi and it is recommended that 140 psi not be exceeded. A higher pressure can assist in problem contamination.
29. How does the operator conveniently select nozzles without being familiar with small measurement variations?
Until the operator is familiar with HTP sizes, simply match the internal diameter of the HTP and nozzle by eye. Use the projectile sizing charts to select the recommended nozzle and projectile.
30. What should be done if a good seal with pipe or tube cannot be achieved?
If the pipe or tube has an uneven cut, and this can't be rectified by re-cutting, or there is weld splatter, wrap a piece of rubber sheet or cloth around the nozzle and seal the pipe or tube.
31. Can chemicals and detergents be used to assist in the cleaning process?
Yes, these may assist the cleaning task when there is an excessive build up of contamination. One or two projectiles should follow this up. With regular maintenance using the system, no further chemicals should be required.
32. Will chemicals affect the projectiles?
This will depend on the chemicals in question. The best method is to soak a projectile in the chemical and see the result prior to using on an application.
33. Can projectiles be soaked in chemicals and disinfectants?
Yes, providing no breakdown occurs, it can assist the projectiles task, e.g., in paint lines, the projectiles must be soaked in thinners prior to cleaning lines.
34. What if the launcher does not fire?
Check that the faceplate is secured properly and safety bar/release mechanism is locked in position. Check for restrictions in the air hose and the gas is turned on.
35. Why is gas pressure so important when operating the system?
If gas pressure is too low, the correct sized projectile will possibly become lodged in the HTP. As smaller projectile will need to be used resulting in greater use of projectiles than is necessary.
The distance the projectile will travel is reduced and the time taken for the projectile to clean will be increased. Any restrictions in the HTP will probably cause the projectile to jam when normally it would overcome these easily. Overall, it reduces the effectiveness of the system.
If the gas pressure is too high, the valve and trigger in the launcher may not operate properly, e.g., difficult to depress trigger and release gas, or the trigger does not close and therefore gas is difficult to turn off. If the trigger does not close, follow one of the following procedures:
- Disconnect quick release coupling from the launcher.
- Tap the launcher lightly against nearest firm object.
- Turn off gas supply source at most convenient point.