Ball valve plugging with solids, alternatives ideas to fix problem?

In summary, the issue with solids building up in 10" discharge ball valves on Mother Liquor Pumps is that they prevent operations from being able to close the valve. There are a few solutions that have been proposed, including insuring the valve is insulated/traced and replacing the valve with a ball valve with a ball stop. However, the ball stops are not likely to be enough to help alleviate the solids build up in the valve, and another solution is to replace the valve with a gate valve. The valve must be actuated in order to be closed, and the pressure is designed at 150 psig.
  • #1
smaust12
5
0
I am having issues with solids building up in the 10” discharge ball valves on Mother Liquor Pumps that prevent operations from being able to close the valve. I have had a few discussions regarding ways to improve or eliminate this issue which have included insuring the valve is insulated/traced and replacing the valve with a ball valve with a ball stop. I am not very familiar with the ball stops, but from a little research I do not think it would be enough to help alleviate the solids build up in the valve since the solids pack and become concrete like. Another recommendation I was looking into was replacing the valve with a gate valve, but it would need to be actuated so operators could throttle the pump during startup.

Does anyone have any suggestions on how to fix this issue or possible solutions?
 
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  • #2
The main issue is the packing solids that are concrete like. What are they exactly or similar examples if possible. Sugar? Cement? Wet saw dust?

A gate valve can get clogged up and if something is in the way it can have closing difficulties. Unless of knife valve construction. And they are somewhat slower to open/close than a ball valve.

Could you use vibration to clear/unpack some of the material from the existing valve? This should be done while the material is flowing.
Can you close the valve while the material is flowing? Pump safety aside.

If going for a different type. What pressure does it need to withstand?
 
  • #3
Maybe fit a jacket to the valve, then heat the ball valve with steam when it needs to be closed. That will increase solubility of the precipitated solids.
 
  • #4
The solids are very dense when packed and wet. Nearly like wet thick cement. Not sure if we can use vibration to clear the solids as the valve is attached to the discharge of a pump and induced vibration could be a concern. The pressure is aroun 90 psig and is designed at 150 psig. If the valve has not been cycled in some time you can not close the valve unless maintenance hooks up come alongs to get it to close.
 
  • #5
Fit two identical valves in parallel. Every set time period, close, then open, each valve in succession to clean the build-up on the surfaces. To turn the flow off, close both valves.
 

Related to Ball valve plugging with solids, alternatives ideas to fix problem?

1. What causes a ball valve to become plugged with solids?

There are several reasons why a ball valve can become plugged with solids. One common cause is the presence of debris or foreign objects in the fluid being transported. Another cause could be the formation of deposits or build-up inside the valve due to the characteristics of the fluid itself. Improper valve installation or maintenance can also contribute to plugging.

2. What are the consequences of a ball valve becoming plugged with solids?

If a ball valve becomes plugged with solids, it can lead to decreased flow rate or complete blockage of the fluid. This can result in operational issues, such as reduced efficiency and increased downtime, as well as potential damage to the valve or the system it is a part of.

3. What are some alternative solutions to fix a ball valve plugging with solids?

One alternative solution is to use a different type of valve that is better suited for handling solids, such as a diaphragm valve or a butterfly valve. Another option is to install a strainer or filter upstream of the valve to prevent solids from entering it. Regular maintenance and cleaning of the valve can also help prevent plugging.

4. Can a ball valve be modified to prevent plugging with solids?

Yes, a ball valve can be modified to reduce the risk of plugging with solids. One method is to use a full-port ball valve, which has a larger opening compared to a standard port valve and can allow larger particles to pass through without getting stuck. Another option is to add a coating or lining to the valve to make it more resistant to deposits or corrosion.

5. How can I prevent future plugging of my ball valve with solids?

To prevent future plugging, it is important to properly select and install the right type of valve for the application. Regular maintenance and cleaning of the valve and the system it is a part of can also help prevent plugging. Monitoring the fluid being transported and implementing measures to remove or filter out solids can also be effective in preventing plugging.

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