mechanical seal maintenance

Using a Flush Plan for Essential Mechanical Seal Maintenance

It’s impossible to deny that mechanical seals need maintenance. Apart from selecting the correct mechanical seal, a flush plan is your ticket to avoiding the hassle of mechanical seal repair.

Mechanical seal maintenance magic with a flush plan

A flush plan isn’t just part of your maintenance plan; it’s part of your pump’s general support system. It helps keep your pump running like a well-oiled machine, ensuring it stays lubricated, maintains pressure, and handles solids. External flush plans redirect fluid to and from the seal chamber, whether from the process itself or an external source.

Applications that process hazardous or dangerous fluids will require more regular or aggressive flush plans to protect the materials and eliminate risks to workers from product exposure.

Simple vs complex flush plans

A flush plan can be as simple or complex as the process itself, depending on the application, the fluid type, and the seals involved.

A simple flush plan will use the suction or discharge pressure of the pump to move fluid across the seal faces. Connecting to the discharge port will allow high-pressure discharge fluid to travel to the seal chamber and re-enter the process. Connecting to the lower-pressure suction port will cause fluid to move from the seal chamber to the suction port to re-enter the process. These ensure lubrication and cooling while flushing solids away from the seal so appropriate contact is maintained, and the process remains inside the pump.

Complex flush plans involve the pre-treatment of process fluids using external devices that either cool the fluid or remove solids before it passes over the seal. When the process fluid can’t be used in a flush plan, cool plant water can be used to flush the seal. However, this comes at the risk of diluting the fluid in the system.

A double mechanical seal is usually used with specialized fluids that can’t be diluted. The flush plan then acts as a barrier or buffer fluid.

Barrier fluid and buffer fluid flush plans

Barrier and buffer fluids provide superior seal control and shield the seals from environmental exposure. The pressurized nature of barrier fluid retains fluid within the pump, while unpressurized buffer fluid collects leakage, serving as a diluent. Flush plans that make use of barrier and buffer fluids offer better control of seals and protect them from exposure to the surrounding environment.

Why use a flush plan for essential mechanical seal maintenance

Taking care of your seals with a flush plan helps protect your equipment and prevent unnecessary repairs in the future. A flush plan can help prevent surprise breakdowns, minimizing unplanned downtime and repairs. A well-cared-for mechanical seal is crucial to prevent leaks and wastage while ensuring the safest working environments for employees.

To learn more about flush plans for essential mechanical seal maintenance, call us at 1-800-367-4180 (toll-free). As your industrial pump supplier in Canada, we’re here to help you choose, install, maintain, and monitor a variety of equipment. And to answer questions about things you’ve previously tried gone wrong.