Q2 2022

Proper Solvent Distillation Improves Cleaning Power

By Bruce Grossman, EZ Timers Manufacturing

DISTILLATION IS A PROCESS USED TO PURIFY A LIQUID, IN OUR CASE SOLVENT. IN THE NEXT SEVERAL ARTICLES I’LL BE DESCRIBING HOW DISTILLATION WORKS, THE MACHINERY COMPONENTS ASSOCIATED WITH IT, AND POSSIBLE PROBLEMS YOU MIGHT ENCOUNTER.

Solvent dissolves some of the impurities it removes from garments like grease, oil, wax, and detergent. These impurities are called solutes. Solvent also suspends solid impurities like lint, dust, and soil. Such impurities are called particulates. Proper distillation in most cases returns the distilled solvent to its original pristine condition.

Continue reading “Proper Solvent Distillation Improves Cleaning Power”

Q1 2022

Check Valve Troubleshooting

In my travels as a drycleaning mechanic, one of the more common complaints I hear is the loss of steam pressure caused by low water level in the boiler. Low water level can be caused by several different problems, and in this and follow-on issues I’ll be explaining how to find the cause/causes of low water faults. Causes of this type of fault mimic each other, so finding the culprit is more or less a process of elimination, so I’m going to discuss these problems starting from the fault that is easiest to identify.

Continue reading “Check Valve Troubleshooting”

Q4 2021

Water Boiler Testing, Part 2

There is a long list of impurities to be found in water entering a boiler. However, in the drycleaning and laundry industries, the major impurities affecting the operation of boilers are dissolved solids (known as TDS, or total solids) and oxygen which is dissolved in the city water entering the return tank. This oxygen combines with carbon dioxide to form carbonic acid, a destroyer of the metal in the boiler and piping throughout the steam/return systems. The concentration of acids in boiler water is indicated by the Ph (Ph-is a scale used to specify how acidic or basic [or alkaline] a water-based solution is). TDS and Ph levels indicate the condition of the treated water entering as well as inside the boiler, allowing us to adjust the blow-down frequency as well as the volume and timing of boiler compound addition to the return tank to prevent boiler damage.

Continue reading “Water Boiler Testing, Part 2”

Q3 2021

How to Test Your Boiler Water, Part One by Bruce Grossman

In the past, companies supplying boiler maintenance chemicals like “BOILER COMPOUND” had representatives visit your plant, take water samples and analyze them to prescribe the proper blow-down procedures and how much boiler compound to add and when. However, the business model which provided this high-level service is no longer workable in most areas. Therefore, these test procedures must now be carried out by either sending samples to a lab for analysis or by onsite water testing by plant personnel. The purpose of this series of articles is to teach how to use modern testing devices to analyze the water samples and determine the proper balance of boiler chemistry and blow-down procedure. In this series of articles, I’ll teach the methods used to obtain, measure, and evaluate boiler water samples.

Continue reading “How to Test Your Boiler Water, Part One by Bruce Grossman”

Q2 2021

All About Meters, Part One

By Bruce Grossman, EZ Timers Manufacturing

The next series of articles will be devoted to the safe use of meters in preventing and troubleshooting common problems encountered in the operation of your plant. Included will be the different tests and measurements required, why they are necessary, how to take them, and the meaning of the results. Don’t be concerned about being familiar with terms used in this article, they will be defined and explained as the need arises. Also, for those of you who are hesitant to tackle electrical testing, I’ll be showing you how to safely use these devices.

The list of meters which this series of articles will cover are as follows:

  1. Volt/OHM/Ammeter – General electrical testing.
  2. Digital Laser Thermometer – Boiler valve performance checks.
  3. pH and TDS Meter – Boiler chemistry testing.

Continue reading “All About Meters, Part One”

Q1 2021

Compressed Air Piping

By Bruce Grossman, EZtimers Manufacturing

Last issue, I addressed the harmful effects of moisture and water as well as devices used in removing these contaminants from a compressed air system. This time we’ll cover the piping practices and components that route dehumidified air to your machinery and eliminate any residual water, providing your machinery with clean dry air.

Two physical forces are used to remove any remaining water and debris from the compressed air stream. Gravity, we all know what that is; and inertia, which is the tendency of objects to keep moving in a straight line at constant velocity. Follow along using the accompanying illustration.

Continue reading “Compressed Air Piping”

Q3 2020

Compressed Air Systems, Part  3 by Bruce Grossman

By Bruce Grossman

In my long career troubleshooting and maintaining drycleaning and laundry equipment by far the largest cause of machine failure has been the condition of the compressed air reaching the machinery. Valves and regulators directing the flow of compressed air are wonders of modern manufacturing technology with close tolerances requiring the compressed air to be as free from particulates and moisture as possible.

Continue reading “Compressed Air Systems, Part  3 by Bruce Grossman”

Q4 2019

Air Compressors and Compressed Air Systems

COMPRESSED AIR SYSTEMS and components will be the subject of this series of articles. In drycleaning and laundry, compressed air is mostly used to expand and/or contract cylinders to actuate valves and position parts of machinery (the head on your pants press or the buck on your shirt unit). In addition, compressed air is also used to “blow out” moisture and debris from fabric on your spotting board, and on far too rare occasions, dust and lint from the surface of machinery.

Continue reading “Air Compressors and Compressed Air Systems”