Thermal Fluid Heaters
A thermal fluid system is an industrial heating system that utilizes a special heat transfer liquid, often a form of oil, that is recirculated by a pump through a fired heat exchanger, that raises temperatures for the use of various heating processes. There are many types of thermal fluid heaters, often referred to as waste heat boilers, waste heat hot water heaters, or oil heaters.
Thermal fluid systems have many advantages over traditional steam systems. They operate at a very low pressure and efficiently produce high-temperature heat, typically ranging between 200°F to 750°F. This decreases the risk of dangerous explosions in your facility and eliminates the necessity of a dedicated operator. In addition to being safer, they are also easier to operate and require less maintenance with only the burner and pump needing regular service. The freezing hazard is also eliminated because oil’s freezing point is significantly lower than water’s freezing point.
Thermal fluid heating systems are generally more efficient than steam boiler systems as they are a closed circuit operation. Incurring less heat loss and consequently burning less fuel to maintain constant temperatures, with typically 20% to 50% less energy consumed to transfer the same amount of heat compared with steam systems.
Thermal fluids such as organic oils act as a lubricant and won’t corrode your components. Since there are fewer components in a thermal fluid heater system, there are fewer parts to maintain. In addition, as they are a closed loop, there is no liquid effluent produced and no water treatment or chemicals required, making it more environmentally friendly.
Steam boiler systems need to be carefully monitored and maintained to prevent corrosion and deposits caused by water and require costly chemical additives.
If you are planning to install a new system or replacing an old unit, the experts at Epcon can help you evaluate which type and configuration of thermal fluid heater, from a waste heat boiler to waste heat hot water heater or oil heater is best suited for your operational needs.