A cooling tower should be built with the conditions of the water in the system in mind. This does not mean, however, that problems cannot occur. Water conditions can change, or problems can simply come up with time. In order to get the most life from your equipment, you will need to properly care for your system. If you see white rust forming on your equipment, the conditions are ripe for corrosion to start attacking. Luckily, you can take steps to counteract the corrosion.
Cleaning away White Rust
White rust is an accumulation of the metal salts that form when the metal starts to corrode. Before you can take steps to counteract the corrosion, you will need to clean off the white rust. You can use any type of acid to clean the rust. Phosphoric, acetic, or even citric acid can be used. The type of acid you use will depend on the type of metal used in your cooling tower, so you will want to consult the designer of your cooling tower to get direction.
Preventing Future Corrosion
Most cooling towers will use galvanized steel because the zinc coating on the steel will help to resist corrosion. However, over time, the zinc coating can wear off. This is where corrosion will start to happen. Thus, if you see corrosion starting to form on your cooling tower, you can't just clean off white rust. You will have to apply some sort of a coating to restore the zinc coating on the steel. In most cases, you can paint on a zinc-rich epoxy paint to create a protective layer over your equipment to stop future corrosion. You will want to be sure to check with the designer of your cooling tower to make sure you use an approved type of paint to restore the steel in your cooling system.
Building a cooling tower is a huge expense. Because of the conditions of the water present in the tower, you will want to make sure that you take steps to protect your cooling tower from the water flowing through it. Corrosion is just one of the dangers that cooling towers are susceptible to. If you have an older cooling tower, you will definitely want to consult with someone who provides maintenance. Even if you have a new cooling tower, you will want to understand cooling tower treatment and how to prevent problems.