American Chillers and Cooling Tower Systems

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What size tank do I need for my brewery, cidery or winery glycol chiller?

Brewery Chillers , FAQ , Glycol Chillers , Medium Temp Chillers , Winery Chillers Blog 🕔May 21, 2015

Chiller glycol tanks are engineered to help absorb heat from the process and eliminate or minimize temperature swings. Large (oversized) glycol chiller tanks are especially important with process that have load swings, but are not very critical for most winery or brewery applications where the load is constant and there is a large amount of mass in the tanks.

An example of a process requiring a large tank is a machine that needs glycol cooling (like in dry cleaning or plastics injection machine) that has a cycle that produces heat followed by a cycle with no heat. On again, off again processes depend on the buffer tank in the chiller to absorb the waves of heat that their processes produce. Without the buffer tank, the chiller would need to be much larger to handle the load swings.

When does a large glycol tank help the brewery, cidery or winery? Mainly, when the vessel is crashing (pulling down). A tank that is the same size as the process vessel can help to speed up the crash time by absorbing a large amount of the heat from the process in the beginning stages of the crash. Once the process has caught up and absorbed the heat from the tank, the cooling is only as good as the Btu rating of the chiller.

To summarize, in most cases, start-up breweries, cideries and wineries can save money by not spending it on over-sized glycol tanks and extra glycol. Size the tank to the process and size the chiller properly for what your process requires and you will be better off or spend the extra money on up-sizing your chiller.

If you are unsure of how to size your glycol chiller, contact us and we will gladly review your process and provide custom recommendations to your specifications.

Cheers!