A Caloris customer requested our help with their evaporator due to issues with turbofan vibrations and vacuum leaks.

Our engineer was joined on-site by members of the customer’s maintenance staff and together they started dismantling the evaporator to take a look. It was immediately apparent that most of the gaskets in the pre-heaters were brittle and severely damaged. They had not been replaced since the evaporator’s installation five years prior.

As the crew began replacing all of the gaskets, a faulty pressure transmitter was identified and a replacement ordered as well.

Given the state of the gaskets in the pre-heaters, a more thorough inspection of the seals elsewhere in the unit began. Many CIP, vent and condensate connections were misaligned and the gaskets were past their prime. The manway O-ring needed to be replaced as well.

The crew next observed the unit under operation to find any additional vacuum leaks. Meanwhile, Caloris had scheduled the turbofan manufacturer to be on-hand to address the vibration issue.

The vibration issues resolved after making adjustments to the balancing bolts on the fan. However, something else was causing a sudden loss of vacuum. The crew worked to resolve several additional vacuum leaks, but this didn’t resolve the vacuum loss.

Meet The Engineers

Tom Schappeler

Tom Schappeler

Process Engineering Manager

Alex Blucher

Alex Blucher

Installation & Design Project Manager

Key Takeaway


A thorough maintenance tear-down, lead by one of our engineers, can identify and resolve tricky problems with minimal down-time.

Finally, they discovered a swollen check ball in the check valve on the feed line. This caused the water in the feed tank to be drawn into the evaporator, and once empty air was drawn into the evaporator, through the feed line. The ball would need to be replaced.

At the end of the site visit, our engineer held a debrief session with the maintenance staff and the turbofan provider. They went over additional items that would need to be addressed as opportunity allowed between product runs. Our engineer recommended specific materials to be used for replacing gaskets in the future and scheduled a future visit to check on the health of the evaporator.

When Did You Last Check Your Gaskets?

If you are experiencing evaporator vacuum leaks, old, brittle gaskets may be the problem. Caloris can guide you through the adjustments that will need to be made, and help with other operational challenges as well. Contact us at 410-822-6900 or problem.solved@caloris.com to arrange for a process assessment at your facility.


About Caloris

Caloris transforms process systems design for the better with unexpected, future-focused solutions that solve real operational problems. We engineer efficient, dependable and productive solutions that also improve environmental sustainability where practical. Designed with the end user in mind to drive plant productivity. Caloris offers evaporation, membrane filtration and spray drying process systems for food and dairy industries, as well as for water reuse and wastewater treatment applications. Both Caloris’ custom and pre-engineered packaged systems are designed to meet our customers’ specific concentration/purification needs utilizing the most cost effective and energy efficient technologies available. Whether concentrating dairy, food or juice products at a high-volume production facility, or processing industrial wastewaters to reduce transportation and treatment costs and recover re-usable water, Caloris provides a range of options and technologies.