A Complete Guide to Valve Maintenance

For any business, when times are tough, it is essential to seek reduced costs within the value stream. One area in which Kemet International has been helping oil and gas companies to reduce their costs is in the overhaul and repair of mechanical seals within valves and pumps.

A Complete Guide to Valve Maintenance

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Mechanical seals have various possible designs and can be made from various materials. When they are no longer usable, the only two options are to refurbish or replace them. Typically, failures occur due to either wear (which causes leakage) or catastrophic failure.

To combat wear, Kemet can supply expertise and equipment, allowing the end users or their service teams to refurbish mechanical seals inexpensively and on-site.

The company also helps to certify flatness and surface finish by supplying all inspection equipment, including monochromatic lights and optical flats, necessary to complete certification after refurbishment and before pressure testing.

Kemet’s flat lapping systems can handle any mechanical seal material, from carbon to silicon carbide, and many of Kemet’s machines and consumables are employed by mechanical seal manufacturers during their manufacturing processes.

This ensures that the specifications of sealing faces will be the same as when they were new.

The most common causes of leaking valves after repair are incorrect lapping or incorrect abrasives and lapping tools. These lead to extended servicing turnaround times.

For time-critical plant shutdowns, seats and seals must be correctly repaired the first time. Kemet has produced a lapping kit that can be used on Tyco, Crosby, and Anderson Greenwood pressure relief valves.

Kemet also offers systems for lapping concave or convex seal faces, a requirement that has become increasingly common every year. A Kemet 24 lapping and polishing machine costs significantly less than some silicon carbide seals, making it a good option for anyone requiring a more cost-efficient solution.

Materials such as stellite, silicon carbide, carbon, tungsten carbide, and ceramic can be processed swiftly and easily in a single-step operation. A complete range of hand lapping and polishing kits is available for portability and on-site work. Kemet’s lapping service is also available and has fast turnaround times.

For field metallographic procedures on components too large to be brought into the metallographic laboratory, the Kemet Portable Grinder Polisher & Etching unit offers the ability to work in situ for non-destructive replication techniques and is well suited to both curved and flat surfaces.

The PGP kit’s major application areas are power plants and petroleum and natural gas pipelines.

Kemet International Ltd. is a globally recognized leader in precision lapping and polishing technology. Since the company’s creation over 85 years ago, Kemet has been involved in developing most of the surface finishing processes used by modern mechanical seal and valve manufacturers.

Kemet Lapping Systems are available from service centers across the globe. In petrochemical plants, refineries, oil platforms, or power stations, Kemet is uniquely able to supply the entire package of lapping machines and consumables for the precision finishing of mechanical seal and valve faces.

The company has a complete program of lapping machines for the maintenance workshop, which can duplicate the processes used by seal and valve manufacturers. The largest standard model machine can finish gate valves up to one meter in length.

Smaller portable systems are based on the Kemet 15 Machine. This bench-mounted model can successfully seal faces with a diameter of up to five inches.

This information has been sourced, reviewed and adapted from materials provided by Kemet International Ltd.

For more information on this source, please visit Kemet International Ltd.

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