PVI Industries LLC, an American water heaters manufacturer has chosen Outokumpu’s proprietary lean duplex grade LDX 2101® to replace carbon steel in its water heaters.
Using lean duplex has significantly reduced PVI Industries’ waste stream and increased the useful life of its water heaters. PVI Industries produces water heaters for large commercial end-users like hotels, restaurants, schools, universities and hospitals. Water heaters can be as large as 11 meters by 2 meters, and contain as much as 17,000 litres of water.
In 2009, PVI Industries built a water heater prototype using Outokumpu LDX 2101®. The prototype went through an accelerated life testing equivalent of 30 years of normal life use at highly elevated temperatures. Five years after development, the prototype is still operational. The useful life expectancy of carbon steel water heater tanks was five to fifteen years, depending on application. PVI now warranties standard duplex water heater tanks for up to 25 years.
Says Chris Bollas, President at PVI Industries: “Using LDX 2101® on our water heater tanks has achieved our goal of reducing our waste stream, because stainless steel does not require any coating or plating. Previously, PVI was using electroless nickel plating to reduce corrosion in the carbon steel water heater tanks. The process generated nearly 600 000 kg of waste a year. Clear savings are achieved since no maintenance is required.”
Moving to duplex stainless steel also reduced PVI’s waste stream to nearly zero. The efforts were recognized on May 7, 2014 by the State of Texas at the 2014 Environmental Excellence Awards where PVI received the honor for Pollution Prevention.
“We are thrilled to be recognized in the largest industrial state in America as the number one green company in this area, and it is a sustainable footprint we expect to carry forward for years to come. Our experience started with a desire to have a more sustainable production operation. But this quickly expanded to a broader mission. There is a huge movement in the marketplace for materials that follow a longer life principle. And this parallels with PVI’s belief. In Outokumpu, I know we have a business partner who shares that core value,” Chris Bollas reports.