One of the biggest safety concerns for enclosed industrial control panels in Denver is condensation that occurs when temperatures fall quickly after high humidity. Rust, corrosion and short-circuiting are all problems that can result from improperly sealed and maintained systems. These issues can shorten the lifespan of a system, or render it useless. Avoiding these problems is paramount to avoid losses of time and money, so be sure to frequently do the following to keep the equipment in good shape.
Ensure a proper seal
Making sure the system enclosure is tightly sealed is important for keeping warm air out of the cabinet. Any warm air that gets in can result in condensation, which is difficult to get out and can result in many technical issues.
Use humidity control
Having humidity maintenance as a part of the enclosure design is crucial for keeping condensation away from an industrial control system. Along with being tightly sealed, make sure the enclosure is large enough to allow for proper airflow. Invest in humidity regulation measures such as a heater that is regulated by a thermostat, which turns on the heater when the temperature reaches a certain point, or hydrostat, which turns on the heater when the humidity reaches a certain point.
Consider installing a hydrotherm
In the summer months, humidity levels may rise above what the industrial panel’s internal system is designed to deal with. Additionally, in the winter months temperatures fall below the optimal operational temperatures. Both scenarios can result in the build up of condensation if humidity is not maintained, which can be addressed with the installation of a hydrotherm, which measures the humidity in the air and triggers the heater when humidity rises above ideal operational levels. Hydrotherms measure both temperature levels and humidity levels, while thermostats and hydrostats can only do one or the other.
Avoid frequent openings
Take note to only open and close the enclosure as much as is needed. Frequent openings and closings can allow for humid air to flow in and out of the enclosure, making it more likely for condensation to occur. Also train employees to not open and close the cabinet unless absolutely necessary.
Keep worksites maintained
In order to avoid condensation, it is necessary to keep the relative humidity at 60 percent or lower. While there are many things that can be done within the panel enclosure to avoid condensation, keeping humidity levels low at the worksite is also crucial for avoiding condensation. Dehumidifiers can be used to help keep the humidity regulated in the worksite as a whole, which will help maintain the equipment as well.