A poultry processing plant in the southwestern U.S. was experiencing severe problems in its 3,500-ton ammonia refrigeration system due to poor water treatment practices.

Since the evaporative condensers were located on the roof, a liquid chemical water treatment program was not considered practical by plant personnel due to accessibility concerns. Instead, a “pulsed power” non-chemical water treatment device was used to treat one of the seven evaporative condensers, while the remaining six systems were only treated by heavy manual bleed. These practices were not effective and allowed heavy scale deposits to form on the evaporative condenser tubes, which resulted in high condensing pressure and increased energy costs. Severe corrosion also occurred, which significantly reduced the life span of the evaporative condensers. The plant was considering an expensive coating to help avoid premature replacement of the corroded system.


Although proven technology, plant personnel considered a traditional liquid chemical water treatment program too difficult and dangerous to implement. They were concerned about the safety and handling requirements associated with transporting and storing liquid water treatment chemicals on the roof. The limited space available for drum storage around the evaporative condensers and in the compressor room was also an issue. However, the high maintenance and operating costs associated with the current ineffective water treatment practices, along with the potential for production losses, begged for a better solution.

To address these concerns, Chem-Aqua recommended the HandiChem™ Solid Water Treatment System. With the HandiChem System, water treatment chemicals are provided as solid concentrates in recyclable plastic bottles rather than liquid in drums. The HandiPak® Solid Concentrates are dissolved as needed into a small plastic reservoir using a reliable HandiFeed™ Mixing Board. The feed solution is then pumped into the system being treated, as is done with liquid chemicals.


The plant implemented the recommended HandiChem System. The HandiFeed mixing boards were installed inside an enclosure located on the roof near the condensers, and HandiPak concentrates were provided in 11-pound bottles that can be easily transported to the roof as needed. The HandiChem System has provided an effective and reliable water treatment program that helped remove energy-robbing scale deposits from the condenser tubes while also controlling corrosion to extend the system’s life and reliability.

The HandiChem System provided the poultry processing plant with the recognized benefits of a high-performance liquid water treatment program but in a form that affords several additional benefits, including:

  • Simplicity of use (solid concentrate is easily moved throughout the facility and product loading only requires handling a single bottle)
  • Reduction of splash and spill concerns
  • Elimination of drum handling, storage and disposal
  • Ideal for use in hard-to-reach locations
  • Reduction of fuel and greenhouse gas emissions associated with product delivery

The HandiChem Solid Water Treatment System provided an innovative and effective water treatment program that solved a difficult handling, space and storage issue for a hard-to-reach location.


Chem-Aqua Inc.