Water treatment

Innovations in filter technology

Samuel Hayes, filter project engineer at Fernox, identifies the latest innovations in filter technology which are pushing design boundaries to raise industry standards

maintain their energy efficiency ratings and do not need to be replaced prematurely due to damage from corrosion and scale. In fact, the supplementary


information of the Domestic Heating Guide states: “A filter can also be fitted to the central heating circuit to help maintain the efficiency and reliability of the system,” and an increasing number of major boiler manufacturers now recommend the use of a filter as best practice, or even require it as part of the warranty. With this focus on filter technology, leading water treatment manufacturers are continually seeking ways to improve and enhance their filter offering. Today, no matter what the limitations or space restrictions of an installation, there is a filter option available to optimise system protection in almost every instance.

Product development

We have seen a rise in the demand for filters that are quick and simple both to install and to clean and maintain. Installers are in search of products that are easy to fit and are quick to service – without compromising on quality. The process of developing new technologies can

take years to ensure any new product design is as robust as possible. Across the industry there are now four key technologies available that provide different methods of capturing and removing debris from a central heating system: mesh/barrier, magnetic, hydrocyclonic and Hydronic Particle Separation (HPS) technology. Barrier or mesh technology traps circulating debris and prevents it from travelling through the system. Although this method is effective in capturing debris above a certain size, it is not able to collect submicron particles. These types of barrier filters can clog if the system is heavily contaminated, causing blockages.

 October 2018

or many, filtration technology is now considered an essential part of the armoury to ensure central heating systems

Magnetic filters are effective at capturing and containing

sludge formed from iron or steel corrosion – preventing magnetite from depositing in pipes which can cause blockages or damage vital boiler components such as pumps and heat exchangers. However, these types of filters only capture magnetic material, leaving materials such as copper, zinc or aluminium to

continue to circulate and cause potential system

problems in the future. To tackle these issues, a key advancement in the industry has been the development of filters that have the capability to capture non-magnetic debris as well as magnetic sludge. When filters utilise hydrocyclonic action, water is directed around the exterior wall of the filter, creating a cyclone that produces a ‘dead zone’ – where heavy debris is deposited for containment and removal. Alternatively, Hydronic Particle Separation (HPS) technology directs the water flow to hit a baffle (a device used to restrict the flow of fluid). This removes its energy and results in suspended debris being dropped to the bottom of the filter, where it is contained for safe removal. These types of technology, combined with a

powerful Neodymium magnet, deliver superior levels of debris capture, ensuring clean water leaves the filter – resulting in an exemplary level of boiler protection and optimised system efficiency.

A comprehensive range of filters

Manufacturers looking to push the boundaries of filter technology are developing a versatile range of filters that provide installers with an ideal solution for any application. As a result of such diverse choices, it is important to remember that there is no ‘one size fits all’

approach to selecting an inline-system filter. For confined spaces, neat, compact filters that can be positioned in up to 24 orientations ensure that even the smallest, awkward and most restricted systems can still benefit from filter technology – providing maximum installation flexibility. Filters which can be positioned at a 45° angle,

installed horizontally, vertically and on any orientation pipework, and in both flow directions, also provide a flexible solution without restricting water flow in any way. Perhaps one of the biggest innovations to hit the

market are filters that have been designed without a lid. This means there is no need to dismantle or interfere with the filter when cleaning, making the process as quick, efficient and as mess-free as possible. By simply turning off the system, placing a container under the drain valve and opening the valve slowly before removing the magnet, dirt will filter out until the water runs clear – saving valuable time when carrying out maintenance checks and servicing. The newest addition to the Fernox in-line system filter range that benefits from this innovative technology is the TF1 Sigma Filter. Precision engineered, this robust, sealed filter is made from composite polymer and is available with valves or slip socket connection to offer maximum customer choice. Reliable and easy to install and clean, the TF1 Sigma Filter comes with a 10-year warranty and is due for release to merchants in November this year. In order to remain at the forefront of the industry, manufacturers must respond to today’s ever-changing market. New, simple to use filters are helping to reduce valuable time spent on-site, encourage best

practice when servicing a system as well as prolonging the lifespan of vital heating system components.

The newest addition to the Fernox in-line system filter

range is the TF1 Sigma Filter which benefits from innovative new technology

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