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  • Ceramic Roller Cleaning and Maintenance

    Time:2020-03-28 15:56:50 Hits:297

    Roller cleaning is ideally done as a preventive maintenance measure. Cleaning periodicity will also depend on glass quality requirements, glass thickness and level of SO2 usage. It may typically vary from 4 to 8 weeks to up to 6 months.


    Heavy architectural glass often requires more frequent furnace maintenance, roll cleaning and at times extended SO2 usage both during start-up and during furnace operation.


    The ceramic rolls should only be washed with water, preferentially demineralized water.  Never use detergents. Detergents will chemically react with the rolls, resulting in devitrification and roll failure. Due to their extremely low coefficient of thermal expansion, the rolls can be washed hot. Glass debris on the rolls surface can be thermally shocked off of the rolls when cold water is applied to a hot roll. Precautions should be taken to prevent the end-caps from getting hot during the cleaning process. Rolls can also be cleaned effectively at room temperature.


    Lint free towels and certain abrasive pads such as 3M’s Scotch Brite™ are effective. The rolls should be dried following cleaning. If the rolls are soaked with water and heated too quickly, steam may develop in the roll and cause it to fail.


    Deposits on the roll surface usually consist of Sodium Sulfate, and may include other elements from the glass, or dust and debris from glass, the furnace lining, or other sources.


    Water and a non-metallic abrasive pad are usually sufficient to wash the rolls and to remove build-up. After washing the surface, some hard spots may remain.  It is suggested that only then sandpaper may be used to remove these spots.  A very fine sand paper, typically 600/800 grit should be used. Sanding roll surface should be avoided if possible. Sanding may induce waves or an out-of-round condition to the rolls. Sanding the rolls may also affect the surface finish, and lead to a faster rate of build-up or nodule formation where the roll was sanded. If sanding is required, take great care and be absolutely certain to avoid introducing the dust in the furnace environment.  Rolls must be washed again after sanding. Wipe the rolls down with a damp cloth, avoiding large volumes of water.  Water will carry microscopic dust particles into the pores of the rolls where they become trapped until the roll is heated and they can migrate to the surface.  This microscopic dust is often the cause for a white haze condition during restart of the furnace.  After washing, a final wipe down using tack cloth is recommended to remove dust from roll surface.


    The frequency of how often rolls should be cleaned varies greatly and is usually determined by cleanliness of furnace environment. The plant environment, furnace cleanliness, fabricating practices, glass cleanliness, SO2 usage, etc. will influence roll cleanliness and frequency of roll cleaning.


    A commonly successful roll cleaning sequence is as follows:


    1. Wipe down all furnace and load table rolls with tack cloth.


    2. Wipe down all furnace and load table rolls with a damp cloth.


    3. Dry with a lint free towel and feel the roll surface with your bare hand.


    a. If smooth, wipe down with tack cloth again and install in the furnace.


    b. If rough or debris is evident, proceed to Step 4.


    4. Wash the rolls with a minimal amount of water and non-metallic abrasive pad.


    5. Dry with a lint free towel and feel the roll surface with your bare hand.


    a. If smooth, wipe down with tack cloth again and install in the furnace.


    b. If rough or nodules are present, repeat Step 4 & 5 before proceeding to Step 6.


    6. If roughness and nodules persist, use a fine grit sandpaper, file, or abrasive to clean localized spots.


    7. Wipe down the rolls with a damp cloth or wash with a minimal amount of water.


    8. Dry with a lint free towel and feel the roll surface with your bare hand.


    a. If smooth, wipe down with tack cloth again and install in the furnace.


    b. If roughness and nodules persist, repeat Step 6.


    c. Once smooth and dry, always wipe down with tack cloth again and install in the furnace.


    Service life of the rolls is very dependent on the conditions of use as described above. To judge if a roll is still in proper conditions for use, make sure the roll surface condition is still good. A rough roll surface may significantly change the contact surface between the glass and the roll, and may generate defects. Some small pits in the roll surface may not be cause for roll rejection, but pits generally have high surface areas and are the likely position for build-up to occur.  Protrusions or build up on the roll surface are cause for roll cleaning or removal from service; as such defects will surely mark the glass. Another possible cause for roll rejection is end-cap damage or looseness. To avoid possible caps looseness, make sure the caps are not overheated due to poor condition of side seals or opening the furnace chamber when hot and exposing the end-caps to high heat radiation. Roll deformation or out-of-round eccentricity is also cause for rejection.  If rolls are identified with high TIR, we recommend that you contact the roll manufacturer directly.


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    Add: No.246, Jinshui Avenue, Airport Industrial Zone, Luoyang, Henan Province China

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