Never before has the business of process water treatment been more crucial for the manufacturing industry than it is today. High tech manufacturing technologies, closer tolerances, more stringent quality standards and substitution of less environmentally friendly components with water oftentimes require high purity water to achieve acceptable results. Those who are proactive about installing or upgrading water purification processes to ensure state of the art water treatment will thrive, while those who neglect this important aspect of manufacturing face growing challenges and process water treatment problems.
Process Water Treatment: The Necessity of Viable Systems
Process water refers to water used in manufacturing processes such as rinsing, plating, spraying, coating, cooling, washing, product dilution, boiler water make-up, cooling tower make-up, etc. Oftentimes, minerals dissolved in the city or well water may cause spotting, fouling, streaking, interference with adherence, scaling, product contamination or other undesirable effects which affect quality of the product or the cost to manufacture it. Water quality may be associated with high energy costs; for example, demineralizing water going to a boiler may reduce fuel consumption markedly by allowing operation at much higher cycles of concentration, thus drastically reducing the blowdown which dumps very hot water down the drain. Oftentimes warm water is discharged to sewer, thus wasting energy.
Any manufacturing company that uses large amounts of water needs to accept the fact that equipment and infrastructure to process water is essential. Otherwise companies not only lose money by failing to reuse water at a time when water and sewer fees are becoming ever more expense elements of a successful manufacturing plant, but they may also risk fines, product quality issues, or forced downtime.
Responsible Water Treatment Process Makes Marketing Sense
Water is a dwindling resource required to sustain life on the planet. Consumers are increasingly interested in how responsibly the products are manufactured. Some retailers (e.g., WalMart) have programs in place to evaluate their vendors on how environmentally-responsible they operate. So in terms of an image and branding strategy it is imperative that every manufacturing facility - whether it is located in the USA or abroad - emphasize their efforts to conserve resources in their manufacturing processes. Frequently this involves water recovery and reuse.
Affordable Process Water Purification
The fact remains that many companies just cannot afford to invest vast amounts of money to create their own process water purification system. Neither can they justify the high salaries it takes to hire and retain expert water system engineers to manage an on-site water treatment process. That's why more and more companies - both large and small - are outsourcing this important and highly specialized work to professionals. For those who need a short-term solution, for example, an experienced water system provider can bring in portable purification equipment for a specific period of time. In that way, a manufacturing company can be more strategic about allocating financial resources to maximize water treatment budgets.
Leaders of manufacturing businesses need to be aware of the potential for water-related problems and address those in a proactive but fiscally sound manner. Working with water purification companies to install and maintain infrastructure for industry compliant water treatment is one solution. Companies can also take advantage of numerous affordable alternatives like leasing some or all of the equipment on an as-needed basis.