2000 maintenance tips & tricks winners

Ralph Dewey of Solvay Polymers in Deer Park, Texas, won the 2000 "Maintenance tip of the year" for his suggestion on how to quickly find leaks in gas service piping flanges.
By Plant Engineering Staff March 1, 2001

MAINTENANCE

Feature: 2000 maintenance tips & tricks

Winner of the 2000 “Maintenance Tip of the Year” was Ralph Dewey, Solvay Polymers, Deer Park, TX. He received $1000 for his suggestion on how to quickly find leaks in gas service piping flanges.

Runners-up were Tom Goodman, Champion Laboratories, Albion, IL, and Paul Salvo, Eaton Corp. TCC, East Lake, OH. Mr. Goodman explained how to remove seized pins in flywheels, and Mr. Salvo presented a solution for stopping sewer gas smells.

Tip of the Year

Finding leaks

Problem: You are pretty sure that a flange in gas service is leaking. How can you prove it?

Solution: Take a piece of 2-in.-wide masking tape and wrap it around the flange connection. Poke a pinhole in the center of the tape. If the flange is leaking, gas can only escape through that point.

Apply a soap and water solution to the pinhole. If bubbles or foam appear, the flange is leaking.

Contributor: Ralph Dewey, Solvay Polymers, Deer Park, TX; 713-307-3784.

RUNNER-UP

Pumping pins

Problem: A pin has seized in a flywheel and no amount of work will pull it out. How do I remove the pin?

Solution: Drill a #3 hole from the opposite side of the flywheel and tap 1/4-28 thd. Insert a grease zerk and “pump” the pin out safely and quickly. The grease gun generates 2500 psi.

Contributor: Tom Goodman, Maintenance Superintendent, Champion Laboratories, Inc., Albion, IL; Tom_Goodman@ Champlabs.com

RUNNER-UP

Stopping gas

Problem: Most floor drains not actively used tend to dry out. Sewer gases can escape when this occurs.

Can the gases be stopped from escaping?

Solution: Pour 1/4 cup of cooking oil in the floor drain. The oil floats to the top of the water and prevents it from evaporating.

Contributor: Paul Salvo, Eaton Corp. TCC, East Lake, OH