Is a Plate Type Heat Exchanger the Right Choice?

by | Jan 27, 2017 | Industrial Goods and Services

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In many process applications, there is a constant need for heating or cooling liquids and direct heat is not always an option. In fact, some processes call for indirect heating methods but they must be efficient. This is where heat exchangers are commonly used. Many companies choose the plate type heat exchanger method. But is it right for you? Let’s check out some of the options you have, to help you decide.

The Job of Heat Exchangers

Heating liquids can sometimes be tricky and one of the most efficient methods involves hot liquids used to warm cooler liquids. During the process, both liquids are separate and the transfer or “exchange” of heat does the heating. This can be done with fluids entering the exchange unit at opposite sides or the same side.


Liquids flow through a series of plates. It is routed so the heating liquid is on one side of each plate while the liquid to be heated always remains on the opposite side. Heat transfers from the hot liquid to the cool liquid via the conductive metal plate between them. This is the basic principle of the plate type heat exchanger.

Shell and Tube

Imagine pumping heated water through a tube coiled in a tank. Eventually the tube will become hot like the water. Now add chilled milk to the tank and as the hot water circulates through the tubes it heats up the milk. This is how tube heat exchangers work.

Reversing the Process

Both tube and plate type heat exchanger can be used for cooling and refrigeration. In fact, this is how many larger commercial chilling units operate.

Choosing the Right System

When you need help with your commercial heating or chilling systems, talk to your experienced supplier. They are there to answer questions and show you all the options for your company.