STEP 1- Identify the leaking tube. This can be done by looking for signs of corrosion and using a tube leak test gun. Once the leaking tube is found, it must be isolated from the other tubes in the heat exchanger.
STEP 2- Clean the ID of the tube where the plug will be installed. This includes removing any debris or corrosion that might be present.
STEP 3 – Vent the tube prior to plugging. Tube venting is a process by which a small puncture is made inside of the tube, releasing any pressure or chemicals that may be trapped inside. This reduces the risk of deposits filling the leak path and causing a build-up of pressure.
STEP 4- Once the area is cleaned, the tube can be plugged. There are a few different ways to do this, but one of the most common methods is to use a mechanical plug. This plug is inserted into the tube and then expanded to create a seal.
STEP 5- Once the plug is in place, it’s important to check for leaks. This can be done by doing a pressure test on the heat exchanger.
STEP 6- If there are no leaks, the heat exchanger can be returned to service.