In an article written for Rail Business Daily, Advanced Radiators talks about how customers can ensure their rail vehicles do not see their performance start to drop because of the impact of the spring and summer months.
Historically, diesel-powered rail vehicles have suffered from poor performance and reliability during the spring, summer and autumn months due to the vehicle main engines being reported with ‘low power’ and ‘reverting to idle’ (RTI).
The root cause of low power reports and RTI is that the engine main and charge air radiators are blocked/plugged with airborne contaminants, such as pollen and leaves. Another factor is aged transmission oil coolers that have deteriorated over time due to the oil and water side tubes fouling with sludge and by-products of the hydraulic oil over many years.
Additionally, performance can drop because of aged thermostatic control systems and the elevated spring and summer ambient temperatures. The main engine/s overheat, thus resulting in an RTI and low power. The low power on one engine is a consequence of the remaining engine working harder, which leads to the ‘good’ engine eventually also suffering with an RTI.
Advanced Radiators Service Support to the Rail Industry
Advanced Radiators is currently assisting one of their customers with its ‘Summer Preparedness Regime.’ The rail customer is working to a stringent maintenance plan with a swift turnaround time that involves its fleets of diesel-powered vehicles needing to have their transmission oil coolers cycled through a ‘clean and test’ (CT) program. If required, fixed tube bundles that have damaged/leaking tube plates and tubes can be isolated and flood soldered to ensure the cooler is again ‘fit for purpose.’ Similarly, the removable-type tube bundle can also be fixed, with new ‘o’ rings and tube repairs carried out as required, thus recycling the oil coolers.
The same regime applies to the main engine radiators. New radiators are supplied as required, but existing radiators can be serviced or overhauled (i.e. a ‘clean and test’) at the customer’s request, thus again recycling radiators where possible.
If oil coolers and radiators are beyond economic repair, Advanced Radiators stock both new-build oil coolers and radiators that can be specifically tailored to the customers’ requirements.