Hydraulic separators first emerged approximately eighteen years ago, born from a need for a multi-load/multi-temperature system that kept all the required circulators within that system from interfering with each other. Read more about the origin here.
The solution? A hydraulic separator – now increasingly found in hydronic heating and cooling systems.
How Does A Hydraulic Separator Work?
A hydraulic separator is shaped in a similar way to the image you see in this article, with closely spaced tees – a top tee and a bottom tee.
There are three possible flow paths, all of which are dependent on the flows within the primary and secondary circuits. Let’s take a heating system as an example to explain the different flow paths.
Flow Path 1
Flow in the primary circuit is the same as the flow in the secondary circuit. Referred to as a balanced flow, this flow and temperature from the boiler would be equal to the distribution system. Hot water from the boiler would be isolated in the top tees or Ports 1 and 2.
The bottom two tees – Ports 3 and 4 – work in a similar way, with the flow and temperature from the boiler the same as those of the water going back into the boiler. This ensures that mixing in the separator is minimal.
Flow Path 2
Another example is the flow of the secondary circuit, where the flow is greater than the first.
In this instance, the flows are not balanced and the temperature going into the circuit is not the same as the temperature from the boiler. In order to satisfy demand, part of the water returning from the system in Port 3 mixes with the water entering the PSH (Primary Secondary Header) from the boiler at Port 1. This means that the temperature flow is lower at the second tee entering the system.
Flow Path 3
In the third flow path, flow in the primary circuit is bigger than the flow in the secondary circuit. This means that the flow is unbalanced, but in the opposite way to Flow Path 2; the system requirement is less than the boiler output.
Flow returning from the system mixes with the hot water from the boiler, increasing the boiler return temperature.
In all of the flows described above, air and dirt are separated from the water that enters the Hydraulic Separator.
At MCH Hydraulics, we pride ourselves on our highly skilled and expertly trained team. So whatever your requirements we can ensure that you get exactly what you need. Contact us today to discuss your requirements.