Cooling Tower Water Treatment

Cooling Tower Water Treatment and Services

Cooling tower water treatment is a valuable form of industrial water treatment which is necessary for any facility or company that utilizes cooling towers and cooling water. A proper cooling tower water treatment program can maximize the efficiency of a system while also increasing the longevity of the equipment using cooling water.  This can reduce the overall cost of repairs and replacements in the future and optimize productivity. Untreated or poorly treated cooling water, on the other hand, can lead to an assortment of issues that may negatively impact overall plant efficiency.

cooling tower water treatment

What is a Cooling Tower Water Treatment System?

A cooling tower water treatment system is a combination of equipment, services, and plan designed by water treatment specialists to maintain optimal water chemistry within a cooling tower system. Each application is different, so a custom solution is necessary for achieving the best results.

Our specialists can provide a turnkey water treatment solution that can:


Reduce Scaling


Protect From Corrosion


Prevent Biological Fouling

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Keep Water Flowing Smoothly

These are the most common issues found in nearly all cooling water systems, but our experts can also provide more targeted solutions as necessary.These include: water clarification, water softening, reducing iron levels, and controlling alkalinity.

Cooling tower chemistry is important and can affect the operations of a plant or facility depending on how it is managed. Contacting a water treatment specialist can lead to more efficiency and peace mind down the road.

Is Cooling Tower Water Treatment Necessary?

Generally speaking, yes.

While cooling towers come in a variety of shapes and sizes for different applications, they are all susceptible to the risks associated with untreated water. Every application is a bit different, so treatment methods vary depending on your facility’s specific cooling tower chemistry, but the most common issues found in cooling water are: Scaling, Corrosion, Fouling, and Biological Growth.

To prevent these common issues, some kind of water treatment program is usually required. This can include equipment designed to maintain water make-up in different ways, specialized water treatment chemicals, and a system of monitoring water in different areas of the system.

cooling tower

Common Cooling Tower Water Issues


Evaporative cooling systems are used to transfer heat from an application to the atmosphere via the release of latent heat as some of the water passing through a cooling tower undergoes a state change from liquid to vapor (evaporation).  The cooling tower water that evaporates is pure; therefore the impurities that are in the remaining liquid water will concentrate over time. As the concentration increases; various minerals, including calcium carbonate, have a tendency to form crystals on the heat transfer surface, which ultimately reduces the efficiency of the equipment. These concentrations are known as scaling.


All water is corrosive, sometimes more than normal. If contaminants are allowed to accrue within water, they begin to degrade pipes through a chemical reaction which returns the metal of the pipes to their oxide state. Over time, the metal can become thinner and more brittle in areas, increasing the risk of breaks or ruptures, and would ultimately require maintenance or replacement.


Fouling is similar to scaling in that deposits of contaminants build up in the water over time and can begin causing issues if left untreated. Unlike scaling, however, fouling deposits are not as hard. Things like sand, silt, or other smaller suspended solids are a few examples of fouling material. Over time these contaminants might block pipes and slow water flow, decreasing efficiency in the system as a whole.

Biological Growth

Biological growth is exactly what it sounds like: the growth and spread of microbial contaminants like algae and bacteria. If left untreated, water can become a breeding ground for biological elements that cause a variety of issues. Among these issues, the development and spread of biofilm can be especially difficult to deal with as it acts as an insulator to reduce heat transfer and can be extremely resilient. Certain harmful bacteria like Legionella, which can cause Legionnaires Disease under certain conditions, can also form in biofilm and spread throughout a system leading to health hazards.

What Does a Cooling Tower Management Program Involve?

Because cooling water applications come in different sizes and serve different purposes, there is no one-size-fits-all solution to treating a system. Instead, it is important to have a tailored plan for your specific system. Contacting a water treatment expert to come survey the system is the first steps towards making this happen. Below are just some of the services FCT Water representatives provide in our cooling water treatment program.

Onsite Water Testing

We pull samples from the system and run tests to verify the performance and integrity of the system. This allows us to diagnose any issues or potential problems, and to begin drafting a plan of protection. This testing can be done in regular intervals based on the specific needs of the system to ensure consistent results.

Operating Recommendations

After an initial survey and testing of the system, our team of experienced water treatment experts will create a plan to establish and control parameters and procedures within the system to relieve existing issues and prevent future problems. We work with you to make sure this plan is as convenient and effective as possible.

Chemical Recommendations and Feed

Chemical treatment is often necessary in cooling water treatment. Our program helps to establish treatment levels of specific products chosen by us to prevent scaling, corrosion and biological fouling.

Service Visits

We act as an extension of your facility’s team, helping to ensure the proper maintenance of equipment to achieve the longest service life possible. We meet with staff, review logs, perform any necessary tests or inspections, and make sure everything is running smoothly and to your specifications.

Custom Solutions for all Your Water Treatment Needs!

Of course, this is just a brief overview of cooling tower water treatment, and needs can vary drastically based on your business’s specific water chemistry needs. An FCT representative would love to answer any further questions you might have, or discuss other water treatment options with you. Click the button below to get in touch with one of our reps today.

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