Importance of a CO2 leak detector

University Research and CO2Meter Sensor Technologies

Importance of a CO2 leak detector

In today's world, industries such as beverage dispensing, restaurants, indoor agriculture, and breweries are all too familiar with Carbon Dioxide (CO2) hazards and the potential incidents that can occur without proper CO2 monitors in place or the tools necessary to find those potentially deadly leaks.

As a reminder, carbon dioxide is a colorless, odorless, and tasteless inert gas. It can be deadly even when normal oxygen levels are present. The majority of commercial refrigeration systems, restaurant soda dispensers, indoor grow facilities, brewery fermentation tanks, and draft beer coolers contain high concentrations of CO2 where potential leaks could occur.

Three main issues typically cause leaks in these CO2 systems:

  • Failure to service and maintain systems including regular cleaning 
  • Damage caused through improper or repetitive use          
  • The systems are under extreme pressure from the CO2 cylinder or bulk tank

And while most individuals will never experience the hazards of a CO2 leak several injuries occur daily to those working in and around hazardous CO2 points such as:

  • Improperly installed beverage systems
  • CO2 cylinders or bulk tanks that are not properly vented
  • Leaking fittings, connections, piping/tubing
  • Leaking carbonators, syrup pumps
  • Leaking beer keg couplers and equipment

While incidents involving some of the above equipment have resulted in severe injury to those exposed, regulations have now been put in place to ensure industries that use CO2 are compliant and have proper CO2 leak detectors and monitors in place to mitigate the chance of injury.

As a company with over a decade of experience in gas detection, CO2Meter has gathered valuable input from partners in the field to create an accurate, fast, reliable, and low-cost leak detection solution for industries worldwide.

By focusing on installers, draft technicians, and safety leads; CO2Meter designed and built the popular CO2 Leak Detector (SAN-13) which features a fast and accurate CO2 sensor to pinpoint even the smallest of potential leak points. 

The SAN-13 measures carbon dioxide (CO2) instantly and with a superior combination of accuracy, reliability, and sensitivity to leak points - the device will provide years of reliable and life-saving convenience.

CO2 Leak Detector - SAN-13

The detector features a large OLED display, IP54 enclosure, and an enhanced NDIR CO2 sensor measuring 20x per second. Combined with a lightweight carrying case and a Li-on rechargeable battery - the CO2 leak detector is quickly becoming the “go-to” for professionals who believe they have a dangerous leak.

Prior to its launch, CO2Meter designed this device in conjunction with professionals from the brewing industry as well as draft technicians who work daily in and around hazardous carbon dioxide gas and needed a faster and more accurate leak detector. 

Jeremy Gobien Using CO2 Leak Detector in Brewery

Pictured Above: Jeremy Gobien, using CO2 Leak Detector

We enlisted head brewer and owner Jeremy Gobien Ph.D. from Copper Kettle Brewing in Denver, CO to help design and test the Leak Detector.

For brewers, having areas that store, create, or use carbon dioxide (CO2) only provides more opportunity for CO2 leaks. Jeremy noticed that as he built out the CO2 system at the brewery there was a persistent ice spot on the CO2 bulk tanks outer jacket.  "Icing" on the outside of the tank means that the tank is drawing gas more quickly that the tank is designed. This is a key indicator that the system may have a leak. 

Without a real solution to measure or diagnose where the leak is, the cost per year of a leaky system is difficult to assess. Jeremy's current annual CO2 expenditure was roughly $7,000 (around $3.5 per barrel of product output). 

Even a 5% loss rate per year due to leaks would be a waste of $350 of CO2 every year. In addition to cost savings, there is a need to provide a high level of safety for his staff.

Jeremy knew that CO2 was the most likely danger his staff would encounter. 

Jeremy stated, "Before having a way to find the source of the leak the walk-in cooler almost always had a higher CO2 level than the building in general at Copper Kettle. Knowing there is a problem is only half the battle. Before having the SAN-13 unit we knew when we had a critical problem but finding the source was a perfect example of the "needle in a haystack" scenario. The walk-in cooler houses nearly 20 individual vessels each with 4-8 tri-clamp connections above the liquid level which could result in CO2 leaks."

"Since having the SAN-13 it has become an invaluable resource to quickly locate and correct leaks in our CO2 distribution system resulting in measurable improvements in reducing waste and increasing safety at the brewery. We have incorporated using the SAN-13 CO2 Leak Detector as part of our standard operating procedure so that every vessel is proactively checked for leaks each time it is pressured."

"I would highly recommend the SAN-13 to anyone using compressed CO2 gas as part of their daily operations. It satisfies all my requirements for a high quality and effective device for this purpose in that it's solidly built, responsive, accurate, and intuitive to use." 

Reaching hazardous levels of carbon dioxide can occur quickly and without warning, which could result in serious health effects or injury. Ensure your workers and employees are consistently safe and keep false alarms to an extreme minimum with our carbon dioxide leak detector solution

Additional SAN-13 features include:

  • Large OLED Display
  • Simple, two-button functionality
  • Highly sensitive NDIR CO2 sensor measuring 20X per second
  • Visual and audible indication for alert
  • Heavy-duty metal clip
  • Rechargeable battery – 8+ hours charge
  • Lightweight, durable carrying case
  • Flexible sensing wand “gooseneck” for hard-to-reach spaces
  • Micro-pump to draw a sample in for fast, accurate measurements
  • Protective IP54 Enclosure – Protects against dust, rain, or splash
For more information on the CO2 Leak Detector for your application or industry, Send us an inquiry today: Sales@CO2Meter.com or (877) 678 – 4259
Learn more about Copper Kettle Brewery, here

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