Late summer guide to CIP cleaning
Consumer safety comes first
Imagine the Formula 1 race car in first position before the light turns green at Silverstone. The start goes with dry tires on this sunny morning. But the weather surprises everything and everyone. By lap 10, the grey clouds have gathered, and within a very short time, rain is pouring down on the tarmac. The team behind the Formula 1 race car takes the chance and pushes through while the others take it to the pit to change tires – unfortunately, it all ends badly on lap 14, when the Formula 1 race car skids off the track and has to exit the race.
Just as the team behind the Formula 1 race car should never have taken a chance with tires that were not suitable for the conditions, companies should never compromise on quality of technical components when it comes to CIP cleaning. Cleaning with chemical fluids - sometimes in a mixture - under high temperature and pressure is no joke. You need to know what you are doing to ensure the process plant is clean from end to end. Of course, both the food and pharmaceutical industries do it with consumer safety in mind - but sometimes things can go really wrong.
Stay tuned as we give you the complete late summer guide to CIP cleaning.
What is CIP cleaning?
CIP is an acronym for Cleaning-In-Place. CIP cleaning was originally developed for the food industry, particularly dairies. Today, the cleaning process, which is typically fully automated, is also used in the pharmaceutical industry and includes the cleaning of pipes, containers, tanks, filters and fittings etc. The CIP cleaning process depends on the product to be manufactured, e.g. beer, spirits or different types of food oils. The cleaning process often includes the following steps in chronological order:
- Rinsing with water to remove coarser dirt
- Rinsing with mixed caustic solution or another cleaning agent, e.g. lye
- Rinsing with acidic solution, e.g. hydrochloric or nitric acid
- Rinsing with water
- Disinfection with relevant disinfectant, if necessary
Production needs vs. safety
As a supplier to the process industry, we at Alfotech have heard several stories about CIP cleanings that did not go as planned. For example, a few months ago we helped one of Denmark's largest food companies when one of their process hoses burst while CIP cleaning was in progress. Fortunately, none of the employees were near the place where the hose leaked acidic solution.
For the customer it's a balancing act; during CIP cleaning, production comes to a halt, so it has to run as efficiently as possible. At the same time, however, the safety of the employees at work must never be compromised. And it is precisely in the context of safety optimization that it is important to use the right hoses for CIP cleaning.
Alfotech recommends Alichem
Alichem SPL with built-in steel spiral.
We recommend using chemical hoses from the Alichem range for CIP cleaning. Common to all of them is that they are constructed with smooth EPDM on the inside and are very durable. Covering a temperature range from -40°C to +120°C depending on the medium, Alichem/SPL also has a built-in steel spiral and is suitable for more demanding tasks where flexibility is also required. For CIP cleaning with very high temperatures, we always recommend the use of HOT Alichem/BN-S, which can withstand temperatures of up to +150°C. In addition to being a suction and pressure hose, it is also antistatic through the hose wall.
Read more about the Alichem variants
Easy ordering via our webshop
With your own user account in our webshop, you can easily order chemical hoses for your CIP cleaning. You will also find a large selection of suitable hose couplings and fittings to suit your needs. Create your user account today and explore our wide product range. You are also welcome to contact us on phone +45 7020 0422 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for advice and guidance regarding CIP cleaning of your process plant.