Construction Materials Case Study: Wienerberger, Bishop Auckland

“When we tapped the pipe, we’d hear the ice rattling up the pipe, but nothing got through the Expel system supplied by yourselves and the conveyors were fine”

Mick Abbott – Maintenance Manager – Wienerberger

About the customer

Wienerberger AG is an Austrian brick maker which is the world’s largest producer of bricks, with over 200 production sites, Wienerberger is number one on the clay roof tile market in Europe as well as concrete pavers in Central and Eastern Europe. In pipe systems, the company is one of the leading suppliers in Europe.

Project Background

The Bishop Auckland site were experiencing prominent issues with liquid water in the compressed air system. The transfer area was the most problematic area at the site as the solenoid valves and conveyors were being damaged and experiencing faulty operation, production downtime and part replacement costs. Maintenance Manager Mick Abbott reported that the site is particularly prone to problems in the winter months as the liquid water in the lines would freeze causing all pneumatic equipment in the area to freeze up and not function correctly.

“The compressors with the refrigeration units weren’t doing a good enough job”

Mick Abbott – Maintenance Manager – Wienerberger

Why did the Bishop Auckland site choose Expel?

Previous attempts to help deal with the problems caused by moisture included purchasing a compressor with a built-in refrigerant dryer. These built-in dryers provided pressure dew points of 3 degrees Celsius. This was problematic when the ambient air temperature dropped below 3 degrees because it would allow significant volumes of water through to the airlines, which in turn, caused extensive damage to pneumatic equipment on site.

The solution to this problem was to install a high efficiency compressed air filter which was capable of continually removing 99.999% of all liquid water, oil emulsion fluids and solid particulates down to 1 micron. Expel was the perfect tool for the job because it ensures this high level of continual protection against these compressed air contaminants. This means that there will never be enough water in the airlines to freeze and cause damage to pneumatic equipment.

Expel put an immediate stop to the problems the site was having, and the Maintenance Manager reported to us that:

“This is the first year we haven’t had ANY problems with water and ice in the lines, and it is all thanks to the Expel unit you supplied us with” – Mick Abbott, Maintenance Manager, Wienerberger.

“We didn’t have any machines freezing… Usually, this area really suffers in the cold weather. This year we have had no suffering.”

Mick Abbott – Maintenance Manager – Wienerberger


Reduced Downtime

Reduces Costs

Increased Productivity

Reduced Wastage


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