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Importing your chemical equipment from China could significantly reduce your company’s capital expenditures. Obviously, the biggest concern here is ensuring quality. Hiring a third party inspector that is based in China is a cost-effective way of addressing this issue. However, in order to wisely select the best inspection company, buyers must familiarize with the several key points in chemical equipment inspection processes.

InTouch is the leading quality control company focusing on inspections on chemical equipment in China. Some of the inspections we take into account in our inspection and verification process include:
Materials Inspection

Stainless Steel – Verify that the types and grades of steel and steel alloys to be used for your equipment comply with international standards and that their properties should match with the specific uses of the unit. ASTM G123 – 00, ASTM G48 – 11, and ASTM G35 – 98 are standards from ASTM International which covers the test methods for determining the anti-corrosive properties of stainless steel against a variety of chemicals.

Borosilicate Glass – Verify that chemical equipment which are partly or completely made from Borosilicate glass adhere to the requirements provided by DIN 12492 to ensure safety and quality.

Coating Check – Check the coating materials comply with contractual requirements and with standards imposed on importing territories. Additional coating materials are used when the main manufacturing material anti-corrosive surface rating is not sufficient for the purpose of the unit.

Fiber Reinforced Plastic – Verify that fiber reinforced plastic materials adhere to contractual specifications and/or standard requirements, if applicable. Fiberglass chemical tanks are often used for containing liquid substances that do not react with plastics.

Visual Inspection

Color – Compare product color with approved sample or with Pantone color chart if value is specified on contract. Chemical and water tanks for New Zealand and Australia have to comply with the required colors provided in AS/NZS 4766.

Surface Inspection – Visually inspect product for any sign of crazing, cracking, embrittlement, leaks, corrosion, bumps or depressions, uneven surface texture, and other characteristics which may affect functionality, efficiency, safety, or marketability.

Welded Parts Inspection – Check that welded joints comply with acceptable tolerances on angle accuracy, alignment, and surface texture or finishing. It is also essential to verify compatibility of welded parts to each other and the welding materials to the base metals.
Dimensional Inspection

Venting – Check that sizes of vent holes are wider that input holes or are equal or larger than specified in the contract to prevent unnecessary build-up of pressure when filling or emptying the equipment.

Individual Parts – Check the dimensional measurements of each individual part and compare with contractual specifications for compliance.

Assembled Equipment – Measure the dimensional properties of the equipment including height, width, circumference, area, and volume.

Functional Inspection

Stirring Modes – Check that the equipment provides the stirring modes specified under contract such as intermittent stirring, continuous mixing, and automatic or manual stirring.

Cooling and Heating Mechanisms – Verify that the product has sufficient cooling or heating mechanisms that are essential in speeding up production. Efficiency may be established using agreed upon conditions or by employing standard test methods, when available.

Pressure Management – Verify that mechanisms for controlling pressure levels are functional and sufficient for the intended purpose of the unit.

Performance Inspection

Chemical Resistance – Verify that parts of chemical tank that comes in contact with chemicals, directly or indirectly through fumes, are made from materials which are resistant to specified chemicals. Additional chemical resistance testing for manufactured good may also be done using applicable test methods.

Environmental Stress Cracking Test – Even with chemical-resistant materials, environmental stress cracking may still occur. Environmental stress cracking test methods are to be used to evaluate the susceptibility of chemical tanks to damage due to prolonged exposure to specified substances and/or presence of other contributing factors such as temperature and pressure.

Pressure Gauge – Check that the pressure gauge attached to the device for monitoring purposes adheres to relevant standards such as ASME B40.100 to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Thermometers – Inspect that the thermometers installed on your equipment comply with applicable standards including ASME B40.200 for accurate monitoring of temperature.

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Topics: Industrial Goods

AQF Team

This article was a collaborative effort among various members of the Asia Quality Focus team.

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