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Insulation of Cooling Systems

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To avoid

  • heat gain and reduced efficiency of cooling systems
  • condensation of water on surfaces and potential corrosion problems

- pipes in cooling systems should always be insulated.

The insulation thickness of chilled water, refrigerant and brine systems should not be less than indicated below.

Insulation of Cooling Systems
SystemOperation TemperaturePipe Size (inches)
< 1"1 1/4" - 2"2 1/2" - 4"5" - 6"> 8"
(oF)(oC)Insulation Thickness (inches)
Chilled Water 40 - 55 4 - 12 0.5 0.75 1.0 1.0 1.0
Refrigerant < 40 < 4 1.0 1.5 1.5 1.5 1.5
Brine < 40 < 4 1.0 1.5 1.5 1.5 1.5
  • 1 inch = 25.4 mm

Insulation of a cold system should be made with micro-cellular cross-linked polyethylene foam with low water vapor diffusion.

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Related Topics


Calculate heat transfer and heat loss from buildings and technical applications. Heat transfer coefficients and insulation methods available for reduction of energy consumption.

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Cooling Water - Pipe Lines

Sizing cooling water pipe lines - maximum allowable flow, velocity and pressure drops.

Insulation Materials - Operating Temperature Limits

Temperature limits for commonly used insulation materials.

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