Catalytic Oxidizer Services

Expert Catalytic Oxidizer Services – Inspections, Service & Upgrades

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Impartial Solutions for Any Make or Model of Catalytic Oxidizer

Catalytic oxidizers consist of few moving parts and are capable of maintaining continuous steady-state operation for long periods of time. However, regular inspections and routine maintenance are required to keep them performing properly and cost-effectively. Particular attention should be paid to the catalyst, which can foul, leading to a sharp decrease in pollutant destruction and the subsequent need for catalyst cleaning, removal, and/or replacement. Your catalytic oxidizer’s stainless steel parts and components should also be regularly inspected to prevent costly future replacements.


We inspect, repair and upgrade all types, makes, and models of catalytic oxidizers, including:

     • Catalytic Thermal Oxidizers – feature a metal catalyst to allow VOC decomposition at

       significantly lower temperatures

     • Recuperative Catalytic Oxidizers – use an air-to-air heat exchanger to preheat

       incoming air

     • Direct Catalytic Oxidizers – basic, non-recuperative catalytic oxidizer (no heat


     • Regenerative Catalytic Oxidizers – feature a ceramic media heat recovery system

     • Electric Recuperative Thermal Oxidizers – use electrical resistance heaters instead of

       gas-fueled burners

Catalytic Oxidizer Maintenance Services at a Glance

     • Catalyst cleaning, repair, and replacement

     • Cleaning and/or repairing heat exchanger tubes

     • Control repairs and upgrades

     • Burner tuning

     • Gas train leak testing (NFPA testing)

     • Process fan balancing and repairs

     • Ductwork repairs and replacement

     • Replacement parts

     • Servicing wet scrubbers (e.g., acid gas scrubbers) and/or dust

       collectors/baghouses if used upstream of a catalytic oxidizer


Catalyst Inspection, Removal & Replacement

The effectiveness of a catalytic oxidizer is directly related to the effectiveness of its catalyst. Regular catalyst activity testing and inspections are critical to optimizing the cost-effective performance of your catalytic oxidizer system. Often, a drop in temperature rise across the catalyst is directly proportional to a drop in destruction of pollutants. A significantly lower temperature rise in the presence of pollutants usually indicates that catalyst renewal is required.

We provide inspection, repair, and replacement services for all types of catalysts, including:

     • Precious Metals (e.g., platinum, palladium)

     • Metal Oxides (e.g., cobalt oxide, chrome oxide, copper oxide)

     • Metal carboxylates (e.g., iron carboxylate, vanadium carboxylate)

We offer annual catalyst testing and cleaning to remove masking agents like dust, dirt and debris that can collect on the catalyst surface. When catalyst poisons can’t be removed and begin to destroy the catalyst, we can replace your catalyst quickly and cost-effectively.

Catalytic Oxidizer Control System Repairs & Upgrades

Our experienced controls engineers can repair or upgrade your catalytic oxidizer’s system controls to increase system performance/efficiencies, enhance system reliability, and improve ease of use. In addition to improving temperature controls to prevent over-temperature damage to the catalyst, we can add robust options such as remote interfacing and monitoring, data collection, and hazardous area classification. Keep in mind that older control systems may include now-obsolete components which can lead to extended downtime if they fail. Learn more about our controls expertise. 


Catalytic Oxidizer & Ethylene Oxide Sterilization

We have extensive experience with all makes and models of systems commonly used in the sterilization technologies market for the abatement of ethylene oxide (EtO) emissions, including Donaldson Catalytic Oxidizers. In addition to our technical expertise, our engineers and field team understand the issues that affect this industry, including safety concerns, proposed changes in emissions standards, and more. We can help your plant stay abreast of industry changes with services including upgrading your catalytic oxidizer’s controls and inspecting safety interlocks to allow for the safest treatment of EtO.


As EtO emissions regulations tighten, it is increasingly important for operators to ensure that their facilities are operating safely and in compliance with their air permit. Tighter emission requirements leave less room for error in maintenance and operation. Furthermore, upgrading and/or altering existing oxidizer systems to achieve higher destruction efficiencies from ethylene oxide sterilization operations requires an understanding of a coplex array of factors, such as a facility’s operational goals, DRE requirements, waste stream, and existing system limitations. We can help you determine whether your system needs relatively minor adjustments or a retrofit.


We’ve helped a variety of EtO sterilization facilities solve compliance and/or safety challenges in the following ways:

     • Exchanging a lower-performing catalyst with a higher-performing catalyst

     • Recalibrating instruments to avoid outages or deviations

     • Inspecting equipment specifically for leaky bypasses or components

     • Installing specialized equipment to prevent chamber emissions “spikes” that can cause

       an upset condition

     • Substituting forced draft fan configuration to induced draft (a negative pressure on the

       system lowers the potential for fugitive emissions through leakage


What Can Poison Catalyst?

The following is a partial list of poisoning agents that can damage the catalyst and/or decrease its performance:




Coating Agents

     ○ Rust

     ○ Dirt

     ○ Inorganic Oxide

Covers catalyst active site. Catalyst replacement may be required.

“Glass” Forming Coating Agents

     ○ Silicones

     ○ Organic Silicates

     ○ Phosphorous containing


Washing may remedy the situation; Factory reactivation or replacement often necessary


     ○ Chlorine

     ○ Fluorine

     ○ Iodine

     ○ Bromine

Prolonged exposure and/or higher concentrations result in temporary or permanent deactivation of catalyst


Permanent deactivation of catalyst

Organic Droplets / Aerosols

May carburize the catalyst or cause substrate deterioration

For maximum oxidizer reliability, we recommend a customized Rapid Response Service Agreement. Plans are tailored to your needs and include routine and scheduled inspections as well as a set number of unscheduled, emergency call-outs with a guaranteed maximum response time.