It’s often believed that, once designed and installed, enclosures can work perfectly without further problems or maintenance. This is not true at all! The electrical components inside them, in order to function properly, need constant temperature and humidity to avoid problems. Today, therefore, we will talk about the most common false beliefs related to electrical panels.
Fan filters always reduce the internal temperature of the enclosure
Wrong: often the fan filter is not enough to cool the cabinet. When the outside temperature is higher than 40°C, ventilation is not just enough and heat can penetrate through the filter grid, increasing the panel internal temperature. It’s therefore advisable to choose an active cooling solution such an air conditioner or an air-water exchanger.
Electrical enclosures are sealed, so always dry
If appropriately garnished, electrical cabinets guarantee a good sealing and water tightness, that is true. However, this does not exclude that condensation may form inside the panel, due to rapid temperature drop, below the dew point. To avoid this, we need to heat the cabinet with one or more anti-condensation heaters, especially during machine shutdowns or in cold rooms. Condensation reduces the reliability and lifetime of electrical and electronic equipment, causing serious malfunctions.
Internal components can be placed anywhere inside the enclosure
No. The electrical equipment inside the panel should not be positioned where it’s most comfortable to the installer or even grouped in one spot, but it’s imperative to carefully choose the position of the components to ensure a distance that allows correct circulation of the air and proper distribution of power loads. By doing so, in addition of energy saving, unwanted hot spots and loss of thermal inefficiency can be avoided.
Electrical enclosures resist dust
Do not minimize the entering of dust or dirt inside the cabinet, as they may compromise components proper working, causing malfunctions, especially if there are oils or condensates that cause obstinate dirt on the surfaces. The panel and components installed in must have an appropriate degree of protection suitable for the conditions of use and a proper cleaning and maintenance routine, regularly scheduled, such as washing or replacing cloth for fan filter units, washing for sanitation in the Food & Beverage field, etc.
Electrical enclosures require only a good ventilation
As mentioned above, it’s necessary to calculate the volume of the required airflow to proper ventilate an electrical cabinet and to choose the type of fan filter accordingly. It’s not enough to install a random fan filter to ensure correct air circulation. In fact, it’s recommended to take the air from the outside, if external conditions permit it, to allow the flow inside the panel: in this way, a overpressure will be created in the cabinet so to prevent the dust to penetrate into the enclosure.
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