Operation and maintenance of glass apparatus

technical requirements

The operating conditions of each glass apparatus should be specified in the design. In case the process has been designed by the customer using glass parts specified in design plans, leaflets and documentation of the supplier, the limits of operating conditions cannot exceed the conditions specified for respective parts by the manufacturer.

Written operating instructions which describe in details the process sections, including starting up, operation and stopping of the equipment run, should be at disposal. Critical factors should be specified which would result in stopping the operation. If this applies to working procedures in which operating pressure limits can be exceeded, the glass apparatus should be protected at appropriate places with pressure safety valves, piercing shutter fuses, alarm devices, etc.

In chemical processes where a danger of fire or explosion due to static electricity exists, the safety measures, particularly in processing and transport of liquids in glass piping, should include earthing of a point on the external surface of each glass part.

The glass apparatus in which processing is carried out of chemical substances, the escape of which could result in detriment to operator's health, should be protected by a suitably fitted shield or by installing the whole apparatus into a separate room which can be locked during operation.


Before putting the apparatus into operation, it is necessary to carry out a general inspection of all glass parts for the possibility of occurrence of mechanical damage (impacts and cracks) incurred during the assembly. These impacts and cracks could make carrying-out of the glass apparatus testing impossible or could cause material damages.

During filling, heating-up and putting into operation of the apparatus, the glass stress cannot exceed the values considered by the designer according to valid regulations and standards.

maintenance of glass apparatus

Cleaning of glass
For cleaning of glass parts surface and preserving of all required properties of the glass, it is necessary to perform cleaning of parts immediately after putting the apparatus out of operation. No cleaning agent of abrasive character may be used and chemical dissolving of impurities should be preferred. Because of a danger of gradual loss in glass lustre and transparency of glass parts, cleaning agents of neutral reaction should be preferred to strongly alkaline ones.

Labour safety
During maintenance of the apparatus it is forbidden:

  • to work on an apparatus and equipment in operation and under pressure
  • to use glass parts of apparatus as load-bearing parts
  • to hang auxiliary assembling tools on glass parts
  • to carry out pressure test with a defective manometer or under pressure which is higher than prescribed value
  • dismantled parts should be cleaned and checked for possible damage
  • after repair it is necessary to inspect flange joints and the whole apparatus in operation for the period of 24 hours
  • a record should be made in the revision book on each repair of the apparatus and carried out test