Parallel Flow Sap Pre-Heater
The parallel flow sap pre-heater is a set of copper pipes installed over the flue pan for sap to travel through before it enters the flue pan of the maple syrup evaporator. With a parallel flow pre-heater sap will be warmed to between 160-185 degrees farenheit. The unit comes complete with a drip pan to catch all condensation water that forms when the steam from the flue pan warms the cold sap. A steam hood is needed to hold the steam around the preheater for maximum performance. Pre-heating your sap will increase the performance of the evaporator by 15-20 percent without any additional fuel or labor. Also available upon request in stainless steel.
Copper vs. Stainless Steel
Copper is a much better conductor of heat than stainless steel and therefor is a more effective material to use in pre-heating sap. Because of it's conductivity the heat applied to copper spreads very evenly over it's surface, and the heating of sap is more even throughout the pre-heater. In order to achieve the same increase in performance from a stainless steel pre-heater we have to double the heating surface by adding additional pipes for sap to travel through.
Why Parallel Flow?
As sap is pre-heated there is a chance that vapor (steam) may be generated. That vapor can create a blockage in the pipes of a pre-heater and stop or slow the sap from flowing through. With a series flow design that blockage would stop all liquid from reaching the flue pan, and could cause the evaporator to run to shallow and burn if it is not noticed very quickly. With a parallel design sap flows from one end to the other through a single pipe. Each pipe carries it's own volume of sap, so if one pipe is blocked or slowed from vapor, the other pipes will still be allowed to flow. This system also comes with a vent tube that will allow the vapor to be vented off, drastically limiting it's impact on flow. This singular flow design