Santos Flores with a pump from the Wilden Pro-Flo Series.
Santos Flores with a pump from the Wilden Pro-Flo Series.
A pump from the Wilden Pro-Flo Series.
A pump from the Wilden Pro-Flo Series.

Diversified Chemical Technologies Inc (DCT) consists of six closely integrated subsidiaries operating in Detroit and Ferndale, MI, with a client list featuring some of the world’s most recognizable and successful brands from the automotive, food and beverage, packaging, electrical and consumer-products industries.

DCT and its subsidiaries manufacture a diverse array of chemicals, adhesives, polymers, epoxies, lighting solutions and recycled rubber products using thousands of pieces of equipment at nine manufacturing facilities in the greater Detroit area.

A crucial component in the manufacturing cycles of DCT’s subsidiaries are industrial pumps, but the keen eye of new hire, Santos Flores noticed that the company was not always using pumps that offered the best solutions for time and cost effectiveness, maintenance needs, operational efficiencies and energy consciousness, so he went to work fixing the problems.

Finding solutions

Flores estimates that DCT has as many as 1,000 pumps in operation at any one time. With the help of Tom Matheson, a Field Specialist with American Controls Inc (ACI), the journey in replacing those 1,000 pumps with more efficient options began with choosing air-operated double-diaphragm (AODD) pumps from Wilden®, part of the New York-based Dover Corporation’s Pump Solutions Group (PSG).

DCT chose Wilden’s Advanced lines of metal and plastic AODD pumps that featured Wilden’s patented Pro-Flo air-distribution system (ADS) to meet its diverse production needs.

“The old pumps we were using were very maintenance-intensive to take apart, put back together and get back online,” said Flores. “We had a competitor pump that we almost had daily failures on…we’ve reduced downtime 50% with the Wilden pumps.”

DCT began installing Wilden Pro-Flo Series (bolted) pumps four years ago with approximately 30 currently in use at various locations. Pro-Flo Series pumps ensure total product containment since they are bolted together and won’t leak. This design makes them ideal for pumping raw materials from holding tanks to batch tanks, and pumping finished products into totes, drums, 5-gallon pails and, in some cases, tanker trucks, chores that are performed on a continual basis at DCT’s facilities.

The Pro-Flo Series’ metal or plastic construction also gives them the versatility to handle products with a wide range of characteristics, while a variety of elastomer options, including Teflon PTFE, allow them to conquer abrasion, temperature and chemical compatibility concerns.

DCT also benefits from the pumps’ Pro-Flo ADS operation which only three moving parts: an unbalanced air-valve spool, a pilot spool and the main shaft/diaphragm assembly, allowing the liquid to be pumped in the most efficient manner possible.

Flores estimates that his maintenance staff is now spending only 25% of its time on maintenance in the areas where the Wilden pumps are used, as opposed to the 75% of the time that was spent on maintenance with the competitors’ pumps. He said: “Now, it’s just normal preventive maintenance that we do—we have not had a failure on a Wilden pump to date”.

And that’s not all

In addition to the benefits realized with the switch to Wilden AODD pumps, DCT is also reaping the benefits of using the pumping technology offered by another member of the PSG? Griswold Pump Company. Griswold® has become most known for its 811 ANSI Series of centrifugal pumps for industrial applications. As it turns out, a Griswold 811 pump was the perfect solution to an ongoing problem that Flores was having within the air-compressor system at DCT’s Adhesives Systems facility.

The harsh environment at Adhesives Systems leads to heavy demands being placed on the facility’s air-compressor system. The job was made less demanding when Flores replaced the competitors’ centrifugal pump with a Griswold 811.

The Griswold pump has performed so far beyond Flores’ expectations that he’s anticipating he’ll place an order for three additional 811 pumps in the future.

Conclusion

Being the manager of an operation as expansive and diverse as DCT’s is a big task. But not only does it involve managing a lot of moving parts, in these difficult economic times, every penny saved is one to be cherished. That’s why operational inefficiencies are no longer tolerated, no matter how minuscule they may seem.

In utilizing the pumping technologies from Wilden and Griswold, Flores has found willing partners in the effort to make DCT as lean and efficient as possible, while also continuing to meet the high expectations of its client base.

“We really have thousands of pumps here, tons of applications, and we want to make sure we go through them correctly, methodically, so we can fix them once then move on to the next project,” he said. “That’s why I brought Tom and ACI in here, to make sure we size the pumps correctly and have the right one for the product. The ones that we’re losing the most money on are top priority and then we’ll go right down the list. The Wilden and Griswold pumps have made my job a lot easier.”