Please don’t excuse the mess: keeping your electrical control panel clean

Poor and irregular maintenance of an electrical control panel can, unsurprisingly, lead to huge pay outs for repairs and replacements, as the control panel overheats and components malfunction. In order to prevent this costly consequence, we have a few tips and tricks for kick-starting and maintaining a clean electrical control panel.

Dust and Debris

Dust is a catch all term for a range of different substances, some of which are often conductive materials. A build-up of unmanaged conductive material can affect currents, causing short circuits and component collisions. Even a build-up of non-conductive dust can lead to overheating, which causes serious problems for electrical control panels. Regularly scheduled maintenance will help to keep the panel clear of dust and debris.

TIP: A vacuum will clean more efficiently inside the enclosure than compressed air, which might work to push the dust deeper inside the panel, and into unreachable corners.

In regular checks on your control panels, be sure to check the plastic casings and components within your panels, which can degrade and create a build-up of carbon. This is most likely with contact components that arc when opening and closing. Additionally, the older the equipment, the more likely this is to happen.

TIP: When cleaning your panel of carbon and other tough dirt, use specific cleaning products designated for their safe removal.

The Filter is Your Helping Hand

Filters are used precisely for the purpose of preventing dust particles from penetrating the control panel. If your panel came with filters, make sure to follow the guidelines for replacement frequency. If the dirt in a filter reaches above 60-70%, the air flow inside the panel will be compromised, risking overheating and damage to components.

Thinking in preventative terms, there are a number of ways you can ensure your filter has the best chance of protecting your control panel from debris, and therefore doing most of the cleaning work for you. Control panels in which filters are positioned outside the enclosure both keep the dust as far away from your components as possible, and are easily accessible for regular replacement.

Buying affordable filters will also encourage you to replace them more frequently, preventing more costly damage to your panel. Some brands also manufacture washable filters, which again contribute to keeping filter costs low.

TIP: Keep a few filters in stock, so there is no option for procrastinating when your filter needs changing.

The Importance of  Control Panel Design

While regular maintenance and cleaning are important for any control panel, custom control panel builders can limit the necessary frequency of this upkeep. Specialist engineers can support the building process to ensure the design of your control panel supports efficient and cost-effective operation.

The highly specialist team at DualTEC can provide this support through the process of your control panel design. Call today on 01535 609314 to speak to our support staff, or visit our contact page  to get in touch