Temperature consistency and energy consumption reduction is key in certain parts of oil processing. Prior to going into a storage tank, oil has to pass through a heat treatment process, which is facilitated by oil treaters. After the oil has been treated, it passes through valves and into storage tanks before it can be transported through a pipeline. This process involves burning propane to heat up the oil treaters to an average of 125ºF. Such was the case of an oil field 18 miles south of the Canadian border, where negative temperatures are common during the winter, and high propane consumption became an issue for the operator, because the oil treaters were not being kept at the optimal temperature. The owner realized that the existing fiberglass insulation on these treaters and oil valves deteriorated after the first year of their installation.
Not only had the treaters’ propane consumption remained high, but also the fiberglass became wet over time, which permitted rodents to break through the batt insulation, cancel all R-value and, disdainfully, generate a rodent issue. With a high propane consumption, no air and vapor barrier, inefficient insulation, and a rodent problem to deal with, the oil field owner opted for a solution that would take care of his problems: spray polyurethane foam insulation.