One easy choice: Ohmstede’s capabilities for the heat transfer industry

Ohmstede has maintained its position as one of the most trusted names in American manufacturing for over a century. Since its foundation in 1905, Ohmstede has set the benchmark in the industry for all things shell and tube heat exchangers.
Heat Exchanger World spoke to Buddy Tucker, Vice President of Sales & Marketing, to learn about how Ohmstede is a legacy company, making it one easy choice for heat exchanger needs throughout the industry.

By Sara Mathov, Heat Exchanger World

Legacy company

Founded in 1905 by August Ohmstede, a German immigrant to Beaumont, Texas, the company started as a small auto repair shop. Recognizing that Beaumont was to be at the epicenter of the East Texas oil boom, Ohmstede quickly adapted to offer metal fabrication services to the rapidly growing oil industry. By the 1980s, Ohmstede was the market leader for manufacturing shell and tube heat exchangers in the U.S., and continued to grow and expand into five locations around the Texas and Louisiana Gulf Coast. In 2003, Ohmstede formed a new division “Ohmstede Industrial Services” (OIS) to provide bundle extraction/insertion field services for the refinery and petrochemical plants. OIS has grown to include many related field services.
Ohmstede developed and patented many machines to increase manufacturing efficiency and quality of industrial process equipment. The company strategically expanded operations in close proximity to gulf coast ports, where many oil companies established refining operations, both for receiving crude oil and distribution of refined products. In 2007, Ohmstede was acquired by EMCOR Group, Inc. in order to expand service offerings.
In 2011, Ohmstede Ltd. established a technically advanced off-site exchanger cleaning operation in La Porte, Texas, with three primary objectives – Safety, Environmental Consciousness, and Production. The cleaning facility offers hydroblasting, media blasting, and a cleaning oven to meet customers’ various cleaning requirements. Ohmstede Ltd. added a second state-of-the-art cleaning facility in St. Gabriel, Louisiana, in 2018 due to customer requests to replicate the proven Ohmstede Ltd. model throughout the entire Gulf Coast.
Today, Ohmstede serves customers through two corporate operations. Ohmstede Ltd. provides shop services of new exchanger fabrication, repairs, and testing, along with the state-of-the-art cleaning facilities. Ohmstede Industrial Services (OIS) provides field services including bolt torqueing, bundle extraction/insertion, machining, pressure vessel repairs, furnace and heater maintenance and repair, pipe repair/fabrication, and more. Together, Ohmstede is uniquely positioned to quickly respond to fabrication and repair needs for heat exchangers and other related equipment anywhere in North America and has manufactured shell and tube heat exchangers for companies around the globe.

Quality partners

Ohmstede’s achievements over the past 100-plus years reflect the skills, experience, dedication, safe work practices, and pride the company continues to value in every aspect of its business. From developing strong customer bonds, to serving as a valuable educational resource and knowledge provider, Ohmstede recognizes the importance of delivering on the promise to help customers get back up and running fast.

“Through our multiple capabilities and services,
Ohmstede is one easy choice.”

“Ohmstede’s corporate credos are simple: ‘Be the Best’ and ‘Make it Easy’ for our customers in designing and building the top performing shell and tube heat exchangers, and providing effective turnaround and specialty field maintenance services available anywhere,” said Tucker. “Whether working in the customers’ plants or in Ohmstede’s shops, our employees remain committed to the same core values. Ohmstede has a long history and successful track record of listening to, understanding, and responding to customer needs. We pride ourselves on doing the job right, the first time. Ohmstede works to earn customers’ respect and loyalty with every job.”
Ohmstede Industrial Services is a proven industry leader in turnarounds and specialty maintenance services. “Our team culture is to complete each project safely, within budget, and schedule. We are experienced, qualified, and equipped to support the next turnaround, outage, maintenance, or capital project,” relayed Tucker. “Through our multiple capabilities and services, Ohmstede is one easy choice.”

Core Values

Safety: A workplace in which employees and clients understand stop work authority/responsibility and where the work environment is free from hazards that may cause injury to employees or damage to property.
Integrity: A workforce who understands the commitment to doing things the right way, at all times.
Say/Do Ratio: A commitment, at all levels of the organization, to deliver on promises.
First to Respond/First to Deliver: The team is driven by its commitment to respond, and deliver, before all others, no matter the time, no matter the size.
Teamwork: Employees are encouraged to cooperate, and are provided the latitude to develop new and innovative ideas in order to improve value proposition for clients.

Build, maintain, and repair

There are a lot of companies that can build, there are a lot of companies that can maintain, and there are a lot of companies that can repair – but there are very few that can do all three simultaneously. Ohmstede provides the greatest value to its clients when sourced on projects that are a combination of these disciplines.
“The Ohmstede name and its people are recognized as an industry leader in North America for manufacturing and servicing highly engineered heat transfer equipment. We create added value by building better, servicing quicker, repair or modifying to the highest standards, and ensuring the greatest operational reliability for our clients. Whether it is limited access, elevated, heavy, large, simple or complex design, our supervision and crafts are experts in multiple heat transfer equipment types,” explained Tucker.
Beyond its building services, Ohmstede also offers specialty maintenance services. “We offer a client servicer mindset, and are ready to respond. We are trained and have experience in multiple industrial plant locations. We also have the knowledge to work in critical path incidents or events,” said Tucker. “The Embedded Specialty Maintenance program is a sequence of carefully coordinated activities driven by a detailed schedule. These are ongoing, progressive maintenance programs essential to reducing the need for long downtimes and the disruptions they cause.” The types of maintenance Ohmstede Industrial Services performs can be optimized to help the customer reach its units’ goals – for example, reduce energy costs, decrease downtime, increase unit efficiency or even extend the life of the equipment.
Ohmstede also offers nested services, which operate efficiently with owner operatives and other contractors. “Our objective is to ensure that a facility is fully functional and reliable for planned process run times.”
Ohmstede Industrial Services safely performs quality field repair and retubing services on a wide variety of heat transfer equipment. This includes several types of equipment, and several services such as tube repair and replacement, expansion, welding, plugging, anti-vibration strip, and more. “We also cover installation, equipment isolation blinding, code repairs, flange resurfacing, welding, bolting and torqueing.” These services are widely sought after for turnarounds, planned outages, emergencies and unscheduled outages, to run and maintain, and even for revamps.

“We create added value by building better, servicing quicker,
repair or modifying to the highest standards, and ensuring the
greatest operational reliability for our clients.”

Offerings at a glance

Event types
• Turnarounds and scheduled outages
• Emergencies and unscheduled outages
• Specialty maintenance
• Nested maintenance

Equipment types
• Heat exchangers
• Towers and columns
• Code vessels and drums
• Reactors
• Heaters and furnaces
• Piping systems
• Boilers

Specialized work expertise
• Environmental, health, and safety
• Quality assurance
• Project management and controls
• Manufacturing, fabrication, assembly
• Engineering (Ohmstede Ltd.)
• Planning and scheduling (P6, SAP)

• Cost tracking/cost analysis/ KPI management
• Code welding (ASME Div I, Div II)
• Boilermaking
• Pipefitting
• Machining
• Exchanger bundle extraction and installation
• Offsite bundle cleaning / repairs (Ohmstede Ltd)
• Heavy rigging and lifting
• Bolt torqueing and tensioning (per ASME PCC1 guidelines)

Heat transfer equipment types
• Shell and tube
• Fin-Fans
• A&B style screw head “Breech Lock”
• Vertical, feed effluent “Texas Towers”
• Nested tube “Borsig”

• Chillers
• Waste heat boilers
• Re-boilers
• Related services

Legacy continued

Ohmstede must be doing something right – with 100-plus years in business, the company continues to thrive. By fostering a safe work environment based on performance, individual accountability and team pride, they have built a reputation in our industry for customer responsiveness and exceptional quality products and services.

About this Featured Story

This Featured Story was first published in Heat Exchanger World Magazine in November 2022. To read more Featured Stories and many other articles, subscribe to our print magazine.

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