Hydrocarbon solvents are designed to remove whole precipitated organic deposits of wax and asphaltenes. These deposits are found in most crude oil producing wells and in many injection well systems. Wax deposits are typically caused by the physical drop in temperature as the fluid is produced from a well. This phenomenon can be easily tested in a laboratory to determine when this may occur in a producing system.
Asphaltenes are a large polar molecule that is very sensitive and can be precipitated by a change in pH, the presence of iron molecules, contact by CO2 or even contact crude oil from a different formation.
When wax or asphaltenes deposit themselves on the rock, the rock face can change from water wet to oil wet and impede production.
To change this back, these deposits need to be removed and only a hydrocarbon solvent can accomplish this. Mutual solvents will not do this on their own.
In this regard, xylene has been used extensively to remove hydrocarbon build up. Generally, enhancers are added to xylene to make it more effective and more water wetting. There are standalone solvents that are very good at this as well, these usually contain a mixture of aromatics and aliphatic components.
Kaliber Chemicals has the following product(s) available:
SOL10-WA – Efficient blend of aromatic/aliphatic components to remove wax and asphaltene deposits