Hydraulic systems & components

Do not neglect to monitor your lube oil system's filtration

First Quarter 2022 Hydraulic systems & components

The viscosity of oil in a lube system can adversely affect the bearings within the system. This is especially so if the maintenance of the hydraulic system is neglected. Failure to filter the oil and keep the system efficient can affect the long-term performance of the system. If the lube oil is not filtered properly, any breakdown or loss of efficiency can lead to production downtime and losses. Leading bearings manufacturer, SKF, advises: “As long as particles larger than the lubricant film are removed, bearings can have an infinite life.”

Chris Banks from Hydrasales recommends that contamination levels in lubricants must be checked when the lube oil is delivered. “Ignore the cleanliness level of the oil at your peril, even if the delivered oil is new,” he warns. “Engineers should ensure the lube oil is clean and meets the system specifications.” Hydrasales’ knowledge and experience in providing filtration solutions for hydraulic systems has led to the recommendation of contamination control monitors as an early warning signal.

“We advocate contamination control measures and recommend that system designers and system constructors incorporate simple, cost-effective filtration and accessory equipment in their system design,” he adds. “The importance of oil cleanliness in lubrication systems can never be over-emphasised.” Hydrasales champions the incorporation of the following types of equipment for reducing contamination within a hard-working system running 24/7, where the engineer cannot afford a breakdown or disruption in the working cycle.

A medium pressure inline filter

A wide range of inline filtration is available, with flows from 200 to 3000 l/min that accommodate pressures from 20 to 80 bar. Hydrasales has the expertise and full access to MP Filtri’s versatile filter sizing software. This gives users peace of mind at the planning stage. The most suitable filter is identified for the application and it’s performance can then meet the design requirements.

The LMP range of filters consists of durable in-line filters with a wide range of element media options, including water removal. Banks says this is ideal for high flow charge pump supply, a return line or an off-line filtration circuit. The duplex filter range is designed to allow element changeout in continuous duty machine operations. This makes maintenance more efficient, eliminating downtime when the filter element requires replacement or cleaning.

He explains that a water removal element is available with 25 micron absolute filtration. Water removal has the following benefits:

• Removes particulate and water contamination.

• Improves system reliability and efficiency.

• Dramatically extends oil and consequently hydraulic component life.

• Reduces the risk of catastrophic failure.

• Eliminates expensive repair costs and associated downtime.

Checking oil levels and ensuring system functionality

Lubrication systems deliver precise amounts of lubricant to multiple lubrication points at the right place and the right time. However it can be challenging to ensure that the lubricant reliably reaches the lube point. Banks supports the use of good cost-effective flow monitoring to ensure that there is flow at critical points. Hydrasales distributes the Badger meter product range, including Headland variable flow meters available with a microswitch to allow for low flow alarm. An alternative is the installation of visual or electrical oil level gauges to suit the application.

Protect your pump with suction filters

MP Filtri’s Elixir Range of filters includes the SFEX inline suction filter including wire mesh filter cartridge for the bowl and housing. This design allows for a mesh element to be easily removed, inspected and cleaned. The more common spin on oil filters cannot be cleaned and needs to be replaced. This is not economical compared to a fully reusable cartridge element.

Commonly found suction strainers are generally situated at the bottom of the reservoir and are not easily accessible, especially with a full reservoir. The Elixir range has been designed to accommodate higher flows with the improved connection system reducing leakage and reducing dirt to the output circuit. The range can accommodate differential clogging indicators and pressures of 16 bar.

Hydrasales carries a comprehensive filtration, quick release coupling and flow metering range, as well as effective contamination monitoring solutions. The company’s free technical support on filter sizing and system requirements can add value significantly during the design and planning phase.


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