As pumps get older the levels of performance of the pump units drops away. This is due to a number of reasons, it could be pump body wear, wear of mechanical parts like bearings and vanes or consumable items like seals and filters becoming blocked and inefficient.
Filtration and separation is an area that can easily be over looked and your pumps can be compromised through low quality filtration, or filters not being changed when needed.
Pumps can usually be found in low areas of the factory which are susceptible to being in a less clean environment. Also all pumps work at high temperatures which causes more stress on the working parts of the pumps.
On oil lubricated pumps the oil internally lubricating the pump can be burnt away. This causes the oil to lose its viscosity and become thick, if not resolved this can eventually lead to pump failure. The oil vapour or mist caused by burnt oil is exhausted through the unit but it is the job of the oil separators (also known as oil mist eliminators – OME) to filter the oil particles (droplets/mist) from any exhaust the pump is depositing into the atmosphere.
With an oil lubricated vacuum pump it is essential that regular maintenance takes place, this will help prolong the life of the pumps. If separators become saturated then obviously oil mist will be exhausted to the factory and the pump will lose performance, it will also lead to a poor working environment in the factory.
We find a similar situation with dry running vacuum pumps. It is essential to clean and maintain both internal and external filters to keep the pump cool and allow for free flow of air.
Filters not being free and unblocked can lead to a cycle of issues which combine to make each other worse. For instance pumps work hot, excessive heat leads to pump failures, blocked filters can cause restricted pump performance and excessive heat.
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