A lube oil filtration system is pictured at a refinery

Why Temporary Filtration is Crucial for Process Equipment

Temporary filtration of hydraulic and lube oil systems is an efficient, cost-effective way to prevent problems before they happen. Often overlooked and underestimated, temporary filtration provides key benefits to the oil and gas industry. These include:

  • Stopping materials from contaminating a system before they can cause damage, downtime, or failure
  • Preventing premature equipment failure caused by plugged lines or damaged bearings
  • Eliminating contaminants of all sizes, particularly on water and condensate systems — both before system startup and during active operations
  • Removing particles and debris that a visual inspection and other methods miss
  • Reducing or completely preventing operational problems caused by contamination

In addition, temporary filtration is a highly cost-effective method that saves money in the long-term.

The Importance of Filter Selection and System Setup

Diagram of temporary flushing equipment setup

The key to a good temporary filtration system is selecting the right filters and setup. There are several key factors to consider to ensure you get effective filters that work with your system:

  • Micron level rating — how fine a particle filters can catch
    • ISO Standard 4406:1999, which covers hydraulic fluid contaminants, requires filtration of solid particles as small as four microns in the oil
    • For context, a micron (μm) is one-thousandth of a millimeter — 0.00004. Traditional filtration can only remove particles to about 1 μm. And the smallest particle visible to the human eye is 25 μm; a human hair is about 100 μm wide.
  • Rating: absolute vs. nominal
    • Absolute — remove 98%+ of contaminants in one pass
    • Nominal — remove 50% – 97% of contaminants in one pass (varies by manufacturer)
  • Ability to withstand various process conditions — check manufacturer recommendations for the following to ensure proper filter operation:
    • Temperature
    • Pressure
    • Flow rate

Selecting the right filter and doing a proper setup is a specialty area of ESI’s. We can walk you through the process and ensure both critical equipment safety and minimal downtime during setup and breakdown.

About Energy Services International

At ESI, we’re one of the most trusted oil diagnostic, flushing and cleaning service providers for plants worldwide. We’ve served the biggest names in the oil and gas, energy, petrochemical, and refinery industries. Our highly trained and certified professionals are experts in lube oil flushing and have deep experience delivering projects quickly and on budget.