A new Australian technology from Excel Hydraulics Pty Ltd is enabling companies from diverse industries to reuse their lubrication fluids several times, facilitating significant savings and eliminating unnecessary wastage.
According to Kevin McCaffrey, Managing Director of the Sydney-based Excel Hydraulics, most lubricants don't wear out but become unstable when contaminated by dirt and moisture, and when additives are consumed.
International tests prove that drums and containers are not free of damaging contaminants. When fluid is drained, there is always a quantity left behind clinging to parts and hoses and in the reservoir tank.
The 24-year-old company has launched a unique mobile service called Excel Fluidcare Technology that uses FLUID-X Diagnostics to expose the real quality of fluid using laser particle counters. The technology identifies contaminants as small as 4 microns and filters them out.
Excel Fluidcare Technology allows the company to operate equipment for years on the same tank of fluid.
Craig Doorey, Facility Manager at the Veolia Environmental Services Clyde Transfer Terminal comments that the company has already saved $60,000 to $80,000 in new fluid, and expects a similar saving in the third year from not having to refill the tanks.
The terminal processes 9200 tonnes of waste materials every week from across Sydney using channel balers, which have hydraulic rams. Operational 24/7, 365 days a year, equipment breakdown is not an option for Veolia.
Each baler has a holding tank with 4500 litres of hydraulic fluid, which is replaced each year with new fluid. The problem was that about a quarter of the fluid remained inside the machinery while the cost to refill the tanks amounted to more than $30,000.
Excel Hydraulics came to the site where they tested and filtered the fluid, also running another series of tests to confirm that the contaminants had been removed. There was no downtime as the compactors continued to operate during the whole hydraulic fluids testing and filtration process.
Ilche Grasevski from the Transpacific Liquid Waste Plant located at Sydney’s Olympic Park, and another customer of Excel’s Fluidcare technology will recommend the mobile service to anyone.
Transpacific specialises in collecting and processing general-liquid-hazardous-industrial waste materials, waste water management as well as recycling among many other services across a broad range of industries from construction and defence to hospitality.
Excel Fluidcare Technology helps the company maintain the quality of highly specialised thermal oils, which are a vital part of their liquid waste processing while enabling considerable savings through reuse.
The thermal oils work at very high temperatures and can get mixed up with water in the heat exchange process. The oil is bled off into two 2500-litre tanks where Excel Hydraulics uses their Fluidcare technology to remove the water and any other contaminants.
Excel also supplies Transpacific with documentation on the spot, which confirms the effectiveness of the filtration process. Grasevski is also appreciative of Excel’s professionalism, especially their awareness of OH&S issues.
A major producer of investment castings in Australia, Hycast Metals is also a customer of Excel’s Fluidcare Technology services. According to Production Manager Thomas Petrovich, the company operates injection moulding machines, which work all day making wax sacrificial moulds for a wide range of products.
Replacing the hydraulic fluid in the machines is an expensive exercise as it involves about 800 litres of fluid. Downtime is also an issue during fluid replacement while contaminants can cause the machines to go down, which can be catastrophic as the replacement parts are in Germany.
Excel Hydraulics conducted oil diagnostics and found high levels of contaminants. Thomas says they were able to save money by not having to buy replacement parts and by dramatically reducing the amount of fluid usually thrown away, thanks to Excel’s hydraulic fluid filtration technology.
Kevin McCaffrey says that the Fluidcare technology is totally transportable, allowing them to take it to any site to maximise the reliability and life expectancy of hydraulic and lubrication equipment, and to dramatically reduce operational costs.