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Most hydraulic systems generate contaminants with solid, liquid, and gaseous particles. These are either generated externally or internally through fluids, component corrosion or wear and tear, or reduced systems maintenance and housekeeping.

In challenging economic times, system maintenance
is prone to be neglected and relegated as a low
priority. Cost savings exercises are adopted. System
engineers or procurement officers o en quiz about
the cost of contamina on monitoring equipment
or appropriate filtra on equipment within their
hydraulic system. Users seldom focus on me savings
and the cost savings if an effective supervisory and
maintenance regimen is adopted to control and
manage contamina on.
Let us examine a few points where investing and
incorporating effective filtra on and condition
monitoring can help with system efficiencies and
optimum performance.
Around seventy to ninety percent of hydraulic
system breakdowns is a ributed to particulate
That is, indeed, a high percentage. If a systems
engineer can incorporate appropriate filtration and
contamination control equipment to reduce this
percentage by thirty to forty percent, he can achieve
optimum system efficiencies.
Hydrasales sales engineer Chris Banks enjoys
helping clients with filter sizing. He says, “ Filter
sizing with the MP Filtri software helps with filter
sizing. Nothing is left to chance, allows simulation
under different flows and pressures. The report
computes pressure drops and maximizes the
opportunity for proper filter selection.”
What you may ask, “are the costs of such
breakdowns?” The significant expense is system
down time, especially in production. Remember
to add the cost of labour, the time to fault-find,
and the cost to remove and replace the failed
component. It can be a prohibitively costly exercise.
Components are continuously subject to
contaminants before the actual component failure.
A system, thus, loses component efficiency right
from the time of commissioning. When new, a
hydraulic system runs at full pressures and flow
rates, the system loads and speeds and performs
optimally. Over- time, contaminants will impact
operating efficiencies and cause wear and cracks at
critical component surface areas. The system will
begin to lose the efficiency of the components and
how well they perform. Some times the affected part
within the system malfunctions due to the blocking
of small orifices by large contaminates.
Typically, the tolerances are small, and engineers
expect component clearances of 0.5 microns up to
50 microns. It doesn’t take much dirt or obstacles
to block an orifice within a hydraulic system. Any
blockage will reduce and ultimately restrict flow
within the system, impacting, stopping, or slowing
down the hydraulic application.
How can we control this contamination problem
and extend component life?
The first step is to incorporate effective filtration at
the design stage of the system. Depending on the
sophistication and needs for system outputs, the
designer must consider including pressure, return,
suction, and an offline filtration system to protect
They all do a job but are they the right filters for
the application?
Take each hydraulic applica on into consideration
to see how it will operate and perform; for example,
how sensitive are the proposed components,
proposed flows, working pressures, temperatures,
environment critical the operation is. Hydrasales
Lucas Thela cautions, “A word of caution on the
approach to designing the system. The cheapest
design may meet the minimum operating
parameters. Without incorporating effective
filtration to meet systems operating needs at peak
pressures can become expensive.”
Can you afford not to filter effectively
and control contamination?
By Hydrasales
Most hydraulic systems generate contaminants with solid, liquid, and gaseous particles.
These are either generated externally or internally through fluids, component
corrosion or wear and tear, or reduced systems maintenance and housekeeping.
Sytems become less efficient over me, and system breakdowns can be costly.
His experience has made him adopt a pro-ac
ve approach to training in hydraulic filtration
and accessories. He says, “There is a lack of
understanding of the importance of filtra on and
contamination control! A basic understanding will
certainly go a long way!”
Hydrasales provide full support on their product
range and offer FREE training on filtration,
contamination monitoring, and accessories.
General manager Elvira Caripis emphasizes, “ With
technology, we can reach the remotest customers
through online platforms. Internet access is all that
is required.”
She advised, “ This will be beneficial for
maintenance and field staff. Training will help
participants troubleshoot on filter efficiency and
performance.” Email Hydrasales at harpo@hydrasale.
co.za for any training requirements. Contamina on
Online particle monitors analyze systems 24/7
initiating internal and external alarms should
the levels of contamina on or moisture levels
change. Protection is afforded to components and
applicavons. It will ensure efficiency and reduces
the high cost of breakdowns and unscheduled down
The benefits of online particle counting are:
✓ Saving money on the total cost of filtration
eliminating unscheduled filter changes
✓ Constant system monitoring = predicvve
maintenance = cost savings
✓ Constant system monitoring = tracking
system cleanliness = cost savings
✓ Prolonging significant component life due to
predicvve maintenance
✓ Save me – high-cost processes effectively
✓ There is predicvve control. It is a costeffective
and efficient method of system
monitoring when system cleanliness levels are
Hydrasales carries a full range of quality and me
tested Hydraulic filters, filter elements and system
accessories. Hydrasales ins tutional expertise
and excellence has developed over fourty years
of successfully serving the mining, engineering,
construc on and hydraulics industries.
Hydrasales represents MP Filtri, Faster Couplings
and Badger Meters Hedland range of flow meters.
These leading manufacturers meet interna onal
quality standards and products are certified to
international standards. Hydrasales enjoy direct
technical support from these leading brands and
the support is key to application development and
innova on in African markets.
Email harpo@hydrasale.co.za for your filtration,
quick connect couplings, flow meters, pressure
gauges, breathers, pressure switches and other
accessories for your system needs.
Alternately visit www.hydrasale.co.za
Hydrasales can be contacted on whats app, email or
by telephone.
Tel 027 11 392 3736
Fax 027 11 392 6957