Modern lubrication systems are designed for the specific needs of the industry. These lubrication systems vary in design, but some best practices should be followed to maintain and protect the internal components. This article provides 10 best practices for proper Lube Oil System maintenance and protection in oil & gas engineering company applications.
Practices for the Oil and Gas Industry Lube Oil System
1. Create an Oil Program
The oil program is the heart of your lubrication system. It is designed to ensure that all of the equipment in your facility receives the correct amount of lubricant and that it is used efficiently. The program should include the following:
- A training program for employees on how to use the system
- The creation of a checklist that ensures that each piece of equipment is checked regularly by a qualified technician
- A maintenance schedule for each piece of equipment in your facility
2. Choose a Suitable Lubricant
Choosing a suitable lubricant is the most important step in creating a safe and effective lube oil system. Your lubricant should be compatible with both your machinery and your process and capable of maintaining the integrity of both.
When choosing a lubricant, consider that oil is combustible, so you’ll need to make sure that it meets all safety and environmental regulations for your industry.
The ideal lubricant will be non-toxic to humans and animals but still effective at keeping your machinery in good working order.
3. Choose a Suitable Fluid Cooler
The fluid cooler is one of the most important parts of a lubrication system. The fluid cooler is a device used to cool down the temperature of the lube oil in order to control its viscosity, which can cause problems with insufficient lubrication.
When choosing a fluid cooler, it is important to consider factors such as flow rate, viscosity range, pressure drop, and temperature range. Additionally, you should also consider whether or not you need an open or closed-loop system and whether or not it will be compatible with your current equipment.
4. Size the Oil Reservoir Correctly
Size the oil reservoir correctly. The oil reservoir size is an important factor in ensuring that you have enough oil on hand when you need it. If your oil reservoir does not have enough capacity, you may have to stop work to refill it. This can be a serious problem for the oil and gas industry, which needs to keep working at all times.
The size of your reservoir should depend on how much time it takes to complete typical operations with your equipment and how long each operation takes to complete. For example, if you’re using a valve that takes five minutes to open and close, having ten minutes’ worth of extra oil in your reservoir should be sufficient. However, if you’re using a pump that takes ten minutes to fill up with fluid and twenty minutes to drain out again (that’s thirty minutes total), then having two hours’ worth of extra fluid would be necessary.
5. Install the Fill and Vent Valves in the Right Position
When installing oil fill and vent valves, it is important to ensure that they are installed in the correct position. If you install a fill valve on the engine side of an oil tank, you will likely find yourself with a gusher when you open up your tank. The same goes for vent valves—if you install them on the top of your tank, you won’t be able to get all of your waste out of there. Ensure these two valves are installed properly so you can properly drain your oil tank without any leaks or spills.
6. Use Sampling Valves Proactively
Sampling valves can be used as a proactive measure to prevent damage to the lube oil system. Sampling valves are installed in the pipeline before any leak or contamination is detected. They allow the operator to sample the fluid and determine what contaminants may be present, thus allowing them to take action before the situation worsens.
In addition to detecting problems early on, sampling valves also provide useful information, such as temperature and pressure readings, that can help operators quickly identify issues with their equipment.
7. Use Air Eliminators to Prevent Cavitation and Gas Entrapment
Air Eliminators prevent cavitation and gas entrapment in the lube oil system.
Cavitation occurs when a pump’s impeller does not have sufficient clearance from the casing, which causes air bubbles to form around the pump’s shaft. The air bubbles disrupt the flow of liquid and can lead to corrosion, wear, and damage to the pump.
Using an air eliminator prevents cavitation by allowing compressed air trapped in the suction line to escape into a separate chamber where it is released overboard. This helps prevent damage by allowing any trapped gas to be released before it has a chance to become trapped at a spot where it could cause damage.
8. Plan Regular Maintenance Work To Optimize The Working Environment In The Lube Room
The lube oil system is a critical component of the wellhead, connecting the various components of the wellhead. It acts as a hydraulic fluid and coolant, distributing hydraulic pressure from the pump to the wellhead components. The system also provides lubrication for bearings and seals within the wellhead.
Regular maintenance work should be done to optimize the working environment in the lube room.
9. Manage Oil Inventories And Implement An Effective Disposal Program
Managing oil inventories is a crucial part of the oil and gas industry. Oil inventories should be managed carefully to ensure that the right amount of oil is available in your systems. This helps prevent unnecessary waste and ensures that you have enough oil available.
Additionally, implementing an effective disposal program will help you manage your company’s environmental impact. While there are many ways to dispose of used lube oils, some are better for the environment than others. Choosing an environmentally friendly disposal method will help you avoid fines or penalties from your local government.
10. Use Synthetic Lubricants For Longer Drain Intervals, Cost Savings, And Fewer Oil Changes
Synthetic lubricants are a great way to reduce costs and save time for your oil and lube system.
Synthetic lubricants have many benefits, including longer drain intervals and fewer oil changes. Synthetics also provide better protection against thermal breakdowns, which can lead to increased engine life and lower maintenance costs.
Synthetic lubricants are also less likely than conventional oils to cause corrosion, which means they can extend the life of your equipment. In addition, they provide better protection against oxidation and foaming than traditional oils, which keeps them from getting clogged as quickly.
Conclusion: Good lube oil systems are designed with best practices in mind.
When it comes to optimizing lube oil systems, some best practices can help drive your success. When designing a system, consider how to use industry lubrication practices as part of your daily routine. Doing so will help you design and optimize a reliable, cost-effective system and continue to drive success for years to come.