Efficient Plant April 2022 - 21

feature | lubrication solutions
with a test for oil-varnish potential, it was
concluded that the new oil increased solvency
levels to the point where old deposits,
caused by degradation of the old AW46
fl uid, were entering the oil as " soſt " particles
and plugging the fi lter. Aſt er a thorough
fl ush/clean, the unit was put back into service
with much-improved results.
S Paper machine bearing failure: A paper
mill experienced a catastrophic failure of a
suction roll bearing. Aſt er investigation, the
oil supply line to the bearing was found to be
plugged with a grease-like material, resulting
in lubricant starvation. A similar deposit
was found in the main supply-line fi lter,
which had plugged and gone into bypass. Th e
plugged fi lter was removed and sent to a lab
for analysis, alongside in-service oil samples.
Th e oil sample showed no indication of
the root cause of the problem. Th e semi-solid
residue from the fi lter was analyzed using
FTIR and it showed a match for a stearate
soap material and traces of sulfur, zinc, and
phosphorus from the oil's additive package.
Upon detailed chemical analysis, the problem
was diagnosed as a chemical reaction
between the oil's antiwear additives and
detergent used to clean the paper machine.
Th e detergent entered the lube oil system
during routine cleaning.
S Lube-oil system fi lter plugging: A chemical
plant was experiencing foaming issues in
a circulating lube-oil system. An accelerated
number of fi lter change outs suggested that
contamination was causing fi lter plugging
and foaming. To control foaming, an aſt ermarket
foam inhibitor was used with little
eff ect. Samples of the in-service oil before and
aſt er adding the defoamer, along with a portion
of the fi lter and a sample of the antifoam
additive were submitted to a lab.
Elemental analysis using rotating disk
electrode (RDE) atomic emission spectroscopy
and a microscopic examination of the
fi lter sample revealed high levels of silicon
in the fi lter, as well as a visible amorphous
white residue within the fi lter media
indicating that fi lter plugging was due to
stripping of the antifoam additive.
Filters are oſt en considered consumable
items for use and disposal. However, next
time you think about throwing out an oil
fi lter, consider the trove of useful data that it
may contain and how analyzing it may serve
as an invaluable tool, alongside more conventional
condition-monitoring practices.
S Th anks to Rich Wurzbach and Dylan
Kletzing of MRG Laboratories, York, PA
(mrgcorp.com), for providing some of the
data and images included. EP
Mark Barnes, CMRP, is Senior Vice President
at Des-Case Corp., Goodlettsville, TN
(descase.com). He has 21 years of experience
in lubrication management, oil analysis, and
contamination control.
The steel industry's top performing calcium
sulfonate grease specially designed for the
unique challenges of continuous casters,
furnaces, and rolling mills.
daubertchemical.com | 1.866.719.4332
APRIL 2022
EFFICIENTPLANTMAG.COM | 21
http://www.mrgcorp.com http://www.descase.com http://www.daubertchemical.com http://www.daubertchemical.com http://www.EFFICIENTPLANTMAG.COM

Efficient Plant April 2022

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