Oil analysis is a key tool used to ensure that compressors stay up and running. Compressor Oil or Lubricant is a necessary component in any air conditioning system that uses compressor(s) in its compression system. There are three main purposes of the oil: lubrication, removal of heat and for sealing.
There are three main categories of oil analysis which include: fluid properties, contamination, and wear debris. To expand on these:Fluid properties focuses on identifying the oil’s current physical and chemical state as well as defining its remaining useful life. The properties answers questions such as:
- Does the sample match the specified oil identification?
- Is it the correct oil to use?
- Are the right additives active?
- Have the additives depleted?
- Has the viscosity shifted from the expected viscosity? If so, why?
- What is the oil’s remaining useful life?
Viewing the contamination of the oil can answer questions such as:
- Is the oil clean?
- What types of contaminants are in the oil?
- Where are the contaminants originating?
- Are there signs of other types of lubricants?
- Is there any sign of internal leakage?
Wear debris determines the presence and identification of particles produced as a result of mechanical wear, corrosion or other machine surface degradation and answers the following questions:
- Is the machine degrading abnormally?
- Is wear debris produced?
- From which in ternal component is the wear likely originating?
- What is the wear mod and cause?
- How severe is the wear condition?
The lab may also look at the acid and base numbers. If the acid number is too high or the base is too low, the oil needs to be changed. Routine oil sampling is important to a successful maintenance program. Oil testing provides essential information to determine the condition of your equipment and that unscheduled downtime is minimized.
Contact Pleune today if you have any questions regarding your compressor or to schedule an oil sample!