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Oil Skimmer Blog

How Exactly Does a Tramp Oil Skimmer Work? | Abanaki

Posted by Tom Hobson on Jul 31, 2019 10:59:35 AM

An oil skimmer is a device that uses a belt, tube, or disk placed directly into the product containing oil. The belt, tube, or disk attracts the oil by breaking the surface tension of the water and then runs back to the machine to be wiped clean. If your skimmer is sized right, it will be able to pull the free-floating oil from anywhere in the tank or pit. Oil skimmers should be purchased more by size than by the volume of oil to ensure you are able to skim from the whole surface area.

What Size of Oil Skimmer You Should Purchase?

Oil skimmers operate with a very basic principle. That basic principle is the breaking of surface tension to attract oil to the belt or tube. Because of this design, it is critical to size the oil skimmer according to the surface area being skimmed rather than the amount of oil in the tank.

For example, you could have a tank or pit that measure 144 square feet but only contains 2-4 gallons of oil at any particular time. Sizing the oil skimmer according to 2-4 gallons versus the surface area would yield unproductive results. Yes, you may only have small amounts of oil, but if your oil skimmer is undersized, that oil skimmer will not have enough power to break the surface tension with enough force to bring oil from the other side of the tank.

Therefore, you could run the oil skimmer for days and never retrieve the oil from the far side of your collection point. Always take into account how large of an area you want to skim oil from when determining what oil skimmer will work best for your application.



Video: How To Tell What Skimmer You Need For Your Machine Coolant


To learn more about oil skimmers, please contact our experts at 440-543-7400 or visit our website: www.abanaki.com


There is a skimming system for virtually any application. Simply fill up the form to your right or click at the button to get your ultimate guide now.

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Topics: oil skimmers, belt skimmer, oil skimming, belt oil skimmer, different oil skimmer industrial, industrial oil Skimmers, oil skimmers applications

Typical Applications for Industrial Oil Skimmers | Abanaki

Posted by Tom Hobson on Jul 18, 2019 4:10:22 PM

Wastewater Sumps

Most manufacturing or processing facilities have water systems where waste oil collects in a central tank or sump. Skimming the floating oils with little water content can reduce the cost of disposal and lower the contingent liabilities of wastewater discharge.

Coolants and Cutting Fluids

Coolant fluidWhen machine coolants become contaminated with tramp oils, four things usually occur:

  • Coolant life is reduced.
  • Quality of machined parts is reduced.
  • In many cases, a smoke will begin to appear in the shop, causing irritation to the workers on the job.
  • The fluid takes on a “rotten egg” odor.

Oil skimmers that remove tramp oils solve these problems and typically pay for themselves within a few months.

Heat Treating

Quench oils that must be removed from heat treated parts can be captured for re-use or disposal. The results are lower quench oil costs, prolonged wash water life and lower disposal costs.

Parts Washers

Floating oils re-contaminate parts as they are removed from a wash tank. Oil skimmers can remove this oil. The benefits of using an oil skimmer are oil free parts and extended fluid life.

Food Processing FacilitiesFood Processing

Removal of vegetable oils, greases, and animal fats from a plant’s wastewater stream reduces the costs of processing and disposal.

Steel Mills/Scale Pits

Most steel mills have scale pits in which grease and heavy oils accumulate. In order to avoid fines from the government and expensive sand bed filters, steel mills must limit the amount of grease in wastewater discharged into the environment. Reclaimed grease and oil can be re-used or used as furnace fuel, avoiding sucker truck disposal costs.

Parking Lots, Garages and Service Facilities

Waste oil from leaks, spills and other sources must be retrieved from sumps before water can be discharged to storm or sanitary sewers.

Outdoor Ponds, Lakes, Basins, Etc.

outdoor pondWhere floating oils are present, oil skimmers provide inexpensive and effective removal, solving a serious environmental problem.

Recovery/Monitoring Wells

Removing oil, fuel and other hydrocarbon liquid from wells can be more cost-effective using a belt skimmer instead of a down well pump. Oil skimmers don’t have nearly the maintenance issues and can reach depths of 100 feet or more, removing product despite fluctuating water tables. Oil skimmers can handle very thick fluids effortlessly and some (like the Abanaki PetroXtractor®) can remove sinking DNAPL’s such as coal tar and creosote from water.


To learn more about oil skimmers, please contact our experts at 440-543-7400 or visit our website: www.abanaki.com


Find out which Abanaki oil skimmers are suitable for your application.

Click button below to access our “ 9 typical applications for industrial oil skimmers” whitepaper to get more information.

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Topics: oil skimmers, belt skimmer, oil skimming, belt oil skimmer, different oil skimmer industrial, industrial oil Skimmers, oil skimmers applications

10 Tips of Effective Oil Skimming | Abanaki

Posted by Tom Hobson on Jun 28, 2019 9:00:00 AM

Oil skimmers keep oil out of places it does not belong. Whether this means keeping oil out of coolant to extend tool life, or keeping oil out of wastewater so it isn’t discharged into the environment, a properly functioning skimmer can save you a lagoon full of dollars.

Oil Skimming White Paper

Because of skimmers’ relative simplicity, it can be easy to overlook important factors when selecting then operating a skimmer so that it can achieve maximum efficiency. Abanaki’s “Ten Tips for Getting the Most Out of Your Oil Skimmer” provides essential guidance for skimmer selection and operation. Topics covered include:

  • Belt material and length selection
  • Proper positioning of the skimmer
  • Factors to consider when determining when the skimmer should operate to ensure peak performance

Download your whitepaper now. 

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To learn more about oil skimmers, please contact our experts at 440-543-7400 or visit our website: www.abanaki.com


Abanaki has a new reference that can help you choose the right skimmer and the right size to ensure years of worry-free operation.

Click button below to access our “How to Successfully Implement Oil Skimmers” webinar to learn how to get the most out of your skimmer.

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Topics: oil skimmers, belt skimmer, oil skimming, belt oil skimmer

6 Types of Oil Skimmers | Belt, Rope, Mop & More | Abanaki

Posted by Tom Hobson on Jun 21, 2019 11:41:16 AM

For industrial oil skimming, there are six basic designs commonly used:

  1. Belt Skimmers
  2. Disk Skimmers
  3. Drum/Barrel Styles
  4. Mop Skimmers
  5. Tube Skimmers (Large and Mini)
  6. Floating Suction Skimmers

Belt Oil Skimmers

Belt-type oil skimmers use an endless belt of corrosion resistant steel or synthetic medium, which is lowered into the tank or vessel to be skimmed. The belt passes through resilient wiper blades where the oil is removed from both sides of the medium.

Belt machines provide a simple, dependable and cost-effective method for removing oil, grease and other hydrocarbons from water.


Disk Oil Skimmers

These oil skimmers rotate a disk-shaped medium through the liquid. Oil is wiped off and discharged into a collection container in a manner similar to belt oil skimmers. It is important to consider reach, the portion of the disk that actually gets immersed,

when looking at a disk oil skimmer. Less disk in the fluid means less oil removed. Obviously, fluctuating fluids can be a real problem for disk oil skimmers.


Drum/Barrel Styles

These are similar to the disk type, but use a rotating drum shaped medium. Compared to disk types, they are usually more rugged and have higher removal capacity. Depending on the design, these units can also be rendered ineffective by fluctuating fluid levels. Also, water pickup with this type of oil skimmer can be high.


Mop Oil Skimmers

These oil skimmers use an endless medium shaped like a rope and having mop-like tendrils that pick up the oil. As the medium leaves the liquid and enters the drive unit, it is pressed and wrung out with pinch rollers. For higher viscosity oils, the medium tends to mat down and lose effectiveness. A decant system is a must for these units, as water pickup can be very high. Also, replacement oil mops can be very expensive, so check prices on replacements before purchasing.


Tube Skimmers

Large Tube Skimmers

Tube oil skimmers use a floating plastic hose that snakes out over the surface of the liquid and is then drawn back through the drive unit where oil is removed. This design requires a relatively large amount of surface area for proper operation. This oil skimmer can skim from very shallow tanks. As a rule, the removal capacity is lower than belt, drum or mop type oil skimmers.

Mini Tube

Very similar to the large tube units, but use either a 3/16″ or a 5/16″ tube instead of 1″. The pickup rate varies from 1 quart/hour to 1.5 gph depending on the diameter of the tube. These tube skimmers are fairly compact, and can fit in tight spots. The better units will have the motor mounted underneath, to bring room required over the lip of the tank down to near zero. The 5/16″ diameter tube is preferable as it has a 1 gph removal capacity and enough stiffness to not drag on the housing and prematurely wipe off oil when being drawn into the unit.


Floating Suction Skimmers

These come in several forms, but all have a floating intake. They are most suitable for relatively thick layers of oil (1/4 inch or higher); otherwise, they tend to ingest large amounts of water. Some machines will actually emulsify oil due to churning as it passes through the suction pump. This type of oil skimmer requires a coalescing or at least a decanting unit to be at all effective. The standard drive on all units is an electric motor and gear reducer. Other drive types available.


To learn more about oil skimmers, please contact our experts at 440-543-7400 or visit our website: www.abanaki.com

Click below and download Abanaki's most detailed resource on our oil skimming equipment.

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Topics: oil skimmers, belt skimmer, tote-it, tube skimmer, belt oil skimmer, disk skimmer, mop skimmer, floating suction skimmer, drum skimmer

How to Triple Machine Coolant Life With Oil Skimmers | Abanaki

Posted by Tom Hobson on May 31, 2019 8:30:00 AM

Why Coolant Goes Bad

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Topics: oil skimmers, belt skimmer, oil concentrator, tote-it, belt oil skimmer

What is Oil Skimming? | Abanaki

Posted by Tom Hobson on May 29, 2019 9:02:51 AM

Although designs vary, all oil skimmers rely on specific gravity, surface tension and a moving medium to remove floating oil from a fluid’s surface.

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Topics: oil skimmers, belt skimmer, belt materials, belt oil skimmer

Tramp Oil Collection: Coalescers vs Oil Skimmers | Abanaki

Posted by Tom Hobson on Apr 26, 2019 10:00:00 AM

Multiple options exist for the collection of tramp oils. Two of the most common are oil skimmers and coalescers. Both offer unique advantages and disadvantages in certain applications.

Coalescers

Coalescers focus on collecting oil into larger droplets. Using a filter medium, the oil is gathered into one place and combines into a larger oil droplet, heightening the differing densities of oil and water. The oil then floats to the top of the coalescer, allowing removal by other means.

Coalescers have an advantage in specific coolant-related applications. Coalescers cover a bigger collection area than oil skimmers, speeding recovery and reducing need for moving the oil collection device.

Unlike oil skimmers, coalescers have no need for a collection container, preventing the potential for spillage. Abanaki's Oil Boss can also be hung from a metallic surface, preventing the floor space footprint of other coalescers and oil skimmers.

Oil Skimmers

Oil skimmers focus on removing tramp oils using oleophilic belts. These belts attract the tramp oils and drag them up to a trough where they are scraped off, removing them from the water or coolant. Different belts have different specialties, such as steel belts being suited for LNAPLs and tramp oils.  

Oil skimmers have an advantage in more varied conditions. Able to be used in high temperature applications where plastic coalescers might face pump failures, oil skimmers can withstand more extreme environments.

In addition, oil skimmers do not have to worry about pumps clogged by shavings or solid byproducts like coalescers might. Dirty oil can also go back into the sump in coalescers, while oil is completely removed by a oil skimmer. Oil skimmers also have more applications than coalescers, such as environmental remediation. 

For more information about our line of coalescers and oil skimmers, take a look at our product catalog using the button below, or contact us via phone at (440) 543-7400 or via e-mail at skimmers@abanaki.com.

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Topics: oil skimmers, belt skimmer, belt materials, coolescer, belt oil skimmer, coalescers

The Next Generation in Oil Skimming | Abanaki

Posted by Tom Hobson on Apr 23, 2019 10:01:57 AM

Dirty coolant often generates smoke, that all too familiar “rotten egg” smell, and bacterial issues that can become a health hazard to shop workers. Disposing of oil laden coolant is expensive and the continual maintenance needed to remove it can cut into production time. Unfortunately, conventional methods can be messy and require oil receptacles, like a small can, to sit next to the machine. Who wants to worry about tripping over an oil can in the middle of a busy day?

Abanaki's Oil Boss with “Constant Flow Facilitator”

Abanaki’s Oil Boss oil skimmer provides cost savings by removing unwanted tramp oil prolonging the life of the coolant. The patent-pending Oil Boss is designed for CNC machines offering passive tramp oil removal. This high-capacity-unit  constantly removes and discharges unwanted oil from the coolant. The unit uses a specially-designed “Constant Flow Facilitator” automatically discharging the tramp oil as it is collects on the coolant. The “Constant Flow Facilitator” eliminates the need to remove oil manually. 

Magni-Cling Technology Oil Skimmer

The revolutionary Oil Boss eliminated the mess and the clutter. The patent pending design allows the unit to cling on to the side, keeping the floor clean and clear. The Oil Boss comes equipped with Magni-Cling technology, which allows it to be hung from any metal surface in the shop. The magnetic backing allows for easy on/off portability, allowing you to clean all the sumps on site.

Oil Removing Process with Abanaki Oil Boss

Oil laden fluid is pumped up from the sump through the inlet valve of the Oil Boss. From there, the fluid passes through a media system, slowing the flow and allowing the oil to be filtered. The clean fluid passes through a second chamber and back to the sump below, leaving your tank with cleaner fluid in no time at all! The filtered oil can be easily discharged for clean and easy removal. In some instances, companies may be able to re-use the skimmed oil elsewhere or sell it for recycling, choosing to keep their part of the world cleaner. The Oil Boss is also reversible, which allows it to work within the layout of your shop without tubes and cords becoming tangled. The sleek design allows for simple, efficient, and clean oil removal.

Advantages of Abanaki Oil Boss

The Oil Boss is an innovative tool that keeps coolant free of oil and ultimately extends tool and coolant life. Additionally, it reduces expenses that would typically be used on maintenance and disposal.

  • No tubes, mops, disks, or belts or wear out. 
  • Magnetic base allows for installation anywhere in the shop
  • Complete reversibility
  • Lightweight and portable
  • Oil is easily collected
  • Requires no floor space
  • Easy to empty and clean
  • Minimal maintenance

 Get the brochure for more information on the money-saving design.

Oil Boss Brochure

 

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Topics: oil skimmers, oil boss oil skimmer, magini-cling technology

Oil Skimmers Help Steel Mills Save Money | Abanaki

Posted by Tom Hobson on Mar 28, 2019 9:15:00 AM

There is likely no larger industrial meeting place for oil and water than a steel mill. Because of the massive amount of water that is needed for process cooling and descaling, and the similar quantity of hydraulic, lubricating, and cooling oils that are required in steel production, the adage that oil and water do not mix is put to the test and proven every day.

Oil contamination in steel mills process water

It can take between 10,000-75,000 gallons of water to produce one ton of steel, depending on the amount of recycled water that is used. Reusing water whenever possible is crucial to maintaining costs, and to be able to reuse water in the majority of steel mill processes it needs to be free of contamination, namely oil.

Tramp oils commonly contaminate steel mill process water and this can lead to a variety of problems. Water purity is obviously affected which means that the effectiveness of this water in its role as a coolant or lubricant is reduced. Additionally, water that is contaminated with oil cannot be discharged into a facility’s wastewater system, as this can potentially cause a hazard to the environment. Finally, the presence of some oils in water can provide an ideal media for bacteria growth that can present unsafe working conditions for workers. All of these factors contribute to a mill not being able to recycle water, which means increased production costs.

Abanaki Model 8 Oil Skimmer

What counter measures can be employed at a steel mill to limit or eliminate process water from becoming contaminated with oil? For one, the Abanaki Model 8 Belt Oil Skimmer is a dependable and effective means of removing oil from water and water-base solutions, such as those found in mills. Oil skimming makes use of the differences in specific gravity and surface tension between oil and water. These physical characteristics allow the belt skimmer to attract oil and other hydrocarbon liquids from the surface of the fluid.

Depending on the characteristics of the liquid, it is possible for the Model 8 to reduce oil content to less than five parts per million in water. It utilizes a continuous belt and wiper to remove up to 40 gallons of oil per hour from the fluid surface. The unit can be used as a pre-treatment before filtration, and in conjunction with coalescing systems. The versatility of the Model 8 allows it to be used in a wide array of applications in addition to steel mills, such as:

  • Wastewater sumps
  • Parts washers
  • Coolant systems
  • Heat treating fluids
  • Food processing plants
  • Parking lots, garages, and service facilities
  • Outdoor ponds, lakes, and basins
  • Underground tanks
  • Ships' bilges
  • Aircraft service areas and tarmac runoff
  • Truck, locomotive, and other mobile equipment washing facilities

Abanaki Model 8 Oil Skimmer Specifications

The Model 8 can be used in tanks with depths as shallow as one foot, or as deep as 100 feet, and is built to last. With the proper configuration it can handle liquid temperatures up to 212°F, and the pH of the fluid can range from 3 to 13. The skimmer drive includes an oil filled gear reducer with bronze gears and ball bearings. The motor, reducer, and powder coated finish of the housing give the Model 8 exceptionally long life, even under the harshest conditions.

For more information about the Model 8 or other Abanaki products, call your sales representative at (440) 543-7400, or simply click at the button below.

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Topics: oil belt skimmer, oil skimmers, belt skimmer, steel mill, steel mills, model 8

Don't Choose the Wrong Belt Material | Abanaki

Posted by Tom Hobson on Mar 25, 2019 1:15:14 PM

Selecting the right belt material is just as important as selecting the right skimmer. Choose the wrong belt and the skimmer will not work correctly. Things like pH, temperature, and oil type are crucial considerations.

Purpose of Oil Skimmer Belts

Selecting the right belt material is just as important as selecting the right skimmer. You might choose the right skimmer but the wrong belt type and the skimmer will not work correctly to solve your oil in water problem. It is crucial that things like pH, temperature, and oil type are considered when selecting a skimmer AND a belt type.

A belt is to a skimmer like wheels to a car’s chassis: although the latter is the most identifiable part, it needs the former to actually run. Just like tires, belts are not one size fits all. Just as there are snow tires, street tires, year-round tires, and more, so too are there a variety of belt materials. So, what purpose does each serve?

Different Kind of Oil Skimmer Belt Materials

There is a great deal of variance in applications where belt oil skimmers are present. Figuring out what would be the best belt material for your belt skimmer will depend on a few factors. For the most part, belts pick up the oil in the same fashion so the big difference is finding what will give you the longest operating life.

 

Steel Belts

Steel belts are the standard for many applications. Their durability, corrosion resistance, and strong oleophilic tendencies make the material effective in most scenarios. The lower price and ease of welding also reduce costs. The biggest caveat is their ineffectiveness when confronted with rust inhibitors in wash water. Steel belts are also ineffective in most applications where Petro-Xtractors are used.

Elastomer Belts

Elastomer belts are an alternative to steel belts that perform well in a multitude of situations. These belts can handle some of the harshest, most abrasive conditions a skimmer can be placed in and are fully compatible with the Petro-Xtractor. Still, steel belts will not stretch when exposed to UV rays over a long period of time.

Polymer (Poly) Belts

Polymer belts, commonly shortened to poly belts, are meant for higher temperatures and conditions where UV exposure and rust inhibitors are an issue. The textured nature of the poly belts causes more oil than usual to be picked up. This option tends to be pricier, but works like a charm in intense functions.

Fuzzy Belts

This video demonstrates how choosing the right belt material makes all of the difference. The Fuzzy belt does a better job at picking up the hydrocarbon than the standard belt on the right. 

LFO belts, commonly referred to as Fuzzy belts, are a proprietary skimmer belt exclusive to Abanaki. This material specializes in the rapid removal of light, non-viscous hydrocarbons from water.  If your problem is an oil like gasoline, the Fuzzy belt will remove it much more efficiently than any other belt in normal conditions. The Fuzzy belts are also extremely resistant to stretching.

XP Polymer (Poly) Belts

XP polymer belts, commonly shortened to XP poly belts, are very similar to poly belts. The key difference comes in its texture and temperature resistance. The XP poly belt is better able to handle high temperatures, maxing out at 180ºF. The belt also has a smooth texture rather than the ridged design of the standard poly belt. Although this change means the XP poly belt will not pick up oil as quickly, the belt will function better than the standard poly belt in conditions that would wear away the ridged design.

More information can be found in the Abanaki Oil Skimmer Factbook or Abanaki Belt Selection Guidebook. It is best to call (440-543-7400) with details of the application and ask your Abanaki representative what will work best with your belt skimmer.

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Topics: oil skimmers, belt skimmer, belt materials, belt oil skimmer

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