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The Scoop on Oil Skimmers | Abanaki

Posted by Tom Hobson on Aug 23, 2019 10:39:01 AM

Oil skimmers are simple, dependable and effective tools for removing oil, grease and other hydrocarbons from water. They usually pay for themselves within a few months. In order to ensure the oil skimmer you choose is right for your operation, there are certain steps you can follow.

Understand the Basics

First, understand that while designs vary, all oil skimmers rely on the fluid properties of specific gravity and surface tension. Most use a moving medium to remove floating oil from the fluid's surface. Floating oil and grease cling to skimming media more readily than water. This allows media in the shape of a belt, disk, drum, etc. to pass through the fluid surface and pick up floating oil and grease while rejecting most of the water. The oily material is subsequently removed from the media with wiper blades or pinch rollers.

Ensure Your Application Applies

When properly selected and applied, oil skimmers are highly economical solutions for separating oil from water to allow its reuse or safe disposal. However, there are certain applications that can expect optimal results. Typical applications best suited for oil skimmers encompass wastewater sumps, coolants and cutting fluids, heat treating operations, parts washers, food processing facilities, parking lots, garages, service facilities, outdoor ponds/lakes/basins, recovery/monitoring wells, remediation processes, and many more.

Select by Application

There are several types of industrial oil skimmers. Choosing one best suited for your application will maximize oil removal while minimizing capital outlay and skimmer operating costs. You may define the application in terms of the following characteristics: operating Conditions, hazardous materials, temperature/viscosity, skimmed water content, residual oil, portability, tank or sump characteristics, size/design, shape, and location/installation.

Determine the Right Design

For industrial oil skimming, there are six basic designs commonly used in moving media skimmers. (Suction skimmers are excluded, as they are generally unsuitable except for relatively thick (1/4 inch) layers of oil; otherwise they tend to ingest large amounts of water.) In more demanding situations, skimming is a cost-effective means of removing most of the oil before using more complicated and costly treatments, such as coalescers, membrane filters and chemical processes.

Consider All the Options

All moving media skimmers use motors to move the belt, tube, disk, etc. While many are designed with standard, industrially rated, continuous-duty motors and also may use fully enclosed speed reducing drives, some can be specified with a number of motor options. Consider also any optional equipment that may be available with the skimmer you are evaluating. Accessories allow customized systems that can ease installation and optimize performance. Some of the more common options include: special drive components, mounting stands and adapters, shelters/ enclosures, controls/accessories, concentrator, and heaters.


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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

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

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


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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.

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

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