If you are in the engineering industry or consistently deal with machinery, you should how important it is to maintain them and ensure regular maintenance. Just like how thorough checks like transformer and generator overhauling are necessary, so is equipping yourself with the knowledge of treating transformer oil.
Transformer oil or insulating oil is essentially a type of oil that has strong electrical insulating properties and is also stable in high temperatures. Hence, making it the oil of choice for many to use as a coolant for their machinery. However, this oil can degrade over time with extended use and exposure to moisture and metal dust. As such, it is vital to filter the oil to prevent any form of degradation or impact on the quality of the oil.
In other words, if you deal with the use of transformer oil in your daily tasks, keep reading on to know more about transformer oil filtration.
Critical functions of transformer oil
To know the importance of transformer oil filtration, it is crucial to be aware of the functions of transformer oil. Primarily, it has three purposes:
As an insulator/insulating layer: Performs as an insulator between the windings; significantly raising the resistance between them and preventing a short circuit.
As a cooler/coolant: Once the voltage changes, be it increase or decrease, the temperature of the power transformer’s windings will see an increase, and this is when transformer oil comes in to help cool them down.
As a form of tighter security: The level of oil is operated within the transformer, and the temperature display of transformer oil depicts the internal condition of the equipment and showcases any short circuit status. As such, this will ensure any critical losses and damages do not occur.
The different processes transformer oil can be treated through
There are three ways that the transformer oil can be treated.
The first way is through filtering where a filtering device is used to filter out the contaminated particles at a temperature of 40-degree Celsius.
The second way to treat transformer oil is through the purification with the drying process. This second method of treatment transformer oil is done by heating the oil to 90 degrees Celsius. When the transformer oil is treated, the impurities like acid is removed due to the heat.
The final way of treating transformer oil is regeneration or reclamation with degassing. This method of treatment is similar to the purification with drying but with the use of additional oxidant additives. This third method is one of the more common ways of treatment because of how efficient and cost-saving it is.
Benefits of transformer oil filtration
Consistent filtration of transformer oil can benefit the machinery in various ways.
Firstly, the filtration increases the insulation capability of the transformer oil. As the impurities like acid, metal dust and moisture are removed through the different filtration methods, the transformer oil would be able to insulate the transformer better.
Hence, helping the transformer work at an optimal rate longer. Not only does this extend the lifespan of the transformer but it also decreases the number of breakdowns the transformers experiences.
Ways to preserve the properties of the transformer oil
You can preserve the properties of the transformer oil by keeping a close eye and monitoring it. Several aspects of transformer oil like the water content or breakdown voltage should be monitored on a consistent basis.
This process can either be done in house by your employees or by hiring professionals who specialise in transformer oil filtration. When working with specialists who use the on-line filtration machine, there is little to no downtime, and there would not be any spillage as the oil is being handled.
With proper, timely treatment of a transformer’s oil – it will significantly enhance the properties of the whole insulating system of transformers. Therefore, it’s key to conduct regular check-ups on your transformer; to always ensure the state of health of your equipment. Similarly, you should do the same for other industrial equipment – regularly schedule electric motor rewinds or any other kind of maintenance for tip-top performance always.