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Information on hydraulic flushing.
What is hydraulic flushing?
Flushing consists of circulating the hydraulic fluid through the circuit to be cleaned at a speed much higher than its normal working speed. This action creates a turbulent, non-laminar circulation whose objective is to displace and eliminate particle contamination.
It is important that the initial inspection is carried out in such a way that there is sufficient time to prepare and assemble the materials. The first inspection was to check the circuit and discuss what steps needed to be taken to disconnect the circuit from the unit.
Duplicator: First, the inlet pipe of the duplicator had to be connected to the return pipe. To do this, washers were installed on the inlet and outlet flanges. A connecting hose was then installed to connect the inlet and return pipes, with hose connection flanges.
Engine bearings: In this case two circuits had to be connected, one to the bearing lubrication circuit and the other to the bearing seal pressure circuit. Washers were fitted to the connecting flanges for the supply and drain, and then connecting hoses were fitted to connect the supply and return lines.
In addition, the connections from the plant drain valves to the supply pipe connected to the portable filter trolley and the connection from the plant air filter to the trolley return were checked. In these cases, reducers are normally required to connect the valve and hose, which in this case had to be reduced from 1 ½” to 1″.
Detail of gearbox coupling flange Detail of bearing coupling flange.
In addition to the plant pumps, a portable trolley (40 l/m) with filter and particle counter was used to flush the three circuits.
The day before the cleaning, the filter trolley was delivered and started up and the electrical connection and operation was checked.
The same oil (ISO VG 46) was used for the cleaning and for normal operation. Due to the circuit conditions, it was not necessary to apply a load other than the process load. After flushing, the oil used would be in perfect condition for normal operation of the plant, both in terms of properties and purity.
The process started with filling the plant (3,000 litres), first filtering the oil (5 micron filter) with the portable trolley and ensuring the correct purity level. After filling, particle values were obtained according to ISO code 16/15/12.
For the flushing process, the drive pumps of the 3 circuits (gearbox lubrication, engine bearing lubrication and bearing pressure circuit) were connected. Each circuit of the system is equipped with in-line filters, which also use 5-micron filter elements.
While the pumps circulated the oil through the circuit lines, the portable trolley cleaned the system oil in the circuit by drawing the oil from the return chamber and returning the filtered oil through the system’s vent filter port back to the supply chamber.
The process continued for several hours until the particle counter read 14/13/11. The oil inlet was then replaced by connecting the inlet port with the filter carriage to the valve in the outlet chamber to purge the oil in this area. The cleaning process was continued until the previous ISO levels were reached.
After switching off the system feed pumps, the filter carriage continued to maintain the achieved cleanliness levels. The carriage was then reconnected to the drain valve in the return section of the plant and the oil was filtered again to verify that the ISO cleanliness levels were maintained.
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