When the workplace gives off oily particulate, odors and emissions, the basic oil properties are the reason it causes concerns about workplace equipment and workers.
Once you know these oil properties, it is easy to see how oil reduces equipment efficiency of equipment and can cause health problems for workers over extended periods of exposure.
The Properties of Oil that Affect the Workplace
Note that oil has two basic forms, organic and mineral. Organic oils are produced by animals, plants and other organic sources through a metabolic process. Oil is also affected by temperature.
Mineral oils are generally known as petrochemicals such as petroleum or crude oil. These mineral oils originate from fossilized organic materials and fossils. While labeling these “mineral” oils may be confusing, in reality, algae is an organism as is plankton from which the conversion to oil occurs.
The texture of oil is viscous and its viscosity rating depends on the type of oil. For instance, motor oil thins as it heats and thickens when cooled. This is a clue to the need for oil mist extraction to avoid oil thinning in high temperatures and thickening in colder temperatures.
To know the precise oil flammability level, check the flash points such as engine oils that are combustible at 150 deg. C which is a C2 classification in terms of flash point.
The Type of Oil Frequently Found in the Workplace
It is notable to include the fact oils found most frequently in the workplace are used for lubrication of workplace equipment. This also depends on whether the workplace is a producer of oil, in which case the need for oil mist eliminators is not only essential but mandatory by OSHA, state environmental regulatory and EPA compliance statutes of the Federal Register.
Certain types of oil residue can provoke hazards when they become an amalgamation with other flammable or combustible sources within the workplace.
An office adjacent to an oil production facility may also incur a certain amount of oil mist. This is when a oil mist collector is a necessity to prevent buildup of oily residue and oily odors in the workplace.
Ironically, if the odor of oil is present it usually not combustible. Depending upon the prevalence and degree of oily odors present, oil odors are prone to cause olfactory sensitivities and allergies when exposure is prolonged.
Description of an Oil Mist Collector
In the realm of machinery and various other equipment that requires lubrication to maintain efficiency and effectiveness, oil mist collectors serve as a filter that removes oil particles from air streams before it is lodged in mechanical parts.
Description of an Oil Mist Eliminator
As its name implies, oil mist eliminators eliminate oil residue and emissions from CNC machines and equipment in the workplace. There is very little difference between a collector and eliminator in terms of removing oil mist.
Description of Oil Mist Extraction
Like its counterparts, oil mist is extracted through a system of removal of up to 99.5 percent of oil mist particulate.
The major differences in these three types of mechanical oil removal systems depends on manufacturers’ specifications such as:
- Efficiency rating
- Operational system load
- Atmospheric conditions in the workplace and in oil
- Specific gravity
- Static pressure
To avoid oil buildup and clogging of machinery parts and maintaining worker health oil mist collection is essential in the workplace.