Self-Cleaning Filter System Cuts Maintenance Costs

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Self-Cleaning Filter System Cuts Maintenance Costs
Monday, October 08, 2001A routine oil and filter change in the tight quarters of the engine room onboard a boat is normally a messy and awkward job. Buckets of used lube oil and filter cartridges must be lugged up the narrow galley stairs for disposal and new oil and filters must be carried down the stairs, all in the short time while the boat is in dock for maintenance. Boston Harbor Cruises found that Alfa Laval's Eliminator, an automatic self-cleaning filter system installed in combination with Cummins' Centinel system in its high-speed catamarans, saved $2,100 per engine per year in oil, filter and labor costs.

With a total of three boats, each with four engines, equipped with the Eliminator, Boston Harbor Cruises save a total of $25,200 per year. "After three years in operation, we are still seeing perfect oil analysis so extended engine life is an additional payoff," says Robert Tarrant, engineering manager for the Boston Harbor Cruise Lines.

The Eliminator consists of an Alfa Laval Moatti automatic, self-cleaning filter and an Alfa Laval disc-stack centrifuge in a single, compact integrated housing. These two sections comprise a complete engine-mounted oil cleaning system. The full-flow section utilizes a series of stainless steel mesh elements to filter the oil and protect the engine. A small portion of the filtered oil is used to backflush sections of these elements to prevent dirt from accumulating on the screen. The backflushed oil containing the impurities is then fed to the separator section of the Eliminator, which is a very efficient disc-stacked centrifuge that cleans oil down to a two-micron level. All dirt removed in the full-flow section eventually is deposited in the centrifuge sludge where it is easily removed. The only maintenance required is replacement of the sludge collection paper in the separator.

Service Intervals Increased From 250 to 1,000 hours

The majority of the...
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