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Scientists holding a flask in a laboratory environment

Vacuum equipment in laboratories

Using vacuum in a lab environment – 5 questions to ask yourself

Do I regularly check the oil quality when using an oil-sealed pump? 
Particularly in harsh processes, oil should be checked regularly and changed when necessary.  When the oil is turning into an amber colour, it is due for a change. If the oil is allowed to deteriorate too much, your pump may be damaged and a full service will be required.

Are my filters clean?
Your exhaust filters need to be in a good condition and free of any blockages. Oil or dust saturation in these filters can cause a back pressure in your pump which can have a drastic effect on both the performance and reliability. 

Does my pump have enough space around it and is the cooling fan clear?
Most of our scientific pumps are air cooled, which means they have cooling fans that pull the heat away from the body. If the pump is placed in a space with no ventilation or in an area with poor airflow, this can cause your pump to overheat and damage components. Therefore, you regularly need to check your fan and make sure that it is free of dust and that the inlet is not blocked by anything else in the lab. 

Is my pipework connected effectively?
A good seal is crucial to achieve the desired vacuum levels. A poor inlet seal will allow atmosphere into the pump, which will increase your pump's down time and make your pump work harder (meaning more maintenance will be required).

Exhaust seals are just as important. If these are not sealed properly it will allow whatever substances that are being pumped, to go in to the atmosphere. Even if your pumps are running a clean application, oil vapours and tip seal dust can still be harmful to your health if you breath them in.

Am I dealing with condensable vapours? 
Vapours condensing in pump oil leads to poor lubrication, increased wear of moving parts and loss of vacuum performance. Work through our recommendations on the checklist to minimize condensation. Our primary pumps are designed to pump vapours and have the highest gas ballast flow rates of any similar sized pumps.

Prefer some personal guidance or advice? Contact our UK or global teams below!

NIKKI LUYT

Senior Sales Account Manager UK South

+44 (0) 7768 634684

nikki.luyt@edwardsvacuum.com

ADRIAN NORTH

Sales Engineer UK Central

+44 (0) 7918 992419

adrian.north@edwardsvacuum.com

NATHAN LAWSON

Sales Engineer Scientific UK North

+44 (0) 7768 634684

nathan.lawson@edwardsvacuum.com

DENIS WHITEHILL

Senior Sales Account Manager Scotland & Northern Ireland

+44 (0) 7767 685426 

denis.whitehill@edwardsvacuum.com