How To Reduce The Effects Of Contamination On Hydraulic Systems

May 26, 2022

How To Reduce The Effects Of Contamination On Hydraulic Systems At least 75% of all hydraulic systems fail due to ageing or contaminated hydraulic fluid. This contaminated hydraulic fluid causes degradation in fluids and hydraulic system failure which leads to huge monetary and productivity losses. Moreover, it increases internal leakage which lowers the efficiency of motors, cylinders and pumps. Contaminated hydraulic fluid decreases the ability of valves to control the pressure and flow, which leads to the wastage of horsepower and generation of excess heat. Furthermore, it causes various parts to stick due to sitting or sludge and it even seizes parts of the machine when large amounts of contaminants accumulate in one part. There can be many sources of hydraulic fluid contamination such as environmental exposure, manufacturing process and system wear. The best way to avoid hydraulic fluid contamination is by changing the fluid after some time and by using high-quality oil filters and hydraulic filter carts. Also Read: How Does A Hydraulic Filter Cart Work? There are many industrial and construction machines that use hydraulics such as excavators, trenchers, loaders, dump trucks and bulldozers. So in order to keep these machines in pristine condition, you need to take care of their hydraulic fluids. In this blog post, we will talk about hydraulic fluid contamination and will outline some measures that you can take to resolve this problem.


While hydraulic system contaminants can be liquid or solid particles, water is the most common contaminant found in the majority of hydraulic systems. Typically, solid particles contaminate the hydraulic system by chemically reacting with the hydraulic fluid or fouling the whole system through accumulation. Whereas the behavior of water as a contaminant varies from system to system. The water can form an emulsion with the hydraulic fluid or it can be partially immiscible. It can float on the surface or settle to the bottom of the hydraulic fluid depending on the density of the hydraulic fluids. The presence of water leads to corrosion of the components of the hydraulic system and ultimately leads to the contamination of the whole hydraulic fluid. Water ingress is caused by environmental exposure, internal generation, maintenance activities and flawed methods of fluid servicing. Proper hydraulic fluid servicing is the best way to limit water contamination, so you should buy your oil filters and hydraulic filter carts from a certified industrial filtration supplier.

Ways To Reduce Contamination

While contamination in hydraulic systems is a persistent and constant issue, still there are measures that can be employed to reduce its impact. These measures include relatively simple storage processes, handling and paying proper attention to hydraulic fluid combinations specified in systems. Here are some measures that you can take to reduce the effects of contamination on hydraulic systems:

Proper Fluid Selection

Majority of the time hydraulic fluid becomes contaminated due to improper fluid selection so make sure you choose the right fluid for your hydraulic system. Also don’t mix fluids, even if the system specifies that more than one fluid can be used, you should still try to use only one fluid and not mix others with it as it only contaminates the whole system. If you have to use a different fluid then completely drain the system first and then add the new fluid. Because even if two liquids are miscible, still their mixture will not perform in an optimal way and will decrease the efficiency of your hydraulic system. Moreover, the combination of different fluids can be harmful to your system.

Proper Hydraulic Fluid Handling & Storage

Hydraulic fluids must be kept in sealed containers until they are ready for use. Both new and used containers should be handled carefully, their lids should be tightly secured and should be regularly checked. The majority of hydraulic fluids become contaminated due to improper handling and storage. So if you want to protect the fluids of your hydraulic system from contamination then make sure to store them properly.

About Harvard Filtration

Harvard Filtration offers what it takes to meet your industrial filtration needs. We offer a broad range of filtration systems. Hydraulic filtration systems and filter carts are the most trusted and dependable portable filtration systems. Compatible with a broad assortment of petroleum-based and synthetic fluids, our filter carts can remove contaminants and water to a single micron, ensuring decreased hazardous waste disposal. Select our filters to experience your machine’s high performance. For more information contact us today.

Get Quotation