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Old 10-06-2017, 05:40 PM   #1
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External Oil Filtration

Hi all,
The boat I recently purchased came with Puradyn external oil filtration. These external oil filtration units are in addition to the oil filters that are mounted on the engine. There are 4 units on the boat, one for each main Cat 3304 motor and one for each generator.
Since this is the first time I have seen these, I thought I'd do some research.
I'm thinking the previous owner made a smart move by installing these when the boat was new back in 1992. The mains have over 5000 hours on them and the gennys have even more than that. After running the boat now for almost a year, I am very impressed that I rarely ever have to add any oil to either the mains or the gennys. No smoke at start up and they seem to be really tight still with little wear. I just ordered new Puradyn filters for my next oil change interval (filter cost = $49 ea).
Seems like a good idea for anyone looking to get max life out of their machinery.
Any other experience?

Puradyn.com

Taras
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Old 10-06-2017, 06:06 PM   #2
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There are a number of add on oil bypass filter systems on the market. They all collect more dirt than the stock engine. Going back to the 60s there was Frantz toilet paper filters and before that older engines usually had a bypass filter not a full flow. The bypass filters, because the oil passes thru very slowly, collect more dirt. Usually in the neighborhood of 1 micron. Full flow filters usually only catch dirt down to 30 micron.
My Detroits (Grey Marine) use a bypass as stock. Maybe that's why they went 60 years before overhaul.
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Old 10-06-2017, 10:59 PM   #3
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The main difference between the add on external oil filters is usually their micron size of between the usual 3 - 10 max micron, where as your standard spin on engine oil filter has a micron of usually 20, (some 10) that compared with the widely accepted theory that the majority of engine wear is caused by particles in the oil that are around 4-5 microns in size shows why you get your longevity from external filters,

Cheers Steve
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Old 10-08-2017, 07:08 AM   #4
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Bypass filtering works best with engines that operate for hours on end , so all the oil gets a chance thru the filter.
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Old 10-08-2017, 07:50 AM   #5
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A filter might be rated at 30mic, but consider how many times the lube oil loops through the filter. Five gal sump, guessing a gal per minute flow. So each hour, whole sump goes through filter over ten times.

Filters are not absolute: A 30mic filter does not stop all 40mic particles and pass all 20mic particles. There are efficiency charts for each filter and the are classed on what percentage of each size particle they catch.

A 30mic filter might catch 50% of 2mic particles. Loop the sump load through the filter ten times and it will catch almost all the 2mic particles.

I don't advocate adding bypass filters with the expectation of any benefit. I think the single filter full flow arrangement is good enough to support an extremely long life of the base engine. Oil has to be changed for reasons other than small particle loading. And when engines fail, it almost always is due to things other than wear of lubed parts.
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Old 10-08-2017, 09:04 AM   #6
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What is the size of carbon particles usually found in lube oil?

I read and hear that carbon is abrasive and is a major source of engine wear. It's said the the black in oil is carbon. What have others learned or heard about carbon in lube oil?

If by-pass filtration is very good at filtering out carbon it may be very valuable. But I think it's viewed as "it probably does a little good". Few are motivated to install it.
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Old 10-08-2017, 10:09 AM   #7
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My Cummins was installed new in 1995. It still runs fine. How many years do you think it should be useful and why would I expect to go for more years than I expect it to? It was run commercially for 5 years with regular maintenance and now its use is non-commercial. It gets regular oil changes and other required maintenance but adding extra oil filtration for a pleasure boat? Total voodoo, not backed by the manufacturers, may benefit long distant truck fleets but there is only anecdotal evidence...I’d spend the money lowering engine room temps or replacing your coolant or doing your impellers...more filters in the landfill with no demonstrable benefit. You still need to change your oil.

There is one huge benefit that I can see, someone will get rich selling snake oil to boat owners.
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Old 10-08-2017, 10:11 AM   #8
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A little bit off topic, but if an external oil filter line developed a leak which caused the oil pressure go to zero, how long do you think the diesel engine could run without causing internal damage?
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Old 10-08-2017, 10:17 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Nomad Willy View Post
What is the size of carbon particles usually found in lube oil?

I read and hear that carbon is abrasive and is a major source of engine wear. It's said the the black in oil is carbon. What have others learned or heard about carbon in lube oil?

If by-pass filtration is very good at filtering out carbon it may be very valuable. But I think it's viewed as "it probably does a little good". Few are motivated to install it.
Took part in a oil refresher course a few years back and believe they said most soot/carbon deposits are only around .03 microns in size(Memory recall!), how ever they can clump together to form larger particles. Individual soot particles normally pose little risk to engine parts, but clumps of soot can cause damage. Saying that how ever additives in today’s engine oils normally keep the individual soot particles from forming into damaging clumps. So if you are using a three micron external filter it should make a difference from the normal engine mounted filter as 20 micron (although some are ten)
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Old 10-08-2017, 10:24 AM   #10
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A little bit off topic, but if an external oil filter line developed a leak which caused the oil pressure go to zero, how long do you think the diesel engine could run without causing internal damage?
How long depends on how hard you are running it at the time. At idle or low power, it could last in the order of minutes to many minutes. At high power, you could have bearing damage before the alarm actually sounds. Alarms are set at a low pressure like 5 or 10psi. By the time pressure gets down there, bearings and pistons might already be damaged from heat.

I have seen this. A guy put prelube pumps on his 3116 Cats. A poorly chosen fitting blew while he was at high power. Alarm came in, he shut it right down. Fixed the leak and refilled the oil. Cranked it up and it knocked. Main bearings wiped.

Adding plumbing to your oil system means adding risk. Vibration inherent in engines can cause sneaky failures if not designed right.
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Old 10-08-2017, 11:16 AM   #11
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Adding plumbing to your oil system means adding risk. Vibration inherent in engines can cause sneaky failures if not designed right.
Thanks. This is my concern.
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Old 10-09-2017, 09:25 PM   #12
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Engine manufacturers have to warranty their products, and are interested in maintaining a good reputation, so if additional bypass oil filtration would bullet proof your motor, it would have likely been equipped that way.
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Old 10-09-2017, 09:59 PM   #13
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Took part in a oil refresher course a few years back and believe they said most soot/carbon deposits are only around .03 microns in size(Memory recall!), how ever they can clump together to form larger particles. Individual soot particles normally pose little risk to engine parts, but clumps of soot can cause damage. Saying that how ever additives in today’s engine oils normally keep the individual soot particles from forming into damaging clumps. So if you are using a three micron external filter it should make a difference from the normal engine mounted filter as 20 micron (although some are ten)
Steve53,
Thanks for the input. I thought "soot" as in "they said most soot/carbon deposits are only around .03 microns" was very soft and carbon very hard. I'm thinking they can't be the same thing?
Otherwise your post all adds up.
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Old 10-09-2017, 10:53 PM   #14
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Eric, had to go back to the supplied course notes to offer some more info on that and the below are from those pages (not my work but no reference to give credits to(Perhaps credits should be to NORIA lubrication courses) -Im saying this as I have been warned by some members not to cut and paste as it's not in the forums best interest/nature of personal input!, but in order of completeness/thoroughness i couldn't remember or relate verbatim as well as my course notes)So if you dont mind here's a few points that should answer that question more clearly and perhaps explain to other interested members (with out spending the $1350 i did for the course),which is SOOT is basically made up from carbon particles

1) Soot includes the fine black particles, chiefly composed of carbon, produced by incomplete combustion of coal, oil, wood, or other fuels. Soot can consist of acids, chemicals, metals, soils, and dust. (Dec 11, 2013)

2) In Modern Diesel Fuel Direct Injected Engines soot generation is just a matter of fact. To lower Nox emissions, the function of the Exhaust Gas Re-circulation system is to re-direct some of this soot back into the cylinders thru the intake system. Some of this soot goes past the rings. As it is going past the rings, it fouls carbons/cokes up the piston ring packs and reduces their efficiency. It also allows even more soot past the piston rings over time. The engine oil suffers from soot loading, meaning the soot pollutes the engine oil reducing its efficiency and shortening oil life.

3) Soot loading in diesel engine oil can present wear problems. Diesel engines consume a carbon-rich fossil fuel that releases soot as a byproduct of combustion. Soot (see figure below) consists of micrometer-scale particles of elemental carbon. The existence of soot signifies incomplete combustion, which suggests an incorrect air/fuel ratio, improper combustion temperature, insufficient residence time in the combustion zone, and/or non-availability of sufficient oxidants (another way to say that the air/fuel ratio is too fuel-rich).

4) Such soot accumulations in the engine oil have been observed in the 2% to 10% range. In concentrations starting around 3 to 5% in the engine oil, soot can become problematic.

5) Soot is harmful in a number of ways when at excess levels in engine oil, but primarily through abrasion; especially if the carbon is agglomerated into clumps, which can cause valve train, ring and liner wear. Soot loading also causes a viscosity increase, which inhibits oil flow, especially in cold weather starts where the soot-laden engine oil can increase the time it takes for the oil to reach critical engine parts, such as the valve train.

Cheers Steve
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Old 10-10-2017, 01:11 AM   #15
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Some Puradyn filter systems have a heater installed, which ensures that any water in the oil gets burned off, thereby removing humidity from the crankcase and internal engine parts. I like that....
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Old 10-10-2017, 05:57 AM   #16
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To monitor the oil pressure the option of a preset switch to alarm is not the only option.

The Murphy switch gauges can be set to alarm or secure the engine with a minor drop.

Up to the operator how close he sets them , even 1 lb can ring a bell if desired.

Large trucks install bypass filtration and seem to have no problems with the reliability of the installed units..

These are usually a factory option , or installed by pro ruck maint shops .
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Old 10-10-2017, 09:43 AM   #17
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To monitor the oil pressure the option of a preset switch to alarm is not the only option.

The Murphy switch gauges can be set to alarm or secure the engine with a minor drop.

Up to the operator how close he sets them , even 1 lb can ring a bell if desired.

Large trucks install bypass filtration and seem to have no problems with the reliability of the installed units..

These are usually a factory option , or installed by pro ruck maint shops .
FF,
That's very supportive information you present.
I wonder what percentage of diesel trucks have by-pass? I have no idea even though I usta drive several. It seems to be fairly effective at filtering out carbon.

I suppose one may be just as well off changing oil more often. More cost in the long run though .... perfect for trucks and other high hour applications like stationary power plants. Maybe Sunchaser has some imput?
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Old 10-10-2017, 09:49 AM   #18
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Engine manufacturers have to warranty their products, and are interested in maintaining a good reputation, so if additional bypass oil filtration would bullet proof your motor, it would have likely been equipped that way.

Yes - I have had a number of engines where the manufacturer had bypass filtration rigged as stock either by a typical spin on filter or through a centrifuge. The buildup that would occur was quite enlightening even when the oil looked fairly clean.
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Old 10-10-2017, 09:52 AM   #19
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CaptSteve53,
So the carbon is in the soot. This means the old time car mechanics that said to change oil when it turns black had a very valid point. I suspect that would pronote much more oil changing than most of us do as diesel lube oil turns black fairly fast on older engines.
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Old 10-10-2017, 10:13 AM   #20
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I wonder what percentage of diesel trucks have by-pass? ?
Eric

On the big fleets, it is not uncommon that extended warranties are in place with aftermarket hang ons voiding the same. The truck and engine builders prefer to have the best of filtering systems as part of the the OEM process. After market stuff can lead to lowered fluid flows and decreased operating pressures. Not to mention pipe and fitting failures.

Whether on or off engine, the systems are designed to operate as "one unit." This includes engine oil, transmission fluids, coolant and in some cases drive axles.

Truckers are subjected to the same advertising we recreational boaters see. Whether promises for perfect oil and filtering, wonderful additives, miracle potions or mileage enhancing gizmos. The big fleets have decades of experience to draw from, the smaller less informed independents have their own version of dock talk to assess.
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