• MMS Youtube
  • MMS Facebook
  • MMS Linkedin
  • MMS Twitter
1/18/2010 | 1 MINUTE READ

Coolant Filtration Yields Significant Savings

Facebook Share Icon LinkedIn Share Icon Twitter Share Icon Share by EMail icon Print Icon

While many shop managers intuitively understand the importance of properly maintaining coolant, it's likely that few have calculated the actual cost savings of doing so. Keller Products says the 80-percent savings realized by one customer after installing pump/skimmer units is typical.

Related Suppliers

Peter Vlismas, vice president of PV Engineering, realized ineffective coolant maintenance had a detrimental impact on the performance of his Salisbury, Massachusetts-based shop. However, like many shop managers, he had no concept of the actual cost savings that could be gleaned from a more efficient system. To his surprise, installing TKO pump/skimmer units from Keller Products on the shop’s 21 CNC machine tools saved more than $80,000.

That figure represents more than 80 percent of the defense, power generation and medical component manufacturer’s annual coolant-related costs. While emphasizing that savings from efficient coolant maintenance can vary according to individual circumstances, Keller says PV’s experience is typical. Based on feedback from hundreds of customers, the company estimates that without proper filtration, coolant typically needs changing about every two months, or six times per year. In contrast, quality coolant maintained regularly with an efficient pump/skimmer unit can last for about a year in the sump. That translates to five—or 83 percent—fewer changeouts per year, with a corresponding reduction in coolant purchase and disposal costs. By extension, machine downtime and labor required for changeouts are also reduced by the same amount.

Keller stresses that considering only these savings ignores the bigger picture. Dirty coolant can cause problems with machine performance, tool life and surface finish—not to mention environmental issues such as odor and contact dermatitis. In fact, the company says customer feedback indicates conservative estimates for savings resulting from reduced tool wear might approach 10 percent of total tool cost.

The TKO units incorporate a self-priming, air-operated pump that pulls coolant from the surface of the sump through a floating inlet device. From there, contaminated coolant flows through a cartridge filter for chip removal and on through the company’s custom, maintenance-free separator element. Once free of tramp oil and other contaminants, the coolant returns continuously to the sump, while oil collected on the top of the separator tank is drained into a waste container. Models are available in floor-mounted configurations and with magnetic frames that mount directly to the machine tool.

Since installing the TKO units at PV Engineering, coolant waste is minimal, the machines run cleaner and more efficiently, and the company is more profitable as a result, Mr. Vlismas says. “All my objectives for the program have been achieved at relatively low cost and with no operating problems.”

Hand holding a crystal ball

We’d rather send you $15 than rely on our crystal ball…

It’s Capital Spending Survey season and the manufacturing industry is counting on you to participate! Odds are that you received our 5-minute Metalworking survey from Modern Machine Shop in your mail or email. Fill it out and we’ll email you $15 to exchange for your choice of gift card or charitable donation. Are you in the U.S. and not sure you received the survey? Contact us to access it.

Help us inform the industry and everybody benefits.


  • Long-Lasting Coolant Reduces Costs, Downtime

    This shop provides a case in point of the substantial savings that can be realized with the proper coolant formulation. Rustlick Ultracut Pro, available from ITW Rocol North America, lasted twice as long in the sump than the shop’s previous coolant, leading to significant operating and maintenance cost savings.

  • Doing Away With Coolant Disposal

    This shop installed a series of improvements that eliminated spent coolant waste.

  • Mist Collector Design Fundamentals

    Consider design differences when determining what style of mist collector is best for a given application.

Related Topics