Vacuum pump question

I have a chance to get an old, but serviceable medical vacuum pump, at a
very reasonable price. When I switched it, gave off a very offensive odour.
What is the best way to decontaminate the thing? I am thinking in terms of
lots of alcohol, but am open to suggestions.
Thanks in advance.
Steve R.
Reply to
Steve R.
Loading thread data ...
Depends what the odour is caused by. Try to find out what it has been used for in the past. Ask the seller. The odour might be something dangerous, but it might not. If it's something dangerous, decontaminating it is a difficult job. If not, just change the oil.
Incidentally, the old belt-driven pumps are often much better made than the modern direct-drive pumps, so they can be a really good deal.
Best wishes,
Chris
Reply to
Christopher Tidy
I would not use alcohol near any seals.
Can you close the inlet and let it pump vacuum for an hour?
i
Reply to
Ignoramus24341
Steve, No alcohol, unless you are opening up everything and cleaning/ repairing on the bench. Drain and replace the oil.
If you are on the US side of the pond, I can send you some vacuum pump oil for the refill. I have several lifetimes supply, DJ
Reply to
Mechanical Magic
Steve:
That will only work for a while, and once you sober up the hangover will be horrendous. If you find yourself persistently seeking solutions in the bottle I suggest a good 12-step program.
Reply to
Tim Wescott
Well spotted, Tim. That's funny!
Best wishes,
Chris
Reply to
Christopher Tidy
Check and see if there is a filter on the input side which will need to be replaced. The more expensive units have a filter to prevent foreign objects from getting into the pump and destroying the precision parts. These filters (like an automotive fuel filter) tend to trap odors and materials, whereas the metal parts of the pump itself are unlikely to trap odors. For the same reason as the filter was originally intended, you should avoid putting any liquid, particularly solvent, into a vacuum pump, unless you have the entire thing disassembled on a bench. These pumps are designed strictly for air and gas use, not liquid or aerosol. If it's ex-medical, it was probably used for suction or something, with the vacuum evacuating air from a filter/trap unit, and the waste being sucked into the trap.
Reply to
woodworker88
First of all, what kind of pump is it? There's a few types that could be used in a medical profession. Is it a simple pump like a Gast, or a "real" 2-stage pump? If the latter, sometimes the oil gets contaminated and stinks. HyVac makes an oil that you use to flush out the pump, then refill with new oil. Works great. Otherwise, rebuilding will take care of it. Beware, though, a rebuild kit for a 2-stage pump can easily run over $200.
Joe
Reply to
Joe
Joe fired this volley in news: snipped-for-privacy@4ax.com: Beware, though, a rebuild kit for a 2-stage pump
yeah... and with a little careful shopping, you can get a brand new Robinaire HVAC pump (good down to about .2u) for under $250.
LLoyd
Reply to
Lloyd E. Sponenburgh
On Thu, 06 Mar 2008 22:34:20 -0600, with neither quill nor qualm, Ignoramus24341 quickly quoth:
Yeah, those drunken bastiches might fall off the dock and drown.
-- The best and safest thing is to keep a balance in your life, acknowledge the great powers around us and in us. If you can do that, and live that way, you are really a wise man. -- Euripides
Reply to
Larry Jaques
don't run alcohol though a vacuum pump with the motor running.
compressed air + alcohol = engine or fire.
vacuum pump oil itself can smell horrible even without unknown stuff mixed in.
I don't mind tearing pumps apart, as long as I know what they were used for, or were rebuilt and came with fresh oil.
If you don't want to tear it apart, you could try flushing it and dumping in fresh vacuum pump oil and repeating.
I always get standard pump and difusion pump oil from kurt lesker company. They have incredible tech support, and can surely tell you more about your pump than you could find on the internet.
Reply to
Cydrome Leader
Change the oil. If it has a gas ballast, crack it open it for a few hours while the pump is running, this helps carry water and other contaminents through.
Reply to
DT
It's just a little portable direct drive unit. The manual suggests that should be used for suctioning out newborn babies, and small surgical wounds. I have no way of tracing the original user. It was donated to a local thrift store, but probably came from out of town.
I decided to buy it anyway (under $20.00). It will have to live outside until the smell is gone.
Steve R.
Reply to
Steve R.
This one is for medical use, as in suction, and has a bottle for the sucked up fluids. It's rated at 25 inches of Hg max.
Steve R.
Reply to
Steve R.
I would get rid of it.
i
Reply to
Ignoramus8691
I call bullshit.
Reply to
Cydrome Leader
Sounds like it got used and was not properly cleaned. What make/model is it. Many of the portable units come apart and can be sterilized in an autoclave. All of ours can be and they are various years. Depending on the unit replacement parts are likely available. The Laerdal and DevilBiss units we have can be stripped down. These units do not use oil usually, they have nylon or similar rings and parts in the pumps.
Reply to
Steve W.
Thanks!. The trap will come apart. At the moment it's plumped up with surgical tubing. That will be disposed of. I'm sure that it's oil free. I will check on the make. It's late at night here, and the pump is in the trunk of the car, outside. I thought it might be useful for testing automotive vacuum relays, and debubbleising stuff I do in the workshop. No way will I throw it out!
Steve R.
Reply to
Steve R.
Arrrg! That should have been "plumbed up".
By the way, I have used high vacuum equipment. The pump I have is not in that category.
Steve R.
Reply to
Steve R.
Based on the intended use, it may not *have* any oil. It may be a diaphragm type pump, or a rotary vane pump. The intended use does *not* need the high vacuum which an oil filled pump can produce.
Perhaps a photo posted to the dropbox would make it easier to tell what kind of pump it is. (Once you have acknowledgement that the photo is up on the dropbox, then post the URL to it here.
Enjoy, DoN.
Reply to
DoN. Nichols

PolyTech Forum website is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.