Oil based vacuum pumps need air filters

Just as an FYI for anyone working with anything that is or has an oil based vacuum pump, and you’re working indoors, use some kind of filter on the exhaust. It’s full of oil particulates that will absolutely cover your entire work area in a thin film of oil.

Hard to see but when I remove the the fan there is a stream of oil vapor coming out of the vent. Easier to see against the beige colored wall as it flows right to left.


Is that the fancy sterilization machine that you use before getting under my skin?

Also, I’ve worked with significantly bigger vacuum pumps, and yes, everything ends up covered in oil but it wasn’t exactly a thin film. Some even have oil mist filters but still, everything can end up covered in oil…


The filters that these come with are trash or basically you have to replace them every time you run the pump. Before when I was using an oil based pump for other lab stuff I just connected a hose to the exhaust port and it went straight outside.

What I didn’t realize is that even though you are running a vacuum from a chamber, somehow the oil makes its way into the chamber too. Once I found that out I switched to dry pumps.

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