Oil Skimmers: the Least Expensive Method for Separating Oil from Water

Oil skimmers are simple, dependable and effective tools for removing oil, grease, and other hydrocarbons from water and coolants. Often, an oil skimmer by itself can achieve the desired level of water purity. In more demanding situations, oil skimming is a cost-effective means of removing most of the oil before using more complicated and costly treatments such as coalescers, membrane filters, and chemical processes. Although designs vary, all oil skimmers rely on specific gravity, surface tension, and a moving medium to remove floating oil from a fluid’s surface. Floating oil and grease cling to skimming media more readily than water and water has little affinity for the media. This allows skimming media in the shape of a belt, disk, drum, etc. to pass through a fluid surface to pick up floating oil and grease with very little water. This oily material is subsequently removed from the media with wiper blades or pinch rollers.

Abanaki’s oil skimmer line offers a wide range of skimmer types including belt, tube, and disk. All applications are different and thus require a different skimmer or belt material.

Belt-type oil skimmers use an endless belt of corrosion resistant steel or synthetic medium, which is lowered into the tank or vessel to be skimmed. The belt passes through resilient wiper blades where the oil is removed from both sides of the medium.

Tube oil skimmers use a floating plastic hose that snakes out over the surface of the liquid and is then drawn back through the drive unit where oil is removed. This design requires a relatively large amount of surface area for proper operation. This oil skimmer can skim from very shallow tanks. As a rule, the removal capacity is lower than belt, drum, or mop-type oil skimmers.

These oil skimmers rotate a disk shaped medium through the liquid. Oil is wiped off and discharged into a collection container in a manner similar to belt oil skimmers. It is important to consider reach, the portion of the disk that actually gets immersed, when looking at a disk oil skimmer. Less disk in the fluid means less oil removed. Obviously, fluctuating fluids can be a real problem for disk oil skimmers.

Oil Skimmers
• Oil Grabber® Model 8 Belt Oil Skimmer
• PetroXtractor Belt Oil Skimmer
• Oil Viper Tube Skimmer

Coolant Skimmers
• Mighty Mini Oil Skimmer
• Mighty Disk Tramp Oil Skimmer
• TubeTastic! Tube Skimmer

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