You are running an unsupported browser, please upgrade your browser. Close

Privacy Policy and Cookies

By browsing this site you accept cookies used to improve and personalize our services and marketing. Learn more about our Data Privacy Policy, including cookies, by clicking the Policy button.

By browsing this site you accept cookies used to improve and personalize our services and marketing. Learn more about our Data Privacy Policy, including cookies, by clicking the Policy button.

Why is Filtration Important?

Estimated reading time: 4 minutes, 14 seconds.

The Chain Reaction of Wear

In a study by the late Dr. E. Rabinowicz of M.I.T., the observation was made that 70% of component replacements or "loss of usefulness" is due to surface degradation. In hydraulic and lubricating systems, 20% of these replacements result from corrosion, with 50% resulting from mechanical wear.


Particles generated as a result of abrasive wear are work hardened; thus they become harder than the parent surface. If these particles are not removed by proper filtration, they will recirculate and cause additional wear. This "chain reaction of wear" will continue and result in premature system component failure unless high-performance filtration is applied to break the chain.


Pall Ultipor III ® filters with ß x= 1000 removal efficiency ensure cleaner fluids for long component life, maximum system reliability, and lower operating costs.


industrial filtration diagram




Abrasive Wear

Particles generated as a result of abrasive wear are "work hardened;" they become harder than the parent surface and, if not removed by proper filtration, will recirculate to cause additional wear. Here's how it happens:


Particles enter the clearance space between a component's two moving surfaces, bury themselves in one of the surfaces, and act like cutting tools to remove material from the opposing surface. The particle sizes causing the most damage are those equal to and slightly larger than the clearance space. Ultimately, abrasive wear will result in dimensional changes, leakage and lower efficiency. Left uncontrolled, more particles will be generated which will result in a chain reaction of abrasive wear -- a chain reaction that will continue and cause premature system component failure unless adequate filtration is implemented to break the chain. To protect components from abrasive wear, particles of approximately the dynamic clearance size range must be removed.


abrasive wear dynamic fluid film thickness

Erosive Wear

Erosive wear is caused by particles that impinge on a component surface or edge and remove material from that surface due to momentum effects. This type of wear is especially noticed in components with high velocity flows, such as servo and proportional valves. Particles repeatedly striking the surface may also cause denting and eventual fatigue on the surface. The damaging effects of erosive wear can be seen in dimensional changes to equipment, leakage, lower efficiency, and the generation of additional particles, which leads to further contamination and wear throughout the system.


erosive wear

Adhesive Wear

Excessive load, low speed, and/or reduction in fluid viscosity can reduce oil film thickness to a point where metal-to-metal contact occurs. Surface asperities are "cold welded" together and particles are sheared off as surfaces move.


adhesive wear

Fatigue Wear

Bearing surfaces are subjected to fatigue failures as a result of repeated stress caused by particles trapped between the two moving surfaces. At first, the surfaces are dented and then cracking begins. These cracks spread after repeated stress by the bearing load, even without additional particulate damage, and eventually the surface fails, producing a spall. Contamination reduces bearing life significantly through fatigue, abrasion and roughening or degradation of operating surfaces.


fatigue wear

Water and Air Contamination in Oil

Water and Particulate Removal Using the Pall HSP Purifier

Water contamination in oil can cause fluid breakdown, reduce lubricating film thickness, accelerate metal surface fatigue, corrode components, and lead to a loss of dielectric strength in insulating fluids. The main sources of water contamination are heat exchanger leaks, seal leaks, condensation of humid air, inadequate reservoir covers, and temperature drops which lead to dissolved water (below saturation) becoming free water (emulsified or in droplets). Both free and dissolved water cause component and oil degradation. When conducting fluid sampling, if oil becomes milky in appearance, the saturation limit at the oil temperature has been exceeded, indicating that both dissolved and free water are present.



Air and Other Gas Contamination


Dissolved air and other gases in oils can cause foaming, slow system response with erratic action, a reduction in system stiffness, higher fluid temperatures, pump damage due to cavitation, an inability to develop full system pressure, and an acceleration of oxidation.

water air contamination oil

Measuring Filter Performance

The Multi-Pass Performance Test

iso 16889 multi pass performance test


The multi-pass filter performance test is internationally recognized as the most reliable means to obtain consistent and repeatable information on a filter's ability to control specific-sized particles.


The multi-pass 'beta' (ß) test challenges the filter in a similar manner as an operating system would!


Here's how


  • Fresh contaminant is introduced in a slurry form into the test reservoir, mixed with the fluid in the reservoir, and pumped through the test filter
  • Contaminant not captured by the filter is returned to the reservoir for another pass through the filter (thus the name "multi-pass")
  • Upstream and downstream fluid samples are analyzed to determine their respective particle counts


For more information, read about our test stands for automotive industrial components.

How can we help?

If you are looking for innovative filtration solutions, you’ve come to the right place. Our knowledgeable subject matter experts are here for you. Contact us for more information. Thank you and we look forward to assisting you shortly.

  • Afghanistan
  • Albania
  • Algeria
  • American Samoa
  • Andorra
  • Angola
  • Anguilla
  • Antarctica
  • Antigua and Barbuda
  • Argentina
  • Aruba
  • Australia
  • Austria
  • Bahamas
  • Bahrain
  • Bangladesh
  • Barbados
  • Belgium
  • Belize
  • Benin
  • Bermuda
  • Bhutan
  • Bolivia
  • Botswana
  • Brazil
  • British Indian Ocean Territory
  • Brunei Darussalam
  • Bulgaria
  • Burkina Faso
  • Burundi
  • Cambodia
  • Cameroon
  • Canada
  • Cape Verde
  • Cayman Islands
  • Chad
  • Chile
  • China
  • Christmas Island
  • Cocos (Keeling) Islands
  • Colombia
  • Comoros
  • Cook Islands
  • Costa Rica
  • Croatia
  • Cuba
  • Cyprus
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Djibouti
  • Dominica
  • Dominican Republic
  • Ecuador
  • Egypt
  • El Salvador
  • Equatorial Guinea
  • Eritrea
  • Estonia
  • Ethiopia
  • Falkland Islands
  • Faroe Islands
  • Fiji
  • Finland
  • France
  • French Guiana
  • French Polynesia
  • French Southern Territories
  • Gabon
  • Gambia
  • Germany
  • Ghana
  • Gibraltar
  • Greece
  • Greenland
  • Grenada
  • Guadeloupe
  • Guam
  • Guatemala
  • Guinea
  • Guinea-Bissau
  • Guyana
  • Haiti
  • Honduras
  • Hong Kong
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
  • India
  • Indonesia
  • Iraq
  • Ireland
  • Israel
  • Italy
  • Jamaica
  • Japan
  • Jordan
  • Kenya
  • Kiribati
  • Kuwait
  • Laos
  • Latvia
  • Lebanon
  • Lesotho
  • Liberia
  • Libya
  • Liechtenstein
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Macao
  • Madagascar
  • Malawi
  • Malaysia
  • Maldives
  • Mali
  • Malta
  • Marshall Islands
  • Martinique
  • Mauritania
  • Mauritius
  • Mayotte
  • Mexico
  • Monaco
  • Mongolia
  • Montserrat
  • Morocco
  • Mozambique
  • Myanmar
  • Namibia
  • Nauru
  • Nepal
  • Netherlands
  • Netherlands Antilles
  • New Caledonia
  • New Zealand
  • Nicaragua
  • Niger
  • Nigeria
  • Niue
  • Norfolk Island
  • Northern Mariana Islands
  • Norway
  • Oman
  • Pakistan
  • Palau
  • Palestinian Territory
  • Panama
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Paraguay
  • Peru
  • Philippines
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Puerto Rico
  • Qatar
  • Romania
  • Rwanda
  • Samoa
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Senegal
  • Seychelles
  • Sierra Leone
  • Singapore
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • Solomon Islands
  • Somalia
  • South Africa
  • Spain
  • Sri Lanka
  • St Kitts and Nevis
  • St Lucia
  • Sudan
  • Suriname
  • Swaziland
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Taiwan
  • Thailand
  • Togo
  • Tonga
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • Tunisia
  • Turkey
  • Tuvalu
  • Uganda
  • United Arab Emirates
  • United Kingdom
  • United States
  • Uruguay
  • Vanuatu
  • Venezuela
  • Vietnam
  • Virgin Islands
  • Western Sahara
  • Yemen
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe
Choose Industry
  • Aerospace
  • Biotech
  • Chemicals & Polymers
  • Food & Beverage
  • Industrial Manufacturing
  • Laboratory
  • Medical
  • Microelectronics
  • Oil & Gas
  • Power & Utilities
Choose Support Type
  • General Inquiry
  • Pricing / Quotation
  • Technical Help
Would you like to receive more information about Pall’s products and services, and related products and services from Pall’s related companies?

By clicking the Submit button below and proceeding I confirm that I have reviewed and agree with the Terms of Use and the Privacy Policy.

Thank You

We will get in touch with you very shortly.