No More Common Oil Changes!

Ulrike J. Smallwood, EuVatec LLC Oliver J. Uxa, EuVatec LLC
Tags: industrial lubricants

Consumers have been well trained by vehicle and engine manufacturers and oil companies to maintain periodic oil and oil filter changes. These replacements are necessary because standard full-flow oil filters remove only particles down to approximately 10 to 20 microns (one micron equals one millionth of a meter), or down to about 40 to 50 microns with a 99 percent efficiency, and do not filter out moisture or fuel contaminants. This lack of complete filtration and removal of contaminants breaks down the oil performance as a lubricant, causes abrasive wear to the engine and oxidation of the oil.


Fine-filtration System Installed in a Road Grader

A Surprising Invention
More than 25 years ago, a German inventor named Hermann Trabold designed a patented bypass oil fine-filtration system, which has been used successfully worldwide. The system filters out harmful particles down to 0.1 micron and binds moisture or fuel, which significantly reduces breakdown of the oil.

With this filtration system, there is a claim that no more common oil changes are necessary because oil is constantly cleaned, water from condensation is eliminated and the additional cooling contributes to longer oil life. It can be used with any engine using gasoline, diesel or biodiesel fuel.

It is also claimed that used engine oil that has been fine-filtered with the Trabold system has a significant increase in load-carrying capacity as measured by a Reichert friction and wear test method.

Oil analysis is still possible as a means of monitoring engine wear.

The filter cartridge change takes five to 10 minutes and is only necessary every 12,000 to 15,000 miles (400 to 450 working hours).


Filter Installed Underneath the Hood of Delivery Van

Testing and Analysis
Extensive studies of oil bypass filtration systems were conducted by governmental agencies. For example, the U.S. Department of Energy, Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy at the National Laboratory in Idaho, tested various bypass filtration systems.2

In 2000, the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction concluded a two-year test of bypass filters in 48 school buses, and installed them on 580 new buses. Most test buses were in operation without oil changes for more than three years, and engine wear and maintenance costs were significantly reduced. As a result of this program, DPI installed systems on all 580 new buses purchased in 2000.

The Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) wrote many articles about the benefit of bypass oil fine-filtration and the damage through contaminated oil with particles sized one to five microns. 3-6 

The efficiency of the fine-filtration system was confirmed in numerous tests and studies, such as the following:


Filter Installed on the Side of a Peterbilt Diesel Truck

How It Works
The fine-filtration systems work in by-pass mode in addition to and independent from the standard filter. They have a flow rate between 1.1 and 6.4 quarts per minute, depending on the fluid viscosity (motor oil in a hot engine is approximately 4 to 5 quarts). The filter cartridge is patented and filters axially and radially (horizontally in a 90-degree angle toward the axel, and vertically parallel to the axel).

This is achieved by closing one side of the center tube of the filter cartridge where the oil comes in and is pressed through the cellulose material from the top and the side into the center tube.

The fine-filtration system can be mounted somewhere under the hood or in a secure place where there is room on the vehicle's frame. The ideal mounting location varies depending on vehicle size or model. The necessary installation kit can be ordered customized (connection parts) with the system.

Systems come in three sizes: 5? inch by 4½ inch diameter, 9½ by 4½ and 13½ by 4½. These measurements do not include the connection parts.

Connection to the Engine
Oil supply: The oil can be taken anywhere at a pressure zone where motor oil is under pressure (such as the oil pressure switch, a motor port or the standard filter).

Oil return: The oil can be returned anywhere where the motor oil is not under pressure (such as the valve cover, the oil filler, oil pan or a nonpressurized motor port).

In Summary
The usage of oil fine-filtration systems is a win-win solution. It saves consumers money, reduces a vehicle's maintenance and downtime, and extends the life of their engines. Additionally, it provides environmental benefits such as reduced oil consumption, reduction of waste-oil management, and less air, water and soil pollution.

About the Company

EuVaTec LLC is the U.S. representative of Trabold oil fine-filtration systems. For more information:

  1. Information about executive orders (in regard to reduction of oil consumption) is available at:
  2. Department of Energy press release. "One Million Test Miles." June 17, 2005.
  3. Pfeifer and Finnigan. SAE Paper No. 650865."Oil Filtration and Lifter Wear."
  4. DenBeston, Leverenze and Bloom. SAE Paper No. 650316. "A Modern Approach to Piston Ring Bore Assembly Wear Determination."
  5. SAE Paper No. 710813.
  6. SAE Paper No. 881827.