Condition Monitoring

Making Maintenance A Profitable Part Of Your Company

Oil Sampling

Oil analysis is a proactive approach to monitor your machines whilst in operation. As important as a blood sample is to the human body, so is oil analysis to your machines. It is vitally important to know the state of your machine and equipment. History and trends can eliminate possible component/equipment failures.  

Lubrication, Hydraulic, Gear and Engine Oil:

Test includes:

“Perfect Filtration is equipped to do both Underground and Surface Transformer Work”

Benefits of Condition Monitoring

  • Identify potential equipment problems/failures
  • Identify when wear and tear is taking place
  • Provide documentation/history for warranty claims
  • Ensuring the additive package is within specification
  • Identify Particle and Water contaminants

Preventative Maintenance is a key factor in this day and age – OIL CONDITION MONITORING IS YOUR FIRST STEP TO BEING PROACTIVE.

Changing Role of Transformer Analysis in South Africa

  • Condition monitoring (monitoring or checking of elements on a regular basis) is now essential for transformer owners Movement away from doing just classic moisture, acid and dielectric (MADS) tests to more “specialist tests”
  • Environmental legislation / insurance purposes
  • Transformer laboratories have become better equipped and the focus is now on quality.

Transformer Oil Tests


Furanics are degradation products of the insulation paper found in transformers. Analysing furanics is important in predicting the degradation of insulating paper.

The following will destroy insulation paper:

  • Water (moisture)
  • Oxygen
  • Heat
  • Oil oxidation

Poly-chlorinated Biphenyl (PCB) analysis

Poly-chlorinated Biphenyl (PCB) analysis: was realised in the 1970’s during the oil crisis to bulk up the transformer oils. Due to the high toxicity of PCB’s, it is now legislation to know the PCB content of your transformer oil.

Dissolved Gas analysis (DGA

Dissolved Gas analysis (DGA): Dissolved gases in transformer oils are inherent gases and gases that form due to the breakdown of paper or oil under stress or degradation. With regular testing, the following problems can be detected months in advance.

  • Overheating
  • Loose connections
  • Breakdown in cellulose
  • Arcing
  • Partial discharge
  • Corona


Corrosive Sulphur

Corrosive sulphur forms acidic conditions in transformers. This is a vital test as DGA, MAD and Furanic tests may indicate normal operation even when failure is imminent. If corrosive sulphur is found, the oil needs to be replaced.

Moisture Analysis

Moisture analysis is important to determine the moisture content in transformer oil in order to:

    • Determine if there are any leaks in the transformer
    • An increase in moisture indicates insulating paper degradation
    • Determine if decrease in insulating strength is due to high water content in the transformer oil.

Total Acid Number (TAN)

Total Acid Number (TAN) is the quantity of base (mg of KOH) that is required to neutralise acid constituents in 1g of sample. An increase in acid indicates that sludge formation is beginning to occur or is occurring.

Dielectric Strength

Dielectric Strength is the voltage at which breakdown of the oil occurs. Insulating power decreases as the number of contaminants in the transformer oil increases so the insulating quality of the oil can be predicted.

Diesel Sample Tests

  • Distillation 
  • Density at 20°C 
  • Viscosity at 40°C 
  • Flashpoint 
  • Total contamination
  • Tent 
  • Sulphur content 
  • Cetane index 
  • ISO 4406 Particle count 
  • Not limited to…

Vibration Analysis

In today’s competitive business world, manufacturers are seeking every competitive advantage they possibly can to increase their production and minimize costs while maintaining product quality.

 The identification of defects within a machine, reducing equipment failures and unscheduled downtime is increasingly being demanded of condition monitoring technologies.

Vibration analysis has proven to be a very effective tool for identifying mechanical faults within machinery and combined with regular oil sampling the health condition and diagnostics of the equipment will reveal significant information regarding the wellbeing of your equipment.

The use of vibration analysis can determine problems caused due to improper installation, machining errors, insufficient lubrication, improper shaft or sheave alignment, loose bolting, bent shafts, and much more.  It can in most cases detect these problems long before the damage can be seen by maintenance and long before it damages other machine components.

Infra-red/Thermal Scanning

Infrared scanning is used to inspect electrical equipment because excess heat is usually the first sign of trouble. Loose connectors, imbalanced and or overloaded circuits, defective breakers, damaged switches, faulty fuses and material defects all lead to equipment failure.

Benefits of Thermal scanning:

  • Increase Equipment Life
  • Lower Risk
  • Cost saving on repair costs
  • Reduce unscheduled Downtime
  • Prevent Failures

Conditions detectable by an Infra-Red Scanning:

  • Loose/deteriorated connections
  • Overloads
  • Open circuits
  • Unbalanced loads
  • Inductive heating
  • Harmonics
  • Defective equipment