Drilling Rig Lubricating Oil
Problem: A drilling company was concerned with the volume of waste lubricating oil and filters generated by diesel power plants on its rigs. Also of concern was the expense of replacement lubricating oil and filters and waste management costs. The drilling company recognized that the problem stemmed from performing oil and filter changes at 500-hour operating intervals as recommended by manufacturer. In general, the basis for the company's concerns was reducing the daily operating costs of its rigs.
Solution: The company extend the operating interval between lube oil changes for the diesel power plants. They performed sampling and analysis of the lube oil to determine the need for a change. Specific analytes, such as contaminants, additives, and metals, were given threshold values. Whenever a threshold value was exceeded, a lube oil and filter change was made. In any event, the maximum operating interval was set at 1,250 hours.
Benefits: The change in the procedure for determining the need for lube oil and filter changes resulted in a decrease in oil costs from $64/day to $41/day in two years. Additional cost savings were realized due to decreased maintenance requirements, improved operating efficiency, and reduced waste management requirements. Importantly, no harm or unusual wear was experienced in the diesel power plants.