When it comes to turf care and maintenance at a golf course, the chemical makeup of fluids used has a large impact on course aesthetics, maintenance costs, and the environmental footprint on the course and surrounding watershed. The last thing a classy, members-only club wants is for their beautiful course to be damaged by leaking fluids. Thankfully, bio-friendly lubricants can be used to save your course from costly turf damage and keep it “green” in more ways than one.
Topics: Biodegradable Fluids
In a nutshell, the Vessel General Permit (VGP) is a law that requires operators of large, commercial marine vessels to switch from mineral-oil lubricants to the environmentally acceptable lubricants (EALs) that meet Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) standards. EALs biodegrade much quicker than traditional mineral oils, and they also have less toxic discharges. That being said, when it comes to complying with the EPA’s Vessel General Permit requirements, not every environmentally acceptable lubricant will work; you also have to consider seal compatibility and VGP criteria.
While there’s plenty of information available today about how to choose the right environmentally friendly hydraulic fluid for your machines, there isn’t much information available about the process of switching your systems over to eco-friendly hydraulic fluids. There’s always the potential for a catastrophic failure if the transition isn’t done correctly, and before you transition from mineral-based to bio-based hydraulic fluids, it’s imperative that your plant and maintenance managers know how to evaluate your lubrication system’s operating, design, and maintenance characteristics in order to identify and remedy incompatibility issues that may result in problems like severe foaming, leaking seals, plugged filters, increased operating temperatures, and higher-than-normal wear on certain components (such as the hydraulic pump).
In nearly every industry today, businesses are trying to figure out how they can reduce their environmental footprint. In fact, many industries have actually launched green initiatives and created regulations that force companies to be more responsible with their environmental practices. And while manufacturers certainly aren’t strangers to these heightened environmental standards, one environmentally friendly practice that’s often overlooked is using environmentally friendly hydraulic fluids in their hydraulic systems and machinery.