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Isomag Bearing Isolators Eliminate Stray Oil Mist

Lapped face bearing isolators eliminate stray mist in oil mist bearing lubrication systems

Oil mist bearing lubrication systems are used extensively in refining, power, manufacturing, pulp & paper, steel, chemical, and offshore facilities using rotating equipment. This form of bearing lubrication is highly successful in providing reliable and cost effective lubrication to bearings in pumps, motors and other types of rotating equipment.

Oil mist is a centralized system that uses compressed air to produce a clean mixture of low-pressure, atomized lubrication oil in precise amounts to provide a continuous supply of clean lubrication to bearings in up to 60 pieces of rotating equipment. Figure 1 shows a typical oil mist system.

There are numerous benefits to using oil mist systems, which are most commonly used on centrifugal pumps, including:

Oil Mist Benefits

  • Reduced Required Maintenance

  • No Oil Changes

  • Reduced Lubricant Consumption

  • Lower Friction

  • Lower Temperatures

  • Mist Blocks Contaminants

  • Reduced Wear

However, one of the widely recognized concerns with oil mist systems is the stray mist that escapes from the bearing housing past labyrinth type devices as shown below.

Figure 1: Old-style (midpoint insertion) oil mist system sealed with labyrinths (

Labyrinth seals are not capable of fully containing mist leakage and oil accumulation on the ground (reference: Oil Mist Lubrication Presented to STLE Houston Section May 2014 by Steven Strollo, Lubrication Engineer Phillips 66 Lubricants).

To fully contain mist leakage requires a face bearing isolator. IsoMag bearing isolators control and contain oil mist inside the bearing housing. The controlled face technology directs the mist thru the bearings and out the reclamation port for optimum reclamation and mist system efficiency.

Figure 2: Modern oil mist system sealed with IsoMag MP-V7 magnetic seals. Note: IsoMag’s work equally well in both old (single mid-port entry as depicted in Figure 2) oil mist systems and today’s (dual mist entry) oil mist systems.

The IsoMag MP-V7 bearing isolator delivers decades of liquid tight operating life by utilizing magnetic vectors and engineered closing forces. This bearing protector provides a deep channel labyrinth and drain back, in collaboration with lapped flat sealing faces and expulsion ports. The MP-V7 offers positively sealed rotating equipment bearing protection, by design, that customary dual labyrinths, with dynamic internal O-rings and lip seals do not.

Figure 3: ISOMAG MP-V7

In addition to providing superior sealing and protection functionality the Isomag MP-V7 offers:

  • A high level of MTBR – projected operating life of 100,000 hours at 12,000 sfm (60 mps)

  • Low operating temperature – does not increase the operating temperature of the bearings

  • Easy installation and removal – O-ring fit on the OD of the MP-V7 makes it easy to install and if necessary remove and reinstall.

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