Option for Dealing With Waste Water
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  1. #1
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    Default Option for Dealing With Waste Water

    So, I got this PM this morning, and I figgered I may as well answer this out front:


    Quote Originally Posted by Xxxx
    Ox, Good thread.
    I wish I had seen this a month ago. We are in the process of switching over to Blaser. What are you doing with your old coolant ? We used Rustlick WS 5050 for the past 25 years, water based. I have 16 55gal drums of old coolant and I'm having trouble getting rid of it.

    I want to build something to boil it off or buy something. I'll probably save money long run if we can build something efficient. I got quoted north of $2500.00 to take it away and a four week wait, then the guy backed out of the job so I'm back to square one and pissed off.

    What do you do ?

    Thanks, Xxx

    Well, if you saw a thread that I had last fall about the tote with the spigot issues?
    That was a tote that had old coolant and waste water/oil from the skimmer on the parts worsher.

    By letting that sit around a while - it mostly separates - which I'm sure that your 55 gal drums have as well.

    Every so many years, in the winter I will crank up the heater in my batch type worsher (for like tranny cases and whatnot? - we don't normally runs production parts through it. Mostly for worshing up our parts trays.) And then I start dumping the waste water back in there. The heat is not wasted as it is winter, and the skimmer on that worsher pulls the oils out as you go. You get a lot of colored water that doesn't have much oil content usually by this point. But it can smell the place up for a bit.

    As you evap off the old water, any oils that were in suspension have to go somewhere, and so they float to the top. If you are not able to skim them off, you just sealed your evap surface. The commercial evaporators that I have seen at the trade shows never have any skimmers, so I guess they are only good for mop water? Certainly not machine shop fluids.

    Now this will still leave me with the oils when done, and at that point (there are a few buckets of really nasty stuff tho too) but when I get a good job in an Acme sometime (seem evasive these days) then I will likely just pour it in there and it will clean it right up - if it's a hot running job anyway. Otherwise - option B is that I can always just give the oils (maybe not the real nasty stuff) to a chum with a waste oil furnace.

    As for the real nasty stuff (that doesn't like to skim well) I might just pour it over a cardboard and waste paper fire before and after the crops go in / come off.

    ... and then recharge the worsher when done eh?


    One other trick that I use, as much of the stuff that I deal with is already skimmed oil that have water that pulled out with it as well, is that I have a 15 (?) gallon drum with the top off of it. I dump it in there, and I have a pump in the bottom and a skimmer on top. I try to keep the water level below the reach of the skimmer and that yields me a pretty good start to having oil and water, and not drums of mixed all over.

    It would be swell to one day land a nice coolant recycle machine with a centrifuge and all, but I'm not sure that I would ever be able to justify that, but it's a goal...


    So - that's what I have been dooing...


    ------------------------

    Think Snow Eh!
    Ox

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    Some other coolant disposal related threads from my PM bookmarks:

    What does it cost you to have your spent coolant taken away ?

    Coolant Disposal Solutions

    The cost of disposing of used coolant. Yikes!

    How do I dispose of tramp oil with some coolant in it?

    I have around 200 bookmarks on coolant issues, my dream is a new cutter coating so perfectly slippery that air alone becomes all you need for any machining job...

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    $2.84 a gallon isn't that bad, heck back when I worked for the man in Cali over 25 years ago we paid $8 a gallon to have 250 gallon totes hauled off.

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    Be careful and know the laws, some states you can not boil off the water unless you are certified with the state DEQ and the epa, and the fines are nasty...Phil

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    Quote Originally Posted by Phil in Montana View Post
    Be careful and know the laws, some states you can not boil off the water unless you are certified with the state DEQ and the epa, and the fines are nasty...Phil
    I guess I can understand this, given you're likely boiling off hydrocarbons too. But there can't be any proscription on simply evaporating the water from old coolant (is there?).

    So a bubbler and skimmer to capture the oils should be fine.

    [Heh - searching for "bubblers" now gets you a lot of vape/drug stuff]

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    Quote Originally Posted by Phil in Montana View Post
    Be careful and know the laws, some states you can not boil off the water unless you are certified with the state DEQ and the epa, and the fines are nasty...Phil
    Isn't that the truth, when I tell people how tight some of the environmental laws are in some California locations they act like I am making up stories.

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    Yah mean dumping it in the creek is bad?

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    Quote Originally Posted by david n View Post
    Yah mean dumping it in the creek is bad?
    Dumdum, that's what terlits is fer...

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    Years ago, a shop I worked at used a gas fired coolant evaporator. It would boil down about 50 gallons a day and usually ran 4-5 days per week. Long story short..... After figuring out how much labor went into boiling off old coolant, managing the resultant oils and waste, plus the cost for waste disposal, gas and boiler upkeep, we bought a recycling unit. Still, no free lunch. Some labor and still some waste to deal with plus maintenance of the recycler, but less costly than boiling.

    Boiling, in addition to water vapor does release some VOCs. The post noting that some states regulate that is correct.

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    Quote Originally Posted by david n View Post
    Yah mean dumping it in the creek is bad?
    In many a So Cal city it is illegal to wash your own car in your own driveway. Natural creeks and rivers are few and far between, the LA River is now pretty much a cement channel.

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    Luckly I don't produce too much waste................It's been years since I had a sump go rancid and had to be pumped. I just skim outa the machines and then let it sit in a tank with a bottom drain. Drain the coolant from bottom up and it goes in the saw. Oil goes to the county recycling center just down the road.....................

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    Preface- I wrote the document that the WI DNR copied verbatim for their Used Oil Best Practices policy for the metalworking industry. I am as much of a subject matter expert on this topic as you will find anywhere, but there are state to state variations since there were only two states(last I checked) that are not authorized agents under RCRA to have their own regulations, which may be more stringent than RCRA.

    No one wants to hear this, but you are responsible for characterizing your waste. When dealing with Used Oils (that is a legally defined term) you have to remember that they carry an exemption to treatment as a RCRA Part C Hazardous Waste. Bottom line is you have "cradle to the grave" legal liability for your metalworking oil/coolant wastes. Your contractor has no, to very limited, liability under RCRA so whatever you do or whomever you hire, you better know the final disposition. That includes places like municipal facilities that are often set up for burning things like used motor oil from local residences and are not likely performing required testing if industrial wastes are being commingled.

    Good news is the Chlorine content problems have gone away in all modern emulsion coolants, but some of the cheap stuff still had chlorinated paraffins as of a few years ago, which can cause issues if you don't know how to handle the exemption. Bad news is we saw plenty of places where the maintenance guys using Brake Kleen on stuff and dumping the waste in with the Used Oil made a gigantic batch of Hazardous Waste.

    If you don't know the metals content of your oil or emulsion coolant, you should find out. For instance, I have seen many coolants that leech lead from brass machining lines, and if the oil portion is not useful for "energy recovery" AND the water portion is not wastewater-treatable, you have a Part C Hazardous Waste. Concentrating the water portion can make it worse.

    Over my tenure in the Used Oil collection/recovery and wastewater treatment business, I saw dozens of cases where shops tried to add an evaporator or something similar to lower their cost by lowering the amount they have us pick up, only to have created Hazardous Waste from what otherwise was easy to process and handle. If you've never seen a lab pack or other Hazardous Waste disposal quote... trust me Used Oil pickups are dirt cheap.

    If anyone has specific regulatory questions I can try to answer them, but don't have time to get into the weeds of some state-to-state differences. Hope this helps.

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    Build a waste water treatment plant...

    The thought occurred: since the oil isn't dissolved, filter it out. Perhaps a sand filter would do it. Cheap to try, and if it works...all that's left is mostly water, which does evaporate.

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    When I change out coolant in a machine I let it evaporate as much as possible then I drain it into 5 gal. pails. It costs me about $35.00 per 5 gal. pail to dispose of at a nearby hazmat disposal company.

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    Quote Originally Posted by norb View Post
    When I change out coolant in a machine I let it evaporate as much as possible then I drain it into 5 gal. pails. It costs me about $35.00 per 5 gal. pail to dispose of at a nearby hazmat disposal company.
    Yeah, but consider Rick's post (which was very on-point) - you're still responsible for the waste, even after you've handed it off. Which means that if that company is no good, and itself disposes of the waste improperly, you can face fines or even jail time for it.

    There's cases I've read of where this has happened.

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    How is it that the "Cradle to Grave" buck stops here?

    Not one tier up or down?


    --------------------

    Think Snow Eh!
    Ox

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ox View Post
    How is it that the "Cradle to Grave" buck stops here?

    Not one tier up or down?
    Because small businesses are always the ones who get shit on. It's just the way it is*, ain't it?


    *Because we keep electing Pols who benefit the wealthy and powerful over the Hoi-Polloi.

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    See, dumpin' in the creek is soundin' better and better....................

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    Ox go make some friends with some mechanic shops (diesel or busy gas) alot of them get all there coolants and oils taken for free. Thats where all my Tamp oils and coolant goes. I dont get alot maybe 30 gals a year? heck I dotn know maybe more or less.
    Neighbors shop is a mechanic shop, the oil dude was there and I asked the neighbor to ask him ho much it would cost to take 5 sealed 5 gallon buckets of waste oil,and a few buckets of coolant. the oil dude said oil free and wanted to see the coolant specs. looked them over made a call and said free as well. told him there was fine metal shaving in both, he said no biggy.

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    Can "skimmed" oils be burnt in a waste oil heater?
    How about edm dielectric oil?
    Straight coolant oils used in carbide grinders have a very high flash point so I'm thinking not good for heating.
    The water is easy and you do not need to boil it. I would consider that a waste of electricity. What I do end up with is a "goo" of stuff that will not evaporate.
    Bob


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