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Vortex oil filters
Trials have shown that draining oil filters is not enough - they should be crushed

Removing oil filters from hazardous waste

There has been an argument raging for a long time as to whether a drained oil filter should still be classed as hazardous waste.

The Motor Vehicle Dismantlers’ Association have been arguing the point with the Environment Agency and they recently undertook an experiment to measure the quantities of oil remaining in drained filters.

The experiment was carried out by Ray Kirk of Derby based dismantler, Albert Looms to see if draining was adequate to remove the oil from filters. The experiment was quite simple, stand ten mixed oil filters on their gravity drainer and leave them there for seven days. They then sent the drained filters off to Wards Recycling in Ilkeston to be crushed to see what quantity of excess oil remained.

Ray Kirk told us, “The results were varied and surprising. Some filters had little to no oil left in them while others had far more then expected, with over a pint of oil extracted”.

Surprised at these figures, Albert Looms purchased one of Vortex’s filter crushers so they can be sure that they are removing all the oil from all the old filters.

From the industry’s point of view, The MVDA is currently consulting with the EA over this matter and it is hoped that they will agree that an oil filter, if crushed is no longer hazardous and can therefore go in with the hulk for shredding. Good to see someone is fighting our corner!

Oil filters get the green light

- updated information May 25th 2011
Last week the MVDA were notified by the Environment Agency that they accepted the findings of the experiment carried out and that the EA’s Guidance has been modified to include the following statement.

“If the oil filter is crushed to remove excess oil using equipment specifically designed for that purpose, it can be returned to the vehicle once it has been fully depolluted. The depolluted ELV will still be considered as non-hazardous.”

Hats off to MVDA for their efforts. This may not be the biggest event in ELV legislation but it demonstrates that the association that represents dismantlers in the UK is listened to and taken seriously by the Environment Agency.

Contact point

If you want more details about joining the MVDA then please click the link and forward your contact details.

If you would like to know more about Vortex's oil crusher, then visit the Vortex website.

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