Gear Box Oil Replacement

Lock & Dam - Upper Mississippi River

Plant Description: Lock & Dam
Equipment Description: Tainter Gate Gearboxes

Industrial Fluid Management (IFM) was contracted by the United States Army Corps of Engineers St. Paul District to drain, flush and replace oil inside 69 tainter gate gearboxes at three lock and dam sites along the Upper Mississippi River. Dams are built on rivers to hold back water and form deeper navigation "pools." Most pools in the United States are maintained at a constant minimum water depth of 9 feet for safe navigation. Dams allow river vessels to use a series of locks to "step" up or down the river from one water level to another.


IFM transferred the oil from 55-gallon drums to 350-gallon stainless steel totes with lifting slings so they could be lifted to the top of each dam safely. Once all equipment was placed on each dam, IFM then added a solvency based flushing agent to each gearbox. Each gearbox was cycled for a minimum of one day for the flushing agent to break up the contamination found in each one. IFM utilized diesel pumps and diaphragm pumps to drain, then fill each gearbox with the superior moly synthetic blend gear oil.


The completion of the project took only 23 days to service on all 69 gearboxes. This project greatly increased the life expectancy of each gearbox by removing a mineral oil that was over 20 years old and replacing it with a full synthetic gear oil.

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View Testimonial from CPT Andrew A Berreth, P.E.


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