FAQ Session 4: Oil vs. Oil Free Vacuum Pumps for BHO

by | Aug 8, 2015 | FAQ, Vacuum Pumps

If you’ve already picked out the perfect vacuum oven for your setup, now it’s time to pick out your ideal vacuum pump to go with it. The 2 most common types of vacuum pumps being used for cannabis extractions are oil pumps and oil-free pumps.

Rotary Vane (Oil) Vacuum Pumps

Rotary vane pump technology is an older technology that has been used in commercial and laboratory grade vacuum pumps for over 50 years. The oil inside the pump seals, cools, and lubricates the pump simultaneously which makes these pumps a very efficient solution for those on a budget.

However, there are some concerns regarding the use of these pumps with cannabis extractions – the main of which is contamination.

If you use an oil pump when purging your extracts, you run the risk of pump oil coming in contact with and contaminating your medicine. Oil exhaust from the pump can also cause contamination in your working environment as well.

Another concern with oil pumps is premature wear and tear of your equipment. Common solvents that are used for making cannabis extracts such as butane actually break down the oil inside your vacuum pump which causes premature wear and tear.

If you do decide to use an oil pump for your operation, we recommend our AI SuperVac Series vacuum pumps. They are commercial grade, dual-stage pumps that are built for long-term continuous operation.

They also come equipped with key features that help to reduce product and workspace contamination like an oil backflow prevention valve and a high capacity exhaust oil mist filter.

They come in both a 5.6 CFM and 11 CFM size, and you can see each of their specification at the links below:

Supervac 11 cfm vacuum pump

AI SuperVac 5.6 CFM

AI SuperVac 11 CFM

We also carry some great oil pump options from industry recognized manufacturer Edwards as well:

Edwards RV8

Edwards E2M28

Always remember that it’s very important to note that you should only run your pumps in a well ventilated area.

Oil-Free Vacuum Pumps

Oil-free vacuum pumps are increasingly becoming more sought out in the industry as the focus on cleaner, pharmaceutical grade extracts grows.

Since there is no oil used in the pump, you don’t have to worry about product contamination or even premature wear and tear of your equipment.

Although oil-free pumps have a higher price tag than rotary vane pumps, they require much less maintenance which will save you more money in the long term, and don’t forget there’s no extra costs like oil changes.

A good oil-free pump can easily last for 1 to 2 years of serious continuous use, and maintenance is as simple as swapping out a simple component which can be done in mere minutes.

Once it’s swapped out, you’re good to go for another year or more.

AI CleanVac 5.1 CFM Oil Free Vacuum Pump

Our new AI CleanVac Series of oil-free dry scroll pumps are the perfect solution if you’re looking for an oil-free pump that is built to last. They come in 5.1 CFM, 11 CFM, and also 22 CFM options. Click on the links to view each pumps specifications and features:

AI CleanVac CV5 5.1 CFM
AI CleanVac CV11 11 CFM
AI CleanVac CV22 22 CFM

In addition to our CleanVac pumps, we also carry a variety of other oil free vacuum pumps, so no matter what your preference is, we have something for you.

Pfeiffer HiCube 80 Oil Free Turbo Molecular Vacuum Pump
Edwards nXDS10i Dry Scroll Vacuum Pump
Welch-2052 2.3 CFM Oil Free Vacuum Pump

Across International cold trap

We also highly recommend using a cold trap with your vacuum oven and pump, and the AI -40°F cold trap makes an excellent addition for any setup.

The addition of a cold trap will increase your extraction’s quality, and it will also boost your vac oven and pump’s performance and even prolong your equipment’s longevity.

Check out our cold trap here, and don’t forget to see what X-Tracted Labs had to say about it after they took theirs for a test run.

Did you find this FAQ session helpful?

Let us know what you thought in the comments below.

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