Contamination Exclusion Starts with Xclude Desiccant Breathers

Xclude Desiccant Breathers

Contamination exclusion starts with desiccant breathers

Lubricant contamination is one of the leading causes for machine failure, and contamination can begin before the lubricant ever enters the machine. Gearboxes, pumps and reservoirs have to "breathe" when the air expands and contracts, as well as when incoming fluid displaces air, or when air is drawn in when hydraulic components activate. Each time a unit breathes in, it brings with it all sorts of small debris and moisture, depending on the operating environment. Over time, the effects of this contamination can be damaging to the lubricant and to the equipment.

Water-contaminated oil can lead to additive stripping, and eventually the water can cause corrosion and rust. Small particulates no larger than three microns (the diameter of a single human hair is 40 microns) can cause unwanted machine abrasion. All of these problems accelerate wear and lead to costly repairs. The simple solution to these problems is the use of desiccant breathers, which can stop water and particulates from contaminating the lubricant in the first place. From the time oil enters your facility to the end of its useful life, protecting it with desiccant breathers will extend the life of the oil and the equipment, decrease downtime, and save you hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Desiccant breathers are vital component of lubricant reliability program

Studies have shown that 50-70% of lubricant contamination comes from outside the equipment. Most machines are designed to "breathe," so protecting the source of airflow from moisture and particulate contamination is extremely important. This is true for most sizes and types of machines.

Breathers are sized according to the required cubic feet per minute (cfm) of air exchange for each machine application. The desiccant beads in the breathers change color as they become saturated with moisture, indicating that the unit is spent. Desiccant breathers use filter media to remove particles and a silica-gel desiccant to remove moisture from the air entering the oil. Xclude desiccant breathers incorporate a high capture-efficiency filter to help sustain desired cleanliness levels by removing even minute particulates.

They also create low relative humidity levels in the headspace, making condensation and absorption by the lubricant unlikely. When a system is properly fitted with a breather that contains drying and filtration media, contaminant ingression is greatly reduced. Installation of desiccant breathers at critical ingression points is a cost-effective means to prevent contaminants from entering the fluid reservoirs as differential pressures occur.

LE offers full line of desiccant breathers and accessories for contamination exclusion in industrial applications

Xclude™ Desiccant Breathers

  • Eliminate rust-forming condensation
  • Prevent sludge deposits and water contamination
  • Reduce wear and tear on equipment
  • Provide longer oil and filter

Xclude Standard Breathers

Xclude Standard Breather

Providing basic protection from moisture and particulate contamination in lubricants and equipment, Xclude Standard Breathers replace the standard dust cap or OEM breather cap on equipment. They work great in totes, transformers, storage tanks and hydraulics in a variety of industries. They are convenient and simple to install. Their clear casing allows easy viewing of color-indicating desiccant in order to monitor when the breather should be replaced. They can withstand high vibration and volatile environments.

As air is drawn into equipment through the breather, the layered filter elements remove particulates while the desiccant beads strip harmful moisture. While in service or during shutdown, the desiccant attracts moisture from inside the equipment reservoir, actively drying the equipment.


Xclude Standard Breather Highlights

  • Primary filter element captures particles at 3-micron absolute
  • Secondary filter element protects against desiccant dust migration
  • Foam pad captures oil mist and disperses incoming air evenly
  • Color-indicating silica gel extracts moisture
  • Integrated nylon standpipe
  • Resilient polycarbonate body
  • Threaded mounting
  • Air vents

Xclude Extended Series Breathers

Xclude Extended Series Breathers

Xclude Extended Series Breathers are high-airflow, long-lasting desiccant breathers with check-valve technology. They are ideal for storage tanks, large gearboxes, wind turbines and remote applications.

As wet, contaminated air is drawn through the unit, multiple 3-micron polyester filter elements remove solid particulates, and the silica gel extracts moisture. When air is expelled from the container, the top foam pad prevents oil mist from contacting silica gel or entering the atmosphere. The breather is outfitted with a resilient nylon standpipe and polypropylene oil mist reducer to allow oil mist to coalesce and drain back into the reservoir, rather than compromising the desiccant. Check-valves are located underneath the unit to isolate equipment from ambient conditions, prolonging breather life and protecting system integrity.

Xclude Extended Series Breather Highlights

  • Six high-quality umbrell check-valves
  • Honeycomb technology oil mist reducer
  • Primary filter elements capture particles at 3-micron absolute
  • Secondary filter element protects against desiccant dust migration
  • Foam pad captures oil mist and disperses incoming air evenly
  • Color-indicating silica gel extracts moisture
  • Integrated nylon standpipe
  • Resilient polycarbonate body
  • Threaded mounting

Xclude High Humidity Breathers

Xclude High Humidity Breather (HHEC)

Xclude High Humidity Expansion Chamber Breathers are best suited for low-flow gearboxes and high-humidity applications with continuous operation. These high humidity desiccant breathers feature an expansion chamber to isolate lubricants from all levels of ambient humidity, keeping out harmful particles and creating a nearly sealed system to protect the equipment.

Xclude High Humidity Breather (HHCV)

Xclude High Humidity Check Valve Breathers are best suited for low-flow gearboxes and high-humidity applications with intermittent operation. They are outfitted with check valves to ensure no excess pressure or vacuum builds. The internal check valve system creates a nearly sealed system.

Xclude High Humidity Breather Highlights

  • High-quality umbrella check-valves (recessed)
  • Integrated nylon standpipe
  • Resilient polycarbonate body
  • Primary filter elements capture particles at 3-micron absolute
  • Secondary filter element protects against desiccant dust migration (Check Valve Breather only)
  • Expansion chamber for expansion/contraction of air within casing (Expansion Chamber Breather only)
  • Color-indicating silica gel extracts moisture
  • Foam pad captures oil mist and disperses incoming air evenly
  • Threaded mounting

Xclude Extreme Duty Breathers

Xclude Extreme Duty Breather

LE’s most versatile breather solution, Xclude Extreme Duty Breathers are designed to take the abuse of vibration and impact, broad temperature range, chemicals and other challenging environments, making them an ideal solution for application such as mobile and off-road equipment, hydraulics and nautical applications. The rugged housing and integrated standpipe allow for decreased oil misting. Quality check valves isolate the system while accommodating airflow. The visual indicator windows show the desiccant as it changes color, indicating that the breather should be replaced.

As wet, contaminated air is drawn through the unit, multiple filter elements remove solid particulates while the silica gel extracts moisture. When air is expelled from the container, the top foam pad prevents oil mist from contacting silica gel or entering the atmosphere.

Xclude Extreme Duty Breather Highlights

  • Quad check valves
  • Primary filter elements capture particles at 3-micron absolute
  • Secondary filter element protects against desiccant dust migration
  • Foam pad captures oil mist and disperses incoming air evenly
  • Color-indicating silica gel extracts moisture
  • Integrated standpipe
  • Rugged PC/PBT alloy housing

Xclude Rebuildable Steel Breathers

Xclude Rebuildable Steel Breathers

Xclude Rebuildable Steel Breathers for high-flow applications feature a rugged housing to protect equipment from moisture and contaminants, even in the toughest environments. Rebuildable steel breathers are perfect for hydraulic reservoirs, bulk oil storage, diesel tank storage, and where chemical or harsh environments exist.

Xclude Rebuildable Steel Breather Highlights

  • Replaceable microglass pleated filter captures airborne particles to 1-micron absolute
  • Easy-to-replace desiccant bags remove moisture from incoming air
  • Color-indicating silica gel desiccant extracts moisture (can be customized to mitigate a variety of chemicals or fumes)
  • Outside sight glass indicator (for viewing when desiccant changes colors)
  • Foam pad captures any large particles and disperses incoming air evenly
  • Integrated standpipe
  • Rugged carbon or stainless steel housing
  • Air vents
  • Threaded mounting

Rebuildable Steel Breathers can be ordered in a variety of the different materials to meet chemical compatibility needs. A variety of steel housings (304 stainless & 316 stainless steel), gasket / seal material (Viton, SBR and EPDM rubber), desiccant media (activated carbon, molecular sieve, activated alumina), and filter materials (microglass / plastisol filter) are available for a customized breather application. Give LE a call for assistance with particular applications.

Xclude Non-Desiccant (ND-2) Breather

Xclude Non-Desiccant (ND-2) Breather

Xclude Non-Desiccant (ND-2) Breathers prevent contamination when humidity is not an issue. They can be used for application such as oil sight glasses and small gearboxes. As wet, contaminated air is drawn through the unit, the hydrophobic media repels water while the particulate filter captures dirt, preventing both from entering the equipment.

Xclude Non-Desiccant (ND-2) Breather Highlights

  • Hydrophobic filter element captures particles at 3-micron absolute and creates impenetrable barrier against water droplets
  • Durable, shock-absorbing housing
  • O-ring seal with pipe threading eliminates need for additional sealantThreaded mounting

Xclude Non-Desiccant (ND-35) Breather

Xclude Non-Desiccant (ND-35) Breather

Xclude Non-Desiccant (ND-35) Breathers prevent contamination when humidity is not an issue. Intended applications include low-humidity applications, water-based lubricants, high-dust environments and oil-misting applications. As wet, contaminated air is drawn through the unit, the hydrophobic media repels water while the pleated particulate filter provides a large surface area and protects against particulate contamination. The unit also blocks free water from the reservoir.

Xclude Non-Desiccant (ND-35) Breather Highlights

  • Pleated filter element captures particles at 3-micron absolute
  • Hydrophobic filter element repels water
  • Coating allows oil mist to coalesce
  • Durable, shock-absorbing housing
  • Threaded mounting

Xclude Accessories & Adaptors

Xclude Adapters & Accessories

Whatever the connection type and size required, we can provide what you need for accessories and adaptors. We offer a full range of creative solutions to get your breathers installed so they can start protecting your equipment from harmful contamination. Contact us today if you need breather connections, adapters, vacuum indicators, or if you want to install multiple breathers.


LE offers full-service support for breathers and other contamination exclusion solutions

In addition to onsite equipment assessment, consultation and service, LE provides the following customization and value-added options:

  • Product recommendation, sizing and installation of desiccant breathers
  • Lubrication reliability training & education
  • Oil analysis program

LE is happy to offer industrial lubricant and reliability recommendations for a variety of industries and applications, and to provide product-specific data on all of our items to help you make the right decision. To learn more about our enhanced lubricants and lubricant reliability products, please contact LE today.

Interested in contamination exclusion solutions?
Call (800) 537-7683 or click to contact LE.