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Freeze Drying Solutions

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General Vacuum Pump Maintenance for Freeze Dryers

The most common complaint about freeze drying is loss in vacuum pressure. This loss is most often due to one of three things:

  • A leak in the freeze dry system
  • Dirty/Contaminated vacuum pump oil
  • An issue with the vacuum pump 

Is it time to change the vacuum pump oil?


Often, the best place to start troubleshooting is by performing a vacuum pump oil change. When the oil in a rotary vane pump starts to look cloudy or dirty, it’s time to change the oil!

The frequency for oil changes in freeze drying is much higher than other applications due to the demand placed on the vacuum pump and the volume of moisture that is being displaced.

Do I have the right vacuum pump?

Because freeze drying requires an oil based rotary vane pump to maintain the depth of vacuum, it’s important to choose the right pump. A standard rotary vane pump works well with aqueous-based solutions.