Zero waste recycling from used oil filters

Our Services

March 20, 2019


Waste oil and oil filters are an unavoidable part of the process for mechanics and auto workshops but all that used oil doesn’t need to go to waste. The waste oil we collect is recycled and re-refined to create high quality fuel oil and base oils, effectively closing the loop on oil usage.

A challenging component of waste oil recovery is residual waste left on equipment parts like oil filters. Automotive workshops build up large amounts of used oil filters each year, each of them filled with highly recoverable used engine oil and contaminated materials like sludge.

Previously, it was almost impossible to remove the residual oil left in a used oil filter. Typically, the filter would be crushed and the oil lost. With our technologically-advanced machines, Cleanaway can provide a cleaner, more serviceable metal recyclable product by extracting up to 95% of the residual oil that is absorbed in the oil filter paper.


How we recover clean metals and used oil for recycling

Cleanaway has a dedicated division called Cleanaway Equipment Services (CES) which provides all workshop waste services, including the collection and recycling of used oil filters.

In WA alone, we collect upwards of 150 tonnes of waste oil filters per year from workshops throughout the metropolitan and regional centres. These are collected in dedicated storage bins supplied by Cleanaway for source separation and next stage recycling.

The used oil filters are processed at Cleanaway’s Bentley facility by a purpose-built filter press machine. This enables us to provide a cleaner, more usable metal recyclable product. No part of the oil filter goes to landfill.

The filter press machine conveys the used oil filters along a sorting line to remove contaminants before being fed to a press that forces the waste oil out for separate collection and processing. The now-empty used filter metal blocks are then compacted and cleaned by Cleanaway’s turbowasher machines to ensure they meet recycling standards, before being sent to recyclers to be reprocessed into next life products such as storage tins and household appliances.

Waste oil captured from this process is consolidated and transported to Cleanaway’s own waste oil refineries for processing and recycling. The recovered oil can be used as an alternative to virgin fuels for energy generation such as hot house boilers and mining operations.

From optically sorting commingled recycling in our state-of-the-art Material Recovery Facilities to turning construction and demolition, and dry commercial and industrial waste into process-engineered fuel at our Cleanaway ResourceCo plant, Cleanaway is committed to our Footprint 2025 roadmap – investing in Australia’s infrastructure to support communities to manage their waste and improve resource recovery.

Cleanaway is the largest waste oil collector in the country – we collect used oil from over 35,000 workshops and businesses around Australia and process over 150 million litres each year. Contact us today to learn how you can turn your waste oil into new base oil and fuel oil products.