RSS® Skimmer Operation Manual






Your RSS Remedial Support Skimmers (Skimmer) will include the following components:

  1. 6' - 12' adjustable stainless steel lifting cable (cable), or optional custom length stainless steel chain (chain);
  2. Plated eyebolt (cable), or Plated eyebolt and S-hook (chain);

RSS Remedial Support Skimmers (Skimmer) remove gasoline and diesel from water using our patented KLEER filter membrane (Filter) which is sealed inside the slotted filter hydrocarbon recovery section.  The three standard Skimmers are designed to float within a well when empty which allows the slotted Filter section to intersect the fluid surface and as the Skimmer fills it will sink lower.  Once the Skimmer fills completely, use lifting cable or chain to remove from the well and dispense the collected fuel. Carefully lower the empty Skimmer into the well to continue the recovery process (ATEX).

The depth that the Skimmer can sink varies in each well.  This distance should be assessed and then limited by setting the cable or chain to a length that your current fuel and water levels demand.  If the fluid elevation changes, simply adjust the cable or chain so that the recovery section slots contact your floating hydrocarbon. 

The most efficient operation of the Skimmer demands that the fuel/water interface naturally rest at the lower portion of the slotted filter to allow as much hydrocarbon as possible to contact the Filter (this is approximately where a standard empty Skimmer floats).  When the Filter contacts hydrocarbon it is designed to recover a fuel layer of any thickness floating on the water.  Since the clear Skimmer reservoir is always below the fluid surface it is important to ensure that you have sufficient depth of total fluids to accommodate the length of your reservoir.

We have developed your RSS Remedial Support Skimmer, often called a passive bailer, downhole oil/water separator or fuel recovery bailer, through three decades of field use.  Our patented KLEER® filter membrane is proprietary and unique.  If you have site challenges, or are uncertain if the RSS Remedial Support Skimmer is authentic, call us anytime.  North America 519 200 1153


STEP 1 - Attach Cable or Chain using Eyebolt

Permanently attach your cable or chain to the wellhead using the included plated eyebolt. This ensures you will not lose your Skimmer down hole.  This permanent assembly is now considered your cable or chain.

STEP 2 - Measure Depth

Measure distance from the wellhead attachment point to top of stabilized total fluid column in the well, including LNAPL.  Note this as Depth.

STEP 3 - Measure Cable or Chain length

Your standard passive Skimmers (RSS25, RSS50, RSS75) will float prior to recovering hydrocarbon fluid and they will sink as they fill.  The cable or chain length must be set according to your current hydrocarbon elevation to limit the descent of the slotted Filter section into the water table.  The highest point on your Skimmer that the interface can be skimmed is near the top of the slotted filter section, skimming 0.35 metres (13"-14") below the top of the uppermost 1" diameter vent tube on standard Skimmers.

To measure the appropriate cable or chain length, you must reference the measured Depth of the Fuel/Water Interface Level completed in Step 2.

Subtract 0.35 (13"-14") representing the vent tube that measured Depth, and the resulting measurement is the Length of your cable/chain above the vent tube.  As outlined in Step 1, remember to include the length of eyebolts, hooks, and other assembly pieces at the wellhead which are permanently affixed as part of cable or chain Length.

If interested in validating your calculations are accurate, you may audit your measurements by completing the following alternate calculation:

Cable or Chain Length plus 0.35m (13"-14")  = Depth

STEP 4 - Adjust Cable or Chain Length

If using a cable adjust the Length by simply loosening but not removing the two securing nuts on the cable clamp.  Slide the cable-end loop up or down and re-attach it with the clamp to the cable.

If using a chain adjust Length using any fastener such as the stainless s-hook included with your Skimmer. You may permanently attach one end of the fastener to the upper section of the chain to avoid losing fastener.  Use pliers to squeeze one end of the s-hook onto the chain or wellcap.

STEP 5 - Place Skimmer into Well

Ensure the drain valve at base of Skimmer is closed prior to installation. Carefully lower your Skimmer into the well until the cable or chain has no slack.

Note: To expedite installation in the absence of specific Depth measurement, many of our clients simply insert the standard KLEER® skimmer slowly down through the LNAPL until the weight of the skimmer is negligible: secure the cable adjustment or chain hook at that position.  Similarly, check periodically for fluid depth variation utilizing the emptied skimmer.

STEP 6 - Recovery

The duration of time between installation and full reservoir recovery varies by well.  It is encouraged that each well is assessed individually and adjusted as necessary.

To remove the recovered fluid from the well, carefully lift your Skimmer to the surface.   

To dissipate any static electricity while emptying, firmly attach a grounding wire between the bottom brass valve and your container prior to opening valve, or ensure the valve or metal skimmer base is in constant contact with your receiving vessel.

Once sufficiently grounded, empty the fluid in the bailer reservoir through the drain valve and into a receiving vessel.    


RSS Remedial Support Skimmers contain no moving parts and therefore are easy to maintain.  Typically the only maintenance required is when the Skimmer is covered in mud.  When this occurs the slotted Filter chamber exterior may need to be hose-rinsed with fresh, room temperature water only.

Avoid detergents, alcohol, waxes, solvents, surfactant or water jets.

There is no need to open the slotted sealed Filter cartridge; there are no serviceable parts. Opening the slotted section will damage the filter assembly.

Cleaning the Skimmer with noted items to avoid or opening the slotted section will void our warranty.



My Skimmer does not collect any fuel, why? 

The cable Length is too short or too long. Recalculate distance for cable Length and re-install your Skimmer. If this doesn't help, there is no more gasoline/diesel downhole. 

My Skimmer fills up only partially with fuel, why?

The cable Length is too long and your Skimmer was allowed to sink too far. If your Skimmer only partially fills and hydrocarbon fluid remains in the well the maximum cable length should be shortened by 2cm-6cm (1"-3").

You will encounter a similar problem if the water elevation drops by a large amount during collection.  If this occurs the cable Length must be extended. 

My Skimmer fills up with water, why?

The cable Length is too long.  Excessive cable length may allow water into your Skimmer through the vent tube if it is filled and heavy with recovered LNAPL.  Alternatively users are free to extend the 1" top vent tube as required.

Your skimmer will not recover water. That is our Skimmer Guarantee. 

What maintenance do you recommend?

Since RSS Remedial Support Skimmers contain no moving parts the best maintenance is no maintenance.

If your fluid has suspended solids and trash and the well diameter allows, wrap any polypropylene "oil-only" mat around the slotted Filter, securing with string or copper wire. Unwrap and replace if it becomes clogged.

Water can not harm your Skimmer, but try to avoid the damaging debris of well floods.

What about warranty?

Your Skimmer is guaranteed for two years to repel water and collect fuel and diesel when used as directed.

When used as directed, RSS Remedial Support Skimmers have demonstrated an ability to continue collecting fuel for significantly longer than two years.

If you need information, we welcome your call. Just ask us.