Machine Lubricant Selection, Part 1

Lubricant selection is a pivotal starting point in the pursuit of precision lubrication practices. All the effort applied to clean delivery and handling, filtration, dehydration, alignment, balancing, etc., is lost if the lubricant selected for the application cannot support the machine’s demands. Many criteria must be considered when selecting a lubricant for a set of machines or machine components.

Lubricant chemistry has an influence on the final decision. The basestock (synthetic or mineral) and the additive systems in use (EP, AW, R&O) exert tremendous influence on the performance qualities of the lubricant. It is common to have multiple choices for a given grade and type of lubricant within a product line (i.e., ISO 220EP/SAE 90EP gear oil), with each example designed to perform effectively for a set of given conditions.

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