While potential savings can be made from consolidating lubricants, you can also potentially save money by using more expensive lubricants.
Indeed, buying cheaper lubricants may be a false economy. If you can procure a high-quality product at a low price, that’s great, but some cheaper lubricants offer inferior performance. They may seize up in low temperatures or run out at high temperatures. In addition, if your manufacturing processes involve a lot of water, cheap lubricants may easily wash off, leading to additional wear and rapid rust formation on components like bearings and chains. For example, Mobil reports that a steel mill in Oman experienced benefits after switching to Mobilgrease XHP 222:
“A steel manufacturer was lubricating the rolling mill bearings with a lithium mineral oil based grease. Due to operating temperatures and continuous spray, the grease was being washed away. After switching to Mobilgrease XHP 222 grease consumption was reduced by 67%.”
If you’re cautious about performing a plant-wide shift for lubricants, you can always experiment on a single machine or line. By then tracking the maintenance on a spreadsheet, you can evaluate whether less lubricant is needed, or less time is spent re-greasing.
High-quality lubricants should be capable of meeting the challenges you face, and while they may be more costly, they can potentially pay for themselves several times over. If you would like to explore whether it’s worth upgrading your lubricants, contact our specialist team at TrAchem to discuss the potential alternatives from multiple manufacturers.