To keep the wheels of industry turning, effective lubrication is essential. Industrial operations rely on heavy duty vehicles, large machinery and other mechanical equipment, and in turn these machines depend on different lubricants to run.
Oils and fluids protect mechanical systems from wear, corrosives and contamination while keeping components moving freely. They can also help them transfer power or cope with different operating conditions. In the following sections, we’ll look at some of the key industrial lubricants in use today and their functions.
Standard engine oils are typically petroleum based and are the lifeblood of most industrial operations, lubricating plant machinery and vehicles alike. Today, synthetic engine oils provide companies with enhanced lubrication that can cope with the intense workloads and operating conditions required by modern industry. Oils include additives to provide specific benefits allowing them to improve performance, keep systems cleaner, decrease wear, stay viscous in colder temperatures, lengthen change intervals and reduce maintenance.
Compressor oils can add service life to compressors and their components. Designed with excellent oxidation resistance and thermal stability, they keep compressors clean and running longer without maintenance. Unlike engine oils, these lubricants have no detergents to avoid damage to compressors from debris.
Designed for mechanical systems like flight control systems, refuse collection vehicles and excavation equipment that use hydraulic systems, these fluids provide energy transmission while lubricating, cooling and protecting parts.
Industrial operating environments often require heavy duty lubricants that have high viscosity. This level of lubrication keeps larger gears running efficiently. Transfer cases and large drive systems, along with commercial trucks and agricultural equipment, are all applications where gear oil is often a necessity.
Sideway oils are specifically created for lubricating machine tool slideways and slideway tables. Usually formulated from premium-quality mineral oil, slideway oils also feature a built-for-purpose additive package that incorporates a tackifier. This ensures the oil always adheres to moving parts and avoids runoff. Other additives are designed for performance and deliver resistance against corrosion, wear and oxidation. These oils are also designed to eliminate judder and stick slip, common issues with machine tools that use hydraulics.
Finally, cutting fluid is a kind of lubricant and coolant designed for industrial metalworking processes, such as stamping and machining. The main role of cutting fluid is to transfer heat produced during cutting to improve operation and extend tool life.