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Tips for Choosing Right Gear Oil Lubricant

Gear oils are designed to protect gears, bearings and seals in all types of enclosed gear drive with circulation or splash lubrication systems. They are also formulated for outstanding extreme-pressure characteristics, varying temperatures and load-carrying properties in a broad range of industrial and automobile equipment. Choosing the right gear oil can help provide slip-free power transmission even at high speed and eliminate pitting from forming in the contact region within the mechanisms of the respective machine.
When selecting lubricants the right gear oil, numerous factors must be considered beyond simply selecting a product from the maintenance manual, such as product availability, operating conditions, the preferred lubricant brand and product consolidation efforts. Proper lubricant selection is a cornerstone of any excellent lubrication program. Therefore when it comes to maintaining your machines gearbox it is crucial that the gear oil you choose to cover all the required parameters of the machine.
Factors that define the right gear oil for application :
The following criteria’s have to be followed for the best possible results when it comes to choosing the right gear oil. Viscosity, Additives and Base oil type.
Viscosity: The viscosity for a gear lubricant is primarily chosen to provide the desired film thickness between interacting surfaces at a given speed and load. Choosing an appropriate viscosity grade is usually as simple as finding the recommendation in a component’s maintenance manual. Therefore, it is important to understand the methods for viscosity selection and the factors that affect the requirement. The viscosity of the oil makes sure that all the mechanism inside the machinery is properly lubed and oil flows throw every part and component and there is no friction among the metals and thus the wear and tear are avoided.
Additives: The additive package used in the lubricant will determine the lubricant’s general category and affects various key performance properties under operating conditions. They are organic or inorganic compounds dissolved or suspended as solids in oil. They typically range between 0.1 to 30 percent of the oil volume, depending on the machine. Enhance existing base oil properties with antioxidants, corrosion inhibitors, anti-foam agents and emulsifying agents. Suppress undesirable base oil properties and impart new properties to base oils with extreme pressure (EP) additives, detergents and so on.
Base oil type: The type of base oil used should be determined by the operating conditions, gear type, and other factors. There are two basic oil types, mineral and synthetic. High-quality mineral base oils perform well in most applications. In fact, mineral base oils typically have higher pressure-viscosity coefficients than common synthetics, allowing for greater film thickness at given operating viscosities. There are, however, situations where synthetic base oils are preferable. Many synthetic base stocks have greater inherent resistance to oxidation and thermal degradation making them preferable for applications with high operating temperatures and, in some cases, allowing for extended service intervals. Additionally, synthetics perform better in machines subjected to low ambient temperatures due to their high viscosity index and low pour points.