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Getting to Know H1 Food Grade Lubricants

A food-grade lubricant of the H1 category is the top option for manufacturers. This is the highest-grade lubricant that can be used on machines and in areas where contact with food is only incidental. They can be lubricants for moving parts or used as a protective anti-rust film or as a release agent on gaskets or seals of tank closures.

Within the Category H-1 food grade lubricants, there are four types of approved lubricants: white mineral oils, natural oils, polyalphaolefins (PAOs) and polyalkylene glycols (PAGs), explains Sibtain Hamid, corporate technical director of Lubriplate Lubricants Co., Newark, N.J.

"The first two types are made using natural or non-synthetic base stocks. The latter two types are made from synthetic base stocks. Much of the progress in matching a food grade lubricant to the needs of an application have come from synthetic fluids, and of these the most significant are the PAGs."

Lubriplate favors PAGs. A key reason is their ability to provide lubrication even in the presence of water. Also, "blending different PAG base stocks permits the production of lubricants that meet specific targets for viscosity and other properties," Hamid says.

Moreover, PAGs are less harmful to equipment that has accidentally over-heated. "Lubricants in the other three groups - white oils, natural oils, and PAOs - tend to leave a residue of carbon, gum or varnish. PAGs experiencing the same conditions leave practically no residue. In addition, PAGs have excellent lubricity, low toxicity and a high index of viscosity. They are biodegradable, have good cold flow behavior and good oxidative and thermal stability. Overall, PAGs represent a dramatic improvement of the base stocks that were being used in the 1970s."

Choosing the right kind of lubricant for your machines is very important. "We're also seeing more processing plants running 24/7," adds Flanagan. "The equipment is becoming more complex, speeds are increasing and the outputs are greater. All of this puts more emphasis on the need for the right lubricants."

As the focus on health and safety heightens, it is essential that only top-quality lubricants be used.  The Industrial Lubricant Store’s food-grade lubricants are 100% OEM compatible and formulated specifically for each type of industrial equipment being used in the food services industry.  Composed of the highest quality synthesized hydrocarbon fluids available, these special blends offer extended life and protect against wear, rust, and corrosion.  Check out our product offerings at

About the Author
Randy Renick
Randy Renick has a Bachelor's degree from LSU. He is an STLE Certified Lubrication Specialist and has a 29 year work history in Industrial Lubrication. He is currently a Lubricant Consultant at The Industrial Lubricant Store.

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