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Proper Lubrication Is Key to Equipment Efficiency

Lubricant starvation is bad for your machine’s health. When a mechanical system lacks enough oil, surface-to-surface contact takes place as lubricating film that keeps bearings, gears, or slides apart is no longer present to protect the surfaces. The sliding and rubbing of two surfaces produce friction and from this comes heat – the direct result of lubrication starvation.

One way to detect depleted equipment lubrication is through vibration analysis. Vibration analysis allows determination of subtle vibration changes in the machinery and it may also be able to identify grease shortage even before intense heat from friction is discovered.

As an effect of friction, two surfaces rubbing together devoid of proper lubrication will lead to fast heating up of equipment components. Heat will show a direct correlation with how fast two surfaces are rotating or sliding. As an example, gears that rotate at 60 rpm will take longer to heat up compared with those turning at 1,800 rpm.  Without appropriate grease job, gears rotating at quicker speeds will heat up fast and can lead to machine breakdown. Excessive heat between two surfaces can also lead to welding and galling that produce hefty amount of debris harmful for the equipment. Smoke, unusual smell, and machine becoming too hot to touch are some other signs to check out for oil shortage as well.

To combat lubricant starvation without sacrificing budget, one should assess machinery on a regular basis, ensure preventative maintenance measures are suitable for each machine, and give importance to the changing conditions around the equipment including temperature, moisture, and workload. Most of all, proper lubrication should be prioritized. Count on The Industrial Lubricant Store for a comprehensive line of industrial, hydraulic, refrigeration, gear, compressor oils and greases. Learn more about our product line by visiting www.theindustriallubricantstore.com/products today.

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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