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The criteria for choosing extreme temperature grease are not only challenging but also require several factors to be considered. Hot grease lubricated equipment work under conditions that need to be monitored and updated on a regular basis. The factors that are involved in choosing the right grease formula for extreme conditions include thickener type, oil type and its viscosity, oil viscosity index, stability of composition, ambient temperature, atmosphere temperature, loading, speed, re-lubrication interval and many others. With so many factors involve, engineers have to formulate grease which is according to the requirement. The following important selection strategies assist in choosing the right grease formulation-

1)      Heat Resistance-

If the temperature exposure to the machine or engine is ultra-high, such as the machines that are used in steel mills, the selection criteria would differ to that of a car engine. Apart from the ability to resist heat and prevent grease from thinning and leaking, the formulation would also require extra load-carrying capability in it. If the grease is not resistant to heat the texture and characteristics of the formulation are bound to change resulting in degraded non-performing activity.

2)      Oxidation Stability-

Other than that, the oxidation stability is also important. If the grease reacts with oxygen or the oxidizing effect of moisture formulation, it is definitely harmful to the machine. The resulting phenomenon leads to changing of grease from machines. Many machines are sealed and opening them up means there is no guarantee of the performance level or life that they have once they have been dismantled.

3)      Moisture resistance and Pump-ability-

Oxidized effect is harmful as it is an external chemical which reacts differently in the composition of grease. Water washing also, on the other hand, with any type of soap being used for maintenance of external parts is harmful for the machine. If soap or water reaches the internal engine the resulting issues with machines can be very disappointing. Many machines get rusty on the inside due to the intervention of liquid. Pump-ability of grease is also an important selection criterion, the self-active formula with which it can flow and reach out to isolated parts without external forces is always a place which oil or other lubricant cannot offer.

4)      Product Degradation-

The causes behind product degradation are inadequate or low quality lubrication that fails to protect the components of a machine from corrosive containments, rust, moisture build up or reduction in wear and tear. To keep the product safe from these kinds of degradation, the temperature range under which it shall be exposed and the kind of lubrication required is necessary to gauge.

5)      Correlation between grease’s resistance to temperature level and price-

The grease formulation that resists extreme high level of temperatures is way more expensive than the ones that are less compatible to high level temperatures. The oxidative stability, mechanical stability and thermal stability each has a role to play in determining the cost of grease. OEM products have pre-mixed or prepared lubricants that can be used without any particular specifications. Whereas, with highly customized machines that need to be lubricated through special formulas are more expensive as it requires the expertise of skilled engineers. The special formulation is done keeping in mind several factors that affect performance, maintenance and life of the machine in the long run. Lastly, grease selection is also done through the consumption level of the machine, whether it is large-volume, medium-sized. Each consumption level requires a different formula for optimum results as the composition of grease and its long lasting effects would vary. The right investment made saves from the follow up high maintenance costs.

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Author Bio:

Jerry is an established writer with a great deal of experience in Petroleum Engineering and Power Generation. He is interested in increasing the knowledge in this field and had a distinguish career in Production Engineering and extraction of oil and gas deposits. His articles, which he submits on some high profile sites likes bouldencompany involve the details of this field.