Created with Sketch. Created with Sketch.

The Advantages of Synthetic Lubricants

Jan 7th 2020

Synthetic lubricants can have many different benefits that make them a better choice than mineral oils. Semi-synthetic options can contain less than 30% oil content, while pure synthetic lubricant will contain none. If you’re considering which lubricant is best for your machinery, here’s why to know before ordering from lubricant distributors.

The Difficulties of Mineral Oil

While mineral oil has its uses, and they do function well as a lubricant, they have limitations and difficulties that put them behind most synthetics. The main difficulties mineral oils have include:

  • The presence of waxes within mineral oils can make them flow poorly in lower temperatures.

  • Mineral oils have poor oxidation stability at high temperatures which can cause a buildup of acid and sludge in the product.

  • Viscosity can change depending on temperature causing it to be highly viscous in low temps and excessively thin in hight temps.

  • The temperature limits with mineral oils sit at around 250 degrees Fahrenheit, at which the mineral oil will begin to oxides quickly. These oils tend to work best between 100 and 150 degrees Fahrenheit.

  • If you still wish to use mineral oil, speak with lubricant distributors about what your needs are. Lubricant distributors will be able to recommend the product that would best suit your processes.

    The Advantages of Synthetic Lubricants

    While synthetics tend to cost more, this is due to the additional processes required to manufacture them. What you’re using them for might also justify the cost, especially in cases where expensive components are in need of proper lubrication in order to prevent damage. The main advantage of using synthetic oils is that they have the ability to surpass mineral oils in performance in both high and low operating conditions. This allows for optimal lubrication no matter the cold or heat of the surrounding environment. Furthermore, depending on the type of synthetic oil you’re using, other advantages can include:

    • Increased energy efficiency due in large part to optimal low-temperature handling.

    • A greater film strength can be found in specific types of synthetic oils.

    • The use of synthetics could allow for warranty extensions by equipment manufacturers.

    • Synthetic lubricants can lower hydrocarbon emissions from engines.

    • In clean applications synthetics can extend drain intervals.

    • Synthetics have a higher viscosity than other options.

    • Phosphate esters can allow for fire resistance.

    • These are just a couple of the most significant benefits that synthetic lubricants can offer. While mineral oils have their place, in most instances, synthetics are the way to go. If you need help deciding which type of synthetic lubricant is best for you, oil distributors will be able to help you find exactly what you need.