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Wednesday, 20 January 2016

Disadvantages Of Biodegradable Lubricants.

You need to take note of the disadvantages of biodegradable lubricants.





Why’s it important for industry to consider the disadvantages of biodegradable lubricants? Even though there’s a very strong case to made in favour of biodegradable lubricants in several industry segments, they can only come into their own if the disadvantages of biodegradable lubricants and oils are fully understood.

Understanding groups to understand the disadvantages of biodegradable lubricants?

In order to understand what the disadvantages of biodegradable lubricants are, it is necessary to examine the various types of biodegradable lubricants to point out their advantages and disadvantages:

Vegetable oils, derived from corn, soybean, rapeseed (canola), sunflower, peanut, olive oil amongst others. In their natural form the disadvantages of biodegradable lubricants, are their poor thermal, hydrolytic and oxidation stability.

  • For example, most natural vegetable oils cannot withstand reservoir temperatures greater than 80ºC. 
  • In addition, water, even in small amounts of a few hundred parts per million, is the natural enemy of vegetable oils and can cause serious foaming and degradation problems. In general, these oils also exhibit low cold-flow abilities. 
  • Another disadvantage of using vegetable oil is the high pour point. This problem with biodegradable lubricants is often addressed by the addition of chemical additives (pour point suppressants) and/or blending with other fluids with lower pour points. 
If a high degree of biodegradability is required, then biodegradable synthetic esters are added to improve cold-temperature properties. On the other hand, if the goal is to maintain the so-called biobased property, where at least 51 percent of the lubricant is made of natural biomaterials, then a portion of the blend could be made up of a light mineral oil with low pour points

Synthetic Esters, based on natural and renewable resources or fully synthetic esters based on petrochemical raw materials.

These products have good antioxidation characteristics and seal swell properties.

Synthetic Polyalphaolefines (PAO) have excellent low-temperature properties, but tend to shrink rubber seal materials.

Synthetic Polyglycols (PAGs), can be both water soluble (ethylene-oxide) and water insoluble (propylene-oxide).

Water soluble PAGs are ideally suited to fire-resistant lubricants. The most important drawbacks of using biodegradable lubricants is their tendency to emulsify water when used in certain applications, such as gear boxes. This will ultimately cause foaming, sludge and corrosion. Another major disadvantage of both PAOs and PAGs is their poor solubility with regard to additives. Most of the manufacturers depending on the application and the environmental performance are using mixtures of the above base fluids to overcome the most notable disadvantages of biodegradable lubricants. Esters are predominantly used as base fluids in the formulation of these environmentally acceptable lubricants.

Seek professional advice to overcome the disadvantages of biodegradable lubricants.

Obviously the best procedure to follow in overcoming any of the disadvantages of biodegradable lubricants is in the correct selection for the application.

Because of the complex nature of biodegradable lubricants and fluids it’s best to seek professional advice. The professionals at Habot Oil can offer you advice and a range of products that will take care of the disadvantages of biodegradable lubricants discussed in this article.

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