What if I ignore the manufacturer’s recommendations for lubricants?

One of the things that many of the people who have cause to purchase lubricants wonder about is whether or not it their bearings would be damaged by not using the recommended grade of lubricant for their particular machinery, particularly if they have a preference for a certain product like Fuchs Ecocool Ultralife A.

The answer to this question is, unfortunately, not as clear as we would like. Completely ignoring the manufacturer’s recommendations for a certain grade of lubricant could lead to an equipment malfunction in some cases, or cause any manufacturer’s warranty to be voided in some cases, but it may work out perfectly well in others.

Check the recommendation

Whether you intend to use the recommended oil or not, it is important to at least check the manufacturer’s recommendation that comes with a piece of equipment, simply because it will usually offer at least some important information about your product, such as the very important viscosity information, that will better enable you to choose an appropriate lubricant.

Oil viscosity

In fact, if you are going to pay attention to only one of the recommendation provided by the manufacturer, it should be the base oil viscosity. This is one of the most important properties that manufacturers think about when writing up product recommendations, and it is one that can have the most dramatic impact on your machinery’s functionality.

Typically, base oil viscosity recommendations will take into account everything from load and speed, to temperature, providing you with an excellent place from which to work when choosing a lubricant.

Additives

It can also be useful to look at the recommendations in regards to additive packages. Additives packages do a number of things, including suppressing base oil properties, giving base oils new properties with extreme pressure additives etc and enhancing your base oil with antioxidants.

Once additive reserves are depleted, they are gone, which is why it is so important to check your additive package

Basically, manufacturers offer recommendations for a good reason, and have typically carried out a great deal of testing before they put the product on sale, so it is only sensible that you should check out and take seriously any suggestions they may have in regards to lubricant use.

However, it is possible to use this information in combination with your own knowledge to select a different lubricant to meet your needs. If you go down this route, you should be sure to bear in mind temperature, conditions and application before making your choice.