With the heightened focus on environmental, social and governance (ESG) goals for businesses today, there is a greater interest in working with and buying from companies that can more positively impact the environment. There are still misconceptions about biodegradable, renewable and sustainable lubricants. The technology of these products has come a long way, and they can offer distinct performance advantages over conventional products.
We understand that for our customers, performance, safety and cost are paramount. We develop a full range of lubricants that meet their high standards for all three. Our products are formulated to ensure they meet the same performance standards and demands as the conventional petroleum and synthetic fluids they are selected to replace.
The following characteristics are native to the natural ester (plant based) based formulations in our lubricants and industrial products:
- Higher VI – Reduce the effect of higher operating temperatures on performance
- “Off the Charts” Lubricity – Lubricity, or “film strength” is the measure of the reduction in friction and wear by a lubricant.
- Stronger Polarity – Better adhesion/attraction to metal surfaces
- Improved Solvency – Ability to reduce or limit varnish buildup in your system(s)
- High Flash Point – Reduced fire risk
- High Dielectric Strength – Reduce effects of electrical currents in equipment on your lubricants
In addition to the above characteristics, BioBlend products are nontoxic or minimally toxic. They are safer to use and less harmful to people and the environment than petroleum-based products. Read on for some frequently asked questions about our products.
Q. Are BioBlend lubricants compatible with conventional petroleum lubricants?
A. Yes. BioBlend lubricants are compatible with most conventional petroleum lubricants – if you have a question on a specific product, please contact us regarding your specific requirements.
Q. Do I have to worry about biodegradable lubricants biodegrading while in my equipment?
A. No, in order for biodegradation to happen air, water and micro-organisms found in the soil and water are necessary. So BioBlend products will not biodegrade during normal use in your equipment.
Q. Do I have to accept lower performance levels while getting the environmental benefits of BioBlend lubricants?
A. No. As we have noted above, BioBlend lubricants have excellent lubricity, high viscosity index levels, and can reduce wear, friction, and operating temperatures. In many cases, BioBlend lubricants perform better than products manufactured using petroleum base oils.
Q. What is the shelf life of biodegradable lubricants?
A. The shelf life of biobased lubricants has been dramatically extended with the use of the latest additive technologies. BioBlend lubricants typically have a warehouse shelf life of 18-24 months and can be used in field applications well beyond that time. The best way to ensure that you are getting the most out of your BioBlend lubricants is to participate in a lubricant analysis program. A quality analysis program will help to ensure both the effective life of your lubricants and that of your equipment.
Q. Do biodegradable hydraulic oils have to be changed more often than petroleum lubricants?
A. Typically no. We do not recommend shorter change intervals for our products. BioBlend hydraulic oils are proven performers in field applications for extended periods of time in all environmental conditions. The life of any hydraulic oil depends on many factors which include operating conditions and contaminants. A great way, in additional to a quality lube analysis program, to help extend the effective life of any lubricant is to minimize contamination from wear metals and water, so proper filtration up to and including desiccant breathers and external filter carts or totes can make a huge difference in change intervals. Ultimately, we recommended following the manufacturer’s guidelines for lubricant change intervals.
Q. Do biodegradable hydraulic oils have difficulty handling water intrusions in oil systems?
A. Water intrusion in any lubricant, whether biodegradable or not, will affect performance and potentially cause harm over long periods to your equipment. In both cases 200-300 ppm of water will deplete some additives, react with others to form corrosives, reduce film strength, clog filters, increase air entrainment, and increase the likelihood of cavitation. The bottom line is that all hydraulic systems have difficulty with high water levels and steps should be taken to lessen the water content in these systems. This is another example where breathers, monitoring and proper filtration is in your best interest.
Q. Can biodegradable oils handle high pressures in hydraulic systems?
A. Yes. BioBlend hydraulic oils can handle the same typical hydraulic oil pressures petroleum lubricants experience in hydraulic systems. If you have questions or concerns about the best fit for your particular application you can fill out a contact form and be connected to our technical experts.
Q. Can I add a BioBlend product to an existing piece of equipment (if they are the same basic product and viscosity) without flushing out the entire system?
A. Yes, in most cases (please consult with our technical services team first), however as you dilute the purity of a biobased lubricant within your system the six performance characteristics we mention above will be diluted and therefore most likely not result in the increased performance advantages you might expect.
Q. Are BioBlend products compatible with Poly Alkaline Glycols (PAG)?
A. In many cases they would be compatible. However, we highly suggest a specific discussion on the exact products in question with BioBlend technical services prior to final determination.
We know there are many more questions and concerns when it comes to using biobased products. Our experts are here to assist you with your unique application needs. Our comprehensive product portfolio is designed to help you adopt new products on your own timeline as you move toward more sustainable practices.
Take a look at our full line of products here or contact us to find out how we can assist you in reaching your operational, cost and ESG goals. You may also reach us at +1-888-BIO-BLND (888-246-2563).