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Functions of Lubricants

There are FIVE main functions of lubricants:

Reduce Wear:

  • Fluid lubricants maintain a film between parts to reduce friction and prevent surface-to-surface contact. Surface contact causes wear and for the surfaces to weld together.

Cool Surfaces:

  • Lubricants remove the heat produced by friction when acting as a heat transfer medium, or coolant. Heat must be removed to prevent damage of other surfaces.
  • Cooling mechanical parts is an important function of any lubricant.

Clean Surfaces:

  • Lubricants flush debris from surfaces and carry it away. This can then be filtered out of the lubricant.
  • By carrying away debris, lubricants prevent it from blocking oil passages and damaging parts.
  • Since lubricants are circulated around mechanical parts, they are a logical choice for a cleaning agent.

Seal Parts:

  • Fluid lubricants fill open areas between moving surfaces. This provides a SEAL that prevents foreign matter from passing between moving surfaces.
  • Keeps material from getting between surfaces also helps to keep them clean.

Cushion Parts:

  • Lubricants provide a cushion against mechanical shock by filling open areas between moving surfaces. Without a lubricant cushion, components could be damaged by mechanical shock and vibrations.
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