Whether you're an industrial veteran or a heavy-equipment newbie, you deal with grease on a daily basis. But unless you've ever been involved with the moly grease manufacturing process, there are things you probably don't know about it.
Here are 6 things that may surprise you:
1. It's not the same as oil
Sure, grease and oil are both used to lubricate things, but they're usually not interchangeable! If you tried to use oil in a high-pressure machine, there's a good chance it would be squeezed out under all the pressure. Grease, on the other hand, is thicker, so it won't leak, drip, or slide off.
2. It's made up of three different things
No matter who you buy your grease from, the "recipe" will contain three basic components -- a base oil, a thickener, and additives. Your grease's appearance will be mostly affected by the type and the amount of thickener that's used, while the way your grease performs will depend mostly on the base oil and additives that the manufacturer uses. Grease's performance can vary widely because there is a near-endless array of additives to choose from. For example, one grease may contain additives that make it more resistant to friction, while another grease may contain additives that enable it to work in very moist environments.
3. Base oils come with their own specific benefits
If your equipment operates at very high or very low temperatures, synthetic grease is the best choice.That's because synthetic base oils have more stability when they're heated and cooled than mineral base oils do.
4. It's got its own type of viscosity
Yes, "viscosity" is an oil term, and we've already talked about how oil and grease aren't interchangeable, but stick with us on this one. You'll often hear grease manufacturers talk about "pumpability" -- or, the way the grease flows through lines, nozzles, and other fittings.The easier it is for the grease to flow, the more pumpability it has. It's not exactly the same as viscosity, but it's a similar measure that's just as important to the way it performs!
5. It can actually prevent bacteria from forming
Depending on the additives that are used, your grease can actually prevent bacteria from forming inside your equipment -- something that's absolutely vital if your equipment is used for food preparation and/or packaging! The grease won't actually sterilize your equipment (you'll have to use something else for that), but both the USDA and the FDA have said that some grease additives can actually inhibit the growth of bacteria, yeast, and mold.
6. It's tested… and then tested some more
Ask a good grease manufacturer for the technical details of a certain grease you're thinking of buying, and you'll see that it's gone through a variety of different tests. In fact, everything from the thickness, the oxidation prevention properties and the way the grease changes (or, better yet, doesn't change!) under certain conditions.
A good manufacturer won't just tell you about these tests. Instead, they'll actually give you the results! That way, you can rest easy knowing that your grease really is capable of everything that its manufacturers claim.
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