Machinery performance: How the right lubricants can reduce downtime and costs

2020 was a year like no other. Every industry and sector saw dramatic changes in both their everyday operations, processes and standards. These challenges were felt by every company, business and person in Ireland. The agricultural industry was no different.

2021 has seen the year start with a lockdown that will be felt nationwide. But farming doesn’t do lockdowns. Very few activities are as time-sensitive as agriculture and the biggest roadblock right now is downtime. Machinery off the field leads to a loss in revenue and with the business pressures we currently face, it can be catastrophic.

Fields need to be tilled and fertilised in March; crops will then need to be harvested. The seasonality of this sector means that these activities can’t be put on hold. Every second on the field counts in maintaining your production goals.

That’s why it is vital to use the correct lubricants in your machinery, ensuring that you are never off the field when you need to be.

The importance of correct lubrication

Lubricants are specifically designed to protect your machinery and increase their performance. But not all lubricants are created equal. Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) approved or lubricants that meet the requirements of your machinery provide numerous direct and indirect benefits.

These include:

  • Machine longevity: Lubricants are developed with molecules that form a strong film over metal surfaces, reducing mechanical wear and improving machine longevity;
  • Longer drain intervals: Many synthetic lubricants are formulated with antioxidant additives that are resistant to oxidation. This can help reduce your maintenance cost and depending on the product, extend drain intervals;
  • Corrosion protection: An engine is made of metal parts that are extremely sensitive to rust. To counteract this, corrosion inhibitor additives protect parts from rust;
  • Machinery performance: Additives prevent the formation of harmful deposits by keeping them dispersed. This improves engine durability, making it run smoother and efficiently;
  • Fuel economy properties: Specific lubricant ranges can provide fuel economy gains via viscosity control and friction reduction. Lowering the lubricant’s viscosity reduces the overall friction in the engine, delivering fuel economy benefits and lowering your costs.

It’s essential to always use lubricants with specifications recommended by the OEM. They have designed, built and launched these powerful machines and understand the type of lubrication and balance of additives that they require.

The effects of using the wrong lubricant

Finol Oils looked at the positives, but what happens if you use the wrong lubricant or have been recommended a lubricant that does not meet the requirements of your machine?

Engine oil

The most important factor when changing engine oil is the grade. If you use the wrong grade (15W-40 instead of 10W-30), incorrect ACEA or API specification, lubrication is reduced and components can be damaged by increased wear, oxidation and corrosion.

You can also experience reduced mileage, oil leaks, increased engine noise and component failure.

Transmission fluid

Incorrect transmission fluids cause similar issues to wrong engine oils; leading to impacted performance and gearbox functionality, wear, corrosion, overheating and eventually component failure.

Coolant and antifreeze

The incorrect coolant can corrode and damage the coolant system, leading to leakages. When mixed, different-coloured coolants or antifreeze can react to form sticky substances within the coolant system that can stop coolant flow, causing the engine to overheat and become damaged.

Which oil from Finol Oils?

Correct lubrication is crucial in ensuring that your production levels are met and your machinery operates at the highest level.

That’s why Finol always recommends using the Which Oil lubricant advisor to ensure you use the correct oils every time. The lubricant advisor, available for use at: www.whichoil.ie, offers many features to give you a fast and reliable recommendation.

For example, the top three selling tractor brands in Ireland are John Deere, Massey Ferguson and New Holland. A quick search with Which Oil highlights a complete suite of high-performance lubricants to guarantee your vehicles are properly lubricated.

Engine oil

Total Tractagri HDZ 15W-40: This high-performance ACEA E7/E9 engine oil is recommended, throughout the year for engines of tractors, harvesters and other agricultural equipment. This lubricant is adapted to all engines of old or recent generation regardless of any brands or types.

Performance LS E9 15W-40: This high-performance, heavy-duty engine oil that delivers all-weather engine protection including dependable cold start-up and exceptional shear stability, it can deliver extended drain capabilities (exceeding OEM standard intervals).

Transmission/UTTO

Dynatrans MPV

This lubricant is specially designed for transmissions with wet brakes requiring an API GL-4 lubricant and 10W-30 or 80W viscosity grade. It can also be used in transmissions requiring an UTTO (Universal Tractor Transmissions Oil) lubricant.

AgriworX Tractor Fluid BF 16 UTTO

A lubricant for transmissions equipped with submersible disc brakes and hydraulic circuits for agricultural tractors. It has been specially developed for transmissions with submersible disc brakes.

Finol Oils: Your Irish partner in agriculture

For over 40 years, Finol has provided high-performance lubricants to the agricultural sector. The national partner of Total, Elf and Petro-Canada lubricants, its experience allows it to deliver a range of leading products and services that are unrivalled within the Irish market.

This expertise ensures that it consistently provides both quality and reliability to all of its customers, no matter their needs or area of operation.

To find out more about its dedicated range of agricultural lubricants, contact its technical team directly at: 01-5827111; or go to: www.finol.ie/agri-range.