Superior Engine Lubrication Technology

Engine Lubrication Image

Many private companies and public institutions have spent years researching consumer oil use patterns and the useful life of motor oil. Even a casual review of this literature will reveal some startling findings, such as:

  • Numerous scientific papers recommend 15K mile plus oil change intervals for most modern vehicles made today.
  • Many vehicle owners, and surprisingly, many automotive experts, rely on the invalid method of oil opacity, or oil coloration and darkness to gauge their engine oil condition.

Of course, changing oil based solely on mileage is the standard most motorists follow. But this approach fails to take into account driving habits, climate, traffic conditions, engine condition, oil type, etc. Because these variables are so difficult to evaluate and quantify, experts have historically advocated frequent oil changes, just to be on the 'safe side'.

A point where researchers agree is on the validity and advisability of oil laboratory tests to determine actual oil condition. Since the cost of oil testing equipment has been prohibitive for motorists, and even for most fleet managers, oil samples must be collected from the vehicle and mailed to a lab. This requires:

  • Purchasing an oil sample kit from an oil test lab for $20 plus dollars
  • Draining a portion of the oil to collect a several oz. sample
  • Mailing the sample to a distant oil lab
  • Waiting a week or more for the results

Given the cost and hassle of using professional testing labs, it is obvious why most motorists don't bother with this option.

Knowing Oil Quality Metrics

The most important factors in determining engine oil quality are:

  1. 1. Acidity

    High acidity content in engine oil causes "pitting", or the eating away of the inner metal surfaces in your engine. This problem is very common, and eventually causes reduced engine performance, excessive oil use, poor fuel economy, and loss of power.

  2. 2. Metal Particulates

    Metal particulates are also a concern and often indicate rapid wear of bearing, cylinder wall and piston surfaces.

  3. 3. Carbonized Particulates

    The dark color in oil is caused by engine combustion and is NORMAL. Carbon deposits caused by the combustion cycle are "suspended" in the oil, causing a dark color over time. But this means that the oil is doing its job.

  4. 4. Foreign liquids (coolant leaks, water leaks)

    Liquids such as coolant and water are detrimental to engines, and can be a major source of internal corrosion. Their presence in oil is an indication of potentially serious engine problems. Catching their presence early will likely save on substantial repair bills.

Lubricheck tests for all these variables in the chemistry of the oil. It is a one stop "laboratory on a chip" and provides scientific evidence of your vehicles health at any given time.

Total Base Number (TBN)

TBN Graph

The TBN (Total Base Number) is a scientific metric used by the oil analysis industry to determine the pH level (or acidity) of the oil. As mentioned earlier, high acidity is detrimental to the performance and life of the engine.

The base level can be measured conveniently and quickly with the Lubricheck. In addition, Lubricheck will also react to the presence water, coolant, carbon and metal particulates that may be present in the oil.