There are many organizations who fail to comprehend the significance of an effective lubrication strategy and how to apply the 5 R’s of lubrication. When it comes to implementing a world-class preventive maintenance strategy, companies must pay due attention to the following 5 R’s lubrication procedures:
1. Right product
The selection of the right lubricant is the first step towards achieving equipment reliability. Boundary film formation properties and viscosity grade are two important factors that help select the right product. The OEM can help you select the right lubricants and grease products for your operations. However, the OEM can’t understand your specific operating environment. It’s important to find high-quality lubricant products that are readily available and meet the OEM conditions. Select a product that meets your goals and budget. While external sources such as OEM and lubricant manufacturer can be helpful, make the final decision after consulting your maintenance experts.
2. Right place
It’s crucial to have every lubrication application point uncovered, reinforced, and tagged. This decision is made during the plant or equipment design process for most applications. Lubrication lines often disappear under a component. In this situation, you can ask those who repair or install the component to determine whether or not the right product is going in the right place. Some maintenance personnel spend decades working at a plant and they understand what is right and what’s not.
3. Right Amount
It’s not complicated to assess oil volume requirements. For instance, it's not hard to calculate the amount of oil going into an isolated, wet sump gear case. The level of oil doesn’t change much between operating and standby modes. Nevertheless, it's difficult to assess circulating oil systems as lubrication lines contain oil outside of the reservoir.
It is more difficult to deal with grease lubrication. Manual grease relubrication is one of the aspects of lubrication which is hard to control. However, the use of a few formulas and measurements make it easy to calculate the right amount. It is also important to consider the whole picture and factors that influence the volume.
4. Right time
Relubrication intervals and quantities are influenced by many of the same factors. It’s recommended to begin with the OEM guidelines and then adapt to enhance lubricant properties as required by your operating conditions and applications. When it comes to the right time, the environment plays a key role as it impacts relubrication intervals.
5. Right attitude
The 4Rs we have already discussed seem more relevant and important. However, regardless of your accuracy in defining the lubricant properties, quantities, intervals, and other requirements, people who carry out lubrication procedures play a decisive role. What if you have well-defined lubrication practices but they are poorly managed? Therefore, it’s important to have a dedicated maintenance team with the right attitude.
About Micro Lube
Micro Lube is a leading full-service maintenance company in Canada where we help a broad range of industries develop and implement the best lubrication practices. We offer a complete range of lubrication products along with technical and on-site expertise. Contact us for more information!