Course Description

Machinery Lubrication I (MLI) is a 3 days course that provides the foundational skillset for applying best lubrication practices and product knowledge. Through MLI, students can move away from the “old school” methods of vague, non-specific lubrication procedures and implement an excellent lubrication program in any industrial workplace.

MLI students gain much more than pointers on lubricating a machine – they learn proven industry methods for selecting, storing, filtering and testing lubricants to boost reliability and generate lasting results in machine efficiency/maintenance. They also gain better understanding of oil analysis, so they can align their efforts with those of maintenance professionals or oil analysis experts.

Level I Course Outline

How Lubrication Affects Machine Reliability

  • Financial benefits from achieving lubrication excellence
  • Four equipment maintenance strategies, and when each applies
  • Important implementation steps to lubrication excellence

Lubrication Fundamentals

  • Six important functions of lubricating oils
  • How oils and greases are formulated and why it is important
  • How friction is generated in lubricated machinery
  • The importance of oil film thickness and critical clearances

Understanding Additives, Base Oils and Grease Thickeners

  • How lubricant properties irreparably change
  • Seven important physical properties of a base oil
  • The importance of API’s five base oil categories
  • What causes grease to dry out and 18 ways to prevent it
  • How to detect the root causes of lubricant oxidation
  • When to select one of the six most commonly used synthetic base oils
  • How to use temperature to determine the right base oil for your machine
  • How to select grease thickeners for your application

Lubricant Performance Properties

  • Key additives that enhance lubricant performance
  • Viscosity grades, measurement, and reporting
  • Why Viscosity Index is important
  • What causes oil viscosity to change and how to set monitoring limits
  • Lubricant performance tests and reporting – what you need to know
  • How water contamination generates other contaminants
  • How to control and eliminate aeration problems

Food-grade and Environmentally-friendly Lubricants

  • Important USDA requirements and government regulations for food-grade lubricants
  • What you need to know about food-grade additives, base oils and grease thickeners
  • Guidelines for food-grade lubricants

Lubricating Grease Application Methods

  • How to protect against incompatible grease mixtures
  • Advantages and disadvantages of centralized lubrication systems
  • Best practices for greasing motor bearings
  • How to control pressure when greasing bearings
  • The unique problems caused by over-greasing – specific steps to eliminate
  • 3 critical instructions to give your electric motor rebuild shop
  • Comparing single- and multi-point lubrication options
  • How to calculate greasing intervals and quantity
  • Best practices for ultrasonic/sonic-based greasing

Lubricating Oil Application Methods

  • Overview of oil lubrication methods and devices
  • How to use oil mist and other automatic lubrication methods
  • Using pressure spray methods for gearboxes
  • Best practices for the maintenance of grease guns and fittings
  • How to protect against problems caused by constant-level oilers
  • Overview of single-point direct lubrication systems

 Journal Bearing Lubricants

  • The 8 most common journal bearing lubrication problems
  • How to select journal bearing viscosity based on speed

Rolling-element Bearing Lubricants

  • The nine critical factors affecting rolling-element bearing lubricant selection
  • How to convert required operating temperature viscosity to ISO viscosity grades

Gear Lubricants

  • 5 key requirements for gear oil
  • How to select the best viscosity for a gear lubricant
  • Best practice guidelines for storing spare gearboxes – lubrication matters!
  • 10 conditions that may require synthetic gear lubricants
  • Lubrication best practices for enclosed gears – a 12 point checklist
  • Mastering the challenges of open gear lubrication

Automotive and Mobile Equipment Drive-line Lubricants

  • How to read a motor oil label: what really matters
  • The 6 critical objectives a motor oil must accomplish
  • Understanding API service classifications for engine and gear oils
  • The #1 reason automatic transmission fluids fail and how to protect against it
  • Service classifications for automotive greases – how to select
  • Extending engine life – surprising engine oil filter study results

Compressor Lubricants

  • Steps you can take right now to combat compressor lubricant failure
  • The most common compressor lubricant stressors
  • When to use synthetic compressor lubricants and why

Steam and Gas Turbine Lubricants

  • Why turbine/generator lubricants are the #1 contributor to forced outages
  • Comparing steam and gas turbine oils – how they differ
  • Checklist for best practice steam turbine lubrication

Hydraulic Fluids

  • How to select the ideal hydraulic fluid viscosity for gear, vane and piston pumps
  • Nine key hydraulic fluid requirements and why they matter
  • Specific conditions that may require a synthetic hydraulic fluid
  • Fire-resistant hydraulic fluids – what you need to know
  • Hydraulic system maintenance best practices – 21 point checklist

Contamination Control

  • Strategies for building reliability through contamination control
  • The seven most destructive contaminants and how to control them
  • Specific steps for managing a proactive lubricant maintenance program
  • The ISO Solid Contaminant Code – understand it, track it
  • 10 ways to get more mileage out of portable filter carts
  • How dirt, metal particles and soot mechanically destroy machine surfaces
  • Guidelines for controlling machine surface fatigue and extending machine life
  • The #1 cause of machine wear and how to manage it
  • How to set realistic cleanliness levels for lubricants
  • Effective lubricant contamination control strategies for extending machine life
  • 4 ways water contamination attacks lubricant additives
  • How to set limits for water-in-oil contamination
  • Managing the root causes of foam and aeration
  • Best practices for excluding and removing contaminants
  • The right way to control contamination in tanks and sumps
  • How oil filters are rated
  • Calculating the clean-up rate for portable filters
  • Best practices for removing water contamination from oil
  • The unique problems created by varnish – how to remove and stop it

Oil Drains, Flushing, and Reservoir Management

  • How to optimize and extend oil change intervals
  • Interval vs. condition-based oil changes – pros and cons
  • Metrics for monitoring lubricant consumption
  • Best practices for oil changes
  • Know how and when to perform a flush
  • The best procedures for oil draining and refilling
  • How and when to use the bleed-and-feed strategy for extending oil drains
  • Selecting the right cleaning and flushing procedures

Storing, Handling, and Managing Lubricants

  • How to set up a world-class lube room
  • How to know when to reject a new oil delivery
  • How to optimize your lubricant selection and procurement process
  • How to implement a lubricant consolidation program and select suppliers
  • Used lubricant storage, handling, and disposal best practices
  • Bulk lubricant storage do’s and don’ts
  • Guidelines for storing and handling drums
  • Lubricant dispensing options and what you must avoid
  • Lubricant coding and identification systems – what works and what doesn’t
  • Portable oil transfer and filter carts selection advice
  • How and where to store oil transfer and filter carts
  • Understanding and managing lubricant storage life
  • Keeping grease fresh – best practices for storage

Design and Inspect for Lube Excellence

  • World-class strategies for accessorizing equipment for lubrication excellence
  • Seven critical accessories for lubricant inspection and sampling
  • The right machine accessories for effective contamination control

Lubricant Failure

  • Know the factors which contribute to lubricant failure
  • Understand the thermal and oxidation process, its effects on lubricants and additives
  • Identify common wear mechanism caused by debris.
  • Recognize what causes lubricant degradation
  • Recognize the byproducts of lubricant failure and wear debris
  • Distinguish the specific test that measures the forms of lubricant degradation and wear debris monitoring
  • Interpret data to set alarms and limits based upon test results

Used Oil Sampling and Analysis Fundamentals

  • What oil analysis can tell you
  • Types and categories of oil analysis
  • Applications for oil analysis
  • Overview of oil analysis tests
  • Elements of a successful oil analysis program
  • How clean should oil sample bottles be?
  • How to find the best sampling locations
  • Oil sampling valve and hardware recommendations
  • A quick method for optimizing sampling intervals
  • An oil sampling technique that ruins trending
  • The importance of primary and secondary sampling points
  • Advice for sampling hard-to-reach machines
  • How to properly sample circulating systems
  • Safe, effective high-pressure sampling from hydraulic systems

Essential Field Inspections

  • 12 questions your oil filter will answer about your machine
  • Visual inspections you can get big results from right now
  • Quick tips for using scent, sound, and touch to inspect lubricants


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