Can lubricating oil be contaminated by fungi and bacteria?

When it comes to lubricating oil, the guarantee of its good conditions of use is essential. In addition to lubricating parts and containing wear, the lubricant is responsible for cooling, sealing and internal maintenance of the engine, essential functions for its good performance.

In this sense, problems in the lubricating oil can mean great losses for vehicles and machines. One of the most recurring complications is oil contamination. It can happen at various times when the oil is used, from its storage and storage to the oil burning in the engine.

Contamination can occur in three different ways: by contact with water, by the presence of solid particles and by biological contamination (by fungi and bacteria). In today’s post, we will deal with this last form of contamination, which, although quite common, can be easily prevented.

How does contamination occur?

The proliferation of fungi and bacteria in the lubricating oil can occur for several reasons. Storage of oil in unsuitable and / or regularly inspected tanks is one of them. In addition, keeping the oil stored for longer periods than those recommended is also a risk factor.

The presence of water, solid particles, dust and other dirt in the oil is another catalyst for biological contamination. This is mainly due to the change in the chemical composition of the oil, which makes it the most conducive medium for the proliferation of bacteria and fungi.

What are the consequences?

Once the lubricating properties of the oil have been changed, all its functions can be compromised. This is a serious complication, as it puts all engine components at risk.

Among the chemical changes caused by fungi and bacteria are the production of corrosive acids and salts, changes in odor, drop in pH and breakage of the emulsion.

Check out some of the negative effects caused bycontaminated oil:

– Perda da proteção exercida pelo óleo.

– Increased friction between parts and increased wear.

– Premature erosion of parts.

– Emergence of lees.

– Shortening the useful life of the equipment.

– Clogging of pipes and filters.

– Injector clogging and failure.

– Engine deregulation and power loss.

How to protect lubricating oil?

To prevent and combat biological contamination, oil filtration is the ideal method. The filters and additives used in this procedure contain biocidal and antioxidant substances in their formula, whose function is to eliminate bacteria, fungi and yeasts.

Investment of low cost and high efficiency, the filtration is also able to remove the water and separate other solid particles present in the oil. As we have seen, this is essential, as these contaminants can also stimulate the growth of fungi and bacteria.

The main benefits of implementing a filtration system are improving lubricating oil stability, reducing friction, containing wear and extending equipment life. The sum of these benefits also results in decreasing the chances of stops and future interventions in vehicles and equipment.

Get in now contact one of our experts and discover more information about oil filtration!

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