Lubrication is a critical part of any industrial application. Equipment have to be properly lubricated to ensure optimum performance and prevent damage. Industrial grease is one of the most commonly used lubricant products. It is applied on bearings, bushings and other applications in which a lubricating oil is unable to remain in position.
A problem that often comes up with grease application is overgreasing. Overgreasing is what happens when too much grease is applied on the lubrication point. This can cause serious and costly problems. Too much grease can result to increased operating temperatures, collapsed seals and higher energy consumption for electric-powered equipment.
The excessive volume of grease increases the pressure within the cavities of bearings and between gears. This leads to higher temperature and more energy required to power the mechanical components as the increased pressure hinders movement of components. If left unattended, this can lead to equipment failure.
Increased oil bleed is another effect of overgreasing. The heat and pressure squeezes out the base oil from the thickener. As the thickener becomes devoid of oil, it can harden and create a solid buildup that can prevent oil from reaching the components that require lubrication. This can lead to increased wear of the mechanical components.
A proper maintenance program is necessary to avoid the problems caused by overgreasing. Calculations must be performed to determine the right amount of grease to be applied and the ideal frequency for grease reapplication.