Additive packages, in short, carry two specific functions: Lessen destructive processes and Enhance beneficial properties of the base oil.The final product of all lubricating oils begin with what is called “base stock.” As we discussed over at the Drain Pan, there are conventional base oils which come directly from crude oil itself and synthetic oils derived from a molecular structure. This is where the differences really began to separate themselves from a protection, efficiency and performance standpoint.
Once you have decided which base stock provides the initial benefits your seeking, then the additive packages come into play. As the quote, “Not all ‘blank’ are created equal” goes; so it is with additives and how they impact base oil properties. Oil additives have had a significant impact on modern transportation and industrial processes, allowing equipment to evolve into high performance “vehicles” making our work and relaxation experiences an amazing adventure.
Additives function to lessen the damage caused from the following:
- Extreme Pressure
- Rust and Corrosion
They also enhance a lubricants ability to control foam, separate or combine with water to keep engines clean. Lets take a quick look “under the hood” at how and why the quality of additives chosen by various companies should be important to you.
Resisting Oxidation: Oxidation and heat are the primary enemies of lubricant base stocks, especially conventional petroleum base stocks. Once these forces cause a lubricant to “break down” it must be replaced or resulting damage will occur. For every 18° F (10° C) increase in temperature oxidation rates double. Oxidation can increase viscosity, acid content, sludge and other deposits while also depleting additives.
It is important to note here that lubricating oils, in and of themselves do not go bad, it’s the additive properties, designed the make the base stock oil perform to a certain level, that wear out so to speak.
One of the standard tests used to measure an oils resistance to oxidation is (TFOUT) or Thin – Film Oxygen Uptake Test. Take a look at how AMSOIL’s 10W – 30 Signature Series stacks up against several other brands.