For an engine to function properly and last for several years it must be lubricated properly. Choosing the right lubricant is of major importance.
An internal combustion engine is made up of several mechanical parts, which become quite stressed by their use. Every time we put our foot down on the throttle, engine speeds are increasing, and these parts are moving more and more, resulting in friction and therefore high temperatures.
The lubricant enters at exactly this point. Its role is multidimensional, since within the engine it accomplishes different tasks. The lubricant penetrates into the mechanical parts to reduce friction, thus preventing the dangerous temperature rise, while also reducing the noise from the contact of the moving parts.
The circulation of the engine’s vital oil is achieved by a pump driven by the motor straps. Keep in mind, however, that not all the lubricants are suitable for all types of engines and that each oil meets certain standards which we must know before we change the oils.
The service life of each lubricant is defined and determined by the manufacturer and then by the vehicle manufacturer, who knows the durability and the strains the engine is receiving. Yet another important function of the lubricant is that, due to its specific cleansing components, it takes care of and removes the various combustion residues generated.
Attention to turbo engines
The new turbo engines are a bit more demanding regarding the lubricant compared to conventional engines, in order to achieve increased performance and high reliability. The difference between synthetic lubricants and “regular” lubricants is that although they have low viscosity, however, thanks to the addition of various ingredients, they last longer! That’s why all new technology cars can travel up to 30,000 km, until they need oil replacement.
In this type of lubricants, the molecules differ in size and connection, resulting in more stress in less time of use. The treatment these lubricants receive does not remove all the unnecessary chemicals, which may affect the size and the structure of the molecules. Thus, the molecular chains can break, degrading the viscosity of the oil, which, due to this, is having difficulty in lubricating properly all the mechanical parts of the engine. Contemporary engines are manufactured with extreme durability, so the mineral oil may not be able to provide them with the appropriate lubrication.
Synthetic lubricants are manufactured through a special laboratory processing to add special chemicals. Of course, this process is expensive, so are the raw materials used, and therefore these lubricants cost more than mineral oils when they reach the consumer. The main feature of these products is that they maintain their molecular chains stable at fairly high and low temperatures. Thus, their viscosity remains stable in order to properly lubricate the engine in every circumstance. Also, synthetic lubricants contain cleaners in order to “absorb” the engine residues and direct them to the oil filter.
Semi-synthetic lubricants are mix of synthetic and mineral oils and their performance is higher than that of mineral oils. Care should be taken not to mix mineral oils and synthetic lubricants.
(Their efficiency reaches 70% compared to non-recycled).
How can oils be lost?
1.From the sump cap
In most garages, in order to change engine lubricants, they unscrew the sump screw to remove the old oils. This is a classic screw, which requires special attention while placing it back to prevent stripping the screw threads. You should remind your engineer, whenever unscrewing this screw, to replace the washer between it and the sump.
In addition to the sump, oils can also leak from a defective filter to the engine. If the filter is screwed too tightly, its base may have been stripped by the large temperature differences or the threads on which it is screwed. You can simply put your hand on the filter base to see if there is a leak.
A common malfunction of the engine is burning oil. This means that there is serious damage to the piston springs, resulting in the lubricant entering the combustion chamber and burning. To check if you have this problem, you can unscrew the spark plugs and see if they are black around the spike. If so, then you should visit your engineer soon. If you neglect it, after a while you will notice white smoke coming out of the exhaust, which means that the damage inside the engine has worsened, which entails higher cost for its repair.
– Do not fill the engine with oils of different fluidity. The “mix” will not blend properly and you will only cause damage.
– If you change oil twice a year, you can choose one for the winter and another for the summer.
– If you change oils once a year, choose synthetic materials which are efficient in a wide range of temperatures. For Greece: From 0W40 +