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Lubricant MSDS Info | Service Hours vs Temperature | Viscosity Chart | FAQ on Mixing Oils



Fluid Changeout Guide

* These fluids can varnish at high temperatures. If these occurs, a diester flush (250-500 hours maximum depending on severity) should be included in the changeout procedure. View our compressor cleaner/flush.

 

Service Hours vs Temperature

 

Often the subject of how long compressor oil will last at a particular temperature is asked. This depends on several factors, including application, cleanliness of air, base fluid of the oil, etc.

We have predicted operating life of various compressor oils based on good operating conditions in our literature.
Generally, they are:

  • 2 - 4,000 hours for food grade USDA H-1 PAO oils
  • 6 - 8,000 hours for PAO
  • 8,000 hours for diester oils
  • 8,000 hours for polyglycol/ester base oils
  • 8 - 10,000 hours for PAO/POE base oils
  • 10 - 12,000 hours for POE base oils

As temperatures increase, the oil life is drastically decreased, especially above 210°F.

Some typical numbers others and we have used are as follows:

Temperature PAO Diester POE Blend PE Coolants POE
180 - 190°F 8,000 8,000 10,000 11,000 12,000
190 - 200°F 6,000 8,000 9,000 10,000 11,000
200 - 210°F 4,000 6,000 8,000 9,000 10,000
210 - 220°F 2,000 4,000 5,000 7,000 9,000

Diester oils will take more abuse and provide superior detergency to PAO products.
These figures are non-specific and "Rule of Thumb".

Viscosity Chart

Viscosity Chart

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT MIXING DIFFERENT OILS

Can I top off the existing compressor oil with another oil?
Will I invalidate the compressor warranty by using aftermarket oils?
What does mixing "different oils" mean?
What about mixing "Coolants"?
What is the condition of the old oil that is already in the compressor?


Can I top off the existing compressor oil with another oil?

eCompressedair does not recommend mixing two different oils. When doing so, a third oil is created. The resulting third oil may vary significantly depending on the mixing ratio, i.e. 50/50, 90/10, 10/90, etc. Additionally, these different mixtures have never been tested for extended periods of time in various makes of compressors. This means that expected oil life is not predictable.

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Will I invalidate the compressor warranty by using aftermarket oils?

Strictly speaking, the compressor manufacturer cannot require a customer to use their oil unless it is an "extended warranty" whereby the customer purchases a kit that comes with that warranty. Most oils contain identifiable components, additives or tracers. Oil manufacturers can tell when their oil has been blended with another oil. Contaminating one oil with another is typically
sufficient grounds to invalidate warranty or insurance claims.

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What does mixing "different oils" mean?

We mean different chemistries. Generally, oils of a similar base fluid, such as PAO, may be mixed with another PAO. A diester may be mixed with another diester, and a petroleum may be mixed with another petroleum of the same quality. The small additive differences are usually not significant.

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What about mixing "Coolants"?

The compressor oils referred to as "Coolants" are oils like Sullube and Ingersoll-Rand SSR Ultracoolant. They are comprised of a particular ester and a polyalkylene glycol. Due to the popularity of these oils there are many aftermarket products that are referred to as "Coolants", when in fact they may contain neither of the two key base fluids found in the original "Coolants".

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What is the condition of the old oil that is already in the compressor?

The old oil may have been run past or nearly past its normal useful life. If it is topped off, and then there is a failure, the new oil gets blamed.

The old oil should not be topped off with another oil if the old oil is not in good condition. Top-off with the same fluid, as required, and schedule the compressor for a change-out as soon as convenient. Sometimes the old oil is topped off with the same fluid to replenish additives that may have been depleted.

If the old oil has developed an acid number well in excess of 1.0, then schedule the compressor for a flush with Ultraclean.