Bel-Ray Greases the Way for Smooth Plant Operations

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When a coal-fired power plant came to us with their predicament of costly repairs and shortened lifespan for machinery, Bel-Ray responded with the solution. After conducting a full-scale lubrication inspection, our team recommended the compatible greases ideal for both high temperature and extreme pressure applications.

Problem: Multiple Greases = Costly Repairs

Our power plant customer was using several different, non-compatible greases for a variety of applications. This was leading to expensive machinery breakdowns and reduced equipment lifespan.

That’s when the Bel-Ray sales team got to work.

After disassembling a problem bearing, we discovered an unsightly dilemma that was causing non-productive machinefunction − a “lubricant rainbow”. There were numerous greases being mixed in this single bearing, with different thickeners (i.e., polyurea, lithium, calcium and barium) that do not work together effectively. This resulted in softening, hardening and oil separation, which are most definitely not conducive to efficiently operating machinery.

Basically, the grease was not grease anymore.

Our lubrication experts examined the full range of equipment in the plant and found additional occurrences where multiple greases had been inappropriately used in the same application. Despite the efforts of the maintenance staff to remedy the situation, there continued to be loss of operational efficiency throughout the plant.

Solution: Multi-use, Compatible Greases

Bel-Ray found the answer: Synthetic PAO, a synthetic base grease that suited numerous applications across a broad range of high temperatures and extreme pressures. This one lubricant could replace the polyurea, lithium EP, calcium and barium greases being used throughout the plant. The Synthetic PAO successfully worked for functions ranging from electric motors to high speed bearings in fans, motors and gear cases. It effectively performed in applications reaching temperatures up to 350°F and in uses generating extreme pressure during operation.

A particular advantage of the Bel-Ray Synthetic PAO grease is its aluminum complex that creates a sticky consistency, which is ideal for applications requiring surface lubrication. Also, Synthetic PAO is technically an Extreme Pressure (EP) grease, carrying a 4 ball EP test and ASTM

D2596 weld load of 315kg.

There’s More…

The Bel-Ray Synthetic PAO was able to replace 75 percent of the company’s numerous greases with one workable solution. However, that was not enough.

The remaining 25 percent of the greases being used in the plant were for extreme pressure applications. The Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) called for a 400kg rating on the ASTM D2596 weld load; our Synthetic PAO had a 315kg weld load. Plus, there was the compatibility issue that had originally plagued the plant’s operations.

The Bel-Ray team recommended our Molylube Extreme Pressure Grease AC NLGI #2. It carries a weld load of 620kg, far exceeding the OEM specification. Plus, another major advantage was that this Molylube Extreme Pressure grease was fully compatible with the Synthetic PAO grease being used in the bulk of the facility’s machinery.

Results: Smooth Operation, No Repairs

Since switching to these two compatible Bel-Ray greases, the plant has reported zero grease compatibility issues. Maintenance personnel are excited about these improvements and pleased with the outcome. They anticipate many years of increased machine productivity with Bel-Ray solutions greasing the way for efficient, non-problematic operation.