AUTHORIZED DEALER
ALAMO OIL
Kyle Davis
San Antonio, TX
CALL (210) 430-0626

OUR BLOG

09/26/2017
Moving metal parts create friction, damage, and even failure sometimes. The quality of oil you use in your engine directly affects the quality of protection for these moving parts. 

What kind of damage can be caused by moving parts?

Engines, transmissions and other vehicle components contain many moving parts. The metal surfaces of these parts look very smooth, but they are actually filled with very small--even microscopic--peaks and valleys. When they come in contact, it can cause damage; and over time it can cause ‘big’ damage. 

  • The damage may be abrasive, like scratching, or adhesive, where one surface sticks to another. 
  • The two pieces can cause a pit in one piece and a lump on the second. 
  • When damage reaches a certain level, it can cause failure, and sometimes a sudden event. 

This kind of wear can be significantly reduced with the right lubrication.

  • Lubricants inhibit friction and wear by providing a film that physically separates moving surfaces so that the peaks go through the lubricant instead of touching the other piece (remember, this is on a microscopic level!). 
  • Oil also cools the components. The crankshaft, pistons, main and connecting rod bearings, camshaft bearings, timing gears, and other engine components can get very hot, and they depend upon oil to keep them cool. Heat is transferred from metal surfaces to the oil, then the oil carries the heat to the crankcase where the heat can then dissipate to the surrounding air in the crankcase. 

Viscosity is the single most important characteristic of oil.

The thickness of motor oil, or its resistance to flow, is known as viscosityTemperature has a huge impact on the viscosity and performance of oil: hot oil is thinner than cold oil (which you’ve probably noticed with cooking oil). High viscosity means the oil stays close to the same thickness in various environments, sustaining the ability to protect the engine. Less volatility in the oil also reduces it’s tendency to vaporize under high heat, mitigating oil loss.
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