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Where Does that Grease Go?

By Guest Author,

Added 15 April 2018

Your Choice in Grease Can Have a Major Impact on Sustainability Written By: Mike Palacios, Manager of Caterpillar Fluids, Caterpillar

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While most construction companies are always seeking opportunities to enhance the sustainability of their operation, doing so can sometimes seem burdensome or expensive.

For example, most operators tend to think that making sustainability improvements requires major operational change, such as investing in low emissions engine technologies or making changes to their supply chain.

However, there is a much easier change that can help immediately improve the sustainability of your operation without the need for significant capital or organizational effort – a simple switch in your lubricating grease.

 

A simple switch with significant sustainability benefits

Specifically, switching from lower quality simple lithium greases to high quality lithium complex and calcium sulfonate greases to lubricate critical construction & mining equipment components, such as pins, bearings and bushings, can have a dramatic impact on sustainability.

 

How?

Well, today, most operators of construction and mining equipment use cheaper simple lithium greases in an effort to save costs. Because these lubricants cannot deliver the needed level of protection, operators are forced to re-apply the grease daily and in some cases every shift.

In doing so, these operators are creating significant waste. Re-applying the grease on such a frequent basis means that many kilograms of grease are pushed out of the equipment every day, ending up on the ground in the form of waste, pictured below. Grease is not readily biodegradable and is meant to be disposed of in a very controlled manner.

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