Drive and control specialist Bosch Rexroth has published a new white paper outlining best practice in hydraulic fluid selection. The paper coincides with the release of the company’s Fluid Rating List, and restates the importance of choosing correctly rated fluids to optimise performance and safety in mobile applications.
“Operators and manufacturers must recognise the changing nature of hydraulic systems, and in particular the dramatically increased stresses that modern hydraulic systems put upon hydraulic fluids”, the white paper states. “Not all fluids can cope and the dangers of choosing an inappropriate fluid — for hydraulic equipment of any age and application are considerable.”
The paper details the considerations and procedures necessary to ensure selection of the best possible hydraulic fluids for a given application.
Kevin Follows, technical support manager, mobile applications at Bosch Rexroth, explained the importance of correct fluid selection. “There is an enormous range of hydraulic fluids on the market but not all of them are suitable for every application. Many are mineral oil-based but specifiers can also select from monograde, multigrade, anti-wear and fire-resistant oils. The varying components of fluids perform a multitude of tasks in protecting the system, optimising safety, performance and longevity. However, each product is designed to function optimally under certain conditions and in tandem with particular components - so specifiers would be well advised to ensure the correct product is chosen, or risk potentially costly and disruptive production issues down the line.”
Environmental factors, manufacturers’ recommendations, material compatibility, operating temperature, and viscosity are listed as important criteria for fluid selection decisions.
Follows continued: “Flow resistance and thermal conductivity are vital, while the effects of leakage or spillage must always be considered in these times of heightened environmental concern. Meanwhile, taking the time to understand the applications for which the fluid has been designed will go a long way towards ensuring optimal product selection.”
Bosch Rexroth’s Fluid Rating List recommends the best high performance fluids for use with its hydraulic pumps and motors.