Viscosity is the oil thickness and is the most important oil property. With increasing temperature oil thins, oil separating film gets smaller and metal to metal contact occurs. Cooling thickens oil which can lead to difficulty starting equipment or wasted energy until it gets to operating temperature.
Viscosity index is a measure of how well the oil stays the same viscosity with changes in temperature (higher is better). This can be achieved with synthetic base stocks or oil additives.
When choosing an oil viscosity consider manufacturer approvals AND operating / environment temperatures to select the right oil for your equipment.
Find out how viscosity is tested below, what is it’s significance and how to diagnose viscosity changes. Then test what you learn in our test your knowledge quiz below.
Test your knowledge of viscosity.
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Basic oil analysis test for beginners
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Question 1 of 7
1. Question1 points
What is the most important property of an oil?Correct
Question 2 of 7
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What are two most common temperatures to measure viscosity?Correct
Question 3 of 7
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Which of the following is not an ISO Viscosity grade?Correct
Question 4 of 7
4. Question1 points
Which statement regarding viscosity specifications is most true?Correct
Question 5 of 7
5. Question1 points
An ISO grade is said to be within specification for a new oil when…Correct
Question 6 of 7
6. Question1 points
Viscosity Index measures…Correct
Question 7 of 7
7. Question1 points
What are likely sources of increased viscosity?Correct