Skip to Main Content
Skip Nav Destination


The function of lubricants is to control friction and wear in a lubricating system containing machine elements such as gears and bearings. This article discusses the basic properties of lubricants to help scientists and engineers understand the principles behind lubricant selection. It reviews the functions of additives, such as friction modifiers, antiwear additives, viscosity modifiers, corrosion inhibitors, oxidation inhibitors, dispersants, and detergents. The article discusses the physical properties of liquid lubricants and the performance characteristics of lubricants. It describes the most common lubricant categories and provides information on health and safety aspects of using the liquid lubricants. The article concludes with a discussion on lubricant-application method that plays a vital role in how the lubricant functions.

You do not currently have access to this chapter.
Don't already have an account? Register

Wei Dai, Hong Liang, Properties of Liquid Lubricants, Friction, Lubrication, and Wear Technology, Vol 18, ASM Handbook, Edited By George E. Totten, ASM International, 2017, p 118–134,

Download citation file:

Close Modal

or Create an Account

Close Modal
Close Modal