During the Heavy Duty Aftermarket Week Conference in Las Vegas, Nev., this week, Eaton Corp. announced its two new synthetic transmission fluid specifications. The new specifications come with new labeling and a new name.
These initiatives have been taken to help customers identify and use the proper lubricant to ensure the best possible performance of Eaton medium- and heavy-duty transmissions and other commercial vehicle components, the company explained.
The company introduced these two transmission fluids in June 2015: one for newer model Eaton heavy-duty manual and automated transmissions, and one for Eaton medium-duty Procision transmissions. At the same time, the entire lubricant portfolio has been rebranded under the Eaton name.
“Lubrication plays a vital role in keeping trucks on the road,” said Donna Mosher, an engineering technical specialist for Eaton Vehicle Group. “So we’ve raised the bar to meet and exceed customer demands for fuel efficiency, extended drain intervals and improved performance.”
Replacing the decade-old PS-164rev7 specification is the new Eaton PS-386 spec, which is backward compatible and mandatory for Eaton Fuller Advantage Series (FAS) transmissions, high torque models, all automated units and for extended protection plans.
Eaton designed PS-386 because the automotive industry demanded improvements in fuel economy and smooth performance. Initial tests have demonstrated fuel economy improvements of 1.5% on non-Fuller Advantage Series transmissions. This gain came from reducing gear churning losses and improving cold temperature performance, Mosher said. Oils meeting PS-164rev7 should be phased out by the end of 2016, and Eaton says that it is acceptable to mix the old and new lubricants in the meantime.
The new Eaton PS-278 spec has been specially formulated for the wet dual-clutch design of Procision transmissions and should not be used in other Eaton transmissions, the company advised. Since the Procision transmissions use a wet clutch, Mosher explained, one fluid needed to be designed that could work in both the transmission and clutch. PS-278 is a new specification and, unlike PS-386, is not replacing an older one.
To alleviate what Mosher describes as widespread confusion surrounding the use of approved fluids is a new colorful labeling system, featuring gold/yellow logos identifying all PS-386 lubricants, and light green logos identifying PS-278 containers. Eaton also is making light green dip stick tags available for Procision transmissions.
“There often is confusion about what the right lubricant is for a particular transmission,” Mosher added. “We’ve made it simple, by either purchasing Eaton-branded lubricants or looking for the new ‘Eaton-Approved Lubricant’ logo on the package. Taking one of these steps will reduce the risk of having the improper lubricant for your transmission.”
The Eaton-branded lubricant product portfolio now includes two axle fluids (FE 75W-90 and 80W-140), multi-purpose grease and the two transmission fluids.