The U.S. industrial lubricants market size was estimated at 2,260 kilo tons in 2016. Rising industrial output across the U.S., particularly in core manufacturing sectors, such as foundry, consumer appliances, metal forming, and plastics, along with the mining industry expected to be a key factor driving the market growth.
Industrial lubricants, in general, are the fluids that are used to reduce friction between adjacent materials or components. They can be either petroleum-based or water-based and are indispensable to the proper functioning of machinery. They facilitate the reduction of wear and tear between different moving parts. These are increasingly being preferred since they significantly reduce the downtime of operations, thereby improving the overall productivity of the machine.
Bio-based lubricants have been gaining importance owing to their environmentally friendly properties. Growing emphasis on aquatic pollution through the unregulated disposal of conventional counterparts has also been a major factor in the development of bio-based alternatives. Rising popularity of these sustainable products is expected to negatively influence the industry growth over the forecast period.
Rapidly increasing demand from the food sector has led to a robust expansion of synthetic food-grade oil. The U.S. is a major market in promoting biofuels as an alternative to conventional fuels, on account of stringent government regulations concerning the use of safe food-grade oil. The U.S. represents a major food processing market across North America, Europe, and Asia Pacific. It accounts for more than 10% of overall food manufacturing shipments.
The manufacture & export of food & beverage across the U.S. has constantly been increasing since the past few years. The segment comprises a wide range of products and processes including chilled, fresh, and frozen foods offering long shelf life to the products. Food processing requires the use of numerous food grade lubricants that are FDA (Food and Drug Administration) and USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) approved. Food grade lubricants are used in machinery for the manufacturing of processed food.
Major oil & gas companies such as Total, Shell, British Petroleum, Sinopec, and Idemitsu are integrated manufacturers, which ensures stable raw material supply to manufacture mineral oils as well as additives needed for the production of lubricants. Through integration, these companies benefit concerning market expansion as well as widening their scope of operations. Major industry players are strategically tied-up with oil & gas companies to ensure raw material supply.
Process oils emerged as a dominant product segment accounting for over 41% of the overall volume in 2016. Process oils are a special category of oils that find wide application scope in a range of chemical as well as technology industries. These oils are used either as raw material or as a processing aid in diverse end-use industries such as rubber, chemicals, and plastic.
These oils also help in improving the efficiency and productivity of industrial operations. They are known to ensure low energy consumption, thereby resulting in reduced production costs and improved product quality.
General industrial oils are widely employed to prevent industrial machinery from rust, wear & tear, and other chemical corrosion. They are well-suited for applications that require extreme pressure performance and in all other applications that demand optimum performance. To name a few, they are used in rock drill, sawmill, anti-oxidant, slideway protection carrying machine tools in severe environments, needle/spindle bearing, and heavy-duty bearing applications.
Metalworking fluids are anticipated to witness the fastest growth rate by 2025. Metalworking fluids offer superior viscosity to temperature behavior and are therefore stable at extreme temperatures. Moreover, metalworking fluids also have good chemical resistance.
The increasing popularity of the metalworking fluids for improvising the surface finish and tool life is expected to be a favorable factor for the metalworking fluids market growth over the forecast period. The growth in niche applications such as medical machining is expected to further stimulate demand over the forecast period.
Industrial engine oils are designed to offset the rising fuel and operating costs. They have a lower coefficient of friction, which helps in saving fuel, while at the same time, keeps the engine clean for maximum combustion efficiency. With a majority of industrial engines running on diesel, there is a growing demand for engine oils with shear resistance and specified viscosity index. This trend is expected to complement industrial engines demand over the forecast period.
Chemical manufacturing dominated the application segment accounting for over 24% of the volume share in 2016. Chemical manufacturing and processing plant challenges include temperature extremes, continuous operation, and the threat of contamination from other chemicals, water, and particulates.
Lubricants used in the chemical manufacturing application result in the lengthening of lubricant and equipment lifespan, reduced oil temperatures, increased production output, reduced friction, heat, wear, energy consumption, and extended oil drain intervals.
Textiles industry is anticipated to be the dominant consumer by 2025. High-performance lubricants have historically played a significant role in the operating of textile machinery equipment. These are developed to cope up with the weaving and other types of constraints such as yarn breakage risks, high speed, and yarn abrasion while at the same time anticipating high wash-ability for all finishing processes such as dyeing and coating where auxiliary removal plays a key role.
The energy segment is also projected to generate significant demand over the forecast period. U.S. industrial lubricants for power plants are engineered to perform even in extreme conditions, such as high temperature as well as wet and dusty conditions. They help in the advancement of the power plant productivity while reducing the operational cost by lowering down friction.
Moreover, they provide excellent resistance to oxidation meaning superior foaming, air release, extended oil change intervals, and de-emulsification properties, ensuring that facilities operate properly and withstand high loads.
The U.S. industrial lubricants market is characterized by high capital investment and rising demand for bio-based alternatives. Key market participants include ExxonMobil Corp., The Lubrizol Corporation, Total S.A., Castrol, Valvoline International Inc., Chevron Corp., Royal Dutch Shell, Phillips 66, and Lucas Oil Products Inc. among others.
The key industry participants are focusing on both organic and inorganic growth to gain a competitive edge. New entrants are expected to focus on product portfolio expansion to extend their regional coverage across the U.S.
In July 2023, ExxonMobil acquired Denbury. This acquisition included the usage of carbon value chains and biofuels that was aimed at strengthening the growth and revenue of ExxonMobil.
In January 2023, Lubrizol introduced EcoAssurant ™ Solutions. This product contains environmentally accepted fuels, addictive packages, and components that elevate the quality of lubricants in industrial applications
In December 2022, ExxonMobil launched polypropylene production in Baton Rouge. This production was planned with the objective to meet the growing demand for lightweight, durable, and high-performance automotive parts that improve fuel efficiency.
Base year for estimation
Actual estimates/Historical data
2014 - 2016
2017 - 2025
Volume in Kilo Tons, revenue in USD Million and CAGR from 2017 to 2025
Revenue forecast, company share, competitive landscape, growth factors and trends
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This report forecasts revenue growth at the country level and provides an analysis of the industry trends in each of the sub-segments from 2014 to 2025. For the purpose of this study, Grand View Research has segmented the U.S. industrial lubricants market on the basis of product and application:
Product Outlook (Volume, Kilo Tons; Revenue, USD Million, 2014 - 2025)
General industrial oils
Industrial engine oils
Application Outlook (Volume, Kilo Tons; Revenue, USD Million, 2014 - 2025)
Industrial heat exchangers
Liquefied natural gas
Cocoa & chocolate
Other industrial applications
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