Download your free guide

4 Techniques for Measuring TAN/TBN in Lubrication Oil

A high concentration of acidic compounds in a lubricant can lead to corrosion
of machine parts and clogged oil filters due to the formation of varnish and
sludge. When a lubricant breaks down, acidic by-products will be formed from
the chemical decomposition of the base stock and additives in the presence of
air and heat. Total Acid Number (TAN) is a measure of acid concentration present
in a lubricant.

Total Base Number (TBN) is a measure of alkaline concentration present in a
lubricant. Engine oils are formulated with alkaline additives in order to combat
the build-up of acids in a lubricant as it breaks down. The TBN level in a lubricant
is targeted for its application.


Learn about methods for measuring TAN and TBN in lubrication oil:

  • What are the Pros and Cons of each method?
  • Is it portable? Easy to use?
  • Is it qualitative or quantitative?