Winter Oil Storage 101

14 Dec 2016, Posted by McPherson Oil in Oil Tips

Winter Oil Storage | McPherson OilWinter’s cold temperatures have an adverse effect on many things, including your motor oil. This is often because often, the storage areas where oil is kept are not climate controlled. By knowing how winter affects oil, businesses and oil company suppliers can work together to apply good oil storage practices. Knowing the effects of winter on oil will help with good oil storage practices when facing cold weather conditions.


The ideal temperature for oil stability is between 40°F and 85°F, but many parts of the country experience much more extreme temperatures throughout the year. These temperature fluctuations tend to affect the viscosity and thickness of the oil. When this happens, the engine or machine that the oil runs in won’t be protected. Slightly too much viscosity will inhibit oil flow to the right part of the engine. Too low a viscosity causes the oil to lack the thickness needed to provide a necessary oil coat on key parts of the engine.

Storage Conditions

Storage conditions contribute to protecting or ruining the good properties of oil. Storage areas should not have excessive moisture, and temperatures should be kept moderate. If oil is stored in a damp area with fluctuating temperatures, moisture will be sucked into the storage container and condensation will form. This becomes even more of a problem if containers are stored half full, allowing more air inside. Moisture ends up increasing solid particles in the oil, as well as microbes. Both of these components can wreak havoc on your oil, causing wear and corrosion.

Best Practices for Winter Oil Storage

  • When possible, keep oil containers sealed to prevent contamination. This is the best way to prevent oil problems.
  • Don’t store oil in a dusty area, since dust will degrade oil.
  • Always keep in mind that motor oil is susceptible to catching fire. It is a Class 2 flammable liquid with a flash point of between 420°F and 485°F. Plan for storage accordingly.
  • Most oil has a shelf life of one year, so rotate stock regularly.
  • Keep in mind that oil with rust inhibitors has even a shorter shelf life.

Implementing good oil storage practices will keep your stock in excellent condition through the winter season.

Finding the Right Oil Supplier

Finding excellent oil products from an oil company is the first step in ensuring good oil storage practices. McPherson Oil offers a complete line of oil products from the Proteck brand. Proteck combines quality, performance, and great value. This is only a part of McPherson’s lineup of oil solutions, which includes commercial, industrial, off-road, and industrial lubricants. With Total Petroleum Management, McPherson is able to better serve a variety of industries by meeting all their oil needs.

Contact McPherson’s experienced sales team, who offers the service and technical expertise to meet your business’s oil needs.