THE PETROLEUM QUALITY INSTITUTE OF AMERICA​

The independent resource for information and insights on the quality and integrity of lubricants in the marketplace

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THE PETROLEUM QUALITY INSTITUTE OF AMERICA​

The independent resource for information and insights on the quality and integrity of lubricants in the marketplace

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About The Petroleum Quality Institute of America

The Petroleum Quality Institute of America (PQIA) conducts independent testing of consumer, commercial, and industrial lubricants. PQIA’s mission is to serve the consumer of lubricants by testing and reporting on the quality and integrity of lubricants in the marketplace. It is expected that this improved visibility of quality will lead to wider conformance by lubricant manufacturers to specification and performance claims.

About The Petroleum Quality Institute of America

The Petroleum Quality Institute of America (PQIA) conducts independent testing of consumer, commercial, and industrial lubricants. PQIA’s mission is to serve the consumer of lubricants by testing and reporting on the quality and integrity of lubricants in the marketplace. It is expected that this improved visibility of quality will lead to wider conformance by lubricant manufacturers to specification and performance claims.

Smitty's Supply and Tractor Supply Agree to $1.7 Million Settlement in "SuperTrac 303" Class Action

August 12, 2019

A class action agreement to settle has been reached with Smitty’s Supply, Inc. and Tractor Supply Company on behalf of Missouri purchasers of Super S SuperTrac 303 Tractor Hydraulic Fluid. As described in detail in public filings, the Settlement provides significant payments to the Class in a way that addresses the fundamental issues underlying this case.

The First Amended Class Action Complaint case alleges that the SuperTrac 303 product was negligently and deceptively labeled, marketed and manufactured and that use of such product could cause damage to tractors and other equipment.

The Settlement Agreement and Release provides relief to approximately 10,000 Class Members who have purchased Super S SuperTrac 303 Tractor Hydraulic Fluid (“SuperTrac 303”) at Tractor Supply Company and other retail stores in the state of Missouri between May 25, 2013 and the present, excluding those who purchased for resale. Also excluded from the Settlement Class are Defendants, including any parent, subsidiary, affiliate or controlled person of Defendants; Defendants’ officers, directors, agents, employees and their immediate family members, as well as the judicial officers assigned to this litigation and members of their staffs and immediate families.

Under just the Part A Relief in the Settlement, the Class Settlement Fund is sufficient to provide each Settlement Class Member with an estimated automatic minimum payment in an amount calculated to be approximately 50% of the average purchase price for the units of SuperTrac 303 purchased by each such Settlement Class Member during the class period, with a possible pro rata increase for each such Settlement Class Member depending on the number of claims made and settlement checks cashed, as well as depending on the number and amount of claims made for the Part B Relief.

Through the Part B Relief in the Settlement, additional amounts can be awarded to Class Members who provide proof of repair costs and/or parts purchases necessitated by the use of the SuperTrac 303 fluid in the equipment. Such repairs, parts purchases, and/or equipment damage may relate to, without limitation, damage to seals, pumps, filters, gears, and clutch and brake systems, power take-off (PTO) systems and/or losses incurred as a result of equipment being damaged beyond reasonable repair which occurred as a result of damage and increased or excessive wear resulting from use of Super Trac 303.

An unopposed motion for preliminary approval of the proposed Class Action Settlement was filed on August 9, 2019 and is pending judicial approval.

Plaintiffs’ Class Counsel are: Horn Aylward & Bandy, LLC in Kansas City; White, Graham, Buckley & Carr, LLC. in Independence, Missouri.

METUCHEN, NJ, AUGUST 8, 2019 – The Petroleum Quality Institute of America (PQIA) together with Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD), today announced that Mark Griffin, President of the Michigan Petroleum Association/Michigan Association of Convenience Stores or MPA/MACS will be the keynote speaker at the upcoming lubricant industry conference, “Bridging the Gap.”

Mark Griffin
President MPA/MACS

Mark Griffin’s keynote address, “Promoting a Cooperative Spirit and Encouraging Group Effort, will speak to some of the issues and challenges petroleum marketers and convenience stores face to assure the quality of products they sell, and how the MPA/MACS works with state regulators to look after the interests of its members and those of consumers.

Mark has considerable experience in lobbying, marketing, publishing, communications, finance, and operations. In addition, he has successfully worked with industry and state regulators to support constructive legislation beneficial to the petroleum industry and convenience store businesses, and oppose that which is detrimental to that industry and those businesses to the extent not contrary to the public interest. Click for More>>>

Although They May Look Similar - Motor Oils Are Not All The Same

PQIA Educational Series - Volume 1 Issue 1 July 31, 2019

It’s not unusual to hear someone say, “Motor oil is motor oil, they are all the same.” Although this is far from true, it’s not hard to understand why some might think so.

As with many consumer products, the differences between products are often determined by using the five senses. In the case of food, for example, a consumer relies on sight to make a buying decision by looking at the price and the package to either actually see the product or a picture of it. Some go further to read the expiration date, ingredients and nutritional facts on the package to determine if the product is good for them. And when it comes time to eat, a consumer’s sense of taste, smell, and touch has the final say in what they consider good, better, best, and even bad.

But the ability to use one’s senses to do the same with motor oil is limited primarily to the sense of sight. And unfortunately, one can be betrayed by that sense if they are unfamiliar with, or fail to read the specifications and certification marks on the product labels, and instead, rely solely on price and packaging to make a buying decision. Since most motor oil bottles and the oil in them look similar, it’s not hard to understand why some might think “motor oil is motor oil, they are all the same.” But they are not and packaging and price can be deceiving.

Although most motor oil on store shelves (including major brands and private label) meet current specifications, the Petroleum Quality Institute of America (PQIA) continues to find products in the market that only meet obsolete specifications or fail to claim meeting any specifications. Read More>>

Tractor Hydraulic Fluid – NCWM Approves Amendments to HB130

July 22, 2019

The 104th Annual National Conference on Weights and Measures (NCWM) was held last week to take public testimony and vote on amendments to NIST Handbook 130. Tractor Hydraulic Fluid was among them and PQIA is pleased to report that all commenters were in support of the amended language to both the Uniform Regulation for the Method of Sale of Commodities and the Uniform Fuels and Automotive Lubricants Regulation sections on Tractor Hydraulic Fluid.

Click here to view the new regulations that will take effect January 1, 2020.

Consumer Alert

July 2, 2019
Chicago and Ohio – Buyer Beware

The PQIA recently visited two areas (Chicago and Ohio) where it has previously found motor oils and transmissions fluids on store shelves that can cause harm to vehicles. To our disappointment, despite efforts to raise awareness about such products and encourage states weights and measures to address the issue, we continue to find such products on stores shelves.

The PQIA now issues Consumer Alerts on two products recently purchased in Markham, IL, and three from Youngstown, OH. These motor oils can cause harm to an engine, and the ATF sited can cause harm to transmissions. PQIA advises consumers to be particularly vigilant when shopping for motor oils and transmission fluids in these areas and to be aware PQIA has issued consumer alerts on the following products recently purchased in Illinois and Ohio.

PQIA Consumer Alerts warn buyers about products found in the market that can cause harm to engines or transmissions. Alerts are issued on the following five lubricants recently examined by PQIA.

​Click bottles for details

​From the Lab

July 2, 2019

The results of the tests conducted on the two products shown below meet the SAE J300 specifications for the SAE Viscosity Grade listed on the product label, and are consistent with the listed API Service Categories.

 

​Click bottles for details

Driver One Synthetic Blend
SAE 5W-30, API SN/ILSAC GF-5

The results of the tests conducted on this sample meet the SAE J300 specifications for the SAE Viscosity Grade listed on the product label, and are consistent with the listed API Service Categories.

Midwest Plus SAE 5W-30
"For use where an SJ/SAE 5W-30 motor oil is recommended."

The results of the tests conducted on this sample meet the SAE J300 specifications for the SAE Viscosity Grade listed on the product label, and are consistent with the listed API Service Categories. 

Note: This product is labeled, “For use where an SJ/SAE 5W-30 motor oil is recommended.” API SJ motor oils are intended for use in vehicles built prior to 2002. It should be noted that although the product references the API SJ Service Category, the label does not state that it meets or is approved under API SJ.

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