How to Choose a Lubricant Distributor

Not all distributors have the same quality standards, but there are a notable few that have strong quality control programs. The Shell Corporation Distributor Product Quality Assurance (DPQA) program is an example of a program that recognizes distributors who follow over 120 Shell QA/QC guidelines for facilities and procedures. Finding a distributor certified under this program is a good way to ensure that your lubricants meet the OEM's quality requirements.

The Shell DPQA certification and inspection requirements cover guidelines for cleanliness and organization in various areas, including offices, the building's exterior, warehouse, product transport, and bulk storage areas.

The Manufacturer-Distributor Relationship

Having a good relationship between the lubricant manufacturer and the distributor can benefit end-users. Shell, for instance, offers the Products Plus Services program in around 30 industrial markets nationwide. In these markets, Shell chooses a DPQA distributor as its partner (Keller-Heartt Oil in Chicago) and assigns a lubrication specialist to work exclusively with the selected distributor and their customers. 


The benefits of having both the right manufacturer and the right distributor on your team are vast. Receive exceptional customer service, get the products you need in bulk and at lower prices, enjoy free delivery and access to private-label products such as Truegard. Not to mention that a quality-assurance and quality-maintenance program reliably provides you with:

  • Consistent quality products that meet OEM requirements, from batch to batch, delivery to delivery.
  • Less risk of contamination and subsequent damage to costly machinery. This means better performance, greater dependability, and less unplanned downtime.
  • Better risk management. A comprehensive audit trail and consistency in manufactured quality and delivery can potentially reduce liability and reduced insurance costs.
  • A safer environment, because your lubes will help keep machines operating within their design limits.
  • Better environmental protection, because your lubes will be safer from contamination, they will be less likely to end up as a hazardous waste disposal problem.

    Choosing the right distributor is as important as choosing the right lubricants. Take the time to visit and inspect both the lubricant manufacturer and distributor to ensure their quality standards and assurance procedures meet your requirements. Don't hesitate to ask about how they maintain and assure product quality.

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