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Difference between API GL-04 and API GL-05

Difference between API GL-04 and API GL-05

API GL-04 and API GL-05 are two different types of lubricants that serve different purposes.API GL-04 is used for general engineering while API GL-05 is used for extreme pressure and hostile environments. Knowing which type of lubricant to use in a given situation is important for keeping machinery running smoothly. In this post, we will explore the differences between these two types of lubricants.

What is API GL-04?

API GL-04 is a classification for automotive gear oils. The API, or American Petroleum Institute, is a trade organization that sets standards for the oil and gas industry. API GL-04 designates a gear oil that meets certain criteria for viscosity, durability, and oxidation stability. Gear oils are used in transmissions, differentials, and power steering systems. API GL-04 gear oils must be able to withstand high temperatures and heavy loads without breaking down. They must also be compatible with seals and other components in the system. API GL-04 gear oils are suitable for use in both passenger cars and commercial vehicles.

What is API GL-05?

API GL-05 is a specification for gear oils used in automotive applications. The API GL-05 standard covers four different grades of gear oil, each with their own specific viscosity and performance requirements. The API GL-05 specification is divided into two parts, the first of which covers the requirements for passenger car and light-duty truck gear oils. The second part of the API GL-05 specification covers the requirements for heavy-duty truck and industrial gear oils. Gear oils meeting the API GL-05 specification are typically identified by a black and white API service symbol on the product label.

Difference between API GL-04 and API GL-05

API GL-04 and API GL-05 are both Gear Lubricants. API GL-04 is a retired designation, replaced by API GL-5. API GL-04 specified a gear oil with extreme pressure additives for manual transmissions operating under high loads and/or low speeds where an API GL-5 gear oil may cause excessive wear.

  • API GL-05 is the current extreme pressure gear oil specification and contains more robust additive technology than API GL-4 gear oils. API GL-05 can be used in all applications previously using API GL-4 or API GL-4/GL-5. For off highway use only, not for automotive transmissions.20W50 motor oil (SAE J306) may be used when API service SG, SH, SJ or SL oils are recommended.
  • Do not use in API CG or CD four stroke cycle engines due to potential piston ring sticking. When using lower quality fuels, frequent oil changes are advised to prevent the formation of deposits that could lead to corrosion or wear.
  • You should also use a higher quality gear oil such asAPI GL-5 in these conditions. Check your owner’s manual to see if special operating conditions apply to your application. If you don’t have your owner’s manual handy, most manufacturers specify API Service SG, SH, SJ or SL motor oils for ordinary passenger car use under normal conditions.”


The main difference between API GL-04 and API GL-05 is that the former does not have a viscosity modifier, while the latter does. This means that API GL-04 can be used in applications where a low level of lubrication is desired, such as in pumps and bearings. However, if you need a product with better performance under extreme temperatures or in more viscous fluids, then you should consider using API GL-05 instead.

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