News

  • VLS Newsletter April 2018

    VLS Newsletter April 2018

    VLS Case 010150

    VLS has published its findings concerning case 010150 following a six month review to ensure continued compliance. The case notice can be seen at: http://ukla-vls.org.uk/latest-news/

    VLS Case 010151

    VLS has received details of a case which is under investigation regarding a Fully Synthetic 5W/30 lubricant. The case notice can be seen at: http://ukla-vls.org.uk/case-outcomes/vls010151/

    VLS Case 010152

    VLS has received details of a case which is under investigation regarding a PCMO 5W/30.  The case notice can be seen at: http://ukla-vls.org.uk/case-outcomes/vls010152/

    VLS Case 010153

    VLS has received details of a case which is under investigation regarding a PCMO Fully Synthetic 5W/30.  The case notice can be seen at: http://ukla-vls.org.uk/case-outcomes/vls010153/

    VLS Case 010154

    VLS has received details of a case which is under investigation regarding a Fully Synthetic PCMO 5W/30.  The case notice can be seen at: http://ukla-vls.org.uk/case-outcomes/vls010154/

    VLS Case 010155

    VLS has received details of a case which is under investigation regarding a Fully Synthetic PCMO 5W/30.  The case notice can be seen at: http://ukla-vls.org.uk/case-outcomes/vls010155/

    Media Update

    Professional Motor Mechanic

    Andrew Goddard, Chairman of VLS, speaks to Professional Motor Mechanic about Making Sense of Marketing Claims on Lubricant packs. To view the article on Pages 36 and 37 click here

    Stay Up To Date

    If your media team would like access to VLS press releases, newsfeeds and notifications from our social media accounts, please email admin@ukla-vls.org.uk, and we will add your name to our list of contacts.

    Andrew Goddard

    Chairman of VLS

  • VLS Bulletin – April 2018 – VLS010150

    VLS 010150 – 5W/30 Fully Synthetic Engine Oil

    On 4th September 2017 the product was reported to VLS.

    The complaint concerned the failure of the product to meet its own stated technical specification for HTHS, TBN and Sulphated Ash.

    A sample of the product could not be obtained on the open market to test whether the complaint was valid.

    Consequently the case was closed in the absence of technical evidence and not meeting the VLS requirement that the product is available for open sale on the UK market.

    David Wright, Company Secretary – VLS (UK) Ltd says “We want to ensure we have the highest standards in Europe for lubricant manufacture, blending and marketing, and we want a ‘level playing’ field for all participants, so that we protect the interests of the consumer and other end users.

    “In the Verification of Lubricant Specifications (UK) Ltd, we have set our course for stronger industry self-regulation by working positively towards more open and transparent competition that benefits all lubricant organisations. By working with the sector to resolve non-compliant products in an independent and impartial manner, we can support companies to compete on a more equitable basis in a highly competitive marketplace.”

    April 2018

  • VLS Newsletter March 2018

    VLS Newsletter March 2018

    VLS Case 010139

    VLS has published its final findings concerning case 010139 following a six month review to ensure continued compliance. The case notice can be seen at: http://ukla-vls.org.uk/case-outcomes/

    VLS Case 010147

    VLS has published its final findings concerning case 010147 following a six month review to ensure continued compliance. The case notice can be seen at: http://ukla-vls.org.uk/case-outcomes/

    VLS Case 010148

    VLS has published its final findings concerning case 010148 following a six month review to ensure continued compliance. The case notice can be seen at: http://ukla-vls.org.uk/case-outcomes/

    VLS Case 010149

    VLS has published its final findings concerning case 010149 following a six month review to ensure continued compliance. The case notice can be seen at: http://ukla-vls.org.uk/case-outcomes/

    Media Update

    Facts magazine  David Wright, Company Secretary of VLS, speaks to Facts magazine about developments in automotive regulation and industry standards. To view the article on Pages 104 and 105 click here

    Transport Operator magazine reports on new VLS member Otto Lube. To read the feature click here

    Commercial Vehicle Workshop magazine reports on new VLS member Otto Lube, click here to read the story.

     Autotrade News reports on VLS’s appearance at the forthcoming Automechanika exhibition in June at the NEC. To read the feature click here.

    Professional Motor Mechanic magazine spoke to VLS Chairman Andrew Goddard in February on a VLS case where the lubricant marketer was making out of date ACEA claims against their products. To read the feature click here.

    Stay Up To Date

    If your media team would like access to VLS press releases, newsfeeds and notifications from our social media accounts, please email admin@ukla-vls.org.uk, and we will add your name to our list of contacts.

    Andrew Goddard

    Chairman of VLS

  • VLS Bulletin – February 2018 – VLS010147

    VLS 010147 – Edge 5W/20 Fully Synthetic Engine Oil

    On 30th September 2016 the product was reported to VLS.

    The complaint concerned the performance claims made on the product which included both a low SAPS specification (ACEA C2 and C3) and full SAPS specifications (ACEA A3/B3).  According to the current ACEA 2012 sequences these claims are non-compliant due to the mutually exclusive sulphated ash levels – for A3/B3 the limit is 0.9 to 1.5% and for C2/C3 it must be 0.8% or less.  Therefore the two claims cannot exist side by side on one product.

    Following the investigation the Named Party amended the product labelling and product catalogue on their website to remove reference to full SAPS specifications ACEA 2012 A3/B3 and retain reference to ACEA 2012 low SAPS specifications C2 and C3.

    On 19th February 2018, VLS conducted a six month review of the above case which included procuring a sample of the product.

    VLS found that the actions agreed and undertaken by Named Party have brought the product into continued compliance at the six month stage and consequently the case was closed.

    David Wright, Company Secretary – VLS (UK) Ltd says “We want to ensure we have the highest standards in Europe for lubricant manufacture, blending and marketing, and we want a ‘level playing’ field for all participants, so that we protect the interests of the consumer and other end users.

    “In the Verification of Lubricant Specifications (UK) Ltd, we have set our course for stronger industry self-regulation by working positively towards more open and transparent competition that benefits all lubricant organisations. By working with the sector to resolve non-compliant products in an independent and impartial manner, we can support companies to compete on a more equitable basis in a highly competitive marketplace.”

    February 2018

  • VLS Newsletter January 2018

    VLS Newsletter January 2018

    ATIEL Appointments

    Marco Digioia has been appointed the new ATIEL President and takes up his position in January 2018, replacing outgoing President Peter Tjan. Based in Brussels, Marco is a professional lobbyist with 14-years’ experience of positioning in Brussels for transport organisations.

    Jef Soetewey, a former lubricant blending plant manager, has been appointed to manage the EELQMS LoC scheme (SAIL).  Jef took up his position on 1 December and is responsible for managing the operation of ATIEL’s ongoing programme of market surveys that are used to monitor the quality of automotive lubricants in the marketplace and their level of compliance with the ACEA sequences.

    https://atiel.org/index.php?option=com_acymailing&ctrl=archive&task=view&mailid=213&key=1As2ORHR&subid=2-264cb188132dfa2cb2ca9d3296ec558b&tmpl=component

    VLS Receives Four New Cases

    Four new cases have been received by VLS. Two product complaints concern 5W30 automotive engine oils and all four concern the performance standards and technical specification of the product. The complaints have been reviewed by the Technical Review Panel. The cases relate to the ability of the products involved to meet their own technical specifications and the claims they make regarding OEM specifications. http://ukla-vls.org.uk/latest-news/

    VLS Case 010115

    VLS has published its final findings concerning case 115 following a six month review to ensure continued compliance. The case notice can be seen at :

    http://ukla-vls.org.uk/case-outcomes/

    Press Coverage

    Andrew Goddard spoke to UK Haulier in January about how the wrong oil could be costing fleet owners’ money. You can read the article at https://www.ukhaulier.co.uk/news/road-transport/fleet/the-wrong-oil-choice-could-be-costing-your-fleet-money/

    In January CAT, the magazine of the aftermarket, featured an article by Andrew Goddard, Chairman of VLS, on the challenge the aftermarket faces with the advent of electric vehicles. The article can be read here http://www.catmag.co.uk/electric-vehicles-vs-the-aftermarket

    VLS was featured in Fleet Alliance magazine in December warning against the dangers of choosing the wrong oil. The article can be seen here. http://www.fleetalliance.co.uk/wrong-oil-costing-fleet-money/

    On January 19, VLS featured in the Road Haulage Association’s Roadway magazine on maintaining standards in the lubricant industry. https://twitter.com/hashtag/Roadway?src=hash

    Professional Motor Factor magazine featured an interview with Andrew Goddard in their December edition talking about the role of VLS in the lubricants sector. The artic le can be found here :  http://pmfmag.co.uk/business-training/what-verification-lubricant-specifications/

     Stay Up To Date

    If your media team would like access to VLS press releases, newsfeeds and notifications from our social media accounts, please email admin@ukla-vls.org.uk, and we will add your name to our list of contacts.

    The newsletter can also be found here.

    Andrew Goddard

    Chairman of VLS

  • VLS Newsletter December 2017

    VLS Newsletter December 2017

    ACEA release updated version of the 2016 engine oil sequences

    You can download a copy of the corrected version of the Sequences here.

    Please remember that all new claims must comply with ACEA 2016 from 1 December 2017 – see the table on page 2 of the Sequences.

    VLS Release new End User Leaflet

    A revised and updated version of the VLS End User leaflet has been issued by VLS which contains improved graphics and simplified messaging.  The leaflet can be on the VLS website here.

    VLS Receives 50th Case

    VLS has passed an important milestone in receiving its 50th product case complaint.

    CAT magazine has published details of the case summaries that VLS has received to date, and the information can be found here.

    VLS to exhibit at Automechanika 2018

    VLS has confirmed its commitment to exhibit the services it provides supporting the End User and aftermarket, by attending Automechanika at the NEC in Birmingham for a second year. Details of the event can be found here.

    Could the Wrong Oil be Costing You Money?

    Chairman of VLS, Andrew Goddard features in November’s edition of Utility Fleet magazine warning against the dangers of using the wrong oil.

    The article can be found on page 39 of the magazine and is available online here.

    The full version of this newsletter can be found here.

    Can I take this opportunity to wish all of our members a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

    Andrew Goddard

    Chairman of VLS

     

  • VLS receives Four New Cases

    VLS, the Verification of Lubricant Specifications, has opened four new cases following receipt of product complaints. Two product complaints concern 5W30 automotive engine oils and all four concern the performance standards and technical specification of the product. The complaints have been reviewed by the Technical Review Panel.

    The cases relate to the ability of the products involved to meet their own technical specifications and the claims they make regarding OEM specifications.

    David Wright, Company Secretary said “Misleading packaging is an issue that VLS has been keen to address, and we released guidance around the use of marketing claims on our website last year. These new cases suggest there may still be work to be done within our industry to educate manufacturers. It is vital that workshops, fleet managers, haulage operators and motorists alike can have confidence that lubricants products can do what they claim.”

     

  • VLS Receives 50th Product Complaint

    On 6th September 2017, VLS received its 50th product complaint concerning an automotive engine oil. Since its inception in October 2013, VLS has reviewed product complaints concerning automotive engine oils, gear oils, agricultural tractor oils and central hydraulic fluids. It has investigated these products for cold weather properties, compliance with formal OEM approvals and industry standards.

    Commenting on the 50th complaint, David Wright, Company Secretary said’ this latest case has become a milestone for VLS in continuing to ensure the confidence of our end users in the lubricants sold in a sector that places quality at its very heart.’

  • ATIEL Webinar – European Engine Lubricants Quality Management System (EELQMS)

    European Engine Lubricants Quality Management System (EELQMS)

    ATIEL Webinar, 3rd October 2017 at 12 noon CET (1300 hours BST)

    Hosted by Adri van de Ven, ATIEL Executive Committee member

    ATIEL, the Technical Association of the European Lubricants Industry, will be holding a webinar for UKLA and VLS members on changes to the European Engine Lubricants Quality Management System (EELQMS).

    Relaunched in  May, EELQMS is a quality system for automotive engine lubricants that are designed to meet the minimum performance requirements of leading European vehicle manufacturers. The webinar will outline recent changes to EELQMS including ATIEL’s Compliance Policy, and changes to the Lubricant Marketers’ Letters of Conformance due to come into effect in November 2017.

    Adri van de Ven, Technical Coordinator at Q8 Research & Technology, and ATIEL Executive Committee member will be hosting the webinar.

    For details of how to participate in this webinar please contact the UKLA Secretariat on +44(0)1442 875922 or email secretariat@ukla.org.uk.

  • VLS CAT Article – March 2017

    In March 2017 an article entitled ‘Does it really do what it says on the bottle?’ written by Andrew Goddard, VLS Chairman was published in Cat Magazine.

    The article can be found here.

  • VLS CAT Article – October 2016

    In October 2016 an article entitled ‘Ensuring Confidence in Lubricant Products’ written by David Wright, UKLA Director General and VLS Secretary was published in Cat Magazine.

    The article can be found here.

  • ACEA 2016 Sequences Launched

    Andrew Goddard, Chairman of VLS, gives his view on the newly-launched ACEA 2016 automotive engine oil sequences.

    To read the article click here.

  • VLS Specifications and Marketing Claims Guidance

    VLS has published guidance on the use of marketing claims in connection with the description of lubricants and their specifications. This guidance can be found here.

  • VLS Brand Guidelines

    VLS are publishing brand guidelines with respect to the conferred rights for VLS members to use the VLS logo and brand in connection with their business.

    It is a condition of use of the VLS brand that members agree to abide by the guidelines.

    The brand guidelines can be found here.

  • ATIEL provides guidance on making combined ACEA Category performance claims

    ATIEL, the technical association of the European lubricants industry, has developed new guidance for engine lubricant marketers on making valid performance claims against more than one Category within the ACEA (European Automobile Manufacturers Association) 2012 European Oil Sequences.

    For more information, visit http://atiel.org/industry-info/acea-sequences/acea-claims-2

  • VLS Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

    VLS are publishing a list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) to help companies raise and respond to complaints about lubricant products.

    Please click here to view the FAQs.

    June 2015

  • VLS Risk Matrix

    VLS are publishing a risk matrix which demonstrates how the programme categorises different types of cases brought forward for its’ attention.

    In the matrix, the technical specification of a lubricant is compared with its’ physical characteristics to determine the level of risk to users of non-compliant products. Examples of risks are given within each cell of the matrix. A traffic light colour coding system is used to illustrate the level of risk involved in the use of non-compliant products.

    Click here to download the Risk Matrix

    June 2015

  • VLS Case Summary: October 2013 – April 2015

    VLS Case Summary Charts
    October 2013 to April 2015

    VLS are publishing two charts showing information relating to cases that have been resolved and closed, or are currently under investigation, since the launch of the programme in October 2013.

    The first graph illustrates cases by the type of product, the second pie chart illustrates cases by the type of issue.

    The aim of the publication is to provide guidance to lubricant manufacturers, blenders and marketers of the nature of cases received to date, and to support VLS’s aim of operating in an open and transparent manner.

    Click here to download the charts.

    May 2015

  • Case Handling Process Chart – May 2015

    May 2015

    VLS publish an updated case handling process

    A new case handling process chart has been published by VLS. This diagram reflects the way cases are currently managed through the process.

    To view the revised case handling process click here.

  • ATIEL guidance on ACEA Claims

    April 2015
    ATIEL has released information for engine lubricant marketers on the representation of ACEA performance claims for engine oils.
    http://www.atiel.org/news-and-info/news-articles/18-public-content/news-and-info-content/95-guidance-on-making-valid-acea-performance-claims

    This guidance is based upon ATIEL’s understanding and experience of the ACEA European Oil Sequences*, which set the minimum performance standards of engine oils required by European vehicle manufacturers. The information includes a chart of ACEA Claims expiry dates for different engine classes in all the issues of the Oil Sequences back to 2002. The chart can be found at: http://www.atiel.org/industry-info/acea-claims.

    The chart can help lubricant marketers to identify and make valid ACEA claims for their products. It lists which claims are current and which have been superseded. It also provides examples of claims descriptions in common use, to assist lubricant marketers in producing appropriate labelling of ACEA claims on product packaging and literature**.

    ATIEL has made this guidance publically available on its website for the use of all marketers of engine lubricants who make claims to meet the requirements of the ACEA Oil Sequences. ACEA requires that all such marketers follow the European Engine Lubricants Quality Management System (EELQMS) and that claims against the ACEA Oil Sequences are only be made by oil marketers who have signed the EELQMS Lubricant Marketers’ Letter of Conformance. This guidance will help to ensure that marketers make claims in accordance with ACEA requirements.
    More information on the Lubricant Marketers’ Letter of Conformance can be found at: http://www.atiel.org/code-of-practice/letters-of-conformance.

    * Only ACEA can give an authoritative interpretation.
    ** The lubricant marketer retains full responsibility for any performance claims.

  • Aftermarket Magazine April 2015

    Andrew Goddard, Chairman of the VLS Supervisory Board, explains the importance of industry regulation and VLS in an article in the April edition of Aftermarket magazine. To view the article on page 23 of the magazine, click here

  • Changes to the VLS Website

     

    Recently the VLS website has been updated. These changes have been made to improve the service offered to VLS members, as well as well as consumers and end users of lubricants. These changes will provide;

    • Clarity for the industry, consumers and end users of lubricants.

    • Consistency across all cases for reasons of fairness, and to demonstrate the impartiality of VLS.

    • Speed and simplicity in reducing the time it takes to categorise and upload new case details to the website.

    Outline details on cases that have been received and are being investigated are being displayed for the first time. The aim of this development is to demonstrate the extent of issues and the number of cases under consideration rather than simply publish details once a case has been resolved. As the VLS process is confidential, organisations or specific products cannot be named until a case has been thoroughly investigated. These changes however will show the type of issues under consideration at an earlier stage.

    More detail has also been provided on the summary pages of the Case Outcomes and Case Resolved sections of the website. Here we have broadly categorised cases as either;

    Product failed to meet claims made, or

    Product investigated and found to be compliant. Case Closed.

    Along with new case headlines, summary phrases have been introduced alongside each case to provide more detail. These phrases fall into four main categories;

    1. Corrective action
    a. “Follow up in progress with Named Party”, or
    b. “Named Party advises corrective actions have been taken”, or
    c. “Corrective actions NOT taken &/or NOT confirmed to VLS”

    2. Trading Standards:
    a. “Case passed by VLS to Trading Standards Office”

    3. Product Testing :
    b. “Follow up testing within 6 months”
    c. “Product re-tested after 6 months and failed again”, or
    d. “Product re-tested after 6 months and passed”

    4. Product Recall:
    a. “Product recall requested by VLS”

    On the VLS website you can still find out more specific case detail on the relevant summary page by clicking on the case number. Specific case details will continue to be displayed as cases are concluded.

    We would welcome your thoughts on the changes made to the website. If you have any comments then please get in touch using the details in the Contact Us pages.

  • VLS – one year on

     

    It is now almost one year since the launch of the VLS initiative onto the UK Lubricants industry.  It has to be said that we were not completely sure of what the immediate impact would be or in fact how the initial membership would take off?  One thing we were sure of was that our industry has long awaited the introduction of an independent and knowledgeable body that would take a responsible role in overseeing the activities of lubricants producers and ensure that not only the interests of consumers are protected but also help provide a fair and level playing field for competition.  Since then we have had very positive feedback not only from UK industry members but also from many and diverse sources both home and abroad.  This also coincides with a new “market survey” initiative from ATIEL, with results to be published imminently, all underlining the fact that both VLS and our timing is right.

     

    VLS currently has nineteen paid-up members who range across small, medium and large producers, including the additive industry.  At the present time, VLS are handling a number of reported cases, testing the VLS processes and methodology with positive results. On completion, the results of current cases will be published; leading to what we all hope will be an improved situation for producers and consumers alike.

    However, this is only part of the story because contacts throughout the industry, including additive and base oil suppliers, are commenting on positive signs of change in the industry with noticeable increases in demands for approved and higher quality products emanating from a much wider range of industry participants. Signs are out there that a change of attitude is happening with respect to product integrity which is all part of the big picture and a strong indicator of the impact VLS is having in the UK lubricant market.  More updates to follow.

     

    Andy Dixon, Q8

    Chair, VLS (UK) Ltd Supervisory Board

    22nd April 2014

     

     

  • VLS Launch

    UKLAThe UKLA are announcing the registration of a subsidiary company “Verification of Lubricant Specifications Ltd”, a not-for-profit organisation that is dedicated to the protection of the integrity of lubricating oil performance standards against false or misleading claims.

    Background

    Misrepresented products are being sold into the UK Market which do not conform to the specifications claimed for them by their marketers. Unrealised quality and performance claim promises place consumers and equipment at risk and distort the market. However, it is appreciated that in some cases the misrepresentation is due to a genuine lack of understanding and we as an organisation do strive to increase the level of specification education to consumers and marketers alike. Equally, it must be said that perpetrators of such actions are in the minority and the vast majority of product supplied into the market is completely fit for purpose.

    The Mission

    The VLS mission, simply put, is to protect consumers of lubricants from purchasing products that make incorrect specification and performance claims.  This will be achieved by providing an independentobjectivecredible and trusted means to challenge and verify lubricant specifications and performance claims.

    Objective

    The VLS objective is to establish a transparent UK Lubricants market with fair competition and accurate performance and OEM specification approval claims that enable consumers to make informed and conscious purchase choices.  There is no intention of curtailing the marketing of cheaper, cost-effective lubricants provided they are accurately described and labelled.

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