1 Scientific and Technological Research Council, Marmara Research Center, Environment and Cleaner Production Institute Gebze/Kocaeli, Turkey

2 Scientific and Technological Research Council, Marmara Research Center, Chemical Technology Institute Gebze/Kocaeli, Turkey


In accordance with waste strategy for Turkey, the study was carried out to analyses waste engine crankcase oils and waste gearbox oils generated from vehicle maintenance services in order to determine their suitability for recycling, recovery or final disposal based on regulation published by Turkish Ministry of Environment and Forestry on 21 January 2004. The regulation requires all waste oil neither abandoned nor released into the environment and all batches must be analyzed for arsenic, cadmium, chromium, lead, chlorine, total halogens, polychlorinated biphenyls, and flash points. The content analysis showed that the heavy metal concentrations in waste engine crankcase oils were varied considerably, between the metals analyzed, lead the highest is followed by chromium, arsenic and cadmium. In addition, higher amount of chlorine and total halogens, were detected in some samples, while polychlorinated biphenyls concentrations remained below regulatory limits for all samples. The analyses revealed that waste engine crankcase oils from fifteen to thirty five years old vehicles contained chromium, lead, chlorine and total halogens levels above legal limits set by Ministry of Environment and Forestry for recycling. Conversely, in comparison to the findings from the analyzed series of old vehicles, the waste engine crankcase oils samples from new vehicles and all waste gearbox oils are eligible for recycling.

Graphical Abstract


  • The age of the vehicle effect their waste engine crankcase oil composition
  • Lead is one of the most abundant heavy metals in waste engine crankcase oil
  • All waste gear oils are suitable for the production of the base or new oils
  • PCBs are not detected in all waste oil samples


Main Subjects

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