Crackle test

OELCHECK test instrument: Heating plate
Sample quantity: 0.4 ml
Unit: none, little, moderate, high
Test result: Water
Analysis for: all types of oils and fuels
Brief description:

In the crackle test, a drop of oil is dropped onto a hot plate. If there is free water in the oil, it evaporates with a crackling sound and visible steam bubbles. The water content is estimated with a visual inspection by a trained observer.


The crackle test is performed on all oil samples. This test offers a simple, fast and cost-effective way to draw conclusions regarding the presence of free water.

It is evaluated in diagnostics as a "screening" test in addition to the IR spectroscopy (water content in %) and the KF method (water content in ppm), which are also used to identify small quantities of dissolved water. An oil change is usually necessary if the crackle test indicates that water content is high.

Underlying test standard: OELCHECK test method OPM 041