Oil Analysis Lab Inc., of Spokane, plans to expand its building and add additional lab equipment at its longtime location in East Spokane, and also has leased space for temporary storage in Spokane Valley.
The company occupies 7,500 square feet of floor space at 1514 E. Sprague, where it plans to add 4,000 square feet of space in a project that's expected to begin soon, says Lane Crandall, who co-owns the business with his wife, Pam.
Crandall says the addition is in the final design stage, and he will select a contractor soon to build the project. OMS Inc., of Spokane, is the architect. Crandall declines to disclose the cost of the project.
Meanwhile, Oil Analysis Lab has leased temporarily 4,500 square feet of space at 5528 E. Cataldo to store equipment it bought recently from a Seattle concern, he says, adding that the equipment will be installed at its East Sprague facility when the expansion there is complete.
Oil Analysis Lab specializes in testing oil samples taken from the crankcases, transmissions, and hydraulic systems of industrial engines. It also analyzes oil filters.
"Like a blood test that can tell what's happening inside a person's body, oil analysis can tell what's going on in an engine," Crandall says. "It can identify contamination from air, dirt, or fuel."
He asserts that such analysis is vital to a client's "predictive maintenance" program, which is designed to minimize loss of production caused when essential equipment is off line while an industrial engine is repaired or maintenance is performed on it.
"Most of our business comes from mining companies," he says, adding that some mining operations use massive haul trucks that are "as big as a house and have $500,000 engines."
Oil Analysis Lab also handles occasional test samples from high-performance powerboat, muscle-car, and diesel-truck enthusiasts.
Crandall declines to disclose how many people Oil Analysis Lab employs or say whether it will hire additional people after it expands, but says its annual revenues have been rising by 20 percent to 30 percent for the last eight years.
The Crandalls bought the business in 1990 and moved it to its current location in 1991.
It has operated under the Oil Analysis Lab name since 1984.
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