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O’Reilly, Ozark, Omni 303 Tractor Hydraulic Fluid Missouri Class Action

Why are companies still selling what purports to be 303 tractor hydraulic fluid when it’s obsolete? And how is it possible for a tractor hydraulic fluid to even be obsolete? That’s what the complaint takes up in this Missouri class action against O’Reilly Automotive, Inc., Ozark Automotive Distributors, Inc., O’Reilly Automotive Stores, Inc. (doing business as O’Reilly Auto Parts), and Omni Specialty Packaging, LLC.

Tractor hydraulic fluid (THF) is a multifunctional lubricant for use in tractors and other equipment. It is supposed to act as hydraulic fluid, transmission fluid, and gear oil. 

The 303 THF is named after a popular John Deere THF in the 1970s called JD-303. However, that product was made with sperm whale oil. Because of laws protecting endangered species, companies can no longer use sperm whale oil. Thus “the ‘303’ designation is obsolete and 303 specifications have not been available for over forty (40) years.”

After that, the complaint says, John Deere made other kinds of THF. For a time, while it made J20A and J20B, it had a licensing program to ensure that if other companies wanted to use those designations, their products met its specifications. However, those types of THF and the licensing program have both been discontinued. Nowadays, the complaint says, the company sells THFs designated as J20C or J20D.

The discontinuation of the licensing program, the complaint says, “resulted in a ‘free for all’ with respect to the THF manufactured and sold in the open market and the opportunity for unscrupulous manufacturers and sellers to falsely use” the Deere designations on whatever THF they offer.

The complaint alleges that manufacturers now “use poor quality base oils, waste oil, line flush, used motor oil and diluted additive packages in their 303 THF products…” 

Because of this, the complaint says, “the 303 THF fluids not only lack the required lubricants and protective benefits offered to purchasers, when they are used the fluids actually cause purchasers’ equipment to suffer increased wear and damage to the spiral gear, excessive wear in the planetaries, improper and poor shifting, seal leakage, and improper operation of the wet brakes.”

Despite this, the makers of the 303 products label them as meeting manufacturer specifications. 

Missouri has now banned the sale of 303 THF. Prior to the ban, the complaint alleges, when consumers bought 303 THF, they received a product that “had no known specifications, had contents and additives that varied, were unknown, were obsolete, did not possess the claimed protective characteristics and/or did not meet one or more of the manufacturers’ specifications and therefore caused consumers’ equipment damage and harm, [and] increased wear…”

The class for this action is all persons and other entities who bought O’Reilly 303 tractor hydraulic fluid in Missouri at any point between July 20, 2013 and the present, excluding those who bought it for resale.

Article Type: Lawsuit
Topic: Consumer

Most Recent Case Event

O’Reilly, Ozark, Omni 303 Tractor Hydraulic Fluid Missouri Complaint

July 19, 2019

Why are companies still selling what purports to be 303 tractor hydraulic fluid when it’s obsolete? And how is it possible for a tractor hydraulic fluid to even be obsolete? That’s what the complaint takes up in this Missouri class action against O’Reilly Automotive, Inc., Ozark Automotive Distributors, Inc., O’Reilly Automotive Stores, Inc. (doing business as O’Reilly Auto Parts), and Omni Specialty Packaging, LLC.

oreilly_ozark_303_hydraulic_fluid_compl.pdf

Case Event History

O’Reilly, Ozark, Omni 303 Tractor Hydraulic Fluid Missouri Complaint

July 19, 2019

Why are companies still selling what purports to be 303 tractor hydraulic fluid when it’s obsolete? And how is it possible for a tractor hydraulic fluid to even be obsolete? That’s what the complaint takes up in this Missouri class action against O’Reilly Automotive, Inc., Ozark Automotive Distributors, Inc., O’Reilly Automotive Stores, Inc. (doing business as O’Reilly Auto Parts), and Omni Specialty Packaging, LLC.

oreilly_ozark_303_hydraulic_fluid_compl.pdf
Tags: Breach of warranty, Fraudulent Misrepresentation