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Nearly all load bearing transformers in electric power delivery systems around the world are filled with liquid. The liquid functions both as an electrical insulation and as a heat transfer fluid. The liquid in almost all of these units is transformer oil, petroleum-based insulating oil refined specifically to meet the requirements of this application. Transformers in electric power distribution and transmission systems are expected to function reliably and efficiently and to do this for many years. The quality of the oil in a transformer plays an important role in performing this function, and the characteristics of transformer oil have been examined and reported on for decades. This article discusses some of these characteristics and the relationships between these characteristics and the production and in-service performance of mineral transformer oil. Transformer oil is used around the world, but the emphasis here is on practices in the United States.