A debris-contaminated lubrication environment is inherent in many equipment applications and requires mechanical components that, as much as possible, are resistant to the potential detrimental effects of debris particles. In addition, lubricants are formulated with chemistry targeted to prevent wear in mechanical systems, and standard tests are used to evaluate the lubricant's ability to impact this failure mechanism. However, many researchers and lubricant specialists often overlook potential relationships between the various failure modes and the engineering solutions that are created to overcome them. The role played by lubricant additives and debris-contaminated lubricants in the failure mechanisms of bearings is just one example requiring closer consideration. Performance evaluation results of tapered roller bearings in the areas of material fatigue and wear in connection with lubricant contamination and lubricant chemistry will be discussed. Several conclusions are drawn in regard to variations observed in these evaluation tests.