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This is a discussion on Oil within the General Maintenance, Troubleshooting & Accidents. forums, part of the Tech & Modifying & General Repairs category; Listen, Ricky, you're only at school for one reason, and that's to sell drugs....

  1. #16
    Registered User Ruh Roh's Avatar
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    Listen, Ricky, you're only at school for one reason, and that's to sell drugs.

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  3. #17
    doa
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    I have been told by a buddy that 5w30 is no good in these engines and is usually the cause of most bearing failures. So im assuming a 5w40 would give me more bearing protection at operating temp, not so much on cold starts?

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    OMG WTF MainFrame's Avatar
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    Some people have had issues with Mobil 1 5w-30 vanishing. IIRC, someone had a UOA done after 1000 miles and it had sheared considerably.

  5. #19
    He simply abides. SD_GR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by doa View Post
    I have been told by a buddy that 5w30 is no good in these engines and is usually the cause of most bearing failures. So im assuming a 5w40 would give me more bearing protection at operating temp, not so much on cold starts?
    Again, a 5W-30, a 5W-40, a 5W-50, a 5W-20, and a 5W-anything are the same viscosity at cold start.

    The 5W-30 and 5W-40 will provide the same general flow -- and protection -- characteristics at cold start provided they are from the same oil family (product family, apples to apples etc.).

    The second number will indicate the viscosity at operating temperature. A higher number will indicate a higher viscosity.

    I have yet to see actual data supporting 5W-30's unsuitability for these engines, but be that as it may, I use a 5W-40 anyway so it's not an issue to me.

    The short answer to your question is "yes" but not for the reasons your friend (or from what I've understood, you) believe, at least in my view.
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  6. #20
    doa
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    Thanks that actually really helped. So any 5w will be just as protective on cold starts but a 5w40 will be more protective than a 5w30 at operating temp. Looks like I will be switching when it gets a bit warmer out.

  7. #21
    He simply abides. SD_GR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by doa View Post
    Thanks that actually really helped. So any 5w will be just as protective on cold starts but a 5w40 will be more protective than a 5w30 at operating temp. Looks like I will be switching when it gets a bit warmer out.
    You're welcome.

    Just to clarify, even at the risk of making things worse:

    A 5W-40 will be more viscous at operating temperature than a 5W-30, or any xW-30.

    Whether a 5W-40 will be more protective than a 5W-30 or any xW-XX depends on the oil's performance, not its viscosity. Performance is measured using oil analysis data. These data typically involve a before ("virgin oil analysis" or VOA) and an after ("used oil analysis" or UOA) chemical analysis of oil samples with respect to the elements present in the sample, the viscosity and flash point of the sample, and for the UOA also the % water, % fuel, % insolubles, and total base number (the latter is a measure of the sample's resistance to acidity, under the idea that oxidation leads to corrosion).

    All this means is that thicker does not always mean better. How an oil protects the motor is seen in the wear elements generated after the oil is used in that motor, not the oil's stated viscosity on the label.

    Bob Is The Oil Guy is an informative and interesting site if you want to pursue all this. Or, you can find a quality 5W-40 or 0W-40, use it year-round, top it off religiously (never, ever, also never!!! let the oil run low), use a quality filter, and call it a day. Depends on whether you have time for a motor oil hobby or not I suppose; I've given up.

    EDIT: The reason a 5W-XX is preferable to, say, a 10W-XX or 20W-XX on cold starts is availability. The lower the fist number, the more likely that oil is to actually flow to where it's needed on a very, very cold morning. Low temp starts are challenging to more viscous oils.

    Hope that helps somewhat.
    Last edited by SD_GR; 04-02-2012 at 06:30 PM.
    WRX Info Links, Courtesy TheJ
    Man is a brute.... If you're cruel to him, he respects and fears you. If you're kind to him, he plucks your eyes out. Alexis Zorbas
    I lied. I cheated. I bribed men to cover the crimes of other men. I am an accessory to murder. But the most damning thing of all... I think I can live with it. And if I had to do it all over again - I would. Benjamin Sisko
    DISCLAIMER: Opinions expressed are the author's alone and are inherently worthless.

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