0w-30

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Apr 27, 2014
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Just about due for an oil change and realized that my usual 5,000 OCI will bring me to about january -- which means cold. last year was bitterly cold, and this year every month has been below average, so i'm preparing for more bitter cold which brings me to the point of 0w-30 .... last year was [censored] for starting, and i ended up doing an oil change when it was about zero degrees outside. what brands of 0w-30 are readily available? any chance i could do a 10,000 OCI with the full syn 0w-30? that would get me past all the bitter cold. i guess i used to do 10-12k OCI's on my escort with castrol syntec (was driving 160 miles a day, so i just changed it every 3 months and didn't keep track of miles)... so i'm not sure why it would bother me to do it with the subaru and the expedition .....
 
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M1 AFE 0w-30 is pretty easy to get. Lighter side. Castrol edge 0w-30 is a euro grade 0w-30, so on thick side. Those are the only two I can buy in my small market. An Indy parts shop carries amsoil, and they could order that for me I guess.
 
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What model Subaru? Run a long interval filter, and pump the oil out of the dipstick tube for a quick easy winter change if you don't want to extend? Amsoil, Edge, and M1 should go to 9-10k in a port injected normally aspirated engine.
 
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How long are your trips, If your trips are less than 10-15 miles regularly, i would do a uoa at 6000 miles to see if you can go 10k. If you are getting the oil up to temp regularly i'd still do a uoa at 7500. I have never owned one, but does Subaru tend to sheer oil down?
 
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M1 0w-30 is pretty much everywhere now. Castrol 0w-30 isn't hard to find, most auto part shops now have it. Non-turbo Subarus tend to be easy on oil, so if your's doesn't have a turbo, and you take it out on the highway often enough to get it up to operating temps and get any water out, you shouldn't have a problem extending your OCI on the Subaru. I can't comment on the Expedition. What oil were you using last year that gave you problems in the winter? Also, what do you have in there now? If it's a quality synthetic in there now, you can probably push out your current oil change to 6k-6.5k miles. That way you don't have to push your next oil change out to 10k if you don't want to, you can do 6.5k now, and then 7.5k next, and hopefully that puts you in the March range for your next oil change when the weather is warmer. I'll also toss in that it might be worth looking at something like PP. Although they don't have a 0w-30, their 5w-30 offers excellent cold flow properties, and there's currently a $10 rebate.
 
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Yes M1 AFE 0W-30 is both the best (unmatched extreme cold performance spec's) and cheapest option. And like most synthetics will handle 10,000 mile OCIs if you're not doing short trips.
 

meborder

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thanks for all the comments! the subaru is an 3.0 H6. daily driven to work by the wife 35 miles one way, and 40ish miles back (picks up the kiddo). no short trips what-so-ever. my usual OCI is at 5k with Trop-Artic 5w30 syn blend. last year i tried some napa synthetic 5w30 and the oil readings appeared to increase throughout the OCI. an oil analysis showed nothing note worth. no fuel, no coolant ect. i'm right at 5k with the trop artic and the oil level is at the top of the full mark, right where it was 5k ago. I used to use puroilator filter but have switched to NAPA gold. same price, and helps the local NAPA stay in buisness. the expedition has been living pretty nicely on trop-artic 5w20. It has come valvetrain noise that i'm almost positive is due to the VCT solenoids (common problem). last year i tried some NAPA synthetic 5w20, and the engine was very noisy. switching to trop-artic 5w20 has made the engine noticeably quieter. one of the bandaid fixes for the noise due to the VCT solenoids is a heavier weight oil, so until i can get those changed out, i'm going to try one OCI with a 30wt instead of the 20wt specified. worth a try, and modulars aren't extremely picky on oil weight. the only bad part is the expedition consumes 1qt of oil every 2000 miles. it is predictable, repeatable, and consistent. this is only bad because replacement quarts of M1 or PP is 7.50/qt. it's cheap in the 5qt jugs, but not in the 1qt. i've only done two oil changes on it since i got it last december. once with the napa synthetic, and once now with the trop artic. normal use is daily driven 25 miles one way to work and and back. also sees a little bit of towing and is the usual road trip vehicle and weekend warrior. i did a 6500 mile OCI with the expedition on the napa synthetic, and it showed some high metals. that may partly be due to extreme cold starts (well into the -20F) and lots of idle time (don't like putting my kid in a car that cold). thought about PP, even i'm "one of those guys" and the thought of trying penzoil again goes against every fiber in my being -- but, that was almost 20 years ago the last time i tried it and i know it's a different animal. farmer's almanac is predicting bitter cold and normal snow ... so i want to be ready for the bitter cold.
 
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Originally Posted By: meborder
i did a 6500 mile OCI with the expedition on the napa synthetic, and it showed some high metals. that may partly be due to extreme cold starts (well into the -20F) and lots of idle time (don't like putting my kid in a car that cold).
I'd definitely get a frostheater for your climate, the kind that splice in a heater hose. Instant heat on startup and saves a lot of fuel and wear on a truck that size. As far as your oil choices right now go. The 5w20 seems to be working fine for you. It's easy to get and relatively inexpensive. Its pretty hard for me to find 0w30 regularly down here for some reason. Especially with your consumption being stable at that rate, I wouldnt change things thicker or thinner personally.
 
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0F is not that cold to gain much with M1 0W-30 over a typically light syn 5W-30. In a car spec'd for 5W-20 I would certainly recommend M1 AFE 0W-20 which is lighter at all start-up temp's than even the lightest 5W-20 syn.
 
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Aug 13, 2011
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Omaha, NE
Originally Posted By: meborder
Just about due for an oil change and realized that my usual 5,000 OCI will bring me to about january -- which means cold. last year was bitterly cold, and this year every month has been below average, so i'm preparing for more bitter cold which brings me to the point of 0w-30 .... last year was [censored] for starting, and i ended up doing an oil change when it was about zero degrees outside. what brands of 0w-30 are readily available? any chance i could do a 10,000 OCI with the full syn 0w-30? that would get me past all the bitter cold. i guess i used to do 10-12k OCI's on my escort with castrol syntec (was driving 160 miles a day, so i just changed it every 3 months and didn't keep track of miles)... so i'm not sure why it would bother me to do it with the subaru and the expedition .....
If you don't change things up now, you will be in the same predicament next year. Run it out or change it early.
 

meborder

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well .... the ship has sailed. the subaru and the expedition both got trop artic 5w30. perfect day to change oil and they were both due, so couldn't let the day go to waste. i went back through my records and a 5k OCI is about 3 months for both cars. so this will put my next one due about the first part of december. usually by that time it is cold, but not bitterly cold. i do think i'm going to try and find some 0w for the next oil change though. if their prediction for bitter cold is right, i'll feel pretty good about it. as a bonus, i changed the oil in the plow/farm truck too (83 chevy K20). it's old school 350 has been ridin' around on the same super-tech 10w30 for 2 years, and the same super tech filter for 3 years. in that amount of time it got about 400 miles on the clock, but countless hours idling around the yard pulling wheelbarrow duty, and going back and forth pushing snow up into piles. on the good side, in that 2 years i never had to add any oil, but it was down 1 quart at the time i changed it. on the bad side there was a bunch of stuff stuck to the oil plug magnet. i'm thinking i had best just stick to 1 year OCI's .... not going to save money on oil to take the chance burning up a motor. i was going to do a UOA on it, but i didnt have time to give it a proper warm-up. i let it run about 20 minutes, but the oil pan was only at about 130 degrees. normally, after a run it would be at 200+, so it wasn't fully warmed up ... figured no sense in wasting a kit if you arent going to do it right. first time using 5w30 in anything that old. should be the right thing to do given it's winter duties .. hopefully it won't give any issues. we'll see i guess. got a NAPA gold filter this time. should be good to go for the winter! also, as an added bonus, i had time to change the transmission fluid (pan only) on the subaru and the k20 both. the subaru is LONG over due, but the plow truck looked great! all in all a productive day. thanks for all the replies. leaning toward M1 0w-30 for both the subaru and expedition for the next one.
 
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On a lark I decided to try M1 0w-30 in my Dakota this time last year. Wow I couldn't have picked a better time. Mountainous Maryland weather last Winter was more like South Dakota's average Winter. Startups were fast and easy and the engine rattled for 1/2 second at most instead of several seconds with QSUD 5w-30. Two years ago I started running E-Free gas and this helped too. No more phase separated Alkie + condensation to struggle through for 5 minutes until it gets to the real, now lowered-octane gas. Yes the truck sits a lot between runs but when I run it, it goes far and works hard.
 

meborder

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kind of bringing this back from the dead ... so I've done a TON of driving in my expedition and I'm within 100 miles of my 5k OCI, so I was thinking this would be a good time to try the 0w30. I bought some M1 0w30 AFE that I was going to use in my generator, but some didn't really think that was the best. so I was thinking I could use it in my expedition. just get another 5qt jug to make my 7qts. that or I was thinking penzoil 5w30 (silver bottle)? just looking for ideas. might try the fram ultra filter. on a side note, the 5w30 trop artic cut my oil consumption in half on the expedition. instead of 1qt/2000 I was down to 1qt/4000. so that was kinda nice.
 
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