2014 Chevy Cruze Diesel 5,900OCI..UOA

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Here's my first UOA on my Cruze Diesel. 16,000mi on the clock now so she's still breaking in. Blackstone doesn't show any fuel dilution on other Cruze Diesel owners but AMSoil's Oil Analyzers showed quite a bit on mine. This is my first sample so we'll see if it's a trend or a fluke. In PA all diesel is 2%bio by law. Mobil 1 ESP Formula M 5W-40 was run for this interval. Other then the fuel I was pleased with the other numbers for a still engine still breaking in. There's a cruze diesel owner with almost 100k already and the iron numbers seem to drop significantly after 50-60k. I refilled with AMSoil European Car Low-Saps 5W-30 and am going to check again in 6k. Here's the link to the pdf https://drive.google.com/file/d/0ByizTF3fJPLJaDg1ZTFQdG82TlU/view?usp=sharing
 
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Regarding fuel, I should have reread your post grin So it's not typical for this particular engine. What are the driving habits/routine? I agree that it's still breaking in and the numbers are great as a result. Have you considered using Rotella T6?
 

Kory

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Well I've read blackstone's method to test for fuel is suspect at best, and the only other UOA of this engine have been from them and didn't show fuel dilution problems. This engine has a DPF so T6 is out of the question. Low saps oils only. Fuel dilution with biodiesel can be an issues during the dpf regeneration cycle in modern clean diesels but it seems to only be a major concern with high concentrations (IE 20%).
 

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Regarding my driving habits I have a 30 mile round trip highway drive to work every day and then there shorter around town driving mixed in. I don't idle it much at all, start and go.
 
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That's an anemic additive package. Curse those low-SAPS oils. That looks like the form from Polaris' Indianapolis lab, so is Oil Analyzers actually contracting Polaris to do the analysis? But anyway, Polaris recommends changing the oil when TBN reaches 35% of virgin TBN. If the oil started at 8.0, you changed it at about the right time. What was the virgin TBN? Iron of 47 is OK for that engine. No need to change the oil based on the Iron reading until it gets over 100. But it looks like the low-SAPS oil will run out of TBN long before the Iron prompts an oil change.
 
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Originally Posted By: A_Harman
That's an anemic additive package. Curse those low-SAPS oils. That looks like the form from Polaris' Indianapolis lab, so is Oil Analyzers actually contracting Polaris to do the analysis? But anyway, Polaris recommends changing the oil when TBN reaches 35% of virgin TBN. If the oil started at 8.0, you changed it at about the right time. What was the virgin TBN? Iron of 47 is OK for that engine. No need to change the oil based on the Iron reading until it gets over 100. But it looks like the low-SAPS oil will run out of TBN long before the Iron prompts an oil change.
Yet blackstone says run the tbn down to 1..... So whose right? Dnewtons runs on his wife's minivan,and his runs on his diesel truck have taught me that we seriously underutilize engine oil,and low tbn is a pre-cursor for sludge,so is it really a huge deal running it down to 1 like blackstone suggests? Worst case is there is slight sludge formation which is immediately cleaned up by new oil. So I'm thinking blackstone is on the right track as far as their recommendations. If sludge is the reason anyway.
 

Kory

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Originally Posted By: A_Harman
That's an anemic additive package. Curse those low-SAPS oils. That looks like the form from Polaris' Indianapolis lab, so is Oil Analyzers actually contracting Polaris to do the analysis? But anyway, Polaris recommends changing the oil when TBN reaches 35% of virgin TBN. If the oil started at 8.0, you changed it at about the right time. What was the virgin TBN? Iron of 47 is OK for that engine. No need to change the oil based on the Iron reading until it gets over 100. But it looks like the low-SAPS oil will run out of TBN long before the Iron prompts an oil change.
The starting TBN is only 5.something so it's holding up well. I'll be pulling a sample next time and we'll see how AMSoil's Low-saps 5w-30 compares. I'm guessing it's pretty similar, because your hands are kind of tied as far as additives packages goes with low-saps.
 

Kory

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Originally Posted By: Bandito440
What kind of overall fuel economy are you seeing? What about at a 60 mph cruise?
In mixed highway/city and secondary road driving I'm seeing around 37MPG. Straight highway in warm summer weather at 70mph 46-50mpg depending on terrain. If you slowed down to 60mph over 50MPG is easily assessable. I'm not a brand fanboy by any means but it's a pretty [censored] nice car. Buick quiet, comfy seats to my 6'1 220lb butt and nice ride/handling. Economy and power. I guess what I'm trying to say it's not your ordinary Chevy Cruze by any means from interior to mechanical part selection (such as transmission), to engine (obviously)
 
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Clevy, that is a good question. I've only used Blackstone and don't know what other analyzers say. Who did dnewton use? You think going down to a 1 TBN is ok?
 
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Originally Posted By: Clevy
Originally Posted By: A_Harman
That's an anemic additive package. Curse those low-SAPS oils. That looks like the form from Polaris' Indianapolis lab, so is Oil Analyzers actually contracting Polaris to do the analysis? But anyway, Polaris recommends changing the oil when TBN reaches 35% of virgin TBN. If the oil started at 8.0, you changed it at about the right time. What was the virgin TBN? Iron of 47 is OK for that engine. No need to change the oil based on the Iron reading until it gets over 100. But it looks like the low-SAPS oil will run out of TBN long before the Iron prompts an oil change.
Yet blackstone says run the tbn down to 1..... So whose right?
I chalk up the difference between Blackstone and Polaris' recommendations as possibly being due to them using different analysis techniques, although I've never checked it out. I think Polaris is maybe too conservative, and Blackstone is too optimistic. When I was a development engineer at Cummins about 20 years ago, our rule was to change oil when TBN got into the 2's, or when TAN exceeded TBN. We did UOA's at regular intervals during a durability test, and plotted the results so we could see trends developing.
 

dnewton3

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Originally Posted By: loneryder
Clevy, that is a good question. I've only used Blackstone and don't know what other analyzers say. Who did dnewton use? You think going down to a 1 TBN is ok?
Simple answer: I use Blackstone. Extended answer: There are two things to understand about the base number: 1) knowing TBN is really only half the equation; you need to know TAN as well 2) TBN/TAN are only predictors to how the oil might be viewed for continued use Regarding point 1, if TBN is some low value (say 2) and your TAN is not at or much over that same value, then there really isn't a lot of concern for acid reactions. However, if your TBN is 2 and your TAN is 7, then you have a much more acidic condition. Regarding point 2, both TBN and TAN are only values to predict the future viability of the lube. Just because TBN goes low and/or TAN goes high, it does not assure that massive sludge is emmient or acid errosioin is assured. These are only values to predict the potential for onset of problems. These are values that state, in effect, "Hey - pay closer attention; you're getting near some point of condemnation and wear rates may be affected soon." Certainly the base number has some relationship to the formation of sludge, but it is NOT an assurance of the formation of sludge, but rather a relative value to represent an increased risk for such. The thing to understand is that some of the components that contribute to TBN to reduce acidity are also elements that assist in "cleaning". So, when TBN is low, there is a presumption that the cleaning capacity is reduced. I would agree with that. But it's not like low TBN is a 100% guarantee of immediate sludge. It only means that there is less capacity for cleaning up sludge as it is generated. It's not like you'll get a massive dump of sludge one day. Sludge is a condition of several factors; overt oxidation, low TBN, hot spots in the engine are all contributors. These don't just "happen"; rather, they develop over a long period. So when TBN drops, it's not like sludge is just going to clump your valve-train in the next 500 miles. When you see TAN cross over a low TBN, it means you need to start paying closer attention, and UOA more frequently to keep a closer eye on the relationship, as well as use other tools (such as visual inspections under the valve cover) to make sure you're not in a danger zone. Unfortunately, many here don't understand the way TBN/TAN relate to a UOA. They think, because they have been told, that a finite number is a cause for automatic condemnation. I completely disagree with that concept. They are values to give a relative status mark and help discern when closer scrutiny is due. It's really no different than some arbitrary value for an OCI. Why OCI at 5k miles? Because the OEM told you to. But that does not mean the oil and filter are anywhere near the end of their useful lifecycle? No; it's a conservative value that protects the OEM at your expense. Same goes with a low TBN; changing oil at some predetermined value is a means of simply making it "simple" for folks to understand. In some of my extended O/FCIs, you can see that TAN crossed over TBN, and yet no sludge formed (pix posted as proof from under the valve cover) and no wear escalated (UOA values at or lower than average). The OEM O/FCI is 5k miles. In a back-to-back series, I ran a 10k mile O/FCI and then a 15k mile O/FCI on dino ST oil and with a normal filter. And yet after 25k miles of extended use, the wear continued to be low and the sludge formation was non-existent. I used enhanced UOAs, visual inspection under the valve cover, visual inspection of filter disection; all these are tools to inform me my actions were just. And they give me a basis to use extended OCIs for the future, and dial back the expenses. A UOA (and all the info therein) is but one of many tools we have to maximize the value of the OCI. Unfortunately, most think that a UOA is a toy where the guy with the lowest wear number and highest TBN wins. Nothing could be further from the truth. The real thinking-man's interpretation goes much deeper. (Caution - forthcoming rant about to take place grin this is NOT directed at the poster or OP, but just a genearl statement) All this leads to my seemingly bad attitude towards folks here who "play" with UOAs and under-utilize premium products. It's their money to spend as they see fit; I get that. But I have more respect for folks that simply O/FCI at OEM intervals with normal products and never give it a second thought. There are a bazillion vehicles out there that will last a lifetime with simple, routine care. It may be wasteful, but it's safe. But at least they don't double down on the waste and pay for UOAs, use expensive products, and still OEM at normal intervals. These type folks (and there are many here) are simply dabbling in a science that they clearly don't understand how to use. If one pays for a UOA, for goodness sake understand what the info is really telling you and then formulate a plan of action based upon the data you paid for. If you don't alter your operational program, when data tells you it's safe, you're heaping waste upon waste. Why pay for a syn product, a premium filter, a UOA, and then ignore the rational action plan? I just will never, ever understand that. It's not that I don't waste and over-spend; I certainly do so. But I don't try to pretend it's anything other than an emotional desire. I "want" some things that I'm willing to pay for that others see as waste. I don't try to rationalize it with some lame excuse; I own my waste and don't try to hide it. But some folks here try to justify their actions with a complete lack of understanding of the topics and/or total disregard for logic. That, I will never understand. Thus endeth the rant.
 
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Thanks for the info. I hear what you are saying. My background on my OCI mindset: In college I didn't know [censored] about changing oil. The first decent car I had was a VW bug. I was on my way to school in the beginning of my senior year. For the first time in my life, I had a decent car and some money in the bank. 30 miles from school the motor blew up. My roommate knew about engines so when we tore it down, the oil filter screen was full of "aluminum foil", which used to be my main bearings. Obviously the car had not been serviced very much and I didn't know how to look at a used car. So there lies the basis for my paranoia in regards to oci's. I spent 35 yrs as an on the road sales rep and just did not want to be stranded on the road somewhere. So I usually changed oil around 3-4000 miles. Never had any engine problems. Fast forward to over a year ago I got my first diesel, a used MB ML 320 with 60k on it. It calls for 10k OCI"s with low saps oil. Two things new to deal with...diesel and it's nasty black oil and long oci's. Didn't know what was in it or how it had been serviced so I put the Mobil 1 5w-40esp in it and drove across country towing my Harley. I changed the filter after 5k cause it's easy and they are cheap and then changed the O/F after 7500 miles. 3700 of that was towing and most was on highway. The Blackstone analysis came back great so I could have run it 10k easily. I guess my point here is that if you have ever had an engine blow up on you in the middle of nowhere due to lack of oc's, it's tough to just easily accept a manufacturer's recommendation to go 10k or more on oil and a small filter. I'm getting there because I've learned so much on here.
 
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