Any video/image examples of sludge cleaning from short OCI?

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I can get plenty of Google hits for people saying that short OCI (1-2K) with high quality oil will clean out engine sludge, but not many before and after images or videos. There are some videos of guys using additives and showing the cleaning progress, which actually performs better than I would have thought. Anyone have any links to posts or videos with actual before, during, after samples of just using straight oil and no additives?

My 2002 Toyota van with the infamous 3.0 V6 sludge monster, was driven and maintained by the same family since new, but their daughter used it for college, and judging by the coolant, shocks, and tires, she wasn't too keen on maintenance! (plus the thing smelled like sweaty stripper perfume for a month after I got it. LOL)

The van runs great, so even if doing short OCI doesn't clean it up all the way, it should be OK as long as it doesn't increase the sludge.

So far it has seen 3 oil changes since July. It has Mobil 1 HM FS 5w-30 in there now with a Denso yzzd1 filter. First two were with Pennzoil Ultra Platinum FS which caused oil to leak onto the ground daily, clearly cleaning some sludge out of somewhere?


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OVERKILL

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I can get plenty of Google hits for people saying that short OCI (1-2K) with high quality oil will clean out engine sludge, but not many before and after images or videos. There are some videos of guys using additives and showing the cleaning progress, which actually performs better than I would have thought. Anyone have any links to posts or videos with actual before, during, after samples of just using straight oil and no additives?

My 2002 Toyota van with the infamous 3.0 V6 sludge monster, was driven and maintained by the same family since new, but their daughter used it for college, and judging by the coolant, shocks, and tires, she wasn't too keen on maintenance! (plus the thing smelled like sweaty stripper perfume for a month after I got it. LOL)

The van runs great, so even if doing short OCI doesn't clean it up all the way, it should be OK as long as it doesn't increase the sludge.

So far it has seen 3 oil changes since July. It has Mobil 1 HM FS 5w-30 in there now with a Denso yzzd1 filter. First two were with Pennzoil Ultra Platinum FS which caused oil to leak onto the ground daily, clearly cleaning some sludge out of somewhere?

I think what I am looking for is a rough gauge of how much cleaning happens with quality oil on short OCI, so I can extend me OCI back out to 5,000 miles with FS HM oil. For all I know, without getting the rear valve cover off (pain in the everything) my engine could have the same amount of sludge or only slightly less, or even be cleaned out now. I really hate taking things apart with seals unless there is something that needed to be replaced, and I don't have a clean area where I could keep my heads free of dust and bird poop with the valve cover off.

Would the easiest way to gauge cleaning without taking the valve covers off be to just cut open the oil filter after each use?

Step 1 should be to pull the valve cover and see if there is anything that needs to be concerned about. If not, just continue with regular changes.
 
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Obvious answer from anybody that knows anything about sludge would be do drop the oil pan and get a putty knife and physically scrape out the sludge that always likes to form on the bottom of the pan. More than half the sludge in the engine will be on the bottom of pan.
 

MrPlow

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I'm not as much concerned about too much sludge as I am curious if anyone knows of any "proof" that changing the oil often reduces sludge buildup. It's one of those things everyone says works, but I have seen little evidence in the way of before and after examples. I formly do believe it does work, but would be nice to see some sort of evidence.

I'm really not so concerned that I want to take the valve cover off, since the seal is likely old, and it's usually the back bank on these engines that gets sludged the most.

I'll be trying a bit of seafoam spray into the PCV baffle at the end of the current OCI, as those tend to clog up easily on these engines. I'll do that for a couple of OCI as also a slow cleaning of any other stuff in the engine and crankcase.
 

OVERKILL

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I'm not as much concerned about too much sludge as I am curious if anyone knows of any "proof" that changing the oil often reduces sludge buildup. It's one of those things everyone says works, but I have seen little evidence in the way of before and after examples. I formly do believe it does work, but would be nice to see some sort of evidence.

I'm really not so concerned that I want to take the valve cover off, since the seal is likely old, and it's usually the back bank on these engines that gets sludged the most.

I'll be trying a bit of seafoam spray into the PCV baffle at the end of the current OCI, as those tend to clog up easily on these engines. I'll do that for a couple of OCI as also a slow cleaning of any other stuff in the engine and crankcase.
Sludge and varnish are formed through what are essentially the same process, the difference is that sludge requires moisture. They are both comprised of contaminants, such as combustion byproducts, broken down VII polymers, oxidized base oil and additives...etc. Oils are designed to keep these contaminants in suspension but once their holding capacity is reached; once the oil reaches its saturation point the contaminants plate-out on surfaces (varnish) or, in the presence of moisture, will emulsify to produce a jelly-like product in cooler areas of the engine, which is sludge. That's why sludge appears in the valve cover and the oil pan, as those areas are cooler than the rest of the engine.

So, short answer, yes, frequent oil changes will prevent sludge and varnish from forming and should work to remove existing deposits if changed before the saturation point. Varnish, being plated-out, is much more difficult and time consuming to remove however.

Mobil used to have a picture posted, which I've shared on here, of their 0w-40 effectively removing varnish/sludge. It was also in one of their product brochures, so that's one blender at least that has demonstrated that they have one product capable of removing sludge/varnish.
 

MrPlow

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Engine oil isn't a cleaning solvent. Doing short OCIs specifically for sludge cleaning is a waste of time and money.

Do normal OCIs with a quality oil and forget about it.
Well, people claim it both ways, but nobody has any actual evidence that it does or does not clean? Why do some oils claim to clean out existing sludge?

This guy on Youtube did a Seafoam test, before and after, showing it cleaned up his engine. Not saying he's done it correctly or telling the truth, but it would be cool to find some before and after samples with just plain engine oil with short OCI.

 
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I'm not as much concerned about too much sludge as I am curious if anyone knows of any "proof" that changing the oil often reduces sludge buildup. It's one of those things everyone says works, but I have seen little evidence in the way of before and after examples. I formly do believe it does work, but would be nice to see some sort of evidence.
Late to the party and theres nothing left to add from what the Bottom feeder and OK have already told you regarding the sludge/oil relationship so I'll address the bolded part.

You wont find any because outside of a test lab, nobody looks for or tests it. The "proof' is the same as heating cooking oil too hot and letting it sludge and build up.

Overheated oil sitting on a hot spot is going to eventually break down and react with oxygen and become varnish and that will eventually become sludge and float off.

The "proof" ( outside of controlled testing) will be found in the exception- you "don't" have it because of regular changes (indirect proof)

About the best you are going to get without your own personal testing.
 

MrPlow

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Late to the party and theres nothing left to add from what the Bottom feeder and OK have already told you regarding the sludge/oil relationship so I'll address the bolded part.

You wont find any because outside of a test lab, nobody looks for or tests it. The "proof' is the same as heating cooking oil too hot and letting it sludge and build up.

Overheated oil sitting on a hot spot is going to eventually break down and react with oxygen and become varnish and that will eventually become sludge and float off.

The "proof" ( outside of controlled testing) will be found in the exception- you "don't" have it because of regular changes (indirect proof)

About the best you are going to get without your own personal testing.
I would be happy if someone just showed a picture of their valve cover off with sludge, then after a few short OCI, show it with less, equal, or more. I'm not looking to gain any sort of OCD-level of scrutiny on the process. I would guess with so many people online saying something of the tune of "do a few short OCI and call it good." but without any evidence, even if anecdotal. There are plenty of videos and images showing engine flushes clean out sludge and other gunk. Strange there isn't the same for the very common theory that short OCI with high grade FS or HM cleans up the existing stuff. I would think someone over the years would have documented this, especially considering how fanatic people can be about oils.

I'm just looking for videos or pictures. As stated in the title of the thread. I'm not interested in conducting a controlled lab experiment here. A couple of pictures is more proof than guys just saying things. LOL
 

MrPlow

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M1 used to claim their high mileage oils will remove engine sludge within just one oil change. I wonder if that’s still on their site?
They still do!
Mobil 1 High Mileage 5W-30 motor oil provides excellent overall lubrication and wear protection, meets or exceeds the industry's toughest standards and outperforms our conventional and synthetic blend high mileage oils. The advanced full synthetic formula can also help:

  • Extend engine life
  • Clean up engine sludge with active cleaning agents
  • Prevent leaks with seal conditioner

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I don't know if this would help but I am using Fram Ultra/Titanium oil filters on my Hyundai GDI and they have been doing a great job cleaning the sludge-like buildup of carbon soot in the engine. The current Titanium filter will be coming off at only 3000-4000 miles of usage so I can gauge how things are going. I will be replacing it with a Hyundai OEM oil filter and repeating the same OCI with the same intention.

 

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I would be happy if someone just showed a picture of their valve cover off with sludge, then after a few short OCI, show it with less, equal, or more. I'm not looking to gain any sort of OCD-level of scrutiny on the process. I would guess with so many people online saying something of the tune of "do a few short OCI and call it good." but without any evidence, even if anecdotal. There are plenty of videos and images showing engine flushes clean out sludge and other gunk. Strange there isn't the same for the very common theory that short OCI with high grade FS or HM cleans up the existing stuff. I would think someone over the years would have documented this, especially considering how fanatic people can be about oils.

I'm just looking for videos or pictures. As stated in the title of the thread. I'm not interested in conducting a controlled lab experiment here. A couple of pictures is more proof than guys just saying things. LOL

Here is one of the pictures Mobil provided:
Screen Shot 2020-10-07 at 1.19.07 PM.png
 
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I would be happy if someone just showed a picture of their valve cover off with sludge, then after a few short OCI, show it with less, equal, or more.

Because it doesn't exist and never will (a legitimate one anyway that can be verified)

Oils by definition don't clean ( they keep clean- thats a big difference) That was specifically pointed out up thread. Oils are NOT solvents- they don't "clean" anything. detergents are not soaps- they are suspension agents.

So if an engine is heavily varnished with baked/caked stuff- no oil made operating under normal engine flows is going to clean anything.

At BEST it will "wet' it and rinse off the loose top layer. ( that's all the cheap flushes do too)

Anyone who wants to test that- find a dirty engine, pour that "cleaning oil" on a rag and have at it. It wont take long to realize that motor oils don't "clean" anything.
 
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They still do!


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Here's what you do before you buy all the marketing hype and carefully selected words and pictures

Ask them (specifically and exactly) what their DEFINITION of 'sludge" is- then report back.

They are counting on you not knowing the industry definition but substituting your own ( the old illusion trick)

Its right there in their pictures too- it takes the top off and talks about it (influencing what your mind sees)
 

MrPlow

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Because it doesn't exist and never will (a legitimate one anyway that can be verified)

Oils by definition don't clean ( they keep clean- thats a big difference) That was specifically pointed out up thread. Oils are NOT solvents- they don't "clean" anything. detergents are not soaps- they are suspension agents.

So if an engine is heavily varnished with baked/caked stuff- no oil made operating under normal engine flows is going to clean anything.

At BEST it will "wet' it and rinse off the loose top layer. ( that's all the cheap flushes do too)

Anyone who wants to test that- find a dirty engine, pour that "cleaning oil" on a rag and have at it. It wont take long to realize that motor oils don't "clean" anything.
Well, I'm clearly not an oil expert, so sorry about the confusion with the semantics of the word "clean". Honestly. Not trying to be facetious. What I mean by clean, is does it remove bad stuff? The answer to that question seems to be yes for the gooey sludgy stuff, right?

I'm not writing the Bible for all oil forever of eternity. I am not looking to put something to bed as 100% proof of anything. Just looking for some before and after samples for my own curiosity. 😅
 

OVERKILL

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That's pretty impressive, albeit assuming they cheated as much as possible for the best results, possibly nothing to do with real-world conditions.
It's essentially supporting what ABN_CBT_ENGR has stated though, it's removed that top layer; the loose stuff, and perhaps any deposits that hadn't made it into varnish yet, but it's still reasonably ugly. That's why I noted that varnish is extremely difficult to remove once it's laid down.
 
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Well, I'm clearly not an oil expert, so sorry about the confusion with the semantics of the word "clean". Honestly. Not trying to be facetious. What I mean by clean, is does it remove bad stuff? The answer to that question seems to be yes for the gooey sludgy stuff, right?

Its not you and I have to go through this all the time with clients ( especially when they try the oil change method of cleaning when they get a bad OA and it never works)

All oil manufacturers tell the same half truths to the point people accept it- none of that is new either.

I make it a habit with a few vendors (XOM being one) to ream their #$$ at times and call them on the carpet to tell the real truth in some bad cases.

Oil LUBRICATES- the additives keep particles in suspension and hopefully keep the oil from undergoing oxidizing changes (leading to deposits of varnish then layering/caking/coking).They are designed to "clean" by "preventing".

They also gently flush ( erosion) and wash ( not like a pressure washer- more like a drinking fountain)

They lead you to believe "detergents' clean because they know you understand that the wife puts DETERGENT in the washing machine and miracles occur. ( mental prestidigitation)

Same with soap ( like a grease) that 'soap" doesn't clean either.

SOLVENTS clean ( don't see much of that in the additive package) as do esters ( break down would be a better term)

They will all rinse the loose stuff and dissolve a silty top coat- turn the oil dark and give you the illusion of actually accomplishing something.

But cleaning baked/caked/coked and thick deposits? not a chance.

So yes they 'clean" to a very limited degree- the degree is specific to the condition of the mess they have to start with.
 
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