Appropriate oil for high mileage GM 5.3

Messages
3
Location
Alabama, USA
Hey I'm a long time reader of the site but never always answered my questions by reading others posts. After reading several posts from other members I'm still uncertain. I have an 06 Silverado 5.3 with 178k miles. Owned since day 1, mostly highway miles always serviced with M1 5w30 an Purolator or M1 filter every 7-8kmi. During my last oil change I considered switching to a different grade oil due to 1) Burning considerably more oil. I recently added an entire quart of oil after only 3k miles. 2) Typical GM 5.3 cold noisy startup issues. Sounds similar to what others have called 'piston slap' and valve tick, etc. 3) Am I using the best oil for my needs or for my next oil change would M1 high mileage be more appropriate? For these reasons I considered switching to M1 high mileage formula and possibly a thicker grade oil. Switching to M1 0w-40 that I had remaining from a car I no longer own. Comparing the Phos./Zinc levels published by M1 the "European formula" I used in my VW car I figured it might be a nice bonus. I read where the 0w oil eased the cold startup noises on other GM 5.3 owners trucks and also knew several people running a 40-viscosity oil in high mileage oil burning engine with success. Unfortunatly I couldn't find much in people that formerly used 5w30 now using a 0w40 oil. I am an engineer by trade and after doing some research into the specs I decided to go ahead and change my oil using the 0w40 euro I already had in the garage over the high mileage oil. I am currently traveling each weekend 750mi round trip towing a trailer moving my girlfriend from college and selling a house so I figured it couldn't hurt using the higher viscosity oil. I currently still have the trip home to observe but so far I have noticed my oil pressure gauge seems to run higher than before. As in a few pounds higher, not much currently the needle rests nearly touching 40psi at idle(with 0w40) where formerly it was a closer to 36-37psi. While driving, I haven't noticed yet. My concerns are 1) Is this oil too thick to allow for adequate flow in tighter tolerance areas? 2) Would the M1 high mileage have a better additive package for my needs despite having a lower zinc/phos. content that the euro oil? 3) Does this higher viscosity result in considerably higher oil temps? I was hesitant to think any additive package would reduce oil consumption but M1 high mileage mentioning doing so on the bottle made me feel it may be better suited for my application BUT M1 doesn't list any oil specs stating the additive properties other than zinc/phos content. Shown here: https://mobiloil.com/~/media/amer/us/pvl/files/pdfs/mobil-1-oil-product-specs-guide.pdf With all the interstate/towing mileage I plan to rack up on the weekends while selling a house I plan to run a 10k mi oci this time. I've been wanting a chance to submit an analysis and this may be my best chance. My typical 8k mi oci is limited due using a company car so I feel that short in town trips cause too much moisture build up to take this oil the milage its rated for. I know it doesn't effect my lubrication requirements but I run a 93 octane tune along with an Edge CTS display to monitor engine parameters, unfortunately oil temps are not provided. I do understand a higher viscosity should theoretically lead to higher oil temps for several reasons but was unsure if the oil cooling system alone prevented oil temps from varying much regardless of oil grade. Thanks for the input, I rarely post if ever but I frequent the forums on a weekly basis.
 
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Messages
6,235
Location
Kalifornia Kollective
OK, well 0W-40 (and most zero W oils) are a bit on the thicker side at Op temp. That's good in your case. Questions have to be asked: 1.) Have you changed the PCV valve and checked the hoses for cracks, blockage, etc... 2.) Any oil leaks? 3.) Have you considered a HM Oil? M1 has proven to be a bit noisy on cold start in some engines. Personally I don't like start-up noise, so I go where I need to to eliminate it. One the has worked well for many folks is Pennz Platinum or a Pennz HM oil. Sometimes it's the filter letting some oil back-flow while off. WIX (Napa Gold same) and Baldwin have very stout anti-drain-back valves, so I'd go there for sure. Oil temps at cruise are controlled by the water temp in the block for the most part. In a race motor turning a lot more RPM than you are going down the highway, yeah viscosity is a consideration. But the usual answer is to open up the bearing clearances to allow more side leakage and flow through the bearing for the higher viscosity. That is exactly what a SBC motor has at 178K laugh Your motor will tolerate 40 grade oil all day, every day w/o an issue. So work to reduce engine noise and consumption as needed smile
 

Tanner

Thread starter
Messages
3
Location
Alabama, USA
Thanks, I haven't touched the PCV valve. Recently had the added expense of a battery, alternator, knock sensor and tires so I haven't done any other maintenance other than what was required. No oil leaks at all, and I added one quart most recently but don't know the exact rate its burning at but I read that it was VERY common on these motors. It has always burned oil it just increased over the last 30k miles or so. I am absolutely considering high mileage oil. I just happened to already have 5 quarts of this oil already. I can pick up mobil1 high mileage for the same price for my next oil change. I think high mileage 10w40 possibly 5w40 in addition to the 5w30 gem spec is available locally. If this 40 viscosity works out well and the analysis looks great I considered sticking with it. I can change oil filters if needed next time if another filter would be best. I always purchased purolator pureone until the M1 filter became available in the package deal and was very adequate for extended oci when I am able to do so.
 
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Messages
43
Location
MS
I started running the mobil 1 0w40 euro formula when i got 50qts for a dollar a quart a couple years ago. I have found out that mixing 2quarts 5w20 with 4 quarts of the 0w40 does well in the winter. I run a 5 qt euro and 1 quart 5w20 in the summer. This has helped stopped the oil consumption. I changed my pvc valve and ordered a new grommet that goes in the block where the pvc goes. There were some model trucks that had oil consumption that had a TSB issued by GM and the fix was replacing the valve cover with a different design. Also, i may be getting time to replace the lifters in your truck. They are the weak link and most people put the delphi lifters or the LS7 lifters back in there. Google any of this information for more detailed reading.
 
Messages
66
Location
WI
2006, 5.3 so you have the LM7? I have read opinions from others that 0w40 is a great oil choice for this engine because it doesn't have AFM (which from what I understand is what causes the majority of the oil burning issues in later 5.3's). I say keep on keepin' on and see how she does. I think she'll do just fine.
 
Messages
8,051
Location
Michigan
I had good results running M1 HM 5w30 in my LS1 Camaro when it had ~150k miles. Compared to the regular M1 5w30 that I had been running since the car was new, the HM oil decreased oil consumption by 25%. It also had higher zddp content and higher HTHS viscosity than regular M1. Since you're in Alabama, you could probably run 10w30 HM, which has even higher HTHS. I kept the OCI's in my Camaro to 8000 miles back then, though, so I can't tell you the HM oil is good for 10k. Probably is, though. But the M1 0w40 would definitely be an oil for 10k mile oil change intervals. It has about the same viscosity as the M1 HM's, which are in the upper range of the 30 grade, while the 0w40 is at the absolute bottom of the 40 range.
 
Messages
2,654
Location
Americus, GA
It’s a Chevy with 180,000 miles. That’s pretty good. It most likely needs valve stem seals. As for the clatter at start up, it’s the lifters. Put some 20w50 Valvoline in it and drive it or spend the money and fix it.
 

Tanner

Thread starter
Messages
3
Location
Alabama, USA
Yeah never used HM oils in any vehicle I've owned but will consider it if I don't continue M1 0w40. I consider a 25% reduction in oil consumption seems a reasonable improvement from a motor oil swap alone. I didn't even consider a 10w oil because I heard so many things comparing it to the corresponding M1 5w stating there was no increased protection. I doubt ill take it as far as 20w50 in this engine anytime soon. Good to know exactly what the clatter is, I don't mind it considering it only happens on cold mornings briefly in the driveway. I always allow it to warm up before leaving the house anyways so I'm rarely even in the truck while it is happening. Isn't the Turbo Diesel Truck oil the stuff thats harmful to the cats on gas trucks? I usually keep some regular Dino 15w40 for my tractor and work truck its very cheap but I just assumed it ALL was harmful otherwise I'd use an appropriate grade for the additive content alone. I am about to start my drive back across the state. When I get to my truck, I'll get my VIN to see if my defective valve cover is at fault. I wil look into the PCV valve when I get home. Thanks again. I thought I've kept up on any recalls or TSBs but I'm hoping I just missed something and the oil burn is an easy fix
 
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Messages
2,654
Location
Americus, GA
Tanner GM V8 engines with high mileage are typically oil users. Looking for TSBs won’t help. Sure, you can change or clean you PCV valve and that may help a little. Just step up to Castrol GTX High Mileage 10W40 and drive it. Other than that, save for a rebuild.
 

4WD

Messages
17,047
Location
Texas
PUP was the loudest on two engines of mine ~ a Ford and a GM … several M1’s better with a DB meter. Yes you are on record of not needing a meter but now you mentioned others who did not meter. You normally advise HDEO for applications like this and have persuaded me to make more use of it. This is one IMO. Why the 0w kick lately? Right now Delvac 1 5w40 is $23/gallon at Walmart.com My 5.3L loves the stuff …
 

RLS

Messages
28
Location
Tennessee
The last oil change on my 5.3 Silverado I used 5w-30 Valvoline w/high mileage technology plus a bottle of Prolong. The Prolong helps with the lifer noise. I am at 173,000 miles doing 6k mile oil changes. Uses 1/2 quart between changes. Truck is mixed use between city driving and towing. I plan on going to the 0w-40 Mobil at the next oil change. If the lifters weren't such a pain to replace on the 5.3, I would have already done it. I'll make it a project after retirement. I prefer not to run the Prolong, however I <span style="font-weight: bold">can</span> tell the difference on the noise level.
 
Messages
5,339
Location
Southeast Texas
Originally Posted By: SilverFusion2010
Use M1 HM 10w-30. It's a nice thick 30 that will make that engine very happy
I agree. Older vehicle + towing + concern about consumption + highway driving + hot Bama climate = High Mileage oil, one viscosity grade up, for sure.
 
Hi Tanner, has your 5.3 developed the start up noise or has it always been there? I have a 06 Silverado and it developed the lifter noise at the same milage as your truck but I always cut open my oil filters at noticed at that time it had started to make metal, did some research and found out that these engines eat cams on occasion. I pulled one head and sure enough there were two lobes and lifters were making metal. I changed the cam and lifters 35,000 miles ago subsequent oil changes have shown no metal. My truck has 245,000 on it with 80% highway and the other city. Just though I would share before things got too serious if that is your issue. I use Valvoline 5W-30 since new and switched to Valvoline 5W-30 HM at the cam swap about 210,000 miles. My engine uses 1/2 qt at the 5000 mile oil change. Mark
 
Messages
8,639
Location
Texas
1 quart on 3000 miles is not bad at all, especially given your mileage. My suggestion is to run Mobil 1 High mileage 5w/30. My 2006 Sierra Denali (6.0L LQ9) has been on Mobil 1 then Mobil 1 EP since new. Never used oil, no leaks and runs great at 151k miles. I switched to Mobil 1 High Mileage at the 120k mark just because I wanted the seal conditioner to prevent any future leaks and I run it in my 2008 CTS so I can keep common oil on hand. I would not go real thick at this point. Just my opinion. Also, the Mobil 1 HM should be able to go 10k miles but I keep it between 5-6000. If you are adding oil then you are replenshing the additives so going 10k miles may not be that much of a stretch - but, again, me personally - I wouldn't go 10k on a high mile engine because more combustion gasses/low by etc are probably making their way into the oil. Since you are doing a UOA at 10k miles - you will have the TRUE answer instead of BITOG opinions so please report back with the UOA results. I would really like to know how M1 HM holds up and maybe I would even extent my OCI a tad longer - maybe 7500 lol.
 
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