Are European and Japanese oil specs really easy to pass ?

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Dec 12, 2002
I was talking to a tech rep for an oil supplier yesterday, regarding oils for my new toy.

During the conversation, I mentioned that the manufacturer specifies E3 and E5, along with JASO DH-1, secifying that if E3/E5 can't be found, then use CH-4.

His response was that you only need worry about the API classifications, as the european specs are very easy for any oil to pass.

Is this true ?
From what I gather here, they are harder than US Specs. That's why European and Japanese rated oil is usually better than what's available here. I guess a good example would be the GC and it's American counterpart.
That's what I thought from reading this site.

Was a little taken aback when they were basically fobbed of by a tech consultant.
ACEA A3/B3 is one of the hardest specs to pass anywhere.

Many of the high end manufacturers specs are based on it.

ACEA A5, A2, even A1 are hardern than SL.

many many unremarkable oils meet SL.
It is much harder to pass of the ACEA specs.

The tech rep was either intentionally misleading you or blissfully ignorant.


[ October 13, 2003, 06:18 PM: Message edited by: palmerwmd ]
Concerning specs, how many tests actually need to be passed?

Aren't some of the specs just specs--certain viscosities and additive levels.

If a spec is just a number spec and not an actual engine wear test, does it mean anything
API CH-4 and ACEA E3 are really very close. Usually all ACEA requirements are based on this or that API service plus additional criteria reflecting design difference and service conditions in Europe. The same story with European OEMs requirements: this or that ACEA level + own qualification tests. Thus, using prescribed oil quality you will be more on safety side and deprive of some surprises. To check the difference you may use Ethyl booklet:

Originally posted by sprintman:
Which vendor Stephen??

A guy in W.A., from one of the lesser known specialty branded imported ulta synthetics.

Won't stop me using their products, just will obtain my information elsewhere (like here).
I'd pay close attention to what your owners manual calls for. In some cases it will say to use a oil that meets ONE spec from a qualifications list. Since you're obviously driving a diesel then I'd say that this mans recommendation for using a CH-4 rated oil is a good one.

However, if your manual specifies that you specifically use a DH-1 rated oil then I'd stick with that recommendation. There is probably something about it that has been tested and your vehicle manufacturer wants to ensure that this spec is being met.
there's a thread I started on this in the diesels board, but in Summary.

The manual lists CF through CH-4, with a rider "NOT CG-4" for some reason, also lists E3 and E5 and Jaso DH-1. States (for europe) that if E3/E5 is not available, then CH-4 is acceptible.
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