Can't Use 10W-40 in a 2002 cavalier?

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52
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Kalifornia
Just wondering what the general consensus is about dufus car makers who put in the owner's manual that you MUST use 5W-30 oil and no other, you must NOT use 10W-40 oil or it may "damage the engine"....... for the record, I have had my Cavalier for about seven years now and I run 5W-30 or 10W-30 in the winter and usually 10W-40 in the summer since I am in california. It still runs like new BTW.
 
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34,954
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NY
 Originally Posted By: bountyh
Just wondering what the general consensus is about dufus car makers who put in the owner's manual that you MUST use 5W-30 oil and no other, you must NOT use 10W-40 oil or it may "damage the engine"....... for the record, I have had my Cavalier for about seven years now and I run 5W-30 or 10W-30 in the winter and usually 10W-40 in the summer since I am in california. It still runs like new BTW.
If you read through previous threads you will see, many BITOG'ers use what ever they want. Especially when there is no warranty involved.
 
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767
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Houston, TX
I have a feeling that it would still be running like new if you used the recommended oil viscosity. Can you post the exact wording in the manual that has you so upset?
 
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Canada
Years and years ago, 10W-40's caused a lot of 'ring sticking' b/c of breakdown of primitive VII's. This, and the need to have their cars get better fuel mileage, made GM 'ban' the use of 10W-40 and 20W-50 in their cars. Modern 10W-40's are excellent oils; I think they would be a great oil for the 'old school' OHV 4-cylinder in a Cavalier. I have a 2002 Cavalier as well, and I've thought about using 10W-40 lots of times, but I hate doing oil changes on it, and all the shops here will put in is 5W-30 (required viscosity on oil cap), so that's what goes in it....
 
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In the california heat, a 10w30 or 10w40 would be fine with that motor. I wouldn't put it in a 03 cavalier however.. Honestly, no matter what grade oil you put in that 02 cavalier, it isn't going to matter.
 

bountyh

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Kalifornia
 Originally Posted By: Scott P
I have a feeling that it would still be running like new if you used the recommended oil viscosity. Can you post the exact wording in the manual that has you so upset?
OK. "SAE 5W-30 is best for your vehicle. However, you can use 10W-30 if it is 0 deg F or above. Do not use other viscosity oils. " That sounds like an "or else" the warranty is toast kind of a thing... BTW: this engine has flat tappet cam design so I would think the new Zinc-less oils would not be a good fit for it.
 
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bountyh

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 Originally Posted By: JustinH
In the california heat, a 10w30 or 10w40 would be fine with that motor. I wouldn't put it in a 03 cavalier however.. Honestly, no matter what grade oil you put in that 02 cavalier, it isn't going to matter.
I gotta ask: why different between an 02 and an 03 cavalier?
 

bountyh

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Kalifornia
 Originally Posted By: addyguy
Years and years ago, 10W-40's caused a lot of 'ring sticking' b/c of breakdown of primitive VII's. This, and the need to have their cars get better fuel mileage, made GM 'ban' the use of 10W-40 and 20W-50 in their cars.
OK, I didn't know that.
 
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Northwest Indiana
 Originally Posted By: bountyh
Just wondering what the general consensus is about dufus car makers who put in the owner's manual that you MUST use 5W-30 oil and no other, you must NOT use 10W-40 oil or it may "damage the engine"....... for the record, I have had my Cavalier for about seven years now and I run 5W-30 or 10W-30 in the winter and usually 10W-40 in the summer since I am in california. It still runs like new BTW.
In the end, its your car. As long as the 10w40 oil youre using meets/exceeds the API rating, use as you see fit.
 
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6,156
Location
Buffalo, NY
 Originally Posted By: bountyh
Just wondering what the general consensus is about dufus car makers who put in the owner's manual that you MUST use 5W-30 oil and no other, you must NOT use 10W-40 oil or it may "damage the engine"....... for the record, I have had my Cavalier for about seven years now and I run 5W-30 or 10W-30 in the winter and usually 10W-40 in the summer since I am in california. It still runs like new BTW.
I have the 2.2L OHV GM engine, and the manual says nothing about 10W-40. All it says is that 5W-30 is preferred, 10W-30 may be used above 0F, not to use "oil weights like 20W-50," and that synthetic 5W-30 or 0W-30 are recommended for cold starts below -25F. I should think a high mileage 10W-30 would suffice is you really wanted to go thicker, and I can't see any advantage with 10W-40 unless you have a burner...
 
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6,156
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Buffalo, NY
 Originally Posted By: JustinH
In the california heat, a 10w30 or 10w40 would be fine with that motor. I wouldn't put it in a 03 cavalier however.. Honestly, no matter what grade oil you put in that 02 cavalier, it isn't going to matter.
I agree. Someone here uses 15W-50 Mobil1 in their Pontiac Sunfire/Chevy Cavalier. I use 5W-30 MaxLife and have had good luck with it. I also noticed a slight cold start improvement after changing out ML 10W-30 and using Penn. Platinum 5W-30 late last fall. I am planning on using M1 10W-30 HM in a change in another week or so..
 
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Canada
 Originally Posted By: bountyh
 Originally Posted By: JustinH
In the california heat, a 10w30 or 10w40 would be fine with that motor. I wouldn't put it in a 03 cavalier however.. Honestly, no matter what grade oil you put in that 02 cavalier, it isn't going to matter.
I gotta ask: why different between an 02 and an 03 cavalier?
In 2003, GM discontnued using the 2.2 OHV engine in the J-body, and started using the 2.2L, DOHC 'Ecotec' 4-cylinder in them. You want a thinner oil in a DOHC engine to reach the cams faster. Also, some would say higher-revving DOHC engines get 'sluggish' with heavier oils in them; less so than a OHV engine.
 

bountyh

Thread starter
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52
Location
Kalifornia
 Originally Posted By: addyguy
 Originally Posted By: bountyh
 Originally Posted By: JustinH
In the california heat, a 10w30 or 10w40 would be fine with that motor. I wouldn't put it in a 03 cavalier however.. Honestly, no matter what grade oil you put in that 02 cavalier, it isn't going to matter.
I gotta ask: why different between an 02 and an 03 cavalier?
In 2003, GM discontnued using the 2.2 OHV engine in the J-body, and started using the 2.2L, DOHC 'Ecotec' 4-cylinder in them. You want a thinner oil in a DOHC engine to reach the cams faster. Also, some would say higher-revving DOHC engines get 'sluggish' with heavier oils in them; less so than a OHV engine.
Mine is the Z24 which had a different engine: it's either 2.4L or 2.6L, can't remember which but it puts out more horses than the standard Cav engine in all other models. It is DOHC, EFI and I think it's 160 HP, and it goes like a missile. It tachs up so fast and pulls so strong to redline that it feels like about 4000 RPM when it is really at 6000 RPM. It hit the rev limiter a couple of times when I first bought it because if I jumped on it in first gear, it hit redline before I knew it.
 
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18,258
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Michigan
For some reason, those 2.4s in the Zs seem to like thicker oil..I know a few people who are running that in their Js... My cavs (03 &04) run on 5w30...only because I didn't feel like playing with them....planning on trying 0w30 though... And you can run thicker oils in the Ecotec...I know someone who is running 10w30 now...cars still runs great....
 
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 Originally Posted By: daves87rs
And you can run thicker oils in the Ecotec...I know someone who is running 10w30 now...cars still runs great....
Most 10W-30 datsheet I've reviewed show a LOWER 100deg CsT than their 5w's. So its actually less viscous at temp.
 
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Buffalo, NY
Most? I haven't seen any in a while that indicated 10W-30 was lower at temp. MaxLife 5W-30 and 10W-30 are both 11.5 at 100C cst, but the 5W-30 will shear to a greater extent...
 
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Michigan
 Originally Posted By: ARCOgraphite
 Originally Posted By: daves87rs
And you can run thicker oils in the Ecotec...I know someone who is running 10w30 now...cars still runs great....
Most 10W-30 datsheet I've reviewed show a LOWER 100deg CsT than their 5w's. So its actually less viscous at temp.
Ecotecs are a pretty hardy engine...they will pretty much run on anything...I'm not sure why he does it. But, the car is doing well with 147k on it....
 
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