Corvette C5 engine oil?

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I'm thinking of purchase a corvette C5 sometime in the next few months. In this engine(LS1), chevrolet recommends/demands? Mobil 1 5w-30. I live in sweden and the only Mobil 1 i can buy locally is 5w-50 and 0w-40. I guess I can order home the 5w-30, but i was wondering if the two Mobil 1 I can purchase locally will work just as fine(or even better)? The car is only intended to be used in the summer. Outside temperature range: max 30C (86F) min 5C (41F) Any suggestions?
 

Patman

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First of all, [Welcome!] Out of those two choices I would suggest going with the 0w40 Mobil 1. In fact, I've noticed a trend that the LS1 engine seems to show lower wear when it's running an oil that is slightly thicker, Mobil 1's 5w30 doesn't always do all that great in this engine, although it's extremely popular here. If you ask 100 Corvette C5 owners which oil they use, 95 of them will say Mobil 1 5w30. I wouldn't go with the 5w50 though, it's a bit too thick for this engine, you'll just rob yourself of horsepower. What year will you be looking for, a new 2004 or a 97-03? I'm planning on getting a 97 Corvette in about 2 or 3 years myself, it's my all time favorite car!
 
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There's two issues here, which I'm sure you realize. Warranty and what works. I assume you are concerned with warranty. The real requirement is GM4718M, not Mobil 1. If the car is on factory warranty, contact GM directly and get a response in writing. They might recommend other viscosity oils in Sweeden. The most important part is to use an oil tham meets GM4718M. Also look at the GM requirements in an owners manual. Here's a couple of things my 1996 LT-4 manual says (same basic engine) "Notice: If you use oils that don't have the GM4718M Standard designation, you can cause engine damage not covered by your warranty." Engine Oil Additives" "Don't add anything to your oil. ...." I understand those requirements are still in effect on the new models. "5W-30 is best for your vehicle. However you can use SAE 10W-30 if it's going to be 0F (-18C) or above" "Do not use other viscosity oil such as 20W-50." 0W-40 sounds like a reasonable choice as long as it meets GM4718M. Other companies also make oil that meets GM4718M What would they use for oil in Sweeden if it actually got hot there? Chassis grease??
 

Patman

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quote:
"Notice: If you use oils that don't have the GM4718M Standard designation, you can cause engine damage not covered by your warranty."
In all honesty, GM is being a bit overly dramatic with this statement. The LT1 and LS1 engines in the Corvettes are virtually identical to the ones in the f-bodies. But yet the f-body has never required an oil with the 4718M standard (of which nobody seems to know exactly what it takes for an oil to achieve this designation!) and it has not suffered any premature engine failures as a result. The owners manuals of both my LS1 Firebird and my LT1 Firebird made no mention whatsoever to needing an oil with the 4718M designation.
 
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I think either of those 2 choice would be just fine. What does a vette manual say in the rest of Europe and Australia??
 
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quote:
Originally posted by Patman:
quote:
"Notice: If you use oils that don't have the GM4718M Standard designation, you can cause engine damage not covered by your warranty."
In all honesty, GM is being a bit overly dramatic with this statement. The LT1 and LS1 engines in the Corvettes are virtually identical to the ones in the f-bodies. But yet the f-body has never required an oil with the 4718M standard (of which nobody seems to know exactly what it takes for an oil to achieve this designation!) and it has not suffered any premature engine failures as a result.

Dramatic or not, that is what they say. I will hazard a guess that GM and the oil companies putting M4718M on their oil cans know exactly what it means. This took me about 30 seconds to Google this. From an Amsoil dealer's site: "It's a high-temperature requirement that tolerates less oxidation (thickening) and volatility (boil-off) on a standard engine test called Sequence 111E according to engineer Bob Olree of GM Powertrain. " [ January 27, 2004, 03:10 PM: Message edited by: XS650 ]
 

vazzen

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Thanks for the fast responses!! I'm looking at a corvette-model between 1999 and 2001. I have no experience from corvette before (or any american made car) and I hope the engines(LS1) are reliable. A friend has a 1972 Corvette with a 454" engine, but I hope that the "new" C5 is a bit better.(fuel economy,soundlevel,roadhandling etc) [Big Grin] A guy at a swedish forum suggested that I should use REDLINE 10w-40. But I don't know if it's any better than Mobil 1. [I dont know]
 
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quote:
Originally posted by vazzen: Thanks for the fast responses!! I'm looking at a corvette-model between 1999 and 2001. I have no experience from corvette before (or any American made car) and I hope the engines(LS1) are reliable. A friend has a 1972 Corvette with a 454" engine, but I hope that the "new" C5 is a bit better.(fuel economy,soundlevel,roadhandling etc) [Big Grin]
Then it should be off factory warranty, so any good synthetic of the right viscosity should do the job. xW-40 won't hurt, but is completely unnecessary in your 85F climate. Or a 100F climate for that matter. The engines are reliable. They are big engines with more power than you can use 99% of the time, so they don't get very highly stressed for long off the race track. Fuel economy can be quite good for a high perfomance car. My LT4 Corvette (about the same engine) will give a bit over 25 mpg cruising at a bit over 70 mph. Conversion from Christian units to metric is up to you [Smile] Sound level and roadhandling of a C5 are in a completely different world than a C3. The two cars aren't in the same class at all. A C3 with a high powered engine is a great classic performance car and a C5 is a modern sports car.
 

Patman

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quote:
Originally posted by vazzen: I'm looking at a corvette-model between 1999 and 2001. I have no experience from corvette before (or any american made car) and I hope the engines(LS1) are reliable.
They are, but I recommend staying away from the 2001 model year. They went to a low tension ring that year, and many of those engines burned a lot of oil. The 97-00, and 02-04 don't have quite as much oil burning problems as the 01, although they can still burn oil too. Piston slap is another concern, be sure to listen to the engine when it's started up stone cold. I highly recommend checking out corvetteforum.com to find out more info on these lovely beasts.
 
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Probably the best source of information would be the Corvette Club of Sweeden. I plan to get a Corvette within 2 years also. (Mid-Life crisis thing) or at least that is what I tell my wife.... I need a Corvette (America's Sports Car) Cheers, Doug
 
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I would love to own one of these beasts, as Patman would say. [Big Grin] Nice choice. For oil choices, I agree with the above. If you can get Redline, I'd go with that. With Mobil 1, 0w-30 R, 0w-40 or Delvac 1 would be my choice. In sweden a 0W oil is a must. [Eek!]
 

Patman

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quote:
Originally posted by Doug C: I plan to get a Corvette within 2 years also. (Mid-Life crisis thing) or at least that is what I tell my wife.... I need a Corvette (America's Sports Car)
At least twice a week I tell my wife "I need a Corvette" I stress the word need, and assure her that it's not a matter of wanting one it's a matter of needing one I'm more obsessed with that than I am with oil, believe it or not! I check online every single day to see if GM Canada shows any new Corvettes in stock within a hundred miles of my area code, and I also check one local Corvette dealer's website for their new stock, as well as checking Auto Trader in Canada and Auto Trader in the US to see what is out there. So as you can see, finding out which oils work best in the LS1 is a huge priority for me. When I finally do get a 97 Corvette, I'll be keeping it for an extremely long time, the only thing I'd replace it with would be a newer Corvette. I haven't quite warmed up to the C6 as much as the C5, but as time goes on that could change. One really cool feature of the C5 that you guys here would like is the ability to see the engine oil temperature as well as the tranny fluid temperature in the driver information center.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by Patman:
quote:
Originally posted by vazzen: I'm looking at a corvette-model between 1999 and 2001. I have no experience from corvette before (or any american made car) and I hope the engines(LS1) are reliable.
They are, but I recommend staying away from the 2001 model year. They went to a low tension ring that year, and many of those engines burned a lot of oil. The 97-00, and 02-04 don't have quite as much oil burning problems as the 01, although they can still burn oil too. Piston slap is another concern, be sure to listen to the engine when it's started up stone cold. I highly recommend checking out corvetteforum.com to find out more info on these lovely beasts.

Actually, GM didn't address or update the piston ring problem until late into the '02 model year but did issue a TSB to replace the low tension piston rings for those that complained. The tradeoff is that GM increased the horsepower of the LS1 in '01 so if you get a '00 model you avoid the piston ring issue but get the lower output motor (which may be fine for most humans). I had a '98 C5 and thoroughly enjoyed it. [ January 28, 2004, 01:51 PM: Message edited by: nick778 ]
 
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quote:
Originally posted by vazzen: I'm thinking of purchase a corvette C5 sometime in the next few months. In this engine(LS1), chevrolet recommends/demands? Mobil 1 5w-30. I live in sweden and the only Mobil 1 i can buy locally is 5w-50 and 0w-40. I guess I can order home the 5w-30, but i was wondering if the two Mobil 1 I can purchase locally will work just as fine(or even better)? The car is only intended to be used in the summer. Outside temperature range: max 30C (86F) min 5C (41F) Any suggestions?
I would imagine some SAAB oil would work great in the vette. Mobil 1 5w30 is just an average oil here in the states. I think you can find better over in Europe. I would also check out Motul in a 5w30 or something like that.
 

Patman

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quote:
Actually, GM didn't address or update the piston ring problem until late into the '02 model year but did issue a TSB to replace the low tension piston rings for those that complained. The tradeoff is that GM increased the horsepower of the LS1 in '01 so if you get a '00 model you avoid the piston ring issue but get the lower output motor (which may be fine for most humans).
This is the info I've got, which indicates the change took place at the beginning or close to the beginning of the 02 model year:
quote:
"We went back to our ring supplier and worked with them in developing a fix," Juriga explained. "We are going to change the ring pack. We’ll use a higher tension oil ring. We go from a nine pound ring to a 13 pound ring. We’ll also change the second compression ring to a ‘Napier ring’ design which has a very pronounced scraper profile on it. The current second ring uses a conventional oil scraper design. "We’re going to get that done for the start of production (MY02) on LS6 and within a couple weeks afterwards, it will go into the LS1, so it will be across-the-board on both."
 
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Patman, We must be related. I also check the Corvette Forum and this forum several times a day. Shhhh, I am at work....don't tell anyone.... Last night at the grocery store I picked up the latest Car and Driver. I also bought the Motor Trend; both because they talked about the C6, and my wife even agreed that it was OK to buy those magazines!! (First step eh!) I also am looking to stay with the C5 because I like the look of the C5 over that of the C6. I really would like to have the technological advances in engineering of the C6 but the price of a C4 and the no-computer electronic failures of the C1/C2! But I digress. The dealer has a silver hardtop for $39K... many more for just over $41-42K but I still can't swing it right now! Although it would get better gas mileage than my Tahoe..... Cheers, Doug Cawthra
 
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Patman, yes, I have read that excerp also that it was to take effect at the beginning of the '02 model year. But it didn't happen from all the other reports I have read including the GM TSB which covers most of the '02 model year in addition to the '01.
 

Patman

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quote:
Originally posted by nick778: Patman, yes, I have read that excerp also that it was to take effect at the beginning of the '02 model year. But it didn't happen from all the other reports I have read including the GM TSB which covers most of the '02 model year in addition to the '01.
I did not know that, especially since the bulk of the 2002 owners on Corvette Forum don't seem to have any oil burning problems. On a similar subject, I got an email response from my cousin today about whether or not they run every single LS1 and LS6 engine in the assembly plant, or if it doesn't get fired up until it is put in the car. Here is his response:
quote:
Every engine is cold tested. Vette engines (for manuals) are also balanced on a hot test stand, using natural gas. It's not really a hot test, it only runs long enough to take unbalance readings, usually less than a minute total. Alot of pre-production (proto, pilots) and start-of-production stuff is dyno tested, especially if there is a major model change (design change), new technology on the engine, etc. This is not for break-in but to double-check quality. These tests are a combination of 20-minute dyno (loaded) and 10-minute non-loaded, running gasoline. Every vehicle gets a dynamic vehicle test (DVT) at the end of the vehicle assembly line. It's basically about a 5-minute (maybe more?) vehicle dyne, and they check everything you can think of, not just powertrain. Most engines are only fired up for the first time at DVT.
 
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Hmmmmm, 5 minute DVT on dyno..... most Corvettes coming off the truck from Bowling Green have 2 to 2.5 miles on the odometer. My new 04 had all of 5 miles on the odo when I picked it up 10 days ago .... and at least 2 of those were from running to the gas station to fill it up.
quote:
Originally posted by Patman:
quote:
Originally posted by nick778: Patman, yes, I have read that excerp also that it was to take effect at the beginning of the '02 model year. But it didn't happen from all the other reports I have read including the GM TSB which covers most of the '02 model year in addition to the '01.
I did not know that, especially since the bulk of the 2002 owners on Corvette Forum don't seem to have any oil burning problems. On a similar subject, I got an email response from my cousin today about whether or not they run every single LS1 and LS6 engine in the assembly plant, or if it doesn't get fired up until it is put in the car. Here is his response:
quote:
Every engine is cold tested. Vette engines (for manuals) are also balanced on a hot test stand, using natural gas. It's not really a hot test, it only runs long enough to take unbalance readings, usually less than a minute total. Alot of pre-production (proto, pilots) and start-of-production stuff is dyno tested, especially if there is a major model change (design change), new technology on the engine, etc. This is not for break-in but to double-check quality. These tests are a combination of 20-minute dyno (loaded) and 10-minute non-loaded, running gasoline. Every vehicle gets a dynamic vehicle test (DVT) at the end of the vehicle assembly line. It's basically about a 5-minute (maybe more?) vehicle dyne, and they check everything you can think of, not just powertrain. Most engines are only fired up for the first time at DVT.

 

vazzen

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From what I have read here the LS1 engine seems to "like" a thicker oil than 5w-30. Would it be a good idea to put in Mobil 1 0w-40 instead of "any" 5w-30 oil? I have also read that a 0w-40(not just Mobil 1) will shear down in viscosity a bit(10-20%?), but is it so bad? I mean, even if it shars down a little bit it's still going to be thicker than a 5w-30? And the HT/HS should still be better than almost any 5w-30? I'm not trying to stretch out my OCI, I just want better protection for the engine. [Smile] Planning to change oil after 3000-5000 miles (5000-8000km). That's the distance I normally drive (with the C5) during the summerperiod (may-october). BTW it is summer until the ground is covered with snow and/or the temperature falls below 0C (32F). [Big Grin] I can get Redline oils but I don't "see" so many enthusiastic people about it here or am I wrong? [Confused] If redline would be a better choice (than Mobil 1) what viscosity do you think would be appropriate? a 10w-40? Some bloke at a swedish forum who has a C5 uses Redline 10w-40 for normal road-driving, but he changes the oil to Redline 15w-50 when he goes on the track. What is the Redline ACEA or SAE ratings? I guess neither Redline or M1 0w-40 are GM4718M rated, but it's not that important or....? At least M1 0w-40 is ACEA A3 rated and it's not a bad thing..... [Smile]
 
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