Full synthetic options w/ extra seal conditioners?

VeryNoisyPoet

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Sounds like your truck is in good shape, and I really hope you didn't jinx anything. laugh Did you have any other leaks before you used the AT-205, or did you add some as a preventative measure and revive the valve seals as a happy side effect? Old vehicles have a habit of springing leaks in odd places, like how I just discovered a new (within the last 500 miles) oil leak coming from an EXHAUST MANIFOLD STUD. crzy
 

VeryNoisyPoet

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Thanks for your input. I'm not overly concerned about the varnish up top thanks to the reassurance I'm getting on here. It has very slowly been thinning over 30k miles on high mileage oils and with shorter/more regular OCI. As for solvents and cleaners, that's already happened back when I was trying to solve the lifter noises. It saw MMO and Seafoam through the crankcase. They did clean something because the lifters calmed down within a few dozen miles after each treatment. But in my case a "mechanic in a bottle" could never solve the problem because a mechanical o-ring failure was the root cause of the lifter trouble. Guess I'm real lucky I didn't have a hidden pile of sludge to knock loose and ruin everything.
 
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In my DD I been using PYB and do 5k OCIs. Have always thought I would use a HM oil for keeping it topped off but it doesn't drop not even 1/4 of a quart in 5k so I don't get the touch of some HM oil.... yet I had once thought of just going to a HM oil, but then think why when things have been going fine although I have over 140k on the clock. When things are doing good I find it hard to switch.
 
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I have a p80 1998 S70 with the T5 high pressure turbo. I bought it last year and it was really neglected in terms of maintenance. - oil was in the car for 2 years, but only driven about 2000 kilometers - timing belt never changed - pcv system clogged - oil cooler lines leaky - original distributor cap/rotor - and much,much more Shortly after the above work it spat out a rear cam seal but I was lucky to have caught it immediately. car only had 129,000 kilometers on it when i bought it. I've now got it up to 156,000km and it runs great, doesn't leak any oil, and loses only a little bit of oil I don't top up in between oil changes. I think I've changed the oil about 9 times on it and owned it 1 year. - first 3 oil changes with castrol GTX 10w-30 (2500-3000 kilometer OCI) - next 3 oil changes with castrol GTX 10w30 high mileage (2500-3000 kilometer OCI) - next oil change with castrol edge 10w30 full synth (noticed some hydraulic lifter noise occasionally when warm) (3000km OCI) - last 2 oil changes with Mobile1 High Mileage 5w30 with one litre of 0w40. (4000-5000km OCI) I have enough M1 HM for one more oil change, so we'll see what's on sale after that. I think I might stick with a HM oil, definitely keep the synthetic in there. Oil now stays fairly clean until I change, unlike the first half dozen changes where it was really dirty at 2500-3000km. Car seems to like the Mobile1 HM, haven't had any lifter noise when warm (my concern was low oil pressure/oil pickup o rings - but the noise persisted to when the car was shut off and cold started 12+ hours later which to me indicated it was just some particles in the oil being cleaned out that may have gotten stuck in a lifter). For these turbo engines just keep to a solid OCI, use a good quality synthetic and follow the owners manual which suggests checking your oil level at EVERY gas fuel up. https://imgur.com/a/L79bF
 

VeryNoisyPoet

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Wow! What a story and what a save for a beautiful car! It looks so nice and clean compared to my rather tattered looking ride. I've put straight cosmetic stuff on the far, far back burner because I want everything to work, even if it looks ugly. But a few things I've done overlap performance, safety, and cosmetics. All exterior lights and most interior lights are LED, and I have a custom two-stage horn. Short beeps are polite stock horn. Long rage honks bring forth a triple-tone air horn that has spooked texting drivers into dropping phones and made a stop sign running jerk jump like he was hit by lightning (and then flip me off like I was the problem). Keep an eye on your lifters and oil pressure. For me the tell tale sign of the cracked pickup o-ring was reduced oil quantity up top and a very fine foam in the oil visible through the fill cap when it was started cold, idled for a minute or two, then shut down. Also had some minor leakage out the right-rear corner of the sump pan where the oil passes to/from filter and oil thermostat. No matter how hard and hot I run it, I've never had noisy lifters except for when I had that problem, but it got a ton of additives so maybe I got the lifters super cleaned in my attempts to quiet them before the permanent repair. I'm way paranoid about checking oil and looking for leaks especially since I've had enough of them in the past. Never had a surprise major oil leak, but I did have a genuine Volvo hose clamp break on the upper radiator hose. My low coolant light never came on because the sensor in the expansion tank had failed! Thankfully it was a gentle, largely downhill drive a mild day, and the hose only partially came off the radiator, so it continued to "throw" coolant across the gap. Next time you have a chance, siphon coolant out until the expansion bottle is empty and see if your warning light comes on. I've also since noticed that the temp gauge on these cars will read about the same (middle of scale), even as the actual coolant temp ranges from 80C to 220C.
 
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Valvoline Maxlife solved a leaking seal in a 95 Volvo I owned many years ago. It had 100,000 miles on it. You may want to try Mobile 0W40, it's close to a 30 weight oil. It stopped a weaping rear main seal on my Montero. AT205 did nothing. Good hunting. Respectfully, Pajero!
 
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South Carolina
Originally Posted By: VeryNoisyPoet
Sounds like your truck is in good shape, and I really hope you didn't jinx anything. laugh Did you have any other leaks before you used the AT-205, or did you add some as a preventative measure and revive the valve seals as a happy side effect? Old vehicles have a habit of springing leaks in odd places, like how I just discovered a new (within the last 500 miles) oil leak coming from an EXHAUST MANIFOLD STUD. crzy
Good shape? Eh ... I pulled the truck out of someone's backyard earlier this year. It kind of ran, but only just. I didn't have high hopes for it, but after several months of Saturday afternoons, I made it completely functional and reliable. It still looks like it belongs in a junkyard, but paint and body comes last. So ... oil leaking out of the exhaust manifold stud. That doesn't seem right. Either the head is cracked around the stud, or your exhaust valve seals are leaking. Does it puff oil smoke at startup?
 

VeryNoisyPoet

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I get it. I have two dented/scraped doors, a scraped up front fender, and a mismatched generic grey plastic wing mirror instead of body color. My mom is a safe driver in general but has bad luck with running into inanimate objects, so the poor car took a beating while she was the main driver. Only the barest hint of smoke at startup. It used to puff a cloud the size of a dog on cold starts after sitting for hours. High mileage oils have improved that significantly over the years. Can't hear or see evidence of exhaust leaks there either. The stud was loose compared to the others, but no other signs of trouble. Nut was seized to stud, so I pulled both out to inspect. Nothing out of the ordinary besides being damp with oil. I cleaned everything real good, put a couple thin rings of high temp oil-resistant gasket maker partway along the threads, and reinstalled it. Letting it cure overnight to see if that fixes the issue tomorrow. Apparently it's a rare but not unheard of thing in otherwise healthy engines, with most people simply sealing the threads and never having an issue again.
 
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Germany
Originally Posted By: VeryNoisyPoet
Thanks for all the replies so far! I understand that I won't see instant cleaning, and that slow dissolving of deposits is better than dislodging clumps.
Well, oils CAN dislodge lumps. I had that happen to my 900 GLE. But then, this car has had a history of extrene neglect. (At least two of the previous owners were women. Coincidence?) In your case, that should be extremely unlikely.
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I get that 10w-30 is acceptable down to 0F, but the car does see a lot of short winter trips and I wonder if that (plus the even higher viscosity of the HM version) will eat some of my fuel economy while warming up. It slurps enough fuel when cold as it is. And running it on the coldest range of what it specs for 10w30 rubs me the wrong way I guess. shrug But VIIs getting roasted by the turbo is a valid concern.
I really don't get why BITOG people are so scared of shearing VII. In a good oil, they don't. I have four UOAs of 0w-40 coming out of a 1980's turbocharged engine after 10.000km in essentially virgin condition. When your viscosity and viscosity index drops, most likely it's fuel contamination. And there is only one remedy to that: Short OCI. (Besides the obvious: fixing injection problems, checking air mass meter and lambda sond, and of course avoiding short trips.) The biggest levers to improve fuel efficiency are driving profile and driving style. On my Saab, I can make a tank last 880km - or I can burn though the same fuel in less than 300. (Here is a link to my spritmonitor profile. Look at the extreme variance in fuel consumption. Some tanks have even been flagged "invalid" by the algorithm and excluded from the averages, because they seem so excessive.) Worst offender in this regard was my 8V turbo: on a swedish country road, or just setting the cruise control at 89km/h following a semi on the Autobahn, it would reliably drink less than 7 litres/100km. But once, I managed to triple that (four and a half hours of near constant full throttle and two refills). And those cars, that with my usually relaxed driving style would get down to and in perfect conditions even below 7 litres are impossible to get below 10 in the city. End even those are only in good conditions - avoiding rush hour and trying to drive efficiently. Less fortunate circumstances or a less concentrated driver, and 12 is much more realistic. Of course there are fuel savings in the oil choice. But the difference between a 15w-40 and a 0w-30 is around 3%. That is next nothing compared to the variance in fuel consumption due to driving profile. Learn some basic hypermiling skills, and you can easily save 20% compared to how most people drive. Getting back to the oil: if that Volvo was mine, I'd just pour some MB229.5 and Porsche A40 approved 0w-40 in. Nice cold starts and plenty of protection, and no worries about the turbo. But that might leave open your right flank of seal conditioners. Perhaps look for something with a bit of esther?
 
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OK, so you wanted high ZDDP and a lot of seal swellers .. I contacted Valvoline and this is what I got: Broc, thank you for contacting Valvoline Product Support. Valvoline MaxLife Synthetic Blend motor oils are formulated with 830 ppm zinc and 770 ppm phosphorus. Although this oil is very capable of protecting flat tappet camshafts in stock pushrod V-8 engines, we do offer Valvoline VR-1 Racing 10W-30 and VR-1 Racing 20W-50 which contain 1400 ppm zinc and 1300 ppm phosphorus if higher levels are desired. VR-1 Racing oil is recommended for use in performance street engines, racing applications, and for use during the break-in of a new engine where the highest level of protection is required and modern emissions systems such as catalytic converters are not used. If you have any further questions, please feel free to contact us via phone at 800 TEAM VAL or by email at [email protected] for assistance. Thank you and have a great day. Michael Valvoline Product Support Thank you, Valvoline Product Support Ticket Number: 11-964939 Subject: MaxLife Motor Oil
 

VeryNoisyPoet

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Thanks for the tips and the reassurance about the VIIs and the anecdote about oil breaking loose a clump. I don't have that much crud in the engine as far as I can tell. As for fuel economy, I'm starting to max things out with my driving habits. I live just outside Boston and work and study in the city. Motorways are busy whenever I commute , to the point of taking much longer than going on less efficient surface streets. I have a ScanGauge and I've made some big improvement over the years. Still, on a bad day with lots of traffic and back luck with traffic lights, I may only get 13 mpg (18 l/100km). On an average day I can get around 17 mpg (13.83 l/100km), and if everything goes perfect and traffic is light I can get 19 mpg (12.4 l/100km). Those numbers are up a a ways from when I first started keeping track. On the motorway I get between 25 and 30 mpg depending on conditions (9.4 to 7.8 l/100km). I keep my tires inflated to economy pressures despite the harsher ride, but I can't do a whole lot about the car's shape or weight. I'm not going to be that guy barely doing 50 mph / 80 kph holding up traffic. That's why I was thinking a slightly thinner oil, as I'll happily take even 1% gains on short cold trips. I'll think about a 0w-40. I guess on the low side I'm reluctant to deviate too far from the recommended oil viscosity, but I also understand that more than 20 years of oil tech improvement have happened since that engine was designed, and the 0w-XX oils weren't much of a thing back then. The manual does warn that 5w-30 may be too thin for operation in temps above 86 F / 30 C, though the viscosity at operating temp should be in still in spec for a 0w-30, 5w-30, or 10w-30, so I'm not quite sure what the concern was about. Maybe fuel dilution and/or VIIs of 20+ years ago being more fragile when on a 5k mile / 8k km OCI? It does claim that a 10w-30 synthetic is recommended for extremes of cold, heat, or towing duty, so I'm willing to try something like that if I can get away with only changing once per year. I can replace a rear cam seal easily. Front cam seals would be real annoying, but doable. Already took care of the PITA oil cooler lines. I don't have the experience, time, or equipment to yank out the engine if the rear main seal starts leaking badly. Whatever I go for will either have seal conditioners included, or I'll have to add some like that AT-205 mentioned earlier in the thread. Oil spots where I park are annoying.
 

VeryNoisyPoet

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Quote:
I contacted Valvoline and this is what I got:
Wow, you went above and beyond! Thank you, my friend. Racing oil sounds great if I were running gobs of boost and taking this thing to the track (not so in my case LOL ). The Maxlife blend or the Synpower with Maxlife is looking more and more promising if I decide to stick with a more mainstream oil, since it worked so well on my return trip. I wish I had gotten samples for UOA from both of those legs to compare them. With the 4 qts of makeup oil I added, that M1 HM could have possibly carried me much further than it did.
 
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Originally Posted By: VeryNoisyPoet
Thanks for the tips and the reassurance about the VIIs and the anecdote about oil breaking loose a clump. I don't have that much crud in the engine as far as I can tell. As for fuel economy, I'm starting to max things out with my driving habits. I live just outside Boston and work and study in the city. Motorways are busy whenever I commute , to the point of taking much longer than going on less efficient surface streets. I have a ScanGauge and I've made some big improvement over the years. Still, on a bad day with lots of traffic and back luck with traffic lights, I may only get 13 mpg (18 l/100km). On an average day I can get around 17 mpg (13.83 l/100km), and if everything goes perfect and traffic is light I can get 19 mpg (12.4 l/100km). Those numbers are up a a ways from when I first started keeping track. On the motorway I get between 25 and 30 mpg depending on conditions (9.4 to 7.8 l/100km). I keep my tires inflated to economy pressures despite the harsher ride, but I can't do a whole lot about the car's shape or weight. I'm not going to be that guy barely doing 50 mph / 80 kph holding up traffic.
City driving sucks. Is public transport an option? In Berlin or Munich, I do not even think about using my car when I have to go downtown. It's annoying, you won't find a space to park, fuel consumption goes through the roof and both S-Bahn (commuter trains) and Subway are way faster anyways... But I also know there are a lot of cities where public transport just doesn't work.
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That's why I was thinking a slightly thinner oil, as I'll happily take even 1% gains on short cold trips. I'll think about a 0w-40. I guess on the low side I'm reluctant to deviate too far from the recommended oil viscosity, but I also understand that more than 20 years of oil tech improvement have happened since that engine was designed, and the 0w-XX oils weren't much of a thing back then. The manual does warn that 5w-30 may be too thin for operation in temps above 86 F / 30 C, though the viscosity at operating temp should be in still in spec for a 0w-30, 5w-30, or 10w-30, so I'm not quite sure what the concern was about. Maybe fuel dilution and/or VIIs of 20+ years ago being more fragile when on a 5k mile / 8k km OCI? It does claim that a 10w-30 synthetic is recommended for extremes of cold, heat, or towing duty, so I'm willing to try something like that if I can get away with only changing once per year.
The reasoning behind 5w-30 not being adequate probably is low HTHS with american oils. I certainly would NOT trust a low HTHS oil in a boosted Volvo 5 cylinder. Yes, A5/B5 were specified in some years, but Ford Germany quickly found out that this is NOT adequate when the driver regularly puts the right foot down. For example, they quickly changed to specification for the Focus ST (white block Volvo engine) to a 0w-40 with HTHS >3.5... So for you, what about a 0w-30 ACEA A3/B4 or C3? HTHS >3.5 for protection, low cold temperature viscosity to save some fuel during cold starts and warm-up. In a xw-30, you cannot get Porsche A40 (oly xw-40 allowed for this spec), but there are plenty MB 229.5 and 229.51 oils around...
 
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Originally Posted By: turboseize
The reasoning behind 5w-30 not being adequate probably is low HTHS with american oils. I certainly would NOT trust a low HTHS oil in a boosted Volvo 5 cylinder. Yes, A5/B5 were specified in some years, but Ford Germany quickly found out that this is NOT adequate when the driver regularly puts the right foot down. For example, they quickly changed to specification for the Focus ST (white block Volvo engine) to a 0w-40 with HTHS >3.5... So for you, what about a 0w-30 ACEA A3/B4 or C3? HTHS >3.5 for protection, low cold temperature viscosity to save some fuel during cold starts and warm-up. In a xw-30, you cannot get Porsche A40 (oly xw-40 allowed for this spec), but there are plenty MB 229.5 and 229.51 oils around...
I agree smile
 
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VeryNoisyPoet

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Is public transport an option?
I live just at the outer range of public transport in a weird spot. 30 min walk, then trolley, then subway to get to school. 1hr+ trip. Driving takes 25 minutes, including parking. Getting to work involves the subway again and a second trolley, for an extra 1hr+. Driving from school to work takes 30 minutes. Trip home from work takes 2hr+ on trains, 35 minutes by car. I much rather lose 1.5 hours per day to my commute than 4+ hours per day. If I need to carry anything bulky or heavy (not uncommon), or if the weather is terrible, it's not fun. No easy parking near where I get on the trolley or subway. Parking at school and taking train to work and back isn't much better either. Even with poor fuel economy, driving is cheaper than the round trip train unless fuel prices nearly double.
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probably is low HTHS with american oils
Low HTHS concern makes sense, especially since the manual calls for API SG (introduced 1988) or SH (1993). Thinner oils made to 30 year old standards probably have weaker film strength than what is safe at summer operating temps. I don't have a thermometer probe for oil, but I do know the oil thermostat begins to open at around 210 F (99 C) and fully opens by 300 F (149 C)! That oil could be roasting under sustained high load in 115 F (46 C) ambient temps - the highest I saw my ambient thermometer during my road trip in the southwest.
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0w-30 ACEA A3/B4
Castrol Edge 0w-30 or 0w-40 meets those specs and isn't super expensive that I can see, so that's now on my list to consider. I would want a seal conditioner in there to feel secure about the main seals holding, but those are pretty widely available as additives as others have mentioned.
 
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There is also Valvoline Full Sythetic with Maxlife Technology. Contact them and ask about it. You'll get a reply and you'll know more than we do now. Since oils change chemistry occasionally, I'd like to get the latest from the horses mouth laugh
 
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Germany
Originally Posted By: VeryNoisyPoet
Quote:
Is public transport an option?
I live just at the outer range of public transport in a weird spot. 30 min walk, then trolley, then subway to get to school. 1hr+ trip. Driving takes 25 minutes, including parking. Getting to work involves the subway again and a second trolley, for an extra 1hr+. Driving from school to work takes 30 minutes. Trip home from work takes 2hr+ on trains, 35 minutes by car. I much rather lose 1.5 hours per day to my commute than 4+ hours per day.
That is indeed terrible. If biking is no option, then the car indeed seems like the only reasonable choice left...
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0w-30 ACEA A3/B4
Castrol Edge 0w-30 or 0w-40 meets those specs and isn't super expensive that I can see, so that's now on my list to consider. I would want a seal conditioner in there to feel secure about the main seals holding, but those are pretty widely available as additives as others have mentioned.
Both seem to be commonly used by the Volvo community. If I am not mistaken, Edge 0w-40 also happens to be the prescribed oil for the boosted Volvo 5-bangers in Ford's hot hatches...
 
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VeryNoisyPoet

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I messaged Valvoline and it took nearly a month for them to reply, but they now have HTHS specs on some of their product information sheets. Here's what I found:
Code:
Maxlife 
Weight 5w-30   10w-30
HTHS    3.1      3.2

Advanced Full Synthetic (Synpower)
Weight 5w-30   10w-30
HTHS    3.2      3.2

Full Synthetic with Maxlife Technology
Weight 5w-30   10w-30
HTHS    3.1      3.2
All very similar, and a few tenths above the minimum spec of 2.9 for Xw30 weight oils. Looks like a modern 5w-30 is a lot hardier than Volvo worried about with early 90s oil tech. I'm not seeing a problem being able to run a 5w-30 year round and certainly looks cheaper than a Euro 0w-40 (plus seal conditioner additives) unless there's a big sale. Because of the 7 qt sump, I need to buy two 5 qt jugs of whatever oil I choose.
 
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