Havoline Synthetic 10w-30

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Oct 11, 2002
Colorado Springs
Just found some on sale so I used it in my Dad's 4.3L Blazer, since winter is coming and all. I thought, what the **** , I'll throw it in the freezer with some 10w-30 dino Pennzoil and compare (from previous posts, you can tell I like the freezer cold weather oil test
). Well, I was suprised as heck! The Havoline "synthetic", with a listed pour point of -47 F turned **** near a milky color and was more like cold moulases than oil. Yes, the regular 10w-30 pennzoil was much much more non-viscous and it still had the nice pure amber color. The Havoline looked like it was practically about to freeze solid
I was like, what the **** is wrong with this stuff? Oh well, regular pennz for me from now on I guess.

One other thing. The oil capacity in his truck is 4.5 quarts and it always takes that much to read full on the dipstick after an oil change. This time, I've already added 4.75 quarts and it's still not up to the full mark
What is up with that? It has NEVER done that before. Does this synthetic havoline cling like crazy or something? I think there might be some sludge or something holding back oil in the heads or something. Should I just keep adding oil till it's full on the dipstick, even though technically it will be overfilled like crazy?

[ October 06, 2003, 11:52 AM: Message edited by: Drew99GT ]
This is a different and more interesting topic than what I thought it was going to be. Can the header be expanded to show what you're discussing, i.e. Havoline Synthetic 10W30-- Bad in Cold Weather?
There is nothing that will surprise me anymore. Remember those 'X-File' shows? Well, my motto today is 'Trust no one, and trust nothing.' I personally feel that gasoline quality is not what it is supposed to be. Who is checking the quality of gasoline, anyway? Probably nobody, or the inspectors are so far apart and between that it might as well be nobody. And what happens if somebody gets caught-a fine that they can easily pay? When it comes to gasoline, I think you need to find a good fuel injector cleaner, because I think the detergent additives are pretty low. If gasoline was all good quality, do you think you would really need to get a fuel system cleaning?

Well, the same is true of motor oil. Who is watching, anyway? Probably nobody, or very few inspectors. How much money could somebody make if they filled the synthetic oil bottles (cost of that oil, something like $4.50 or $5.00 a quart) with buck a quart conventional motor oil? You don't think that could happen? Well, I remember when I took some Mobil 1 to an oil change place and I caught them trying to put conventional motor oil (of the wrong viscosity) in my car engine. Remember all of those crooked people on Wall Street who are now heading for prison? Another way to make bucks would be to reduce the amount of additive in the oil. Who is going to notice, anyway?

If a synthetic oil is freezing in a freezer before a conventional motor oil of the same viscosity freezes, something is fishy and smells to high heaven.
My bad on the header; I'll try and be more specific next time.

I went out and bought another quart of the havoline synthetic 10w-30 cause the one I was using only had about 1/4 quart in it; the pennz had 1/2 quart. It seems that with less oil in the containor, the less effective it is at telling how viscous the fluid is. I'll chime in later with my results
On a side note, I tested some pennzoil 75w-90 GL5 synthetic gear lube against castrol dino 75w-90 GL5. Whooaa, Pennzoil was the CLEAR winner on that one. The pennzoil synthetic gear lube went in my car last night and it's a bit better as far as cold shift notchiness but still not great. I'll just order Redline MT90 next time and call it good.
This topic seems to be growing by leaps and bounds! Mystic, I can speak for gasoline quality. Having worked in the industry for over 30 years. The quality of gasoline is watched VERY closely, but dependent on many things. Oil companies always meet or exceed API specs when producing gasoline. Just a short primer here, start a new topic if you wish. When the gasoline is produced, before it leaves the refinery, it is tested and certified to meet all API specs including octane. "Shipments" of product are tested upon arrival at a terminal for RVP, the Govt. mandated vapor pressure standard. They are then tested for appearance, contamination (visible), Color, Haze, and particulate. Then they are put into storage and made available for distribution. THEN monthly they are tested for Octane AGAIN, corrosivity, D86 distillation, and additive content. There are no "penalties" for ignoring most of these standards except lost sales (other than the Govt. mandated parameters that is). I am not going to mention any brand names since that is pretty much forbidden on this board, however I will advise you to stay with the more common stations in your area, and BIG name brands don't always get better quality. In your geographical area, a little research will tell you exactly what you are getting. If drinking water was tested so vigorously, we would all be healthier, even the bottled kind!
Dang, JohnnyG, I wish you would give me a hint! I like the Chevron gas stations in New Mexico and Arizona, because my car seems to run better with Chevron gasoline. But there are no Chevron gas stations in my immediate area. There are also no Shell stations-I would have to drive to a city about 45 miles away to get Shell gasoline. I have been going to a Amoco gas station. I have experienced a partially plugged injector, so I don't trust the gasoline quality.

What about motor oils? Is motor oil quality checked as well, or could somebody get away with reducing the additive content or even switching conventional for synthetic?
Sorry, I may have given a wrong impression above. It was not the Amoco station gasoline that seemed to partially plug the injector. It was another station that I no longer go to.
Seems to me that regardless what the temperature actually was in the freezer, if you have two bottles of motor oil in that freezer side by side, and the conventional stays liquid and the synthetic is so thick it will hardly flow, then there is something wrong.

Mobil 1 sure would flow longer then a conventional motor oil, or at least most motor oils. Maybe that special Quaker State Winter Blend will also flow at very low temperatures.
That is really an interesting test that you did. Maybe we should test all motor oils in a freezer and see how they test? Would it not be interesting if some synthetic oils and synthetic blend oils do not flow in the cold as good as some conventional motor oils?

For all we know there could be some faking going on. Without a chemist testing a oil, how do we really know what is in the oil?

I do remember in the past when some organizations were bench testing samples of motor oil purchased in various stores across the country, that in a considerable percentage of oils the additive levels were low and the motor oils did not really meet the requirments.

What if somebody decided to make a lot of money and put conventional motor oil in what is supposed to be synthetic oil containers?
Yea, Mystic, it wouldn't suprise me if oil branders decieded to pull a fast one on consumers. It's not like they haven't done it before
I just hope the stuff is good enough for a 3,000 mile run in our cold weather here in CO. If I do notice a lot of hesitation and such when starting in really cold weather, out the havoline goes and in comes the pennzoil.

Anyone want to comment on the oil level dilemma? I hope it's not the oil itself.
A couple of winters ago I kept Amsoil ASL 5w30, Mobil1 5w30 and Pennzoil 5w30 (purebase), on my deck. Checked them weekly. Temps down to -45F. Both synthetics moved around freely, while the Pennzoil slowed down. Still I was impressed with Pennzoil, it was not a solid mass.
OK guys, back with the results. Same thing. The Havoline synthetic 10w-30 is weird stuff!!!!!! Temp in my freezer was about -3 degrees F with a real good thermometer. All kinds of white, cloudy, milky stuff settles out of the Havoline synthetic, almost like wax crystals floating on top
It did however, seem to flow as good or slightly better than regular pennzoil, but barely, maybe not even at all. The fallout of white milky goo however did not give me peace of mind at all. I have NEVER ever seen motor oil do that. After it warms up to about 70 degrees and you mix it around, the milky stuff and wax like crystals that settled out on top were gone. So, I don't know what to think. I do know that the pennzoil dino seems to be fantastic for cold weather.

What do you oil experts think about the milky substance and crystals that came out of the Havoline synthetic? Is this normal for a group 3? Is this the ester coming out or something (dumb question but I'm looking for awnsers)? Perhaps I'll do this again tonight and take some pictures and post them for you all to judge. I'll tell you it ain't pretty looking and does bad things for my piece of mind
Pictures would be great. It would also be great to test several brands of conventional and synthetic oil. Maybe people in your area who use different brands of oil could help you out. Maybe somebody has Chevron, another person another brand, etc. It would be interesting to see several brands of conventional and synthetic tested.

In fact, this would be a cheap test of synthetic oils. If a synthetic oil is not going to flow in the cold, somethign is fishy. Better not use that brand!
But a Group III should flow better in the cold then a Group II? Havoline is now apparently the same as Chevron Supreme. An interesting test would be to see if the conventional Chevron Supreme (or Chevron/Havoline) would flow as good in the cold as the Havoline Synthetic or Chevron Synthetic. If so, then who needs the synthetic?
I do think that this would be a way to test synthetic oils and see if they are legit or not. A true synthetic oil is going to outflow a conventional motor oil of the same viscosity in the cold.

If any so-called synthetic oil is unable to flow better then a conventional motor oil in the cold, then who needs it? Certainly in the wintertime, if you are using an expensive synthetic oil of whatever brand to protect your engine in the cold, and a conventional oil can outflow it in the cold, then who needs the synthetic?

How do we really now what we are seeing here? Is it possible that the results come from the different group types or additive packages used by each oil, it would see that way to me? I think a bigger sampling of oils would be required to what is really taking place here, and I'm sure someone will have at it soon.
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