Hoe-Lee-Cow -- 0w-20 Forever!!!

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Well guys, I set out this morning on an "almost 500 mile" day, thinking perhaps I might generate an interesting datum point or two. Boy, was I ever right! I frequently have to travel from Pensacola to Tallahassee, roughly 200 miles, depending upon the exact start and end points. Three weeks ago, I did the trip, when my Camry hybrid had a fill of 12 cSt green GC in the crank case. The engine had behaved nicely enough with the GC, but mileage was beginning to be a concern. On that trip, the best I could coax from the ECU's data display was 32.9 mpgs. Most of this trip is on I-10, with various side trips for rest, mission accomplishment, etc. Today, I did the same trip, under very similar circumstances. Same speeds, same (pig-headed) driving habits, same brand of gas (Shell 87), and so forth. The notable differences were that it was very slightly cooler (averaging in the high-80s instead of the low-90s), and it rained several times on this trip, very hard, but that usually HURTS the mpg result. And THE BIG DIFFERENCE: two nights ago, I replaced the GC with a fill of ~8.5 cSt PP 0w-20. Yes, it's true -- I changed oil myself on a Tuesday evening. After finding out I'd have to make this trip, I changed slightly early so as to avoid running over OCI because of other commitments. And yes, I have a sample of the GC to send off, and a blotter card (looks good) which I'll post later. Well, here's a very poor photo I snapped with my Canon G10 while driving down I-10W, while controlling the car, and being amazed with what I was seeing: So, what do all of you "20wt really doesn't make a mileage difference" crowd think? Alas, it will be about 1.5 months before I can sample this fill meaningfully (I will pull it at the same mileage as the GC I just dumped). Subjective observations: in motion, the PP runs just fine. No bad noises, and the car revvs up noticeably quicker than it did with the GC. I've had a couple "cold" starts that sounded a tad "rougher" than with the GC, but beyond that, all the subjective observations favor the 20 wt oil. Allright now, ready to have some fun with this?
 
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 Originally Posted By: CharlieJ
The GC is almost a 40w! I would hope that a 20w would make a difference!
I was about to say the same thing...GC isn't exactly 30 oil...
 

ekpolk

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 Originally Posted By: glxpassat
I could see it making a 1-2 mpg difference, but not that much. My guess is the wind was helping you out this time.
That was my first thought too, but I got this reading about two hours (it's a ~three hour trip) into the westbound leg. You'd think that prevailing winds would would DISFAVOR the westbound leg, normally. But then again, I logged a good chunk of the miles while eastbound. It certainly IS possible that the winds conveniently changed by 90 degrees (EDIT: ooops, I mean 180 deg...), at exactly the right time to favor my mileage on this trip, but I really don't think that's too probable. Possible, but would you bet your next paycheck on it?
 
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BGK

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The proof that it was the oil that made the mpg improvement will be when you make repeated identical trips and get similar mpg. I bet a new VW diesel would get closer to 50 mpg under same conditions...
 

ekpolk

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 Originally Posted By: BGK
The proof that it was the oil that made the mpg improvement will be when you make repeated identical trips and get similar mpg. I bet a new VW diesel would get closer to 50 mpg under same conditions...
Sure he would. I assume you're talking about a Jetta TDI? I actually passed two of those today... ;\) . But let's be fair. The Jetta is a much, much smaller and lighter car than the Camry hybrid. Would you condemn an Accord because it gets less mpgs than a Civic??? The difference is almost that large. The TCH weighs in at a very, and sadly, porky 3700 lbs. The TDI Jetta is a full quarter ton lighter. When VW comes out with a TDI model that weighs the same as a Camry, let's talk again... Beyond that, very fundamentally, the diesels absolutely DO have the advantage on the highway. The hybrids blow the diesels away in urban driving. Please show me a diesel (or any conventional car that weighs almost two tons) that can get 36+ mpgs in town. And unlike a diesel owner, I don't have to worry about where to get gas -- anytime or anywhere. May not matter to some, but I like that.
 

ekpolk

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 Originally Posted By: peterdes
Yeah. but how's the engine wear. ;\)
Based upon the several hundred stellar 20 wt UOA we have here, AND the fact that eight-plus years into the Ford-Honda "20 wt experiment", with no mass failures, I'd predict the wear to be just fine.
 

ekpolk

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 Originally Posted By: hpichris
I need to buy myself a new VW diesel before they go the way of the dinosaurs.....
That already happened once. They went away -- until VW attached one of those super-expensive, and super-clean exhaust systems on their diesels. I find it interesting that all the anti-hybrid "chicken littles" were predicting expensive doom for hybrid batteries, years ago, and it has never happened. Yet nobody thinks it's worth discussing that replacing a VW diesel exhaust system will probably cost you more than replacing the $2,300 battery (that rarely ever fails...) in a Prius, Camry, or Highlander. p.s. PLEASE, nobody start with that $10,000 hybrid battery nonsense. That was pure internet legend/hysteria that persisted for years. Before I bought my first (the Prius, back in 06), I checked the battery price. For a Prius, $2,300. . . And most will never need one, ever.
 
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This is a new 2009 Camry Hybrid? It's just getting broken in. When I bought my 1987 Jetta in 1987, it got terrible gas mileage for a 1.8L until the engine was well broken in -- which took several thousand miles. I was at first getting mid-20's mpg (imperial) in the city. Now it gets 33-34 mpg easily in the city. OOOPS, I meant to quote, not edit... If this is NOT as it was intended, please PM me so I can re-fix it. Very sorry!
 
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ekpolk

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If it says anything about my driving habits -- this car clicked over to 30,000 miles yesterday. Yes, it is a 2009 model. . . p.s. it now has thirty-thousand, four-hundred-something on it... p.p.s. There, that's what I meant to do!
 
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No problem, my post is fine. Well, … 30k miles is already well broken in, so I have no real answer. Different gas? Ethanol laced gas can reduce gas mileage substantially over straight gasoline. Warmer weather can also help with gas mileage, although in Florida, there shouldn't be much of a difference seeing how it doesn't get that cold there. I'm looking for another variable because 20 weight oil shouldn't really make much of a difference over 30wts.
 
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The PP 0W-20 I used in my 2008 xB (2.4L Camry Engine) the wear was excellent. Take a look for yourself:
 
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 Originally Posted By: ekpolk
Well guys, I set out this morning on an "almost 500 mile" day, thinking perhaps I might generate an interesting datum point or two. ...
SHOW OFF!
 
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I drove a TDI 09 6spd manual it got 48 mpg around mixed traffic blew me away the engine didnt sound like a diesel just a knock is about it when the turbo kicked in full tilt. Amazing cars coupled with bio diesel would be amazing for u.s. market. IDK they did have issues with cam lobe wear even with the 507 approved oil idk where that has went to.
 
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I have run G.C. 0w-30 , Motorcraft 5w-20, 10w-30 Castrol, PP 5w-30 and 5w-20 valvo syn. Between the last two oils I lost 7 tenths MPG going from PP 5w-30 to Valvoline 5w-20 yes 5w-30 to 5w-20 via the tank averages with a Scanguage , through out the life of the PP 5w-30 vs the 5w-20 . The 5W-20 miles per gallon is on summer gas, Ford claims the difference around 2 tenths using 20 wt.
 
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