Honda H22A4 Synthetic vs Dino Oil Results

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94
Location
Morristown, NJ
So, many of you are still not convinced that you should be using synthetic oil for 7500 mile change intervals in your 4G or 5G Honda Prelude. (Which is what I've done as per the factory service manual for 110k of 120k on the engine.) The images below are (top) an H22A4 valve cover [from a perfectly working engine]with 70,000 miles on it, and (bottom) an H22A4 valve cover from my ride with 120,000 miles on it. I decided to post the graphical difference as seeing is believing. I've taken part in cylinder head work in about 6 H22A4 engines at this point... and all of the synthetic lube users have clean valve covers, and the dino (veggie really) lubed H22A4 are covered in gum, varnish, and sludge.  - Use synthetics... they work better.
 
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31
Location
SF Bay Area
Wow, that a big difference!! Are they the same egine? If they are two different engines, are they using the dino and Syn oil from day one? What's their OCI? 7.5K?
 
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College Dorm...
While this is a more extreme example, this has been my one and only complaint with mineral-based PCMO's all along: They can keep wear rates low on moderate OCI's, but they just can't keep an engine clean... [ August 05, 2004, 01:36 PM: Message edited by: Jelly ]
 
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1,139
Location
USA
7500 miles on a regular oil is borderline abuse. i've run 3-4-5K miles on regular oil (5w30 all brands) and my valve cover is as clean as yours, and my engine has over 120K. of course mine is an accord, not prelude.
 
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1,462
Location
MD
If you run dino at 7.5k intervals then your just asking for it in most applications.Dino can keep most engines clean with sensible use.
 

gerhardb

Thread starter
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94
Location
Morristown, NJ
Well, The service manual indicated 6000-7500 oil change intervals on the H22A4 motor. 7500 miles is the interval of the oil change light. So that's what Honda is recommending. The 3000 mile dino change interval is what the TOP (NASTY) valve cover was created by. Compared to the 7500 mile Mobil 1 / AMSOIL change interval that I used on my (BOTTOM) H22A4 for 50,000 mile longer... It's CLEAR that the synthetics are working very effectively at preventing deposits and restrictions. I'm certain that the Prelude's H22A4 engine is hard on oil... but so far, 100% of the time... there is ALOT of build-up of gum/varnish/sludge when dino oils are used... even with 3000 mile intervals. Now, I may only have about 7 H22A4 Preludes that I've inspected... and the syn/dino rate is basically 50%... but I think an obvious trend is showing up here. What this shows (at least in an H22 Prelude): - 3000 mile dino changes are NOT better than 7500 mile brand named synthetic changes. - even at lower milage, dino gums up pretty significantly. - even at high milage, synthetic keeps an egine very clean. - 3000 mile synthetic oil changes are a waste of money (unless you do UOA that indicate insoluables are high).
 
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9,365
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USA
7500 miles with dino? that TBN would be way past 0 causing that sludge. but then again people misread their manuals and think 7500 miles per owners manual. but that's only with extended highway driving
 

gerhardb

Thread starter
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94
Location
Morristown, NJ
I ment to reply to that... Dino oils can hold up quite well. 7500 miles is not a problem for certain engines. I can tell you that in a Honda H22A4 engine, that dino is probably never going to work as well. Also, keep in mind that it is possible to have as good an additive package in a dino oil. It's just not as common.
 
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31
Location
SF Bay Area
Wow, the top is with 3K OCI with dino?? I don't expect it is so nasty, I think it is @7.5K OCI with dino. The buttom look so nice!! I like Syn oil!!
 
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960
Location
Kyiv, Ukraine
Don't think H22A4 is really different from H22A2 where it's recommended to change oil every 10K km or once a year for normal conditions and every 5K km or 6 months for severe service. But I never met somebody with H22A who would use a mineral oil. Semi-synthetic, yes, but not a mineral oil. This is not a type of the car where owners risk to make savings on oil. By the way, in respect of sludge or deposits semi-synthetic oil works as good as synthetic, just leaves slightly denser light-brownish layer on the engine parts. As for the photo, the engine run on synthetic oil looks good, but not really perfect, though may be the light was quite weak. I've seen very clean engines after 120-150K km on semi-synthetic oils with 10K km intervals (severe service is not really respected in Europe). May be thanks to the performance provided by ACEA A3/B3 and VW/MB/BMW approvals, better gas quality and clean roads.
 

gerhardb

Thread starter
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94
Location
Morristown, NJ
quote:
Originally posted by Primus: Don't think H22A4 is really different from H22A2 where it's recommended to change oil every 10K km or once a year for normal conditions and every 5K km or 6 months for severe service. But I never met somebody with H22A who would use a mineral oil. Semi-synthetic, yes, but not a mineral oil. This is not a type of the car where owners risk to make savings on oil. By the way, in respect of sludge or deposits semi-synthetic oil works as good as synthetic, just leaves slightly denser light-brownish layer on the engine parts. As for the photo, the engine run on synthetic oil looks good, but not really perfect, though may be the light was quite weak. I've seen very clean engines after 120-150K km on semi-synthetic oils with 10K km intervals (severe service is not really respected in Europe). May be thanks to the performance provided by ACEA A3/B3 and VW/MB/BMW approvals, better gas quality and clean roads.
There is actually use oil covering the "clean" valve cover... so it appears a little varnished. Keep in mind that it does have 120,000 miles on it, and it's covered in used oil.
 
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1,130
Location
California
I've never seen that amount of sludge inside the valve cover of any engine which has seen 3,000 mile OCIs on dino oil. Perhaps the Honda engine is different??? Are you certain about the oil change history of the bad looking cover? Is it from your own vehicle or one you have been maintaining? John
 
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18
Location
Wellington
Well fwiw i have used a semi syn 10w40 in my H22a with 100000 km and it looks similar to the bottom pic and if anything cleaner.I do mainly short trips and low ks per year and change the oil every 4 to 5 months.
 
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392
Location
Toronto, Canada
I have a Honda C27A 2.7l V6 and i have had the same results with dino on 3,000 mile changes as well. On my engine, Honda installed an oil temp sensor that attempts to cool the engine down with rad and ac fans when engine is shut off and oil temp reaches ( I think 200 degrees C). The sensor is located on the valve cover to boot. I think the deposits have to do with oil temps breaking dino down and then the vapors then condense on the valve covers??? For non Honda owners my engine also has a built in liquid liquid oil cooler and I believe the H22 as well. When my stock of Dino is exhausted I'm also seriously considering switching to Syns. BTW, two treatments of Auto RX did NOT clean the deposits on the valve cover but it DID clean the cam areas.
 
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1,462
Location
MD
This is in one application.My cousin had a 95 prelude with nothing but 3-4k Jiffy lube oil changes and it didn't look anything like that top pic.
 
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