Lubrication Engineers Tests 5w-30 (TFOUT)

Not open for further replies.
Nov 16, 2002
This is old, from 2000 but I wanted to post it regardless.


Simon G, and for the readers information, I will print the test data done for Lubrication Engineers on 5w30 oils. Two tests were done, the ASTM D-2670 Falex pin and vee block wear test with results of pass or fail. If the oil passed then the lower number of teeth shows the lower wear. Each tooth correlates to .0000556 of wear on the pin and vee blocks. The other test was an ASTM D-4742 TFOUT oxidation test. In the TFOUT test the higher number shows the ability to resist oxidation better.

Oils Tested --- P/F--- Teeth---TFOUT

Castrol GTX Fail N/A 121
Havoline Formula 3 Pass 14 193
Honda Pass 14 323
Lubrication Engineers Pass 6 481
Mobil Pass 16 218
Mobil-1 Pass 12 509
Mopar Pass 19 237
Motorcraft Fail N/A 207
GM Goodwrench Pass 16 221
Pennzoil Fail N/A 231
Quaker State Pass 11 157
Total Quartz 5000 Pass 17 219
Toyota Pass 14 222
Phillips 66 tropartic Pass 17 153
Valvoline All Climate Pass 17 247
Valvoline Durablend Fail N/A 166
Western Auto Fail N/A 190

As you can see by looking at the Mobil oils, in this case the Mobil-1 synthetic had less wear and much better oxidation than the Mobil petro oil. But that is not the case with the Valvoline all climate vs the Valvoline Durablend. The Valvoline all climate petro oil had less wear and more oxidation resistance than the Valvoline durablend synthetic blend.

The difference in synthetic and petro depends on the manufacturer. Valvoline's synthetic blend is not as good as the Valvoline petro. Valvoline petro is only as good as the Mobil petro oil. So in this case the synthetic blend of Valvolines' shows that going Valvolines' synthetic blend is a wase of money. However if you look at the numbers of Mobil-1 or Lubrication Engineers It would be worth the money. It's not weather a synthetic beats a petro or a petro beats a synthetic it's what kind of money and technology the manufacturer wants to put into their product. It's obvious in the chart above that Mobil-1 and Lubrication Engineers spare no money or technology in producing the best oil that is possible.

The best oil will be the one that has the lowest wear combined with the highest oxidation resistance number. The Lubrication Engineers SPB (synthetic petro blend) oil had 1/2 the wear than the others petro or synthetic and was close to the oxidation resistance of the Mobil-1 synthetic. I would rather have the lower wear and slightly less oxidation resistance, than higher wear and slightly better oxidation resistance. These tests prove that the best oil is the Lubrication Engineers SPB for the F 150 application.

You can also see that the average oil for oxidation resistance is about 200. The poor oils are less than 170, and the best oils for oxidation resistance approach 500.

You can see that the average oil for wear is in the 11 to 19 range with the poor oils failing the test, and the best oil for wear is at 6.

Sorry these are the only 5w30’s we have had tested to date.

I hope this information helps
Sincerely, Kevin

Yep, that is a bit old. Some update on the comments by Kevin.

Allegedly, LE provided him with some "skewed" or otherwise inaccurate information. He resented this.
He now works as a driveline lubrication specialist for AMSOIL, in the Tech Service department.
Buster and ****,
Here are some May, 2003 TFOUT/ASTM D-4742 results from AMSOIL's G-1971. These are for 10w30 oils, not 5w30.:


Mobil 1 Super Syn 397

Penziol / Purebase 242

Casrol Syntec 221

Valvoline 219

Valvoline Syn Power 211

Mobil Drive Clean 209

Qaker State Peak Performance 192

Penzoil Synthetic 159

Quaker State Synthetic 148

Castrol GTX Drive Hard 132

"The Thin-Film Oxygen Uptake Test evaluates the oxidation stability of lubricating oils. A mixture of the test oil and chemistries found in gasoline engine operation (oxidized/nitrated fuel, soluble metals and distilled water) are placed in a test vessel, which pressureized with oxygen and placed in a heated bath. Anti-oxidant breakdown is evident when the oxygen pressure in the vessel rapidly decreases. At this point, the induction time (break point) of the oil is recorded...AMSOIL ATM didn't reach it's break point in over 500 minutes of testing."

I met and had a good conversation with both Kevin and Peter Haines a couple of weeks ago at AMSOIL University in Superior, WI. Peter was with L.E. for 18 years in commercial sales. Both said they were happy with their move north.

buster, I personally find it very interesting that conventional Valvoline motor oil outperformed Valvoline synthetic and that Valvoline passed whereis some motor oils that have been highly rated at this web site based on VOAs and UOAs failed. Exactly what this means I don't know but maybe the only true and correct way to test a motor oil is by testing it in fleets of vehicles and in the real world.

I am disappointed that there may be some indication that Lubrication Engineers may not have been completely accurate in some information provided.

I like to take all advertising with a grain of salt but based on all of the published testing that Amsoil has provided (assuming all of that testing is accurate) I think we have to assume that Amsoil may be the best, or at least one of the best, motor oils available. But I personally have not seen Amsoil testing comparing Amsoil with Redline or Royal Purple.

In much of the testing that amsoil has made available it seems like most motor oils (even Mobil 1) seem to be all over the place in the various tests. A motor oil will look good in one test and maybe poor or average in another. If Amsoils tests are completely accurate only the Amsoil seems to appear outstanding in all of the various tests.

Originally posted by novadude:
Castrol GTX did not do well. I thought this was regarded as one of the top dinos? Can someone explain?

It's not the real world and in an engine

Whens the last time you saw a low cost dino oxidise and thicken out of grade ? Never

Here's real world TFOUT testing

Amsoil 10w-40 Synthetic Ford 3.0 in a Sable for 3888 miles under 85F ambient so not much stress there .

Starting Vi 14.0
Ending Vi 15.2 TBN 7.73

Originally posted by novadude:
So you are saying you saw oxidative thickening in 4000 miles w/ amsoil?

Nope , analysis showed it to thicken in 3888 miles
and I dumped it because of rising fuel prices knowing I had seen this oil act similar in another analysis ......linked below .

Here the 10w-40 ended at 16.8 @ 5751 miles .

16.3 is the starting point for 50wt

Bench tests are one thing . Running different oils and seeing how they actually do in engines are another .
I have to agree with that. Testing of motor oils in fleets of different kinds of vehicles (cars, trucks, SUVs, vans) in the real world is the only real way to test motor oils.

No telling what the results of such testing would be if we could afford to do it. Maybe Valvoline conventional oil, which has not looked so great in VOAs and UOAs here, might come out on top.

Yep, that is a bit old. Some update on the comments by Kevin.

Allegedly, LE provided him with some "skewed" or otherwise inaccurate information. He resented this.
He now works as a driveline lubrication specialist for AMSOIL, in the Tech Service department

****, I don't doubt what you said, but being an Amsoil guy yourself, do you find it odd that LE found M1's TFOUT back in 2000 to be 509 yet recently Amsoil found it to be only 400? Seems strange being the latest formula is better.
I do wonder about testing results published by any company. Obviously they want for their own oil to look great. But the results would have to be good otherwise a company could get in trouble. I wonder also how Pennzoil, which looks very good at this web site in VOAs and UOAs, comes in behind Quaker State. And how Valvoline conventional can look pretty good.

In some of the testing done by Amsoil I wonder how Mobil 1 can be all over the place in testing results.
For what it might be worth (or not), my assessment is that Mobil 1 was an extremely good engine oil prior to the merger of Exxon and Mobil.
In this merger of equals, Exxon was more equal than Mobil-- most of the Mobil managers have retired or gone away. Mobil 1 was reformulated and cost engineered, using Exxon technology.
This came out as Tri-syn. Numbers indicated it was still a good oil, but not as good as it could have been. Indications are that the supersyn formulation is an improvement, at least in many ways.

I do know that anything that AMSOIL publishes is backed by testing, both in-house and by independent lab. I don't have any idea which particular formulation of an oil AMSOIL tests--but assume it is the latest they could get their hands on. If they published incorrect or inaccurate data, I presume that a battalion of lawyers would be on their doorstep. When I was there a couple weeks back, didn't see a single lawyer.
****, M1 SS is the best M1 there ever was. I wouldn't underestimate Exxon. From what Terry has said, they used to make a nice high ester content synthetic. When they merged with Mobil, they went PAO.
Not open for further replies.