Oil weight question in lawnmower/snowblower

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I'm now using a 50/50 mix of SAE 30 and 10W30 in all of my non-winter small air-cooled engines. My thinking is that this will provide more protection against viscosity shear than pure 10W30, especially for extended running in 80+ degree summer temps. Snow blower gets Mag 1 synthetic 5W30 and generators get synthetic 10W30. I'm no lubrication engineer, but I tend to follow manufacturer recommendations, many BITOG posts, and some common sense. All engines get fresh oil before they're put away for the season.
 
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Having owned & worked on many, many horizontal cylinder engines - from OPE to a six cylinder boxer engine Honda motorcycle, the only time I experienced oil burn on start up of a healthy engine was when the machine was parked on a fairly steep grade with the engine cylinder/head on the downward side. Otherwise, very seldom did I even see a wisp of smoke. However, some engines do or did have an issue with smoking at startup even when new. When BMW came out with their first inline horizontal engines back in the 80s, they were famous for smoking due to oil accumulating in the cylinder while parked on the side stand. If the OP's engine regularly smokes on startup, it's likely getting tired. I had a Suzuki ATV that had been flogged hard and long for decades that began to smoke a lot upon startup but would clear up right away once the engine warmed a bit. The cylinder on it was air cooled and close to horizontal. I suspect oil was dripping past the valve guides with that engine. What oil would I use? Anything suitable for automotive applications albeit with a preference for something in the XW40-50 range.
 

wallyuwl

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I bought 3 gallons of Delo synthetic blend 10W-30 for the rider, because that is what it specs. After MIR it is $25 for all 3 gallons, so I couldn't pass it up. I put some of it in the Recycler, as it was due for an oil change anyway. It runs smooth with it, but smokes quite a bit when I turn the engine off (Briggs 190cc). I doesn't noticeably smoke at start up, as I originally thought (typically my wife uses the push and I use the rider). I'm going to keep an eye on it and see how it does with consumption, but will stick with it if consumption is minimal. The manual says 10W-30 could result in more consumption, especially when temps get above 80 deg. than either straight 30 or synthetic 5W-30. Doesn't make sense to me why a 10W-30 would result in more consumption than a 5W-30? I'd like to avoid straight 30 to have a little lighter starting weight, not that it is probably that big of a deal. Bet I could go 15W-40 or 5W-40 and be good, too.
 
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Originally Posted By: Smokescreen
My Briggs is to the point where I just don't even think about it anymore, almost to the point of neglect. It will get no accolades from me seeing as it is attached to a 25 year old Toro RecyclerII that uses no oil between yearly 5w30 synthetic 500ml OCI, has used the same air filter and spark plug for the past 12 of those years. I am hesitant to mention that this engine starts first pull every time no matter first start of the season or after just shutting it down to empty the grass bag. I expect more than this type of bland performance from my OPE. IF this mower ever dies, you can bet that I will be looking elsewhere than Briggs.
So the engine starts first pull even with neglect and you will be looking elsewhere? I haven't really had any major issues with Briggs engines. In fact, MOST of the issues I see with small engines across the board are due to low/no oil, bad fuel, or mouse damage. I'll agree their new engines are not really anything special, but that's also why they are on the $139 mower at WalMart. Even on the cheapest mower you can find, the engine will still outlast the deck and wheels. The inteks with the bad head gaskets kinda suck, but I've seen quite a few of them with tons of hours. If you want to talk about junk engines look at the Kohlers from the last few years. Cracked blocks, loosening bolts, excessive oil consumption, broken camshafts, all on engines under 3 years old with perfect maintenance.
 
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