Old old old 20W-20 Non Detergent motor oil

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Oct 25, 2014
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My 90 year old dad has a cluttered garage and I've been elected to tidy it up since his days of visiting the garage seem to be over. I found a few jugs of 20W-20 non detergent motor oil. I'm estimating they were under the workbench since Nixon or even LBJ was in the White House. I'm not kidding. 1968-72 is a good estimate. Based on when he bought the house, and also, after that time, I got a memory and I never looked or saw him look under the bench in my 44 years. Can anyone comment on whether this is ok for us in my old car? What can I do with upwards of 20 gallons yes gallons not quarts of the stuff? Is it good for my mower/snowblower etc? One neighbor suggested that I use it in the car for the summer only and run it only 2000 miles until its all gone. Any comments appreciated.
 
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what is the "Old Car" you ask about using this in? are the Mower/Snowblower relatively new? or is the warranty period LOOONG over with?
 
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How is this oil packaged? If it's as old as you think it is, it'll be in metal cans. What brand? Are you sure it's non-detergent? If it really is a detergent oil, 20W-20 was among the grades recommended by GM up to at least the year Nixon resigned. I state this based upon an OM for the 1974 Cutlass, in which 20W-20 is among the recommended grades for ambients above 20F. If it really is an ND oil, I wouldn't use it in any engine. You might give it to someone who has an old-school mechanical injection diesel and they could use it in the fuel at about 5%. I know some will say that this is bad practice, but there are many old Mercedes diesels being run on far worse, like WVO.
 
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When I was 17 or 18 I was working at a local hardware store. There was a case maybe 2 of old oil in the cardboard can. I want to say sunoco oil but I don't really remember. But nevertheless I was my job to take it all over to the service station and dump it all in the tank. I really wish I would have kept it. One of the many stupid things I did.
 

Astro14

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Put it on eBay for the folks who,like to collect old stuff, or "accessorize" their garage.... It's not really a good choice for any engine theses days, I run better stuff in my '32 Packard...
 
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I like Astros idea of selling it on ebay. That way you can put it in somebody elses collection and not put it in a fine working car engine. Hope you make a lot of money on it off ebay
 

Rxman01

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Thank you all for the quick replies. It says non detergent and is in large metal cans with a small metal (1 1/2") cap. I'm sure there is some value to the oil, even if its not as good as modern stuff. It would be a real sin to just dump it. I've been using it to oil my garden tools as I store them for the winter, but that would be 100 years worth. My " old "car is an 84 buick regal and 05 subaru. My 13 Toyota is synthetic only and under warranty, so not there for sure. Another buddy suggested I put 1 quart in each oil change for the rest of my life. What say you all about that?
 
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Originally Posted By: Rxman01
Another buddy suggested I put 1 quart in each oil change for the rest of my life. What say you all about that?
I asked a similar question about some modern ND SAE40 wt., wondering if I could blend it off a qt. (or even a half qt.) at a time for use in a 97 Chevy truck, and some of the posters here just about had a stroke. They didn't even want me to use it as bar lube for my chainsaw.
 
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Do not put it in a modern crankcase. You're just diluting the important additives. Put it on eBay, find a shop that burns waste oil for heat, or recycle it at your local auto parts store.
 
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Do Not use it, its got good value to it, list 1 can on E-Bay and you will be surprised at the money you get.. you have a couple thousand dollars of classic oil there.. Sell it..
 

Astro14

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Use it on your garden tools, use it to wipe down your guns, but don't put it in any of your cars. Seriously though, if they're the old cans, they have some collectible value - someone wants them more than you...and would pay you enough to buy good oil for your cars, gun oil for your guns and Ballistol for your garden tools... Everyone wins...
 
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Washington
Originally Posted By: fdcg27
You might give it to someone who has an old-school mechanical injection diesel and they could use it in the fuel at about 5%. I know some will say that this is bad practice, but there are many old Mercedes diesels being run on far worse, like WVO.
Why is this bad?
 
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Originally Posted By: Tabor
Originally Posted By: fdcg27
You might give it to someone who has an old-school mechanical injection diesel and they could use it in the fuel at about 5%. I know some will say that this is bad practice, but there are many old Mercedes diesels being run on far worse, like WVO.
Why is this bad?
Ash deposits.
 
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I am guessing 2 gallon cans. I remember buying that stuff for $2.00 a can. I think the ebay idea is the best thing you can do. It has value......Just not as a lubricant!
 
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