Rotella 10w-30; 3k miles; 42k miles on Dmax

dnewton3

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Indianapolis, IN
Here is my string of UOAs with latest update this fall for my 2006 LBZ Dmax. The last three UOAs (4, 5, 6) are the same O/FCI. The asterisk indicates a continuation from the previous UOA.
Code:
UOA #		6*	5*	4	3	n/a	1	Univ Avg
Date		2014	2013	2012	2011	2010	2009	
grade (dino)	10w-30	10W-30	10w-30	10w-30	15w-40	10w-30	
Brand		Rot TP	Rot TP	Rot TP	Rot TP	Dlv1300	Rot TP	
Oil Mileage	2.5k	3.0K	3.5k	6.5k	6.5k	6.0k	6.6k
Truck mileage	42.0k	39.5	36.5	33.0k	26.5k	20k
Filter		Wix	Wix	Wix	PureOne	Wix	Wix

Al		2	2	1	2	n/a	3	3
Cr		1	0	0	1	n/a	0	0
Fe		17	12	7	14	n/a	10	14
Cu		4	3	2	3	n/a	5	13
Pb		2	2	1	5	n/a	2	3
Tn		2	0	1	0	n/a	1	1
Molyb		3	3	2	14	n/a	2	38
Ni		0	0	0	1	n/a	0	0
Manganese	0	0	0	0	n/a	0	0
Silv		0	0	0	0	n/a	0	0
Ti		0	0	0	0	n/a	0	0
Potas		8	9	6	11	n/a	13	4
Boron		23	25	27	35	n/a	24	105
Silicon		13	11	9	11	n/a	11	10
Sodium		5	4	5	7	n/a	2	4
Calcium		2409	2326	2232	2336	n/a	2358	2094
Magnesium	30	29	26	133	n/a	10	416
Phos		1059	1069	951	1115	n/a	1001	1090
Zn		1183	1205	11831069	1314	n/a	1201	1270
Barium		0	0	0	0	n/a	0	0


SUS @ 210F	65.0	66.1	64.7	67.6	n/a	72.5	58-69
cSt @ 100C	11.61	11.90	11.54	12.31	n/a	13.6	10-12.5
FP		435	425	410	415	n/a	425	>425
Fuel		<.5	<.5	.5	0	n/a	0	< 2
Antifreeze	0	0	0	0	n/a	0	0
Water		0	0	0	0	n/a	0	< .5
Insolubles	.2	.3	0.2	0.2	n/a	0.3	< .6
TBN		7.5	6.7	8.1	n/a	n/a	n/a	n/a
TAN		4.9	3.0	n/a	n/a	n/a	n/a	n/a



As you can see, time means NOTHING to oils and filters. Note the wear rates are perfectly in line with "normal" expectations, despite being the in crankcase for 3 years and using the same filter for 3 years. I did an O/FCI this fall, so the next load will start over. I will likely go 4 or 5 years on this next load. I will likely UOA along the way, but might skip the first few years just to save money. In some manner, I kind of wish I'd left the load in there, but I have been super busy this year and when the opportunity to O/FCI presented itself, I decided to take it rather than push it off to an unknown available time. Hindsight is always 20/20, as they say. Clearly 4 or 5 years is within grasp! Given this data, I've decided to not UOA my few other long-term OCI engines (1966 Mustang, Kubota tractor, Scag zero-turn). Because the TBN/TAN relationship is so strong, I don't see the sense in spending money on those units when the proof exists that the oil and filters hold up just find in multi-year O/FCIs. I use the same lube and filter (Rotella 10w-30 dino and Wix filter brand) for all. If you know me well, you know I'm not into wasting money! Even after three years, look at the stong TBN/TAN relationship! It hasn't even "crossed over" yet. I will be doing a filter dissection and post it up in a few days from this O/FCI. Note that this report has the insolubles down at .2 from .3; I can say that two things may be occuring here: 1) the longer OCI is improving the overall efficiency of the filter and so it's cleaning a bit better perhaps? 2) the insoluble count at Blackstone is a visual coloration test and there is some amount of human variation (person to person) in the rating. Overall, the insolubles count is not a direct attribute of only the filter performance, and should only be viewed as "indirect" at best. But by any means, things look good! No make up oil over 9k miles; went from the high end of the full range to the low end at the "add" mark (a change of about two quarts). Longer OCIs will likely need a top off as it seems 6-9k miles is what it takes to go from the full to add mark. Each of the three years had full seasonal temp swings for the midwest, with a particularly brutal stint last year (several cold starts below -10F, and one down at -17F). For those who say syns are a necessity to protect against cold start wear, I would challenge you to show me the evidence here; all to the contrary! Use includes infrequent starting (about once a week or so), plus pulling the heavy tractor and travel trailer in summer, and generally hauling of stuff year round. Proof positive that the "... or one year ..." mantra is just a CYA move on the part of the OEMs and lube makers. I fully understand and agree that warranty provisions and protection make following the OEM OCIs a good idea. But past that point, does it really make sense? Here's what you nay-sayers can glean if you look with un-jaded eyes ... My "normalcy" article clearly shows data that proves beyond any doubt that short OCIs do absolutely nothing to reduce wear. My UOAs prove that longer distances and durations do not escalate wear. I am not advocating blind obedience; you need to think your way through this and test each condition you want to expose along the way. But there are opportunities for those willing to experiement! In short, for those who O/FCI semi-annually or even anually, you might want to rethink the waste ... LET THE DATA BE YOUR GUIDE!
 
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It's weird that the TBN between samples 5 and 6 increased from 6.7 to 7.5. Do you think the sample 6 could have been in error? If it had continued to decrease as it had from sample 4 to 5, the TBN would have been in the low 5's, and close to the crossover point. But I think you could have gone another year / 3k miles.
 

dnewton3

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I just double checked my data input; it's not a typo on my part. I can check with them and see if it's a typo on their part. Other potential cause could be the reference fluid may have shifted a bit? Or, in my aging brain, I could have put in a top-off, but for the life of me, I don't think I did so. I had bought two cases, which hold three one-gallon containers each. That is a total bought of 6 gallons. Dmax = 2.5 gallons Kubota = 1.5 gallons Goldwing = 1 gallon Scag = .5 gallon leftover = .5 gallon still sitting in the garage All four engines went three years on their OCIs (synch'd together for convenience). That .5 gallon has been sitting there for quite some time. I'm fairly sure it's still there. That all adds up to 6 full gallon jugs, so I don't know where I would have even gotten a top-off volume from ... ???? But, I'm far from perfect, so I'll have to go home and check. It would not be the first time I've made a mistake and had someone catch my error.
 
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This is standard Rotella "T" correct? I think it was called that 3 years ago before the T5 and T6 if I remember right. I run this in my old cars and have no complaints. As always, thank you for the info you provide us!
 
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Originally Posted By: morepwr
This is standard Rotella "T" correct? I think it was called that 3 years ago before the T5 and T6 if I remember right. I run this in my old cars and have no complaints. As always, thank you for the info you provide us!
It is. It also says "dino" in the document.
 
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Be careful, in my experience TBN can drop off suddenly, not linearly. Also, do you have any sense of the level of contaminants in the oil beyond the elemental analysis? I applaud the long oil changes and I do them myself, but I also consider time. Maybe I am overcautious.
 
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Portland, OR
Originally Posted By: Garak
Very nice. With respect to TBN, didn't Blackstone recently change their TBN methods?
Yes, that's what I was thinking as well. Dave, thanks for sharing your work. You've answered the one question that's been nagging me for years, how important is time in sump? Seems it's not important at all. When you think about it, it's almost crazy how much lube oil gets wasted. How many vehicles are done in by engine wear vs. collision damage, body rust, wear parts becoming uneconomical to replace, etc. I bet the entire nation could change to 10k-conv and 20k-syn OCI's and in 10 years there would be 0 difference in fleet longevity. The only people that would notice would be oil change guys put out of work.
 
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Chicago
Originally Posted By: folzag
Originally Posted By: Garak
Very nice. With respect to TBN, didn't Blackstone recently change their TBN methods?
Yes, that's what I was thinking as well. Dave, thanks for sharing your work. You've answered the one question that's been nagging me for years, how important is time in sump? Seems it's not important at all. When you think about it, it's almost crazy how much lube oil gets wasted. How many vehicles are done in by engine wear vs. collision damage, body rust, wear parts becoming uneconomical to replace, etc. I bet the entire nation could change to 10k-conv and 20k-syn OCI's and in 10 years there would be 0 difference in fleet longevity. The only people that would notice would be oil change guys put out of work.
While this theoretically may be possible, I can only help but think about the girls at work whose cars burn a quart every 1000 miles and change the oil every 3k at jiffy screw.... The only thing saving these engines are the frequent oil changes that keep the oil pressure from dropping due to low oil.... Also we must taking into account that this engine does not hold 4 quarts like a normal car... It holds 10 quarts... Which adds a huge buffer...
 
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dnewton3

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As I said, I do NOT advocate doing this blindly; this is not for the uninformed to take on. And nothing is infinite; at some point an OCI would be a must. All I've proven is that 3 years is EASILY doable with little to no risk. I think 4 years is within range, and 5 is not out of the question, although perhaps a syn-media filter may be a better choice for 5 year plans? Would this be a smart plan in a known sludger or neglected engine? NO WAY! Is this pragmatic in a well cared for engine that has no propensity for lube issues? Sure. And that's what I've proven. Careful extensions with monitoring can make for better ROIs. But it also does something else ... What it does show is that if your dad, or sister-in-law, or great uncle, or boss comes to you and says "OMGosh - I missed an oil change a month ago and I'm afraid my engine will implode ...", you can assure them that there is a HUGE, Ever-Loving Massive reserve capacity in most lubes and filters. There is zero reason to panic, even if one over-runs an OCI. As for the TBN, I've not talked with Blackstone recently, but if they had a TBN methodology shift, it could explain the uptick. Also, I've seen plenty of UOAs where the TBN/TAN inverted mildly, and there was no catastrophic degradation as most predict. While I do agree it's a PREDICTOR that needs to be more closely monitored, it is NOT, in and of itself, a reason for immediate condemnation. In retrospect, I wish I had left it in there, but no harm at this point. Also, I wanted to do the filter tear-down at three years, so that I can understand how more (4 or 5) may represent any degradation shift. That will be forthcoming a few days from now when I get a chance. Additionally, on a "per liter" basis, the oil capacity of the Dmax really isn't overly large. At half the displacement a 3.3L engine would have 5 quarts; a VERY typical volume. And in perspective, the Dmax holds the least amount of oil of the truck diesel engines (the ISB, PSD, etc all hold even more). The Dmax is simply one of the best wearing light duty diesel engines mainly due to a very good lube system design. Despite the hard driving and use, the oil simply does not get stressed much. My long term plans are to eventually change to a different lube. I have been doing this to prove to many that the 30 grades are every bit as capable as thicker lubes. My data proves this in macro analysis beyond any doubt. At some point I'd like to move away from the brand names and try a house brand (perhaps ST) and show how very capable those are too. But at this pace, it could be several years before that ever gets into the crankcase!
 
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5 years - 15k miles looks doable - especially with a top off or two. I'll bet the filter would have held up fine, although at some point, maybe the rust might start to affect the structural integrity. Put some wax on that next filter - dirt adhesion may accelerate rust. Nice report Dave - you have changed thinking in some people and reduced waste.
 

dnewton3

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sorry - generally most trips have full warm up. some have been short, but most are 15 minutes up to several hours.
 
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Originally Posted By: dnewton3
sorry - generally most trips have full warm up. some have been short, but most are 15 minutes up to several hours.
If so, then no surprise here. I do the same thing with my boat. Very low hrs, but always fully warmed up when used a couple of times a year. I use dino 15W40 and change every 3 years lately.
 
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