Rotella T 5w-40 3770mi '02 WRX EJ205

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Here is my Blackstone Labs analysis. The oil was used for 3.5 months and 3770 miles. From 70K-108K miles I only used Mobil 1 5w-30 year round. I heard stories and decided to switch to Rotella T 5w-40 and this is the report from that oil. The oil filter is the new OEM Subaru blue style made by Honeywell in Canada. The air filter is OEM and was last changed around 80K. Driving consisted of about 50/50 highway and stop and go city driving. I took a 1000 mile roadtrip, but sat in traffic for about 2.5 hours so I figured it averaged out. The car has a turbo back 3" exhaust and the computer is tuned to Cobb Tuning's stage 2. I am concerned about the high lead content comments.
 
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Just a guess. Oil is too thick and you are starving the bearing so you see higher wear. Go back to M-1 5W-30 or 5W-30 EP.
 
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I don't agree with Boomer. Subarus have always enjoyed a thick oil, unless something was wrong or a passage clogged, you would not see a starved bearing in the EJ20. Particle streak? Lab error? I would maybe ask for a re-test to confirm the numbers, everything else looks utterly fantastic, a great choice in oil for the WRX.
 
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I am no where near an expert in this area, but (a question for our resident experts), would'nt the other wear metals be elevated as well if there was really a problem? If preignition was pounding away at your pistons, I would think we would see the other metals elevated as well. Also, have you tried data logging with your Cobb AccessPort to make sure you don't have any knock events? Cobb's OTS maps are pretty conservative though.
 

mrjoshm

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Thanks for the replys. I forgot to post that the oil sat in a plastic container for about a week while I waited for the sample container to come in. The Blackstone site said that it would not make a difference but I wanted to note it now. Also, I didn't think of it when I posted above, but I did have a couple of runs to about 6500 RPM (700 rpm short of redline) on oil interval but I have never seen the check engine light blink to indicate knock. I will datalog a run tommorrow night and then keep the RPM's low until I get my next UOA done in about 2K miles.
 
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 Originally Posted By: Boomer
Just a guess. Oil is too thick and you are starving the bearing so you see higher wear. Go back to M-1 5W-30 or 5W-30 EP.
I do not think the lead is from the oil being too thick.
 
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That's some nice Pb you have there. As was said, everything else looks great. Viscosity dropped about 3 Cst but the flash and the fuel % don't seem to match (that's how B-S calculates fuel, by FP). Got me swinging on the reason for the Pb. I'd surely expect a more noisy UOA over all with that number. It's sitting so alone there it just doesn't seem right.
 
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Possible particle streak? I would run another OCI with the same oil and resample to see what the lead does. Last year I got a UOA back on a large diesel with lead over 100 PPM, all other wear metals were close to single digits. We changed the oil and resampled after 100 hours, the lead had dropped to normal and hasn't increased since.
 

mrjoshm

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This is the first UOA I have ever had done. I might still have some of the sample left over in the plastic container, I am pretty sure I clicked the lid down but I left the container outside for disposal. If the lid is secure then is the general consensus that I should send in another sample of the same oil or would it be safe to make a conclusion based on my next sample in 2K miles?
 
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It's either a big fluke or you'd got a bearing getting ready to bite it. Since you've got no other signs of accelerated wear and since UOAs aren't good indicators of upcoming failures, my guess is it's a fluke. If you've drained and re-filled, resample in 2k miles like you plan on doing. If your lead is still elevated 10x normal, figure you've got some major engine work coming up (who knows when though). Or call blackstone and ask if they can re-run the spectro analysis on the metals alone to confirm the high lead. Joe
 

mrjoshm

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Well I plan on changing the oil again in 2K miles, so I'm just going to wait and see what that oil says. I called Blackstone and asked them if it was possible if that was a typo or error since no other wear metals were high and he said that it was not and that I should just wait to see on my next oil change so I guess that is the plan.
 
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I think the key elements are: "From 70K-108K miles I only used Mobil 1 5w-30 year round." Which is thin, especially when it is combined with "the computer is tuned to Cobb Tuning's stage 2." and "The air filter is OEM and was last changed around 80K" , maybe a little overdue. I am afraid you are experiencing a serious problem and you should contact Dyson Analysis.
 
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mrjoshm

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Well my concern with using Mobil 1 should be clear since I switched to Rotella T. At 104K miles when I changed the timing belt the air filter looked perfectly clean. Subaru's recommended change interval is 30K miles, which I am right around and plan on doing. The car has been at Cobb's stage 2 from around 80K, when I last changed the filter, because it was recommended by Cobb that I stick with an OEM filter element. I also performed a compression check at 104K and each one came in between 150-155 psi, where Subaru's spec for new is 160 and the wear limit is something like 120. Since I have yet to hear any knock indicating that a bearing is going, I'm not going to jump the gun just yet but I think I will spend the extra money and send a sample to both Blackstone and Dyson Analysis to cover myself if this was a fluke.
 

mrjoshm

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I justed checked out the Dyson Analysis site and didn't realize it was just a guys opinion of the results for an extra $99 (I get that from you guys for free!) What are the other labs that do the same work as Blackstone so I can cross compare my results?
 
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Well, don't get "freaked" by it. Tall Paul had an open PCV vent line and drove through a construction site for a few months. He had Pb in the hundreds of ppm ..but he also had lots of other stuff too. Relax and see what the 2k UOA says. I'd really take it to the same mileage just so you can get a reasonable even playing field for comparison. A downward trend would mean more than just a lower reading from a short OCI. I mean (imagine some animated gesture here) ..what are you going to do, anyway, go to a 20w-50? The 5w-40 should be as stout as you require. It's not like you're preserving the engine by changing it early if indeed there is some pending event. Do you catch what I'm struggling to say here?
 

mrjoshm

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Yeah I know what you are saying. I might as well keep all of the test conditions as near the same as possible to get a more accurate idea of what is actually going on. I think a road trip is in order... I want to know now!!
 
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Terry is more than just the average Guy's opinion and would guide you in the right way. IMO
 

mrjoshm

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I understand that he is a professional at what he does, I was under the impression that Dyson was a different lab doing the same work so I would be able to double check the sample for more accurate results.
 
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