SAE 30 vs SAE 30W?

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Aug 23, 2014
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What is the difference between an SAE 30 vs SAE 30W oil? I'm curious because I could not find SAE 30W down at the local Autozone store. The operator's manual for my father-in-law's Toro lawn mower calls for SAE 30W detergent oil with API SG through SL. I picked up a bottle of Valvoline SAE 30 with API exceeding SM/SN. They only had SAE 30 oils (both detergent and non-detergent types, I bought the detergent type). So, my concerns are: is SAE 30 going to be OK? And should I have bought one with appropriate API service rating (SG through SL rather than SN/SM) and where would I buy it since I can only find SN/SM at local parts stores? I put about 4-5 ounces in the lawn mower to top it off to full, ran it for about an hour. Ran fine as far as I can tell. Then I noticed the oil I bought was SAE 30 and not SAE 30W. Double checked the manual... [censored]. Probably not a big deal. I'm guessing most oils are meant to be backwards compatible for most motors. Then again, I know jack about motor oils. Doing some research on it now, but thought I'd ask all you oil gurus out there while I'm at it. Also, I emailed Toro with my questions. Figured they may just give me a pat answer and repeat what it says in the manual, which is why I came to BITOG first, but they may shed some light on this for me. I will update when they respond. Any advice is much appreciated!
 

parker1997

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Originally Posted By: tom slick
There is no 30W. The "W"inter designation doesn't include 30 or higher.
So, sounds like the manual was written in a way to confuse the [censored] out of the lawn mower owners.
 

MolaKule

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Undoubtedly they meant SAE 30 weight or an oil with a 100C viscsoity of approx. 11.0. A synthetic SAE 10W30 HM oil should more than sufficient for the Toro.
 

parker1997

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Originally Posted By: MolaKule
Undoubtedly they meant SAE 30 weight or an oil with a 100C viscsoity of approx. 11.0. A synthetic SAE 10W30 HM oil should more than sufficient for the Toro.
Awesome! Good to know. Just glad I was freaking out over nothing. cool
 
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I have had the same issue looking at single grade oil and I believe its a difference between light duty vs heavy duty additives. You should be fine with any SAE 30 oil in a lawnmower, the Autozone oil worked fine in my equipment. For me, I just buy small engine oil from Lowes or Tractor Supply and you know it has the proper additives in the formula.
 
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Originally Posted By: MolaKule
Undoubtedly they meant SAE 30 weight or an oil with a 100C viscsoity of approx. 11.0. A synthetic SAE 10W30 HM oil should more than sufficient for the Toro.
Sir Humphrey Davy abominated Gravy. He lived in the Odium of having discovered Sodium. smile Did Descartes Depart With the thought "Therefore I'm not"?
 
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Originally Posted By: OneEyeJack
Sir Humphrey Davy abominated Gravy. He lived in the Odium of having discovered Sodium. smile Did Descartes Depart With the thought "Therefore I'm not"?
Thanks for your wonderful contribution to this thread. To the OP, if is says 30 weight, SAE 30, etc, then it is the correct stuff. Just make sure and use detergent oil.
 
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Originally Posted By: bubbatime
Originally Posted By: OneEyeJack
Sir Humphrey Davy abominated Gravy. He lived in the Odium of having discovered Sodium. smile Did Descartes Depart With the thought "Therefore I'm not"?
Thanks for your wonderful contribution to this thread. I think you missed he shadow that passed you by. To the OP, if is says 30 weight, SAE 30, etc, then it is the correct stuff. Just make sure and use detergent oil.
 
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