Shelf life vs lifetime fill

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We've had plenty of threads with manufacturer recommendations of ~5 year shelf life for oils. I presume this includes transmission fluid and maybe even differential fluid. Is such a shelf life recommendation consistent with transmission and differential fluids that were or are considered lifetime? How about the usage of motor oil as manual transmission fluid with very long ocis?
 
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Originally Posted By: brandini
Shelf life is not at operating temperature and is without mixing so it's not a comparable use/non-use-case
Plus, as at least some of the previous threads conclude, the shelf-life is probably an arbitary, arse-covering number (some are A YEAR!) with no basis in fact. So ignore.
 
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I have no problem with shelf (or floor) storing unused motor oil for a number of years personally. My dad passed away in 1986, I used up the last cans of SAE 30 Havoline and white SAE 30 Quaker State plastic bottles he'd stored in a detached garage in South Texas heat in 1992, with no issues. A substance that has a key parameter of oxidation stability in the combustion chamber environment IMO isn't challenged by storage in a sealed container at a temperature above its pour point, regardless of whether that container has been opened and re-sealed.
 

aa1986

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^ thanks. That makes sense to me. I'll stop worrying about the order in which I'll use my stash. Now someone will have to tell me how much I should worry about mixing oils.
 
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Shannow had a good post recently with links in it about interactions between oils that use different viscosity index improvers. The main impact in the reports in the links is on cold flow performance over time so I've decided to only mix oils of different brand families in the warmer months.
 
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What type of container do you think motor oil will react with? Cardboard has worked for decades unless punctured, witness the many intact cardboard cans of motor oils available on eBay. Metal cans of motor oil could rust from the outside but not typically from the inside unless something really strange went on, like getting something corrosive into a metal can of motor oil that's corrosive when the can is open. Plastic motor oil bottles in a landfill will outlive us all.
 
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I've got quite a lot of rather old oil I found in an about-to-be-demolished shed on campus. I don't personally believe that oil has a shelf life, but some of the plastic bottles were brittle and cracked easily (or already had). Taiwan is a fairly hostile environment for plastics, and the bottles probably got some direct sunlight through a window. When I get around to it I'll decant to glass bottles. Should be OK indefinately in them.
 
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Plastic can indeed degrade via exposure to UV light (photodegradation) and this can be accelerated at elevated temperatures. Ask me how many pristine vehicle dashboards I've seen in used vehicles in South Texas and Southeast Louisiana. But this isn't a reaction between the oil & the oil container as KrisZ posited as possible. That's why my example mentioned the landfill, where it would be buried with other garbage. Motor oil could also degrade with exposure to UV light. I thought the transparent plastic bottles Quaker State used for a while were the worst choice I could think of seeing in my lifetime. So keep the glass bottles out of the light or use dark glass bottles. Amber glass bottles are the standard for petroleum industry samples of photoreactive materials meant to be stored long term.
 
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I rather fancy using wine bottles, and doing the full-on wine waiter thing (white napkin over the arm, etc) for the oil change. Corks would probably be going too far though. Have to be screw caps, down-market though that is.
 
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I assume that the manufactures recommendation of shelve life of 5 years is based on additive fallout. GM dealers were told to not use bulk oil in large containers that would result in oil not being used for over 4-5 years many years ago. For the homeowner dealing in quarts or 5 Gallon jugs, this is not an issue as we can shake before pouring and or we empty the complete container. This is my understanding, on this issue, Ed
 
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Originally Posted By: Ducked
I rather fancy using wine bottles, and doing the full-on wine waiter thing (white napkin over the arm, etc) for the oil change. Corks would probably be going too far though. Have to be screw caps, down-market though that is.
I love it! A motor oil sommelier! thumbsup Back in my youth when I could drink wine I was always a screw cap wine kind of guy - Boone's Farm Country Quencher apple flavor was my favorite. You should feel no shame in offering an opportunity to sniff the screw cap before serving!
 
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Originally Posted By: Eddie
I assume that the manufactures recommendation of shelve life of 5 years is based on additive fallout. GM dealers were told to not use bulk oil in large containers that would result in oil not being used for over 4-5 years many years ago. For the homeowner dealing in quarts or 5 Gallon jugs, this is not an issue as we can shake before pouring and or we empty the complete container. This is my understanding, on this issue, Ed
Well, that seems to make sense. That doesn't, however, mean its necessarily true. I personally tend to favor the "its arbitary bollocks" explanation, mostly because of this article. http://www.machinerylubrication.com/Read/172/lubricant-storage-life Its titled "Industry Needs A Standard" but you might just as easily conclude from reading it that "industry doesn't need a standard" since they don't seem to have one. If they did have one, it wouldn't mean that it had any basis in fact. There is absolutely no evidence presented there for on-shelf deterioration of motor oil. Its served up as a ready-cooked "given", with a side order of "The Sky is Falling" panic-salad. This is strange, because, from their own survey of industry recommendations, there is a notable lack of consensus about this. 1 year to infinity is a pretty wide range. It suggests that the "editorial" agenda was fixed before they did the survey.
 
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