UOA comparisons, syn versus dino...

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I was asked in another thread to post some UOAs which support my notion that syns do not reduce wear (when compared to good dinos). Important Preface: The theme of this post concerns wear metal counts, and rebuttals should remain on point. We can discuss long term engine cleanliness issues, or matters related to high temperature oil breakdown in other threads. These UOA's show single digit average wear metal counts in drains as long as 7,000+ miles. All on dino oil. Honda (Acura) k20a3 engine, 5W20 dino, 3 OCI's... http://theoildrop.server101.com/ubb/ultimatebb.php?ubb=get_topic;f=3;t=002923#000001 '02 Honda (k20a3 engine) http://theoildrop.server101.com/cgi/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=3;t=002828#000000 Good engine? Of course it is. But let's take a look at some synthetic oil UOAs on this same engine. Conventional "wisdom" would say that a good synthetic would show even lower wear metal counts. Here are some k20a3 UOAs on synthetic oil: http://theoildrop.server101.com/cgi/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=3;t=002765#000000 Here is a 3400 mile run on German Castrol 0W30 in a k20a3 engine: http://theoildrop.server101.com/cgi/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=3;t=000742#000007 The GC did very well! But in an even longer run on Exxon 5W20 dino (4800 miles) wear metals were even lower than with the vaunted GC! http://theoildrop.server101.com/cgi/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=3;t=002582#000000 But with an engine design as robust as the k20a3, we're really splitting hairs. So let's look at some dino versus syn UOAs with other engines... Here's the copper-shedding GM 5.3, first on Mobil 1 during break-in: http://theoildrop.server101.com/cgi/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=3;t=002749#000000 http://theoildrop.server101.com/cgi/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=3;t=002111#000000 http://theoildrop.server101.com/cgi/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=3;t=000996#000000 Then on a dino at about that same mileage: http://theoildrop.server101.com/ubb/ultimatebb.php?ubb=get_topic;f=3;t=002279#000000 Then this one, which may be the best sub 20K mile report on a 5.3 in the data base. It was on dino Castrol GTX... http://theoildrop.server101.com/cgi/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=3;t=002367#000000 Here's a short drain with Amsoil in the 5.3... http://theoildrop.server101.com/ubb/ultimatebb.php?ubb=get_topic;f=3;t=002640#000000 So basically, you can see that there is literally no meaningful wear differences between dino and syn in these engines. Here is an interesting report on a Chrysler 3.5 engine. Look at the Pennzoil dino's numbers compared to the Mobil 1 and GC's. [Smile] http://theoildrop.server101.com/cgi/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=3;t=001683#000000 Here are some great numbers on the Ford 4.6 using Mobil 1 synthetic: http://theoildrop.server101.com/cgi/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=3;t=001767#000000 and here is a 3000 mile OCI on the 4.6 with Mobil 1: http://theoildrop.server101.com/cgi/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=3;t=001763#000000 but here is the problem for the syn advocates. Note that the Havoline 5W20 ran 2000 miles longer and still beat the Mobil 1's wear numbers... http://theoildrop.server101.com/ubb/ultimatebb.php?ubb=get_topic;f=3;t=000887#000000 In other words, the dino's numbers are very favorably comparable to the syn's in the 4.6 Ford. Looking at a bigger engine, the same 5.7 litre GM in a dino versus syn UOA: http://theoildrop.server101.com/cgi/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=3;t=001322#000000 And more 5.7 GM UOAs: On Quaker State dino at about 3K: http://theoildrop.server101.com/ubb/ultimatebb.php?ubb=get_topic;f=3;t=001472#000000 And another 5.7 on syn at about 3K (second column): http://theoildrop.server101.com/cgi/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=3;t=000034#000000 We've got a wealth of information here folks. [Smile] So. As I was prompted to do, I "dug up" some UOAs that support the idea that when it comes to reducing wear metals, there is literally no difference between the abilities of synthetics versus dinos--unless the dinos have the advantage. [Eek!] I hope any members who would like to take issue with my contention would please look over the UOA links I've provided--before flying off at the keyboard! [Big Grin] If there are issues I missed which make individual comparisons irrelevant, it should of course be pointed out. If some of you would like to bring out some UOA comparisons which show that synthetics appear to reduce wear, they should become part of this discussion. And such evidence will need to be forthcoming before any counterpoints should be considered cogent. Persons wishing to suggest that syns show higher metal counts because they are cleaning out old sludge should, in lieu of responding in this thread, go HERE... Also, for the extended drain guys--bring up the long drains on your favorite syn, and we'll compare ppm's per thousand miles with other oils... I can't find UOAs here which indicate that syns reduce wear. But that doesn't mean someone else cannot. Happy hunting! [Smile] Dan
 

fuel tanker man

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The thing is that we're looking at dozens of UOAs comparing several syns to several different dinos. When we compare "like engines," I say that the data gleaned is very relevant. If the stats were not statistically relevant, there would--by definition--be some cases where syns bested the dinos. Finding such cases and linking them here would--if nothing else--go some way toward proving my notion wrong. But we're not finding those links... [Frown] Dan
 
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fuel tanker man, Are you sure the 5W-20 are petroleums lubes only? no GIII mixed in or are they GIII oils? Are there 5W-20 oils that are petroleum only? Thought I read somewhere here that all 5W-20 oils had some mixture of Group III mixed in? [I dont know]
 

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Synthetics shine when we talk cold weather conditions. 90% of engine wear occurs during start up. So you would rather have dino in an engine during winter ver synthetic? My 6.5l turbo diesel is turning 265,000 miles on Amsoil synthetic. 10,000 mile oil change intervals. Does_not_burn_oil and zero blow by. Add about 1 quart in 10,000 miles. Why? because 90% of my engine wear has been protected during the cold start-ups in the winter by using Synthetics. I am more concerned with starting up the engine that has cold oil BUT has a very low Pour Point, High Shear rate, and have extended drain changes. Dino's and synthetics are always equal when running normal 3-4k mile oci. Thats why 3-4k is recommended for dino. Cant hold up... Show us a test with a 10-20,000 miles on dino and 10-20,000 on synthetics. Thanks for showing the 3-4k mile oci is equal between the two. I already new this...
 
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Total # of Gas Engine UOA’s posted Total # of Gas Engine synthetic UOA’s posted Total # of Gas Engine semi-synthetic UOA’s posted Total # of Gas Engine petroleum UOA’s posted For each UOA (in no particular order): Mean miles Mean miles @ 0, 10, …..80, 90, 100° F # of starts per mile # of starts per x miles accumulated # of starts per x miles accumulated @ 0, 10, …..80, 90, 100° F Climate type Miles accumulated traffic conditions Mean trip length and engine on time per trip Area geography Engine temp when climbing hills Driver age Driver temperament Driver style Fuel types, brand, Aki Engine size Engine brand Engine layout Engine health Engine hours Engine miles Air filter age Air filter type Air filter brand Oil filter age Oil filter type Oil filter brand Trailer pullage Tire width Transmission type and gear ratios Oil date code Lab used Lab error Sample error Sample technique And a bunch more factors, I’m sure. These factors weigh on a UOA. How much I don’t really know. Your point is well taken. "Synthetic Heads" can’t claim superior wear metals without REAL proof......
 
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Dan, Dan, Dan [said with shaking head...] It's not really fair to selectively frame the issue so as to channel the answers into the pattern you hope to see emerge. Your constraining premise is: "Important Preface: The theme of this post concerns wear metal counts, and rebuttals should remain on point. We can discuss long term engine cleanliness issues, or matters related to high temperature oil breakdown in other threads." Previously, you asserted that those of us who choose to use syns were fooling ourselves if we thought they offered better protection than natural petro-based oils do. You did not limit your conclusions to just wear metal issues in making those assertions. As Pablo points out, there is a whole range of many dimensions in which one oil, or class of oils, may be "better" than another. Quite frankly, before this particular debate took off, my BITOG "studies" had led me to theorize that wear metal numbers have an element of constancy to them. In other words, for a given application, within a normal range of use, so long as there's an adequate flow of the required grade of oil between an engine's moving parts, the metal generated will fall into a predictable range, if not to a particular constant value. If this is the case (EDIT: and the only thing that matters), then you're absolutely correct that anything but the cheapest dino is a waste of money. At a given pressure, a 30wt cheapo Coastal or Wolf's Head oil will keep parts separated pretty much the same way pricey RL, GC, or M1 will. But there's obviously so much more involved in determining what's the "best" oil for any given application. And it's when you look to many of those factors, many hard to read from standard, inexpensive UOAs, that the strength of synthetics are more readily appreciable. IMO, before you can make any global assertions about oils, I think you have to account for more than just wear metal levels. On the other hand, for many folks, especially those who stick to 3/3 or even perhaps 5/5-6 routines, dinos are probably just fine, in most cases. For many years, during the time of pre-BITOG darkness, I even changed M1 on a 3/3 routine (gulp, what a waste...). But now, for a variety of reasons, I place much greater weight on being able to extend my OCIs (not ridiculously, of course), and the better stability of the syns gives me the ability to do that, with comfort. Havoline has not offered a dino-based 15k mile EP product, have they? There's a reason for that. [Cheers!]
 
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quote:
Originally posted by Bill: fuel tanker man, Are you sure the 5W-20 are petroleums lubes only? no GIII mixed in or are they GIII oils? Are there 5W-20 oils that are petroleum only? Thought I read somewhere here that all 5W-20 oils had some mixture of Group III mixed in? [I dont know]
I've seen the same thing. As I read it, the distinction between dino and syn is actually blurring some. Particularly the "dino" 5w-20 oils have a fair amount of "synthetic" blended into them in order to achieve their performance requirements.
 
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pablo, driver style is subjective too. running the engine hard may not be hard to someone else..etc
 
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So, the synthetic drivers run their cars "hard"? The data are, as presented, show no particular advantage of the grp4+ over the lower class oils.
 
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ch - Thanks, my point exactly.
quote:
It's not really fair to selectively frame the issue so as to channel the answers into the pattern you hope to see emerge.
ekpolk- yikes....he thought he could control what we post - I thought that's why we have moderators [Smile] [Smile]
 
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I like Dan the fuel tanker man, and applaud him for challenging the current thinking. [Cheers!] I personally never found this to be an issue though. All oils have to meet a certain protection level. It's a fact, they have to meet API requirements. Now we see dino oils with similar additive packages as synthetics where the only difference is the baseoil. So again, under some conditions, clearly synthetics will out perform dino oils. However, most don't drive in those conditions to show that.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by fuel tanker man: I was asked in another thread to post some UOAs which support my notion that syns do not reduce wear (when compared to good dinos). I can't find UOAs here which indicate that syns reduce wear. But that doesn't mean someone else cannot. Happy hunting! [Smile] Dan
Here's one on my vehicle we can discuss for fun. It's not a "similar" engine but in different vehicles driven by different people in different parts of the world. It's the same car. First UOA is M1 5W-30, next is Pennzoil 10W-30 http://home.illicom.net/users/jsharp/personalphotos/OA/Mustang_oil_anaylsis_2.jpg Notice the top end metals are bit higher with the M1? Check the silicon. It had a K&N filter in it at the time the M1 was run. Also, the M1 was in the car for 23 months and it sat through 2 Illinois winters. Think that might have been a factor in the iron numbers? Now compare the lead in ppm/mileage. The dino sheared to a 20 weight in only 3k miles and the lead numbers are measureably higher. I don't know about you, but I'd see that as a bad thing... I'm on a 7K mile interval with GC in this car right now. I bet it beats them both by a good margin.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by buster: I like Dan the fuel tanker man, and applaud him for challenging the current thinking. [Cheers!] I personally never found this to be an issue though. All oils have to meet a certain protection level. It's a fact, they have to meet API requirements. Now we see dino oils with similar additive packages as synthetics where the only difference is the baseoil. So again, under some conditions, clearly synthetics will out perform dino oils. However, most don't drive in those conditions to show that.
I like him too. He's fearless in stating his position, although he does seem to like pushing an occasional finger into the eyes of those with differing points of view. He should expect, and have no problem with, his positions being challenged with every bit as much vigor and spice as he puts into them. May the "best" idea win. Dan, I'll leave it to you to define "best idea". [Wink] [Razz] [Cheers!]
 
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I think many forget about deposit control and engine cleanliness. http://www.pennzoil.com/platinum/platinum_.html Just look at the test Pennzoil did with their platinum. A conventional oil just can't compare. Also, how does one know every wear metal is really wear? $20 reports don't tell the whole story. Oxides.
 
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You worry me sometimes, P. (not really) For what it's worth, I dug up 6 UOA's on the same engine, Jeep 4.0 using 10W30 oil. Three dino, 3 Mobil 1. The dino's all did better as far as Fe wear, while the Mobil 1 had better lead wear. Of course the syn had better TBN at 6230,5064, and 5000 miles then the dino's at 3000-3500. Viscosities were all close. Of course, all this means little, and I'm both stunned and embarrassed that I have so little else to do than this....
 

fuel tanker man

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Ethan, Thanks for the link. It's good to see that at least some presumably pedigreed folks are thinking like I am. [Smile] On the start-up wear issue. If syns are truly reducing start-up wear, they are giving back those wear advantages later in the cycle--or would at least appear to be--based on the numerous UOAs we have here. On the group III content in dinos... it's still petroleum base, so it's a dino for the purposes of this discussion. If, as advocates of synthetic oil superiority, we have reduced ourselves to saying "iron isn't really iron, or copper isn't really copper, etc.," we are in a peculiar position indeed. [Smile] Dan
 
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