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Engine Oil: Selecting the Best for a Duratec

I spent quite a bit of time reviewing data and putting together the following matrix, in order to "bottom-line" what are the best engine oils out there. I hope you find this informative and helpful. It certainly impacted my decision making process.

Just in case the attachment doesn't come through the way I expect, the average of ordinal rankings were as follows: Amsoil (1.14), Valvoline SynPower (3.43), Mobil 1 (3.71), Castrol Syntec (4.57), Pennzoil Synthetic (5.14), Quaker State Synthetic (5.71), Quaker State Peak Performance (6.29), Castrol GTX Drive Hard (6.57), Valvoline (6.71), Mobil Drive Clean (7.00), and Pennzoil with Purebase (7.14). The lower the number, the better the oil is overall. Seven tests were run on each oil: Thin-Film Oxygen Uptake (ASTM D-4742), High Temperature/High Shear (ASTM D-4683), NOACK Volatility (ASTM D-5800), Pour Point (ASTM D-97), Total Base Number (ASTM D-2896), Cold Cranking Simulator (ASTM D-5293), and Four-Ball Wear (ASTM D-4172). Each oil was ranked by test, in order to come up with an overall "Average of Ordinal Rankings."

European oil torture tests are probably the toughest in the world for an oil to pass. In the U.S., the oil industry establishes the standards; however, in Europe the automobile industry does (the Association des Constructeurs Europeens d'Automobiles or ACEA). The toughest of the tough are, in my opinion, Mercedes-Benz'.

Like many of you, I'm looking for the best oil out there. In my opinion, that is Amsoil. I'll tell you why. Not only is it in a league by itself in the "API Motor Oil Testing: 10W-30" results, it is the only manufacturer of 5W-30 and 10W-30 engine oil that I know of that contains an ACEA A3 rating and has passed Mercedes-Benz' 229.3 tests. This is no small task. Neither Valvoline nor Mobil 1 can claim this distinction. An ACEA A3 rating is tough to get and is defined by, "Stable, stay-in-grade oil intended for use in high performance gasoline engines and/or for extended drain intervals where specified by the engine manufacturer, and/or for year-round use of low viscosity oils, and/or for severe operating conditions as defined by the engine manufacturer." Similarly, MB sheet 229.3 approved oils are, " for passenger cars with gas and deisel engines with extended drain interval indicator FSS up to 20,000 km, or 40,000 km-25,000 mi, min. 1.0% fuel saving compared to 229.1, Base ACEA A3 B3." I run Amsoil 5W-30 with a SDF-11 filter in my Duratec . . . it's awesome. It meets not only Ford's oil requirements, but almost everyone else's too. It's all about adding that "margin of safety" in life.
 

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Interesting info... I'm glad to see Valvoline Synpower near the top of the list, that's what I always use. :)
 

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I wonder where Valvoline Durablend (synthetic blend) would be on that list. I've been using that for the past four changes or so, and it's great...it even smells like peanuts when the little bit burns off the exhaust manifolds after changing the filter.

JR
 

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What was striking was that, overall, every synthetic tested beat out every petroleum oil. I would guess that Valvoline Durablend would come in below the synthetics, but above the petroleum oils.
 

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I think it's to be expected that the synthetics would be miles above the conventional dino oil. Everything I've seen has said synthetic is the end-all be-all of motor oil.

Once I get my Mustang, nothing but Mobil 1 synthetic and K&N oil filters for that thing.

JR
 

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LOL...

I know that Mobil 1 is the best synthetic you can get, except for Royal Purple or Amsoil. I also like to change my oil, which is why I'd rather use Mobil 1 rather than either of those. With Amsoil, you change your oil, what...once every 15-25K?

JR
 

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I see we agree on Bush/Cheney and Mobil 1. How would you like to live in Texas, race NASCAR, and eat bar-b-que?
 

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Originally posted by godspunk32@Aug 21 2004, 05:15 PM
LOL...

I know that Mobil 1 is the best synthetic you can get, except for Royal Purple or Amsoil. I also like to change my oil, which is why I'd rather use Mobil 1 rather than either of those. With Amsoil, you change your oil, what...once every 15-25K?

JR
Did you rate Royal Purple? That's what I use. I am curious as to how it rates compared to AMSoil.


I change my oil filter every 3K, and the oil itself every 15K with Royal Purple. But at $5 a quart from my local rep, I can't afford to change it any earlier.
 

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Originally posted by topgunovrtx@Aug 21 2004, 06:25 PM
I see we agree on Bush/Cheney and Mobil 1. How would you like to live in Texas, race NASCAR, and eat bar-b-que?
Sounds good to me! I just don't want to live in TX...too hot there and no snow.

JR
 

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No, I'm sorry I didn't. I will say this, though, I have never seen Royal Purple listed in any Mercedes Benz sheet and I try and stay current on oils meeting their specs. MB and ACEA are exhaustive in testing oils. They pay special attention to an oil's High Temperature/High Shear (HTHS) performance, which is where some Mobil 1 products fail. For instance MB specifically says not to use Mobil 1 0W-30, 5W-30, or 10W-30 products in their vehicles. However, Mobil 1 OW-40 is 229.5 rated and is factory fill in all new Mercedes. Mobil 1 OW-40 is truly one of the great oils in the world, but its viscosity doesn't work well in Duratecs.
 

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Did you take a look at the 5w20 oils? I think that's the recommended oil for all 2001+ Duratecs and I think there was some thread that mentioned that Ford also recommended it for their 2000 model Duratecs even though it has the 5w30 cap on it.

I think the best deal on oil out there is probably the Motorcraft synthetic blend of 5w20 from Walmart. I think it was around $1.42 or something a quart. I wonder what the percentage of synthetic is in it as their other weights are the same price and they're just the conventional dino oil.

I just change the oil every 3k-5k. No matter how good an oil you use, it still gets contaminated by gasoline and water.
 

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I buy Amsoil online from Vic Sledzinski, www.syntheticlubes.com. He has a great website and recommend you check it out. I became a "preferred customer," in order to buy it wholesale. For the 5W-30 it runs about $4.55/quart. I save on the shipping by picking it up at the Arlington, TX distribution facility, but they have other distribution facilities around the country. I buy enough oil, filters, and transmission fluid for two cars for several years to warrant going by their facility near Six Flags Over Texas. I normally schedule pickup on my way back from Arkansas. It's worth paying shipping to get it. My son lives in Los Angeles, CA and puts incredible mileage on his car in some of the worst traffic in the world. I ship him Amsoil oil and filters and pay the shipping--it's worth it when you consider your investment in your car. It's cheaper than other products, if you follow their recommended maintenance schedule of changing the oil once a year or 25,000 miles, whichever comes first. Just change the Amsoil filter every 6 months or 12,500 miles, whichever comes first. Amsoil's professional product information and disclosure is the best in the industry. They give you the data, so you can see, for yourself, that their products are the best. Other companies only give you selected product data. When I compare the technical specs on their oil versus others, Amsoil always comes out on top.

I'm opposed to the new 5W-20 oils. It's really just to increase Ford, Mazda, and Honda's overall fleet gas mileage, so they can then sell more larger vehicles. The HTHS figures on 5W-20 oils don't provide the "margin of safety" I require. My son's girlfriend has a 2004 Mazda 6. She's running Amsoil's Series 2000 0W-30, instead. In Texas, Mazda dealers are running 10W-30 in their new cars.
 

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I don't see how any comparison can be don't without taking into consider of the cost especially when one item cost's 5 times (Synthetics) more than the dino oils.

If you're interested in learning everything there is to know about motor oil... go here..... To Bobistheoilguy.com. They have several different forums. Below is the one one auto oil's.

http://theoildrop.server101.com/cgi/ultima...m&f=1&submit=Go

These guys really know their stuff. That take their used oil and send it to labs and have it analysed. The results tell them how the oil wore and how their engines wear. Also, they've cut open every oil filter that's sold and checked their filtering properties. Additionally, some manufacturers make filter that are then sold under different brand names. These guys have those pegged.

You know when I need to know what time it is don't tell me how to build a watch... so here's the bottom line as I remember from reading Bob's stuff.

Mobile 1 is the gold standard of oils. Some like Amsoil better. Some don't. There's conflict of interest in The Amsoil supporters, IMO because some guys on that site sell it.

Among Dino..... non-synthetics.... those guys like..... Pennzoil, Havoline, Chevron, Castoroil and Motorcraft. Don't think anyone there doesn't like those oils but some list different ones as their favorite. If there's one oil they mostly seem to dislike, it's Valvoline.

Among filters..... they ALL........... ALL.......... hate Fram. That was surprizing to me having grown up getting the impression that Fram was top notch.
They like Wix, which makes filters for several other name brands. They like Motorcraft for Fords very much and they like Pure. Also, they're OK with that Walmart house brand..... Super Tech.

Anyway..... check this site out. Read the boards that give the results of guys testing their oil.

Or just ask them their opinions of oils and filter to use for you car.... model, consdition, milage and how it's driven. Then link us to their answers.
 

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Well, then it looks like it's time for me to stop using Valvoline Durablend. How much is Castrol Syntec running per quart these days?

JR
 

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For what it's worth on my previous car a '96 Taurus I bought from a lease company with 70,000 miles.... I took it to a local chain that did the oil changes with 10W-30 Valvoline bulk oil with a Valvoline filter.... (for $14 total). I changed oil in the 3,400 to 4,000 mile range. I sold that car with 146,000+ miles and it never burned a drop. I never added even a cup of oil between changes and the car still got 29.5 mpg going 350 miles from Charlotte to S. Georgia on my way to Florida.

I really don't think the brand matters a great deal. If the oil is changed before it turns to black sludge, I think the internal engine parts will last a long time.

My last changes..... which I've done myself have been with Pennzoil 5w-30 and a Motorcraft FL 820s filter from Walmart after 3,771 miles. Total cost.... $10 on my '00 Sable Duratec with 84,000 miles.

On my wife's '98 Acura 3.5RL I used Exxon 10W-30 and a Super Tech filter. total cost was $7.50. Car had about 4,100 miles since the previous change.
 

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Did you rate Royal Purple? That's what I use. I am curious as to how it rates compared to AMSoil.
Royal Purple is not good at all, IMO. It usually scores poorly against other synthetics. Do a search on Bobistheoilguy.com and you'll see exactly what I mean. :blink: How much are you paying for RP, anyway?
 

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Originally posted by SixFoFalcon@Aug 23 2004, 11:56 AM
Did you rate Royal Purple? That's what I use. I am curious as to how it rates compared to AMSoil.
Royal Purple is not good at all, IMO. It usually scores poorly against other synthetics. Do a search on Bobistheoilguy.com and you'll see exactly what I mean. :blink: How much are you paying for RP, anyway?
I think it's about $6-8/quart, isn't it?
 
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