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Despite some question on the protection offered by the new 5W-20 oils, I'm leaning to using it for my 3750 oil change. I'm wondering if anyone has seen anything to sway me against using 5W-20, which is now recommended by Honda. Synthetic is an option, but means I'll probably have to do it myself since I don't trust them to use synthetic even if I bring it myself.

Anyone paid up for this paper or want to be the guinea pig and do so?
http://www.sae.org/servlets/productDetail?PROD_TYP=PAPER&PROD_CD=1999-01-3468

I do notice that the Penzoil 5W-20 is a synthetic blend, and wonder if that might not be true of all 5W-20 oils:
http://www.pennzoil-quakerstate.com/indx_pqs/about/products/pr2000-10-31.htm

The Penzoil is $1.69 a quart locally at Pepboys. Anyone seen it for significantly less?
 

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I would be leary of the 5w20 motor oil. I think that's just a fuel-average rating scam. Has Honda recommended the 5w20 since '99, or just starting this year?

Here's an example: For my '99 F150, Ford recommends 5w30. They tell me that the manual for the exact same model for '01 now calls for 5w20. Did they just change their minds?? I suspect it has more to to with fleet fuel-efficiency averages than the protection and longevity of your car.

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'01 SS Honda Odyssey EX
'99 F150 XL Supercab
'00 Kawasaki ZR-7
 

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I agree with gram, 5w20 is probably used more for fuel mileage claims than anything else. I had never heard of 5w20 until recently when someone refered to it from Honda's recommendations.

I also think, dare I say, it may be a good excuse to pull the customer into the dealer for oil changes at a higher cost. I know I wouldn't use it. 5w30 would work just fine without any doubt in my mind.



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Jim
 

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I decided to stick with the recommendations of the owners manual, to avoid any possible issue with honoring the warranty. I purchased the Penzoil 5W-20 at the local Pep Boys for $1.69 a quart.

http://www.penzoil.com/TechData/pdsheet/DomesticMarketing/EngineOils/pdf/Multigrade.pdf

On paper, it looks like a decent oil. Like the specs, the bottle also claims it is a synthetic blend. The bottle also claims it exceeds the forthcoming new API SL and ILSAC GF-3 specifications. These appear to be much more extensive than previous specs. See:
http://www.ilma.org/0898/GF3.HTM
http://www.lubrizol.com/products/core/pcmo/index.htm

So, hopefully my engine won't croak 1 year out of warranty. Perhaps I'll switch to a synthetic 5W-20 if one is available at the next oil change. I'm sure the 5W-30 is OK, since the manual lists it as an alternative, but these new 5W-20 oils look like they may be decent lubricants and offer slightly improved fuel economy.

[This message has been edited by caviller (edited 03-02-2001).]
 

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Very interesting. I didn't realize that Pennzoil had a 5w-20 out there on the shelf. I'm quite sure it is just fine, especially in a syn blend. Probably other brands will follow sooner or later.

The fact that it exceeds the new SL rating is a plus.



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Jim
 
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gram_parsons said:
I would be leary of the 5w20 motor oil. I think that's just a fuel-average rating scam. Has Honda recommended the 5w20 since '99, or just starting this year?

Here's an example: For my '99 F150, Ford recommends 5w30. They tell me that the manual for the exact same model for '01 now calls for 5w20. Did they just change their minds?? I suspect it has more to to with fleet fuel-efficiency averages than the protection and longevity of your car.

5W20 was recommended starting in '01. Your right about the same engine now requiring 5W20. Reason - fuel economy. My conclusion - go for better protection and stick w/5W30.
 

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Wow, bjmeyer, this is the "smoking gun" of the 5W20 issue! Honda is so insistent on the 5W20 purely to satisfy the EPA!

I have long stated that 5W20 is just for CAFE purposes and 5W30 or 10W30 will offer better protection in the long run.

For all those sitting on the fence or leaning towards 5W20, here is the issue in my opinion.
- If you are leasing the vehicle or otherwise interested in owning it for 3-4 years and less than 100,000 miles, then by all means stick with the 5W20 recommendation.
- If on the other hand you plan on keeping the Odyssey "for as long as it runs", i.e. well over 100,000 miles, then seriously consider using an oil that is thicker and more suited to the specific conditions where you live and how you use the car.

Personally I plan to use 5W30 or 10W30. I have no fears of engine failure from this choice.
 

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rg said:
Wow, bjmeyer, this is the "smoking gun" of the 5W20 issue! Honda is so insistent on the 5W20 purely to satisfy the EPA!

I have long stated that 5W20 is just for CAFE purposes and 5W30 or 10W30 will offer better protection in the long run.

For all those sitting on the fence or leaning towards 5W20, here is the issue in my opinion.
- If you are leasing the vehicle or otherwise interested in owning it for 3-4 years and less than 100,000 miles, then by all means stick with the 5W20 recommendation.
- If on the other hand you plan on keeping the Odyssey "for as long as it runs", i.e. well over 100,000 miles, then seriously consider using an oil that is thicker and more suited to the specific conditions where you live and how you use the car.

Personally I plan to use 5W30 or 10W30. I have no fears of engine failure from this choice.
I live in Southern California (LA area). I haven't gone to my first oil change yet for our '02 Ody. I've been going to a local mechanic and he's been using Castrol 10W/40 and sometimes 20w/50 (regular oil, not synthetic) whenever I took my '96 Accord for an oil change. Are these oil grades ok to use on our new Ody? We plan to keep the van for about 7 - 8 years. Right now, it's only being driven about 5 miles/day on weekdays and about 200 miles per weekend.
 

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AlpineMan said:


I live in Southern California (LA area). I haven't gone to my first oil change yet for our '02 Ody. I've been going to a local mechanic and he's been using Castrol 10W/40 and sometimes 20w/50 (regular oil, not synthetic) whenever I took my '96 Accord for an oil change. Are these oil grades ok to use on our new Ody? We plan to keep the van for about 7 - 8 years. Right now, it's only being driven about 5 miles/day on weekdays and about 200 miles per weekend.
You will get better hot engine protection with 10W40 or 20W50, but at the cost of low temperature protection (which may not be necessary for you) and fuel economy. From what I understand, 20W50 is likely something one would use in a high performance motor bike or boat engine. In other words, if you consistently take your Odyssey to redline, tow a trailer all the time up hills, etc., then maybe a higher high temp viscosity is for you. For most people, even towing trailers and revving once in a while, 5W30 is more than sufficient. In my opinion, if you're hard on your oil, change it at 3750 mile intervals rather than switching to a 20W50.
 

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AlpineMan said:


I live in Southern California (LA area). I haven't gone to my first oil change yet for our '02 Ody. I've been going to a local mechanic and he's been using Castrol 10W/40 and sometimes 20w/50 (regular oil, not synthetic) whenever I took my '96 Accord for an oil change. Are these oil grades ok to use on our new Ody? We plan to keep the van for about 7 - 8 years. Right now, it's only being driven about 5 miles/day on weekdays and about 200 miles per weekend.
It is my understanding that 10w-40 is not recommended by most manufacturers, specifically because it has additional viscosity improvers that can eventually cause problems. In any case, I'd stick with the grades listed in your owner's manual, at least during the warranty period.

If you are concerned about high temperature perfomance, consider a synthetic or semi-synthetic.
 

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caviller said:

It is my understanding that 10w-40 is not recommended by most manufacturers, specifically because it has additional viscosity improvers that can eventually cause problems.
What problems can be caused by the additional viscosity improvers?
 

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bigred said:

What problems can be caused by the additional viscosity improvers?
Good question. I really have no idea, but I've read in a few articles that 10W-40 was replaced with 10W-30 by most manufacturers because of reliability issues.

This is from an older oil FAQ ( http://atis.net/oil_faq.html ):

"Multi viscosity oils work like this: Polymers are added to a light base (5W, 10W, 20W), which prevent the oil from thinning as much as it warms up. At cold temperatures the polymers are coiled up and allow the oil to flow as their low numbers indicate. As the oil warms up the polymers begin to unwind into long chains that prevent the oil from thinning as much as it normally would. The result is that at 100 degrees C the oil has thinned only as much as the higher viscosity number indicates. Another way of looking at multi-vis oils is to think of a 20W-50 as a 20 weight oil that will not thin more than a 50 weight would when hot.

Multi viscosity oils are one of the great improvements in oils, but they should be chosen wisely. Always use a multi grade with the narrowest span of viscosity that is appropriate for the temperatures you are going to encounter. In the winter base your decision on the lowest temperature you will encounter, in the summer, the highest temperature you expect. The polymers can shear and burn forming deposits that can cause ring sticking and other problems. 10W-40 and 5W-30 require a lot of polymers (synthetics excluded) to achieve that range. This has caused problems in diesel engines, but fewer polymers are better for all engines. The wide viscosity range oils, in general, are more prone to viscosity and thermal breakdown due to the high polymer content. It is the oil that lubricates, not the additives. Oils that can do their job with the fewest additives are the best.

Very few manufactures recommend 10W-40 any more, and some threaten to void warranties if it is used. It was not included in this article for that reason. 20W-50 is the same 30 point spread, but because it starts with a heavier base it requires less viscosity index improvers (polymers) to do the job. AMSOIL can formulate their 10W-30 and 15W-40 with no viscosity index improvers but uses some in the 10W-40 and 5W-30. Mobil 1 uses no viscosity improvers in their 5W-30, and I assume the new 10W-30. Follow your manufacturer's recommendations as to which weights are appropriate for your vehicle."
 

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Thanks for that post, Caviller - very informative. Also interesting to note that breakdown due to high polymer content doesn't apply to synthetics (yet another reason to go for synthetics!). I'm thinking of using Amsoil Series 2000 0W30.
 

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Wow - a proprietary additive. What I hate most is when you are not informed in detail of the reason why you must do something. Many people recommend changing the filter at 500 - 1000 miles because of the high metal particulate content in the oil at break-in. Honda says to let the metal do its job for 7500/3750 miles and TRUST ME. I don't want to trust them if they are not going to tell me what the patent number is or give me more details... maybe the filter is special and prevents metal particle build up... but we'll never know because Honda doesn't want to say. Shhhh!! :mad:
 

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My understanding has always been that the VI compounds can leave some "crud" in the engine, so the least one can get by with, the better. I can remember having the oilpan off my 69 Pontiac, which had oil changes at two month intervals, and finding a strange deposit of "stuff" in the bottom. I think this is one reason that many synthetics are said to keep the engine cleaner. Just my take on the subject.

Jerry O.
 

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I've read that in addition to better fuel economy, 5w-20 & 0w-20 also flow much better at start up, when most engine wear occurs. Synthetics flow even better than the same weight dino oil and protect better at higher temperatures.

I just go with what the manufacturer recommends as far as oil weight and change interval. Besides, when was the last time you heard of someone having their engine seize due to oil failure. I've seen a few 10 year old smoking Caravans, but that is probably due to engine seals, not engine wear.

Bottom line, I wouldn't lose too much sleep over it, oil quality is far better today than in years past.
 
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