5w/20 oil



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Thread: 5w/20 oil

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    5w/20 oil

    Good Evening Board,

    I am new to the group, and was glad to find one.

    We just recently purchased 2005 T & C, Touring with the 3.8 engine. In my reading of the manual, they recommended 5w/20 oil for the engine. In my research, it would seem this weight oil was recommended by Chrysler in order to meet the C.A.F.E. governmental requirements for fuel efficiency for their vehicles - and for no other engineering reason.

    My understanding, and I could be wrong, but previous years i.e., 2004, 2003 with the same 3.8 engine (I am assuming Chrysler made no changes) were spec'd for either 5w/30 or 10w/30.

    Can anyone confirm this who has a prior year T & C, 3.8 engine?

    My thinking is that really this engine should have the 5w/30 running in it not the lighter weight oil.

    Since I keep my car for a long time, the vehicle we traded in was 89 Chev Astro van, I really want to make sure the "right weight" oil is in there.

    Any suggestions & input would be appreciated.

    RevRider

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  3. #2
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    Welcome RevRider. I would agree with your assumption. I have a 2001 and it calls for 5w-30. I am of the same opinion as you that 5w-30 would be best for the engine. It will not void the warranty or anything like that if you use the 5w-30 and I don't see you getting a big plus mpg more because you are using the 5w-20 oil. You are right that all the chrysler product engines (EXCEPT the 3.5L engine - 10w-30 oil) are going to 5w-20 oil.
    However if you have a vehicle with the Hemi engine in it, you need to use the oil they call for because of the Cylinder Deactivation factor that decides the amount of cylinders being used. A heart of the deactivation is the lifters and THEY SAY using 5w-20 oil is a must.
    Avatar: EconoVoyager Concept
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    Yes, and in addition to what DSMLVR said, a conventional 30 weight oil will shear down to near a 20 weight oil after a few thousand miles anyway. Especially if you live in a real hot climate during the summer, I'd put 5W-30 or 10W-30 in it.

    I have no doubt that a specific weight oil is required for the cylinder deactivation system. The new Northstar engine requires a synthetic oil (it never did before; was even recommended against), because of the variable valve timing. With all the new features on these engines today, it's best to do exactly what the OE calls for in most cases. In the case of our simple OHV engines, I think you're exactly right -- 5W-30 is most appropriate.
    '11 Toyota Camry | 2.5/6AT | Sandy Beach
    '07 Chrysler T&C | 3.8/4AT | Cognac Crystal
    '05 Acura MDX | 3.5/5AT | Billet Silver
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    Hi all,

    I too am concerned about this 5w-20, goes against my better judgement, especially here in AZ.
    The thing is according to my 2005 Owners manual "Lubricants which do not have both the engine oil cert. mark and the correct SAE vicosity grade number should not be used"
    The only oil listed is 5w-20, same on the page that usually shows the different grades, for diff. climates and temps. the only choice for 3.3 and 3.8 is 5w20!

    Now I know some will say this is "against the law", "they have to supply the oil", etc. But, when it comes to claims, I don't want to get jerked around forever (and they will) and jepordize my: 7/70 .

    Your comments please.

    Bob

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    Bob,

    I think the only way they could "prove" what oil you used in the case of a failure would be to have it analyzed. And any oil is going to shear down anyway, to a thinner weight than what it was new, over time. There's no way they can prove how recent the oil was that was in the van when a failure happened, so I really don't think they could PROVE via an oil analysis exactly what weight the oil was when it was new. In short, I don't think they'd go to the trouble to analyze your oil (as that's the only way they could claim against you) because they won't find anything meaningful.

    If you approach it another way, consider posing a question to Chrysler customer service or another Chrysler information outlet and ask why the change was made to 5W-20. They may point out an engineering change, or they may indicate that it was solely for fuel economy measures. In the case of the latter, I think they'd have a hard time finding against you in an engine failure if you were using a thicker oil...after they acknowledged that it was simply a fuel economy measure.

    I'm certainly no oil chemistry expert. But I know the guys who are. Check out www.bobistheoilguy.com and check out the forums there. They've heavy Amsoil pushers, so you'll probably see a lot of references to Amsoil and synthetic oil. But I bet you'll find a LOT of information about the new 5W-20 oils (they love new oil technology, and they'll probably have discussed it a lot). After reading some of this info (for the first time myself), the data (used oil analyses) seem to indicate better wear levels with 5W-20, possibly supporting its use in new and older engines.

    Lots of discussion in these threads (the first one listed is Chrysler minivan-specific):

    http://theoildrop.server101.com/cgi/...=008102#000000

    http://theoildrop.server101.com/cgi/...=006779#000000

    http://theoildrop.server101.com/cgi/...=010526#000028
    '11 Toyota Camry | 2.5/6AT | Sandy Beach
    '07 Chrysler T&C | 3.8/4AT | Cognac Crystal
    '05 Acura MDX | 3.5/5AT | Billet Silver
    '97 Dodge Dakota | 5.2/4AT | Emerald Green

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    stop the concern

    I was concerned about the oil used in new 2005 T&C, I used Mobil 1 full synthetic, concern was resolved. No problems starting in 0 degree weather, and no smoke coming out of oil dipstick tube any more in 95 degree weather when I check oil.

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    I believe they still have the chart in the owners manual that shows that you can use the higher viscosity when the temp is extremely high. Look it up in YOUR owner's manual. This is from the 2004 Factory Service Manual so it still shows 5w-30 but it also shows 10w-30 for hotter area.

    SAE VISCOSITY
    An SAE viscosity grade is used to specify the vis-cosity
    of engine oil. Use only engine oils with multi-ple
    viscosities such as 5W-30 or 10W-30. These are
    specified with a dual SAE viscosity grade which indi-cates
    the cold-to-hot temperature viscosity range.
    Select an engine oil that is best suited to your par-ticular
    temperature range and variation.
    use such a product, use only those oils that meet the
    American Petroleum Institute (API) and SAE viscos-ity
    standard. Follow the service schedule that
    describes your driving type.

    So, as long as you use an API Rated oil (which is any name brand oil) , you will NOT VOID YOUR WARRANTY.
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    5/20 Oil

    From the posts, it would appear my assumption is correct, that indeed our vehicles from 2001 to current, all having the same V6, 3.8 engine, were spec'd for either 5/30 or 10/30 wt oil.

    It would also appear to be a truth that Chrysler re-spec'd our engines for the 2005 model year, for the 5/20 for the purpose of meeting their corporate fuel economy numbers, and perhaps they've had a change of engineering mindset that now says 5/20 will also be an acceptable oil for engine durability.

    From my study of this topic, a lighter weight oil flows easier and faster through the engine, thus providing "lubrication" which is important. But, I am concerned that for our engine, the engineers previously spec'd the 30 wt oil at operating temperatures, and now say 20 is ok??? Just doesn't sit well with me, if you know what I mean.

    I have read all the pages of my manual, it is possible that I've missed it, but I don't think so, I didn't find the verbiage:

    SAE VISCOSITY
    An SAE viscosity grade is used to specify the vis-cosity
    of engine oil. Use only engine oils with multi-ple
    viscosities such as 5W-30 or 10W-30. These are
    specified with a dual SAE viscosity grade which indi-cates
    the cold-to-hot temperature viscosity range.
    Select an engine oil that is best suited to your par-ticular
    temperature range and variation.
    use such a product, use only those oils that meet the
    American Petroleum Institute (API) and SAE viscos-ity
    standard. Follow the service schedule that
    describes your driving type.


    Because I keep my vehicles along time, 10+ years, drive train care is essential, and engine oil & filtering system is the "blood of the engine & the kidneys."

    The comments from the other members were appreciated, and very helpful and informative.

    It is my intention to use a full synthetic, I've been a Mobil1 fan for a number of years; my brother has put 380,000 miles on 3 vehicles, all using M1, 5/30 wt, with ZERO engine issues - that's a pretty good testimonal.

    Are any other members drawing the same conclusion as myself regarding the acceptable viscosity?

    Thanks,

    RevRider

  10. #9
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    RevRider, the statement:

    SAE VISCOSITY
    An SAE viscosity grade is used to specify the vis-cosity
    of engine oil. Use only engine oils with multi-ple
    viscosities such as 5W-30 or 10W-30. These are
    specified with a dual SAE viscosity grade which indi-cates
    the cold-to-hot temperature viscosity range.
    Select an engine oil that is best suited to your par-ticular
    temperature range and variation.
    use such a product, use only those oils that meet the
    American Petroleum Institute (API) and SAE viscos-ity
    standard. Follow the service schedule that
    describes your driving type.

    Was from the FACTORY SERVICE MANUAL , not the owners manual.

    I use Mobil1 0w-30 during the winter months in the van. I would use the 5W-30 , or any other 0 thru 10w-30 weight and not worry about it.
    Avatar: EconoVoyager Concept
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    2004 Chrysler Pacifica AWD 3.5L

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    Quote Originally Posted by RevRider
    Are any other members drawing the same conclusion as myself regarding the acceptable viscosity?
    I think that as long as you change the oil regularly, no matter what you use, you'll have a trustworthy vehicle. I have a combined 200,000 miles on just my two current vehicles alone, using only conventional oil, and have had no problems. My old Nissan truck had almost 200,000 miles on it when I sold it to my brother, and it was only fed conventional that I know of. I had an '84 Cutlass in pristine condition with about 120k miles on it when I sold it, and I only put conventional in it (as did the previous owner). My dad has never used any synthetic oil in anything he's owned and he's never had a problem with anything on an engine before, let alone a lubrication problem.

    No matter what you use, as long as you change it reguarly, according to the manufacturer's recommendations (not necessarily as soon as every 3 mos. or 3000 miles), you'll be fine.

    I suspect the advent of 5W-20 oils, their retrospecification for older engines, and their use where a 30 oil was previously recommended, has as much to do with better oil chemistry available today that wasn't yet proven a few years ago. For instance, Ford retrospecs 5W-20 to engines up to a decade ago. There's no incentive for them to do that (except maybe to try to get people to buy Motorcraft oil) because older vehicles obviously aren't under the CAFE regulations. It's possible that a good 5W-20 oil provides at least as good protection today than a 10W-30 oil did 5 years ago. Chemistry is advancing...so should our use of that chemistry. Jiffy Lube still wants you to change oil every 3 months or 3000 miles. Hey, we were doing that in the '60s! Let's get with the program of today. Engines are totally different today and oils are totally different. Why aren't we utilizing our oil to it's maximum life? Like 5000-6000 miles, or double that in some cases? Maybe the time has come that a newer, more advanced oil, can take the place of some of the older stuff and provide good protection.

    As an asterisk to one of my first statements above, my Cadillac (with almost 150k miles) has gone its whole life following the oil life monitor. It recommends me change the oil anywhere from about 2500 miles (the lowest I've seen) to about 7000 miles (the highest I've seen). I think that's a good testiment that no matter what you use (conventional here), as long as you don't overuse the service life of the lubricant, follow the manufacturer's recommendations, and maintain the car the way the OE specifies, anything will last you a long time.

    Regarding your vehicle...personally...I'd fill it with 5W-20 and drive it. Or put in 5W-30 if you can't easily find the 20. I run 10W-30 in my van just because my Cadillac takes it, and it's easy to buy a case of 10W-30 than 8 quarts of 10W-30 and 5 quarts of 5W-30. I live in North Carolina, so the temperature never gets cold enough to require a thinner weight oil, nor near hot enough to require the extra thermal stability of a synthetic. So I run whatever 10W-30 is convenient when I need it. I've been running Pennzoil High Mileage, and I've been happy with it.

    Cheers,
    Jason
    Last edited by Hokiefyd; 07-25-2005 at 09:08 PM.
    '11 Toyota Camry | 2.5/6AT | Sandy Beach
    '07 Chrysler T&C | 3.8/4AT | Cognac Crystal
    '05 Acura MDX | 3.5/5AT | Billet Silver
    '97 Dodge Dakota | 5.2/4AT | Emerald Green

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