My Tractor Forum banner
1 - 20 of 46 Posts

Registered
Joined
48 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all,

My boss owns a (small) lawn care business, and he wants me to do the regular maintenance for him now. (He's not much of a grease monkey, but I am you see, and going to a shop is expensive 馃). So, I want to get oil in bulk because we have three machines (two Kohlers and one Kawasaki all air cooled) that each need oil changes, and we would prefer a straight grade 30 weight oil for them. My question is, would this oil work? \/ \/ \/


It's the only straight 30 I can find, and is actually cheaper than 10w-30 (the next best option). I understand that Diesel oil will work just fine for gas engines, but is it actually a good idea? Am I going to damage our equipment?

Thanks,
-S.W.
 

Registered
Joined
1,173 Posts
I run Shell Rotella in every gas and diesel engine I own, except the cars. I run 5w - 40 in tractors or 15w -40 in mowers. That oil is designed to be run in turbo charged engines so it is on the high end of the quality spectrum. However, read your owners manual on the weight, maybe you have.

That oil should be fine but check the manual, don't take our word for it.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Toomuch2183

Registered
Joined
48 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I run Shell Rotella in every gas and diesel engine I own, except the cars. I run 5w - 40 in tractors or 15w -40 in mowers. That oil is designed to be run in turbo charged engines so it is on the high end of the quality spectrum. However, read your owners manual on the weight, maybe you have.

That oil should be fine but check the manual, don't take our word for it.
It doesn't say NOT to use it, but it really doesn't say anything about Diesel oil at all. That's what I'm really wondering about.
 

Registered
Joined
1,173 Posts
A good many guys on this site run diesel engineered oil in their gas engines. I just like the convenience of not having to have multiple kinds of oil. I could really use either weight of Rotella I have in any of my mowers/tractors.

Diesel has better anti-wear properties so it is good to use on anything that doesn't have a catalytic converter.

 

Registered
Joined
48 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
A good many guys on this site run diesel engineered oil in their gas engines. I just like the convenience of not having to have multiple kinds of oil. I could really use either weight of Rotella I have in any of my mowers/tractors.

Diesel has better anti-wear properties so it is good to use on anything that doesn't have a catalytic converter.

Thanks for the reply.馃憤 According to that guy /\ /\ /\ I probably shouldn't be using it because of increased detergent load. Who knows. 馃し鈥嶁檪锔
 

Premium Member
I use scissors! Twice a week.
Joined
10,007 Posts
For oil detergents, it depends on the engine.

If the engine is pressure lubricated with an oil filter, you want more detergents (which keep things suspended in the fluid) so all those bits get swept along to get caught in the oil filter.
If the engine has no oil filter to catch those particles, then you want less detergents, so those particles instead drop out of the oil to rest at the bottom of the crankcase (generally they will stay there until the engine is disassembled to be rebuilt).
 

Registered
Joined
325 Posts
I would recomend non detergent sae 30 for summer use and a non detergent 10w30 for winter. In the winter the multi viscosity oil will be easier on the engine. Straight 30 would be better protection in the summer.
 

Registered
Joined
48 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
For oil detergents, it depends on the engine.

If the engine is pressure lubricated with an oil filter, you want more detergents (which keep things suspended in the fluid) so all those bits get swept along to get caught in the oil filter.
If the engine has no oil filter to catch those particles, then you want less detergents, so those particles instead drop out of the oil to rest at the bottom of the crankcase (generally they will stay there until the engine is disassembled to be rebuilt).
All three of our engines are pressure lubricated (with filters) so I guess that might be okay. One page I was reading said that it might actually be the cylinder walls you should be worried about with detergents especially on the diesel oils; it might "over-clean" the cylinder walls or something like that. I've heard the same thing about a lean tune 馃檮

Anyway, I probably will just end up going with the recommended 10w-30 for now. Needs to be purchased today, so I'll just make do with a jug for now.

Thanks for the reply!
-S.W.
 

Registered
Joined
48 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I would recomend non detergent sae 30 for summer use and a non detergent 10w30 for winter. In the winter the multi viscosity oil will be easier on the engine. Straight 30 would be better protection in the summer.
Only problem is, I can't seem to find non-detergent SAE 30w in Canada. Straight weight is just so hard to find here it seems. You lucky Americans 馃槄

-S.W.
 

Super Moderator
Joined
12,786 Posts
Hi all,

My boss owns a (small) lawn care business, and he wants me to do the regular maintenance for him now. (He's not much of a grease monkey, but I am you see, and going to a shop is expensive 馃). So, I want to get oil in bulk because we have three machines (two Kohlers and one Kawasaki all air cooled) that each need oil changes, and we would prefer a straight grade 30 weight oil for them. My question is, would this oil work? \/ \/ \/


It's the only straight 30 I can find, and is actually cheaper than 10w-30 (the next best option). I understand that Diesel oil will work just fine for gas engines, but is it actually a good idea? Am I going to damage our equipment?

Thanks,
-S.W.
Which Kohler engines are the machines running? If they are Commands straight 30 is not recommended due to the hydraulic lifters. Here is Kohler's recc on oil choice for Commands.
Rectangle Font Parallel Slope Pattern

Font Circle Parallel Document Number


Air cooled engines have flat tappet lifters and benefit from zinc/ZDDP as a lubricant which has been eliminated from car engine oil due to ZDDP clogging catalytic converters. Diesel rated oils still have ZDDP.

I run Rotella 5W-40 in my 4 air-cooled machines. 3 Kohler Commands and 1 Kawasaki FD620D. They use no oil and have ~500hrs on Rotella collectively. If you wanted a no-brainer solution for the oil choice first go to the manufacturer's webpage and look at their recommendation.

Kohler markets their own oil and it has a healthy dollop of ZDDP in it.
Liquid Automotive cleaning Fluid Personal care Service
 

Registered
Joined
920 Posts
non-detergent SAE 30w
I use the 30w non-detergent in all 6 of my older engines-----I can't find it in the lower states either I did buy up several gallons when I found out that the store, I was buying from would no longer be selling it. There is one that looks like what I was buying but if you read close it has detergent in it.---I don't know what to do when I run out of the 30W-ND OIL---------but in the newer engines like you have if they were mine, I would use any good 10-W 30 -----I bet the OM calls for a detergent oil prob. 10w30
 

Registered
Joined
1,173 Posts
Only problem is, I can't seem to find non-detergent SAE 30w in Canada. Straight weight is just so hard to find here it seems. You lucky Americans 馃槄

-S.W.
So if it is that hard to find, what should that tell you? You don't need it. Or if you do, I guess all the rest of our engines are going to wear out any minute.

Go back up and read what Dave_r said. You can take his advice on engines to the bank.
 

Registered
Joined
4,770 Posts
Modern oils that comply with API test standards are all pretty good. I'd go for the Rotella option on bulk.

The main problem is, allowing oil levels to be below "full range", and, not changing oils and filters on a regular maintenance basis. Heavy duty use requires frequent oil and filter changes. Be sure you include removal of tins and cleaning cooling fins regularly, and don't forget transmissions and their cooling fans!!

Design and document your maintenance procedures and schedule, and stick with it.
 
  • Like
Reactions: SpeedWobble

Registered
Joined
1,281 Posts
Only problem is, I can't seem to find non-detergent SAE 30w in Canada.
Canadian tire, just bought a couple liters a month or so back for my air compressor and pressure washer pump. Their online search comes up with the wrong product if you type in the sku on-line. 30W non-det 028-7113, $5.99L
 

Registered
Joined
48 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Which Kohler engines are the machines running? If they are Commands straight 30 is not recommended due to the hydraulic lifters. Here is Kohler's recc on oil choice for Commands.
View attachment 2565931
View attachment 2565933

Air cooled engines have flat tappet lifters and benefit from zinc/ZDDP as a lubricant which has been eliminated from car engine oil due to ZDDP clogging catalytic converters. Diesel rated oils still have ZDDP.

I run Rotella 5W-40 in my 4 air-cooled machines. 3 Kohler Commands and 1 Kawasaki FD620D. They use no oil and have ~500hrs on Rotella collectively. If you wanted a no-brainer solution for the oil choice first go to the manufacturer's webpage and look at their recommendation.

Kohler markets their own oil and it has a healthy dollop of ZDDP in it.
View attachment 2565932
I believe that they are both Courages. Flat tappet lifters. The Kawasaki is for sure; I just rebuilt it. I did think of zinc additives, thanks for the info (y)

-S.W.
 

Registered
Joined
48 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
So if it is that hard to find, what should that tell you? You don't need it. Or if you do, I guess all the rest of our engines are going to wear out any minute.

Go back up and read what Dave_r said. You can take his advice on engines to the bank.
馃槄 I was just told that it was cheaper and easier to find. Irony Alert

10w-30 is really the recommended oil in any case. I'm finding that non-detergent doesn't come up in any "engine oil" searches, because it is no longer used that way. More for hydraulics and such.

Oh well, I'm not going to spend half my life trying to pursue something that may or may not be any better. We'll see what I do. Probably just go with 10w-30 for today, and get bulk Rotella in the future...

-S.W.
 

Registered
Joined
2,712 Posts
Having worked in the OPE industry for more than a few years I learned a lot about lubricants but am by no means a guru. Save your non detergent oils for compressors and pressure washers, the o rings and seals will deteriorate with regular automotive lubricant. By the same token a good quality detergent oil is best for engines especially those that don't have pressure lube and filters. Otherwise, sludge (abrasives) will form shortening the life of the engine. Single weight or multi viscosity is an argument for another time, I used name brand 10W30 because it was readily available. Let's face it, the average mower only lasts a relatively short time because of extreme operating conditions and poor maintenance. Most of us tend to be more diligent and tend to get extra life out of our equipment but again it is finite. If your boss is smart, he will be upgrading every two or three years anyway to minimize down time and take advantage of tax breaks.
 

Registered
Joined
920 Posts
the average mower only lasts a relatively short time because of extreme opera
Having worked in the OPE industry for more than a few years I learned a lot about lubricants but am by no means a guru. Save your non detergent oils for compressors and pressure washers, the o rings and seals will deteriorate with regular automotive lubricant. By the same token a good quality detergent oil is best for engines especially those that don't have pressure lube and filters. Otherwise, sludge (abrasives) will form shortening the life of the engine. Single weight or multi viscosity is an argument for another time, I used name brand 10W30 because it was readily available. Let's face it, the average mower only lasts a relatively short time because of extreme operating conditions and poor maintenance. Most of us tend to be more diligent and tend to get extra life out of our equipment but again it is finite. If your boss is smart, he will be upgrading every two or three years anyway to minimize down time and take advantage of tax breaks.
Don't tell my 6- 40-45year old engines that they got to wear out soon------
----It was recommended to use 30w non detergent oil in them--Hum I guess it works--- Now that said there is some hydro-oil that is Stright 30w and we all know that this is real clean oil.
 

Registered
Joined
48 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Having worked in the OPE industry for more than a few years I learned a lot about lubricants but am by no means a guru. Save your non detergent oils for compressors and pressure washers, the o rings and seals will deteriorate with regular automotive lubricant. By the same token a good quality detergent oil is best for engines especially those that don't have pressure lube and filters. Otherwise, sludge (abrasives) will form shortening the life of the engine. Single weight or multi viscosity is an argument for another time, I used name brand 10W30 because it was readily available. Let's face it, the average mower only lasts a relatively short time because of extreme operating conditions and poor maintenance. Most of us tend to be more diligent and tend to get extra life out of our equipment but again it is finite. If your boss is smart, he will be upgrading every two or three years anyway to minimize down time and take advantage of tax breaks.
You talked about compressors, and pressure washers, and non pressure systems. What about the full pressure systems that I have? You said detergent was good for non pressure systems, does it matter with filters and mechanical oil pumps? 馃え

I see what you're saying though. In the end I just went for 10w-30 just to be safe... it is the OG recommended oil after all.

BTW, the two machines my boss owns are both ~13 years old. Still going strong. Says he'll run them until they die, they don't owe him anything. In the meantime, he gets to enjoy pocketing the extra net. He also has an extra backup machine (mine) that I was able to buy for the almost scrap price of $400. (It had a blown engine) A few hundred dollars more and I have a newer machine then his that's worth at least three times what I paid for it ;) Just saying that it's worth keeping the old things running sometimes...

-S.W.
 
1 - 20 of 46 Posts
Top