20-50w or 10-40w - BMW Luxury Touring Community
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 25 Old Aug 13th, 2007, 2:22 pm Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Swindon, , England
Posts: 63
20-50w or 10-40w

I have been investigating my choice of oil for the next service interval. I have decided to change to Amsoil. I have found out after some investigation that using their motorcycle specific oil would affect the catalytic converter so I will be buying their car specific oil. Recently BMW changed their recommendations from 10-40w to 20-50w , although I know that the viscosity index and, as such the operating ranges are different does anyone know exactly why they have changed their recommendation? Is it due to better performance and starting etc?

Dave

Last edited by Dangerous2; Aug 13th, 2007 at 2:48 pm.
Dangerous2 is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 25 Old Aug 13th, 2007, 2:39 pm
Senior Member
 
JPSpen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Jones, OK, USA
Posts: 3,525
Depends on temperature

Right now here in Oklahoma It's over 100 degrees. Hence the 20 W 50

But for you . I think 10W40 would be the norm. I'm thinking it's not quite as hot there as it is here...

John

Live and direct from the new earthquake capitol of the U.S. Jones, Oklahoma
08 Can-Am Spyder (Miss Lindy's)
03 R1200CLC Capri Blue "Flipper"
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

01 R1100RT Glacier Blue "Lucky"
91 R100GS "It'sNotAMoneyPit"
The voices in my head may not be real, But they have some good ideas!


"I like the wind in my face and Boobies on my back. No, Wait, I got that backwards"

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
JPSpen is offline  
post #3 of 25 Old Aug 13th, 2007, 2:55 pm Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Swindon, , England
Posts: 63
John
Speaking to a rep at Castrol UK today he says that in his native country of Australia they run 10-40w in 50c without problems. From what I have read a 10-40w will cool an engine better than 20-50w.
Dave
Dangerous2 is offline  
 
post #4 of 25 Old Aug 13th, 2007, 5:09 pm
Senior Member
 
Newf's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 353
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dangerous2
John
From what I have read a 10-40w will cool an engine better than 20-50w.
Dave
Never heard that one before. It may be better on a cold start 10 vs 20 at start up.

Manny
Where is the nearest Tims?

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

Need to stay awake

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Newf is offline  
post #5 of 25 Old Aug 13th, 2007, 5:18 pm
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 575
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dangerous2
I have been investigating my choice of oil for the next service interval. I have decided to change to Amsoil. I have found out after some investigation that using their motorcycle specific oil would affect the catalytic converter so I will be buying their car specific oil. Recently BMW changed their recommendations from 10-40w to 20-50w , although I know that the viscosity index and, as such the operating ranges are different does anyone know exactly why they have changed their recommendation? Is it due to better performance and starting etc?

Dave
Amsoil motorcycle oil should not affect the catalytic converter. The Amsoil warranty should pay for parts and labor should the catalytic converter be damaged earlier than normal. The Amsoil motorcycle oil is the older API SG SL/CF formula and should have more zinc and phosphorus compared to API SM formula, yet has less than Golden Spectro, Mobil 1 motorcycle, Royal Purple and Maxima. However, the Noak Volatility of this oil is only 3.89% for the 20W50 (MCV) and 6.44% for the 10W40 motorcycle oil (MCF). So very little oil should be passing into the exhaust carrying very little catalyst poisoners. I don't use any noticeable amount of oil in my K1200LT with 12,000 mile oil changes, so feel very minimal amount of metals are going to the catalyst. Lot's of good motorcycle oil info on zinc, Noack and much more at http://www.amsoil.com/lit/g2156.pdf .

The Amsoil 20W50 (ARO) and 10W40 (AMO) car oils are recommended for motorcycles and might be API SL or SM (best to check the label and with Amsoil) so may have similar or about 30% less metals in them. Noack Volatility is 6.7% and 6.5%, so a little more volatile. These are still very low when compared to many oils testing in the 7-12%.

To affect the catalytic converter, you have to burn a lot of oil containing high levels of metals to poison the catalytic converter. I don't think I've heard of one be poisoned on the K1200LT. But a good reason to avoid API SM oils with high Noack Volatility weight%.

If you choose the AMO, Amsoil recommends changing it at up to 6,000 miles for the LT, and up to 12,000 miles or once a year for the their motorcycle specific oil. For me this is important, for others it might not be.

My 2006 owners manual says you can use 15W40 oils up to 86F and 10W40 oil up to 68F. However it does list 10W40+ "special" oils to be used at temps -4F to over 86F. I would think Amsoil's group IV PAO oils would be in this class. 10W40 should give better fuel economy, better extremely cold weather starts, and more power. Most of the new Honda motorcycles are now recommending 10W30 instead of 10W40, and in some cases recommend it for the older models as well.

I may also switch to the 10W40 Amsoil motorcycle oil for the winter temps when my warranty expires in a year, but it is 102F here today so will stick with the 20W50 for now. Let us know how it works for you.

Can you reference where you read about BMW changing oil viscosity recommendations?
TimVipond is offline  
post #6 of 25 Old Aug 13th, 2007, 5:28 pm
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Redlands, CA, USA
Posts: 439
I've seen the chart in my manual and often wondered why they even make this chart for us to go by. The LT is a liquid cooled engine and runs pretty much at the same temperature whether it's 25 degrees or 100 degrees. I can see having a lighter oil for cold start ups but that would be the only reason. On the other hand, an air cooled motor will run at a temperatures that vary according to the air temperature and should have an oil that matches the outside air temperature. Anyone have an answer?
BEhrler is offline  
post #7 of 25 Old Aug 13th, 2007, 5:46 pm
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 575
Lower cold weather viscosities such as 5W or 10W has less resistance to flow when starting a cold engine in very cold temperatures and allow less wear at startup. As the oil warms up, it will thin out depending on the oil temperature and the viscosity. In cold weather you may notice your engine may never exceed mid range, but in hot weather, the temperature may go near maximum especially when idling. If the oil becomes too thin at extremely hot temperatures, an SAE 30 oil may be too thin to provide adequate protection, where an SAE 50 may thick enough for protection. However in most multiweight oils, it would take a lot of polymeric viscosity improvers to provide an ideal 5W50 weight which could make the oil shear down to a 30 weight under extreme conditions. A 20W50 would have fewer or perhaps no viscosity improvers to shear less to a lower viscosity. This is why they recommend the smallest spread between the multiweight oil in the recommended temperature range.

Hope that helps.
TimVipond is offline  
post #8 of 25 Old Aug 13th, 2007, 6:14 pm
Senior Member
 
petevandyke's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Dallas, TX, USA
Posts: 1,741
Quote:
Originally Posted by TimVipond
Lower cold weather viscosities such as 5W or 10W has less resistance to flow when starting a cold engine in very cold temperatures and allow less wear at startup. As the oil warms up, it will thin out depending on the oil temperature and the viscosity. In cold weather you may notice your engine may never exceed mid range, but in hot weather, the temperature may go near maximum especially when idling. If the oil becomes too thin at extremely hot temperatures, an SAE 30 oil may be too thin to provide adequate protection, where an SAE 50 may thick enough for protection. However in most multiweight oils, it would take a lot of polymeric viscosity improvers to provide an ideal 5W50 weight which could make the oil shear down to a 30 weight under extreme conditions. A 20W50 would have fewer or perhaps no viscosity improvers to shear less to a lower viscosity. This is why they recommend the smallest spread between the multiweight oil in the recommended temperature range.

Hope that helps.

the man knows his oil!

I'd stick with 20W 50, MOTORCYCLE oil as well...I am not certain whether the manufacturer talk about "automotove oil can cause damage to motorcycles" is true or hype, but I don't want to chance it personally. But in theory, why would ANY oil potentially cause damage to a cat converter unless you were burning large amounts of oil (and therefore had something seriously wrong) anyway?

========================================
When life throws you a curve, LEAN INTO IT!!!
2000 R1100RT-P...R.I.P. "Old motorcycle"
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

2004 K1200LT "Lick and Tickle"
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


FU*K Cancer. If I have one more MRI, I'll stick to the refrigerator door.
petevandyke is offline  
post #9 of 25 Old Aug 13th, 2007, 6:34 pm
Senior Member
 
rattler50's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Wichita Falls, Tx, USA
Posts: 1,337
10w40

I run 10W40 Quaker State in every vehicle I have except the LT. I use 20W50 QS in it. It has always served me well. I doubt if there is much difference in it. I'd trust either one........JMHO

2006 R1200RT
2005 K1200LT Ocean Blue
2003 K1200LTE Black
Totaled Oct 2, 2010
2006 Kawasaki Vulcan 2000
Most of us would rather be ruined by praise than saved by criticism.
rattler50 is offline  
post #10 of 25 Old Aug 13th, 2007, 6:37 pm
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 575
Pete - I haven't heard of any catalytic converter replacements done on motorcycles, so I agree and think it is rare except in a case like you describe.

But for a bike with a catalytic converter like ours, would you rather have an oil like Golden Spectro American 4 with Noack Volatility of 9% and zinc of 2162ppm, or an oil like Lucas with a Noack Volatility of 3.8% and zinc of 907ppm. You can guess which will make the catalytic converter last the longest, but maybe Golden Spectro will be fine for those who don't rack up the miles. But there are tradeoffs and Golden Spectro outperforms Lucas in other tests. Overall I think Amsoil has the better overall test results, but is not the best in every single test. You just have to pick and choose which test results are important to you.
TimVipond is offline  
post #11 of 25 Old Aug 13th, 2007, 7:22 pm
Senior Member
 
info's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Albuquerque, NM, USA
Posts: 110
Repsol makes a 10W50 oil if you are concerned about having the proper weight as that would cover any BMW requirement and it is a motorcycle specific oil.

Hello 07 R1200S
Bye2006 LT
1982 R65
Buy More Warranty!
info is offline  
post #12 of 25 Old Aug 13th, 2007, 7:25 pm
LAF
Lifetime Supporter
 
LAF's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Harrisburg , PA, USA
Posts: 2,978
Here in Pennsatuckey, I run 20-50 summer, and 10-40 winter.

Have in all the bikes I have owned and that I ride year round.

Lee
17.5 R1200 GSW Black Low
15 R1200 RTLC San Marino Blue Metallic (Sold)
10 Liquid Silver FJR1300 (Sold)
O7 Biarritz Blue Metallic LT (Totaled 2010)
ATGATT I am breathing proof.
BMW MOA #135959
LAF is online now  
post #13 of 25 Old Aug 13th, 2007, 8:18 pm
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Posts: 339
Mobil 1 15W50 synthetic, year round.

Worth every penny.

2000 K1200LT
1981 Honda CBX ( kind of for sale)
K1200LTryder is offline  
post #14 of 25 Old Aug 13th, 2007, 8:39 pm
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 575
Quote:
Originally Posted by LAF
Here in Pennsatuckey, I run 20-50 summer, and 10-40 winter.

Have in all the bikes I have owned and that I ride year round.
Lee - which oils and what have you noticed?
TimVipond is offline  
post #15 of 25 Old Aug 13th, 2007, 10:03 pm
LAF
Lifetime Supporter
 
LAF's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Harrisburg , PA, USA
Posts: 2,978
Quote:
Originally Posted by TimVipond
Lee - which oils and what have you noticed?
I ride when it is 20-30* out and have been out in the teens a fair bit.

As far as notice not sure what you mean.

I am very fussy about warm up and I don't care what anyone says, motors need to get warm and that includes oil. When it is 30 outside my Harley would have sat at idle 10 minuets at least, until I finished with outer garments, got all plugged in gear wise, and situated and stuff. I would then ride 16 miles in semi-city, stop and go traffic to work, and still only saw 170 or so on the oil temp.

And that was a Rev Performance 98" Nikasil jugs, forged pistons, Speeds Cam 615/585 lift, 10.8 compression.

What that taught me was that in the cold it takes a pretty good amount of time to heat oil, and in my opinion the Tranny would take much longer. That build is a cooker for an old style Big Twin.

So I warm the bike up a long time and ALWAYS used a full synthetic in my tranny. I also like synthetic for it's ability to cling on parts and pretty important in a gear box and now a FD also.

I have found no mater what flavor, synth or dino, the 10-40 was a good Winter oil and a good compromise for the thinning at start, and protection while running.

In the 98" after I got past 2000 miles (their recommendation for life time warranty on the Nikasil jugs to stay in force) I used strait 60W Amsoil Racing in the summer and 10w40 Winter. That 60W will quiet down that front exhaust valve a bit on a Harley, but wont cure it

A 5 W anything wont give me full warm protection IMHO, and 20w50 ain't going nowhere fast at 20-30 degrees.

Just think they are realistic weights for my area of the US where we have 4 distinct seasons.

Lee
17.5 R1200 GSW Black Low
15 R1200 RTLC San Marino Blue Metallic (Sold)
10 Liquid Silver FJR1300 (Sold)
O7 Biarritz Blue Metallic LT (Totaled 2010)
ATGATT I am breathing proof.
BMW MOA #135959
LAF is online now  
post #16 of 25 Old Aug 14th, 2007, 12:42 pm Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Swindon, , England
Posts: 63
Thanks to everyone for the replies. Here are a few answers to some of the questions posed by this post:

∑ Newf- Iím not sure where I read that a 10w-40 will cool an engine better than a 20w-50 but looking at it logically could it be because it is less viscous?

∑ Tim- I have consulted Amsoil directly and they advised that you do not use their Motorcycle specific oil if you have a catalytic converter, by the way the tech I spoke to had never heard of a motorcycle with a catalytic converter. As for where did I here that BMW changed their recommendation as to which weight oil to use, this came from my BMW dealer who had been instructed by BMW to change the weight when servicing.

∑ Petevandyke- The Amsoil dealer in the UK said that it may take 60,000 miles for the catalytic converter to become contaminated but it will happen if you use the motorcycle specific oil.

Dave
Dangerous2 is offline  
post #17 of 25 Old Aug 14th, 2007, 1:47 pm
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 575
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dangerous2
∑ Tim- I have consulted Amsoil directly and they advised that you do not use their Motorcycle specific oil if you have a catalytic converter, by the way the tech I spoke to had never heard of a motorcycle with a catalytic converter. As for where did I here that BMW changed their recommendation as to which weight oil to use, this came from my BMW dealer who had been instructed by BMW to change the weight when servicing.

∑ Petevandyke- The Amsoil dealer in the UK said that it may take 60,000 miles for the catalytic converter to become contaminated but it will happen if you use the motorcycle specific oil.

Dave
I am checking with Amsoil to get the official word on using motorcycle oils with motorcycles with catalytic converters. Amsoil is growing at a huge pace, has a lot of new people, and someone who does not know that many motorcycles have catalytic converters may be in error when he/she advised not to use their motorcycle specific oil.

Do you have the name of the person you spoke to? Was it male or female? Did you call the Amsoil technical line, or an Amsoil Dealer?
TimVipond is offline  
post #18 of 25 Old Aug 14th, 2007, 2:11 pm Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Swindon, , England
Posts: 63
Tim

I rang their technical line. A male answered, I don't recall his name.

Dave
Dangerous2 is offline  
post #19 of 25 Old Aug 14th, 2007, 2:29 pm
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 575
Was it the tech line in the US? I want to track this down and get the best answer from Amsoil. In 2002 and 2003, 20% of all motorcycles sold have catalytic converters. It is estimated that 50% will by 2010.
TimVipond is offline  
post #20 of 25 Old Aug 14th, 2007, 4:00 pm Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Swindon, , England
Posts: 63
Tim
US Tech line
Dave
Dangerous2 is offline  
post #21 of 25 Old Aug 14th, 2007, 4:07 pm
Senior Member
 
petevandyke's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Dallas, TX, USA
Posts: 1,741
Quote:
Originally Posted by TimVipond
Pete - I haven't heard of any catalytic converter replacements done on motorcycles, so I agree and think it is rare except in a case like you describe.

But for a bike with a catalytic converter like ours, would you rather have an oil like Golden Spectro American 4 with Noack Volatility of 9% and zinc of 2162ppm, or an oil like Lucas with a Noack Volatility of 3.8% and zinc of 907ppm. You can guess which will make the catalytic converter last the longest, but maybe Golden Spectro will be fine for those who don't rack up the miles. But there are tradeoffs and Golden Spectro outperforms Lucas in other tests. Overall I think Amsoil has the better overall test results, but is not the best in every single test. You just have to pick and choose which test results are important to you.

Yeah, what he said!!!

Dangerous: that would seriously suck if a company that sells "MOTORCYCLE OIL" says privately that it's motorcycle oil may be harmful to some motorcycles...

========================================
When life throws you a curve, LEAN INTO IT!!!
2000 R1100RT-P...R.I.P. "Old motorcycle"
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

2004 K1200LT "Lick and Tickle"
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


FU*K Cancer. If I have one more MRI, I'll stick to the refrigerator door.
petevandyke is offline  
post #22 of 25 Old Aug 14th, 2007, 7:22 pm
Senior Member
 
Newf's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 353
Quote:
Originally Posted by LAF
Here in Pennsatuckey, I run 20-50 summer, and 10-40 winter.

Have in all the bikes I have owned and that I ride year round.
That is what I did in my last ride. had over 100,000 on her with no problems.

Manny
Where is the nearest Tims?

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

Need to stay awake

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Newf is offline  
post #23 of 25 Old Aug 16th, 2007, 6:36 am Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Swindon, , England
Posts: 63
Tim
Did you get an answer from Amsoil? I have been doing a bit more investigation and according to Amsoil their motorcycle specific oil has very high levels of phosphorus, which are damaging to catalytic converters assuming that an engine will burn some oil this must be a consideration when choosing which of their products to buy.
Dangerous2 is offline  
post #24 of 25 Old Aug 16th, 2007, 12:09 pm
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 575
Dangerous2,

I spoke on the phone with Amsoil tech support yesterday and he said that Amsoil is well aware that many motorcycles (at least 20%) have catalytic converters, there is no documentation stating that the oil should not be used in motorcycles with catalytic converters, and that the Amsoil motorcycle oil was formulated to meet catalytic converter requirements. I also sent Amsoil an email and asked them to respond so I can post the official word here. I haven't heard back from them yet. I've seen some used Amsoil 20W50 MCV oil analyzed and the phosphorous is around 1200ppm (typical for motorcycle oils), which is a few hundred ppm higher than found in the new API SM car/truck oils, but with the much lower Noack Volatility and if you don't burn any oil like I, then you shouldn't get hardly any metals in your catalytic converter from the oil anyway.
TimVipond is offline  
post #25 of 25 Old Aug 21st, 2007, 6:45 pm
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 575
dangerous2,

I got this response from Amsoil regarding the use of Amsoil synthetic motorcycle oils in motocycles with catalytic converters.

Kathy Berry
Technical Service Administrator
715-392-7101, ext 6502
[email protected]

In response to your resent e-mail, we are not aware on any motorcycle manufacturer either offering or requiring the use of low SAPS oil in their motorcycle equipped with exhaust catalytic convertors. That being the case, there is no technical reason AMSOIL Motorcycle oils could not be safely used in such equipment. We hope you will find this helpful and should questions remain, please feel free to contact us.
TimVipond is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the BMW Luxury Touring Community forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in











Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome