I know its nothing serious,just was wanting to know that's all. Was just wondering if it was true that ford specs the 5w30 for the new f150 5.0 over there unlike here in the US where they spec the 5w20.
I can't speak for the Aussies, but 5W20 has been used in Ford engines for 15+ years. My '99 Taurus uses it as per factory specification.
It's not entirely CAFE related, but you're on the right track. the lighter oil flows better on start up which aids in lowering long term engine wear & tear. It's so minimal over a 5W30/10W30 you won't really notice it - unless you start and stop the engine 50 times a day.
The other reason is lighter oils are used is because of high-tech engine components. Tighter tolerances requires the use of a good viscosity engine oil. Older engines with 2valves could run on any engine oil, even the diesel stuff without worry of problems even after 100K miles.
Newer Honda vehicles (among many brands now) use 0W30 or an 0W20 engine oil. As an example with Honda, when you go past say 5000rpm, the VTEC kicks in to aid in better breathing and aid overall performance. It's better to have a good thin oil when systems like this kick on. Chances are high that most owners rarely take their engines much beyond 3500rpm and a regular 5W30 oil will suffice for that.
Lighter oils have a greater tendency to burn off quicker then say a 10W30 if you operate a vehicle in hot climates. However, 10W30 might be too heavy unless you can find a 10W30 synthetic to run, it won't cause much wear to the engine. If you operate 10W30, even synthetic, in a very cold climate, then you can run into problems with oil starvation. It might only last a few seconds longer for the oil to get to the critical engine components (top end mostly). Using a 5W20 or 0W30 oil will cut the oil starvation time in half in cold weather. This is why a lot of truckers don't shut their engines off while stopped. To rebuild a large diesel costs upwards of $20K USD, and it causes less wear and tear to keep the engine running then it does to constantly start it, especially in cold weather.
Ford (among every other manufacturer) weather tests their vehicles and the engineers help decide which oil would be best suited for not only operating inside the engine, but improving overall performance in various weather types.
Another reason for light oil is the overhead cams drive chain tensioners are tensioned off the oil pressure.
The more tension the more wear on the tensioner guides.
The greatest wear is at cold startup when the oil viscosity is greatest, hence the light weight # of 5 in the designation.
My 02 4.6 is at 182,000 miles and the motor is quiet as new from 5k-6k oil change intervals with Motorcraft 5w20 and filter each time.
I look at it this way: in 1972, you bought 30 or 40 weight oil, if you got 100K out of your engine without a rebuild, you thought you were getting away with murder. Roll 40 years into the future and you're putting these new lightweight blends in and people are getting pissed if they have to do any major engine work prior to 150K. The increase in life miles have a lot to do with design change and these changes incorporate the oil. I'll stick to the new oils and not worry about the CAFE standards.
To add on to what CatSkinner mentioned, technology in general for engine building has greatly increased primarily to using tighter machining tolerances, and better metallurgy know-how which is why some engines can get 300K+ without even thinking twice about it. Good quality oil is a definite key ingredient. Quality oil also allows you to drive farther per oil change, even more with full synthetic.
As an example, my 2000 Durango R/T, has a '360' engine, or 360cubic inch (5.9L) V8. The block itself dates back to the 70's, and was originally built to use 30W and 40W oils. The top end has been changed over the years to merely keep up in the horsepower race, but the basic engine architecture has remained the same.
I use Amsoil 5W30 full synthetic engine oil, change it once a year, and I have been using it for the last 7 years. Yes, I add oil throughout the course of the year and just recently in its 140K mile life it is starting to burn more oil than usual. I changed back to Standard oil, as it's cheaper to burn, and it still burns as much petrol based oil, as it did the higher priced synthetic, so knowingly a ring (or two) has bit the dust and I might get a few more months out of it.
In that 140K life, it's towed a 2.5 ton boat over 6K miles, various landscape, utility, and dump trailers from 0.5 to 3tons for no less than 30K miles (I own cars to commute with!). I also bought it used with 52K miles on it. It is my workhorse vehicle and the engine never once called attention to itself. I even modified it with some bolt on performance goodies and a programmer (one of the joys of computer controlled vehicles). If I didn't tow, I would be safe to assume that its 140K miles would be closer to 190K miles in regular driving, which is still rather spectacular. Who's to say the full synthetic oil I ran gave me another 5, 10, or 15K miles before my oil consumption greatly increased? Hmm. When towing on the highway the engine would turn at 2700-2900rpm in 3rd gear (1:1) and I believe the synthetic oil helped keep engine wear down. After draining it, I'd send a sample in for analysis and they said I could easily put an additional 11K on the oil without question. The oil is rated for 25K miles, or one year.
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