Update: 5W-30 & Heavier Recommended RoTW

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People here do realize these recommendations might change by year, correct? I know the transfer case fluids did. We are taking about a vehicle and engine that has spanned 13 model years.
For USA market engine oil, I looked. Used to be 0W20/5W20, as depicted here. But then changed to 0W20, with verbiage that essentially says you can use 5W20 no more than 50% of the time (sorta).
 
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@04UZJ100 , "Theoretically", per the manual, I could alternate between 0W20 and 5W20, right? That was the basis for my ~50% max comment.


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I’m not debating you anymore. You’re just trying to be difficult all while running 5W30.
Nah, as long as you keep your facts straight, I'm pretty easy. These forums are public -- they're not just for you and me. Thus, I'm not 'debating' you personally. I've already demonstrated my willingness to concede. But, with the same fervor, I won't concede to misinformation. You are free to spout it. I'm free to call you out. That is what you are perceiving as difficult.

IMHO, I feel that you, or anyone else, who runs 5W30 and suddenly needs a lubrication-related USA-based warranty claim, might have a very difficult time if Mr. T knew. You may not care...but I'd like others to be really clear on that. It's a risk that you/they are taking.

And, consider your OP: even IF all this 'debate' is just an EPA thing (I'm now on your side with that), I hope you realize that is not at all insignificant. Can you imagine the hot water Toyota would be in if they somehow acknowledged, even indirectly, that their owners can violate emission-based law and still be honored with warranty consideration? I tell you: if Mr. T thinks you refused to follow their oil specification, regardless of how or why they were derived, I think you'd be f'ed. It's not really going to matter what is permitted in other countries.

You are convinced, and have me convinced, that mechanically we should be fine. Ok. But then when you go all Oprah on me -- "You're fine! And you're fine! Everybody is fine!" -- then I think you perhaps exceed your expertise? You are taking a huge risk. You deem your probability as low -- agree. But you don't seem to be accurately evaluating the potential consequence: no warranty coverage. Keep it simple. The manual leaves no doubt.

For me? Yes, I'm going to try 5W30. But that's because my consequence is already established: no warranty coverage. You helped resolved my probability concerns.

None of this has been difficult for me -- so I will likely struggle with what you think is me being difficult. Thanks for your OP, and your patience in helping this thread be more accurate and more thorough.
 
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Nah, as long as you keep your facts straight, I'm pretty easy. These forums are public -- they're not just for you and me. Thus, I'm not 'debating' you personally. I've already demonstrated my willingness to concede. But, with the same fervor, I won't concede to misinformation. You are free to spout it. I'm free to call you out. That is what you are perceiving as difficult.

IMHO, I feel that you, or anyone else, who runs 5W30 and suddenly needs a lubrication-related USA-based warranty claim, might have a very difficult time if Mr. T knew. You may not care...but I'd like others to be really clear on that. It's a risk that you/they are taking.

And, consider your OP: even IF all this 'debate' is just an EPA thing (I'm now on your side with that), I hope you realize that is not at all insignificant. Can you imagine the hot water Toyota would be in if they somehow acknowledged, even indirectly, that their owners can violate emission-based law and still be honored with warranty consideration? I tell you: if Mr. T thinks you refused to follow their oil specification, regardless of how or why they were derived, I think you'd be f'ed. It's not really going to matter what is permitted in other countries.

You are convinced, and have me convinced, that mechanically we should be fine. Ok. But then when you go all Oprah on me -- "You're fine! And you're fine! Everybody is fine!" -- then I think you perhaps exceed your expertise? You are taking a huge risk. You deem your probability as low -- agree. But you don't seem to be accurately evaluating the potential consequence: no warranty coverage. Keep it simple. The manual leaves no doubt.

For me? Yes, I'm going to try 5W30. But that's because my consequence is already established: no warranty coverage. You helped resolved my probability concerns.

None of this has been difficult for me -- so I will likely struggle with what you think is me being difficult. Thanks for your OP, and your patience in helping this thread be more accurate and more thorough.
My facts were never wrong.

You have far too much confidence in dealer related mechanical failures, troubleshooting, and diagnoses. When is the last time you heard of a dealer running lubricity and oil analysis testing to verify cause for mechanical failure.

What is stopping me from putting 0W20 in my engine if it decides to throw a rod tomorrow? Absolutely nothing.

Your confidence in the dealer doing a thorough FMEA and RCFA is hopelessly optimistic. Toyota “how did the oil look”, dealer “clean and fresh”. That is the extent of the conversation that would occur.

If Toyota decides to take it further, what basis do they have to stand on when their manual for the IDENTICAL vehicle has different oil recommendations in other parts of the word. Absolutely Nothing.
 
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My facts were never wrong.

You have far too much confidence in dealer related mechanical failures, troubleshooting, and diagnoses. When is the last time you heard of a dealer running lubricity and oil analysis testing to verify cause for mechanical failure.

What is stopping me from putting 0W20 in my engine if it decides to throw a rod tomorrow? Absolutely nothing.

Your confidence in the dealer doing a thorough FMEA and RCFA is hopelessly optimistic. Toyota “how did the oil look”, dealer “clean and fresh”. That is the extent of the conversation that would occur.

If Toyota decides to take it further, what basis do they have to stand on when their manual for the IDENTICAL vehicle has different oil recommendations in other parts of the word. Absolutely Nothing.

Failure modes?!! Lubricity analysis?!?! Wow. Give me some credit.

How about: "Lexus records indicate that you have never had the oil changed here or anywhere in our system. This is a very unusual failure. Since this is a lubrication failure, requiring a $20k warranty repair, Lexus HQ is asking you to provide receipts demonstrating compliance with the maintenance schedule." Receipts will show the wrong oil. That's not an absurd request. Simple. You TAKE A RISK in thinking your way...which was my point. But you want to think Toyota is all run by a bunch of wealthy idiots, and that they'll just kindly roll over, look the other way, and give you a $20k engine with little to no evaluation? Would you do that? Risky, IMO. Even if that is your result, I'm not comfortable advocating that as an expected result for others. Are you? I'm not familiar with warranty contracts: is the burden on you or Lexus to demonstrate compliance?

I told you the basis Toyota has: (1) EPA requirement, (2) Owner's Manual. Those seem pretty solid to me -- yet you assert that as "absolutely nothing" (or did you intend that as a fact?). You plan to comport yourself as authority above those 2 items, show up to small claims court, and point to a specification from another country? They are simply going to point to your Owner's Manual and Warranty Service Contract: 0W20. You're going to say, "Yes, but isn't that only there to appease the EPA!? Who really cares about a 0.5% MPG increase?!? Look at what other countries allow!" A kind judge will advise you to stop talking so that you don't incriminate yourself further of more serious crimes (e.g., willfully violating EPA requirements).

Again, mechanically speaking, all makes total sense. But my fear is you think that Physics will rule out when it comes to issues dealing with emission law and contract. Risky. Risky. Risky. I'm certainly not comfortable advocating what you expect as a guarantee. Seems you're banking on: (1) Toyota not investigating at all for a huge, unusual repair, or (2) if they do investigate, they have no case against you because you have your UAE spec in tote?

"My facts were never wrong." Isn't that circular reasoning?! Is there such a thing as a wrong fact? Ok, yes, that is me being difficult.

I think I've contributed all I can to this thread. If you feel attacked, sorry. IMO, contrary to yours, I would be uncomfortable with a decision to purposefully deviate from the owner's manual and still expect warranty protection on those related components. I want others to be adequately informed before following any other opinion/fact/conjecture/other market specification. I felt you were making it too comfortable for them: "Don't worry about it...you'll be fine." Hope so.
 
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Austin, just changed to 5w30 at a local friends shop. All of the s***ty ticking and rough rumbling idle is gone. Engine is smooth now.
Oil pressure actually responds under load unlike the anemic 0w20 where flooring the car barely raised it a tick. I cant imagine that was good for the car.

5w30 for me from now on. Maybe 0w30 for winter? But will it freeze again next year? Who knows.

Also, it gets really hot here. So yeah, above 100F. And I let my car warm up a little before hitting the road.
Not a lot of places in the world break 100F, you should be running a heavier oil here in Texas. Forget the manual.
 
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Austin, just changed to 5w30 at a local friends shop. All of the s***ty ticking and rough rumbling idle is gone. Engine is smooth now.
Oil pressure actually responds under load unlike the anemic 0w20 where flooring the car barely raised it a tick. I cant imagine that was good for the car.

5w30 for me from now on. Maybe 0w30 for winter? But will it freeze again next year? Who knows.

Also, it gets really hot here. So yeah, above 100F. And I let my car warm up a little before hitting the road.
Not a lot of places in the world break 100F, you should be running a heavier oil here in Texas. Forget the manual.
Awesome!
 

vtl

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On my brand new truck I've switched to Red Line 0w20 at 3k on odo and then went back to Toyota 0w20 at 16k. The main reason for going back was my Volvo engine I was rebuilding after exhaust valve failure. But speaking about 0w20 oils in 3UR-FE...

When Red Line has been drained on a slightly warmed engine, maybe 100F, its viscosity was higher than Toyota's one that sat overnight on the concrete floor in garage with ~50F air temp. You can feel immediately that the engine is more noisy, spins easier and returns slightly better MPG with Toyota.

Not sure how well Toyota's high moli content will help with the wear. Red Line protects the engine against mechanical wear extremely well. I took apart two similar engines (Volvo), with similar mileage around 220k, one was on Red Line and short OCI (5-7k) for years, another one was a generic beater. I measured bore wear, Red Line engine showed twice less wear. The clearance even allowed reusing old pistons.

I probably go back to Red Line with my next oil change. Don't like the valvetrain tick. Maybe switch to European version if it has lesser calcium content. High oil consumption via dead valve stem seals in my Volvo engine resulted in a lot of calcium deposits in the combustion chambers and eventual valve death that had a cement-like chunk pinched between its face and the seat.

Red Line 0w20 is a good alternative to 5w30, but please refrain using it once the engine starts consuming oil, until you fix the problem. That applies to all oils high in calcium.
 
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On my brand new truck I've switched to Red Line 0w20 at 3k on odo and then went back to Toyota 0w20 at 16k. The main reason for going back was my Volvo engine I was rebuilding after exhaust valve failure. But speaking about 0w20 oils in 3UR-FE...

When Red Line has been drained on a slightly warmed engine, maybe 100F, its viscosity was higher than Toyota's one that sat overnight on the concrete floor in garage with ~50F air temp. You can feel immediately that the engine is more noisy, spins easier and returns slightly better MPG with Toyota.

Not sure how well Toyota's high moli content will help with the wear. Red Line protects the engine against mechanical wear extremely well. I took apart two similar engines (Volvo), with similar mileage around 220k, one was on Red Line and short OCI (5-7k) for years, another one was a generic beater. I measured bore wear, Red Line engine showed twice less wear. The clearance even allowed reusing old pistons.

I probably go back to Red Line with my next oil change. Don't like the valvetrain tick. Maybe switch to European version if it has lesser calcium content. High oil consumption via dead valve stem seals in my Volvo engine resulted in a lot of calcium deposits in the combustion chambers and eventual valve death that had a cement-like chunk pinched between its face and the seat.

Red Line 0w20 is a good alternative to 5w30, but please refrain using it once the engine starts consuming oil, until you fix the problem. That applies to all oils high in calcium.
I just went from red line 0w20 to renewable lubricants 5w30. The engine is much quieter and seems smoother with the 5w30.
 

vtl

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I just went from red line 0w20 to renewable lubricants 5w30. The engine is much quieter and seems smoother with the 5w30.
Yes, the heavier the oil the thicker the oil film. I wanted to point at the thicker Red Line's oil film while staying within recommended 0w20 viscosity.

On the other hand, Toyota has relatively a lot of moly, which helps with the wear, however does not do any noise cancelling, like thicker oil does. So this is a two-fold thing what allow more wear: dull 5w30 or high-moly 0w20.
 
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Yes, the heavier the oil the thicker the oil film. I wanted to point at the thicker Red Line's oil film while staying within recommended 0w20 viscosity.

On the other hand, Toyota has relatively a lot of moly, which helps with the wear, however does not do any noise cancelling, like thicker oil does. So this is a two-fold thing what allow more wear: dull 5w30 or high-moly 0w20.
So are you saying that redline 0w20 is thicker than other 0w20 oils? This kinda doesn't make sense.

When I went from 0w20 toyota oil to redline 0w20 oil there was no difference between the two as far as noise and smoothness is concerned.
 

vtl

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So are you saying that redline 0w20 is thicker than other 0w20 oils? This kinda doesn't make sense.

When I went from 0w20 toyota oil to redline 0w20 oil there was no difference between the two as far as noise and smoothness is concerned.
Yes, Red Line is thicker (look at the cSt numbers): 0W20 Motor Oil - https://www.redlineoil.com/0w20-motor-oil vs PETROLEUM QUALITY INSTITUTE OF AMERICA TEST PROGRAM - http://pqiadata.org/Toyota_0W20.html

5w30 is even thicker, I don't object that fact ;)
 
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Recently made the switch and went on an 1100mi trip. all good, my oil pressure gauge moves now, just like everyone reported. engine sounds the same.
 

bloc

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So are you saying that redline 0w20 is thicker than other 0w20 oils? This kinda doesn't make sense.

I realize this is an old post but the response could inform some people.

The viscosity indexes listed on the bottle are only ranges that the oil needs to operate within. It is common for a manufacturer to push their product to the edge of the range to achieve a given objective.. for instance many of the oils listed as allowing you to extend your drain intervals are formulated to come in just under the upper limit of their viscosity range. As the oil shears down from use this means it can be used longer while staying within the published viscosity range. They will include additives that help prevent this shear, but with the OCIs some of these oils are pushing they need all the help they can get. Or, a fuel-efficiency-focused oil could be thinner, with more of the additives that prevent or counteract shearing down.

This requires quality in producing the products.. a lower quality oil will have trouble keeping the end viscosity uniform and may go out of range if their target is near one end of that range.. so they tend to shoot for a target closer to the middle.

This also means that if you have a reason or frankly the OCD, you can do the research and find an oil that achieves your objectives while staying within a given published range. Like if you want to stay with a 0w-20 for extra insurance against warranty claim denial, but want to run as thick of an oil as possible.. they are out there.

There is a lot going on with modern oils and even more ability to nerd out on the stuff. I've spent way more time than I should have on bobistheoilguy but it has given me the ability to bore the hell out of my friends...
 
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As we're not too far out from winter...

I'll make a case for 0W-30. Closer in characteristics to the original recommended 0W-20 fill, but with higher viscosity on the hot end to support harsh use in the hottest of summers.

Predominent temperatures in your region should drive your choice.

I use to switch between 0w-20 for winter and 0w-30 for summer. 0W-30 for summer as towing 15k lbs worth of rig in 100*F+ in the summer, over the Rockies and Sierras holding 5k RPM for 30 minutes of time. My track days taught me to use higher viscosities for extended hot use, and this certainly was it. Also, rock crawling is not harsh use.

Now I run 0W-30 all year round. The 200-series makes such a great travel vehicle that we'll often experience really cold under freezing and hot weather in the same trip.

Having a free flowing OEM recommended viscosity for cold help maintain startup protection in the cold.

0W-30 year round for me.

As I'm also cheap and pragmatic, 0W-30 Mobil 1 is easily found in mainstream Wally world and chains. I don't care to pay extra for boutique brands. Rather I keep to a consistent 5k change interval (unless really abusing the oil on harsher tow trips).
 

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