Trainfan, you're a smart guy. I think you've misunderstood what I meant.
I've seen that law trumpeted for the stupidest of reasons, mostly by AmSoil
"dealers." My statement was not based upon the idea that he was using a
full synthetic, but that he is using a different viscosity than is specified
by the manufacturer. You may, of course, use any brand that you want, and
even oils that have varying bases, i.e. conventional, semi- or full
synthetic. You may not, however, use a product that doesn't meet the
specification of the manufacturer without voiding the warranty.
Additionally, let me say that I have no problem personally with using 5w30
or 0w30 in place of 5w20, especially if you're using full synthetic instead
of the factory semi-synthetic. In fact, I do that very thing in my 2003
Triton. It specifies 5w20, and I use either 5w30 or 0w30 Mobil 1, whichever
is in stock. I have heard people say that they had been given a hard time
by their Ford dealer if they had used an oil which varied from the
specification, which is why I was trying to simply tell the guy to keep the
info to himself if he ever had a warranty issue.
The law you mention basically states that the manufacturer may not specify a
brand unless they provide you with the product for free. They may, however,
specify a standard, which, I'm sure you agree, includes their right to
specify a viscosity. According to your logic, he could put in 90 weight
gear oil and Ford would have no recourse if the gear oil was sae certified.
I totally disagree.
EXCEPT gear oil is not API (which is what I meant to say instead of SAE)
rated as an engine lubricating oil for his Ford. If the vehicle
manufacturer calls for API Service SM/CF oil, any SM/CF or better oil
will suffice to keep the warranty intact.
This is not true. Ford can and did create its own specification for the
lubricating oil. They don't have to specify that any oil that meets API
certifications is acceptable.The API standard is an industry standard that
oil companies and auto companies have jointly developed as a convenience. It
is not a legal requirement. The only thing they can't do because of the
Magnum-Moss Act is to require you to buy "Ford" brand oil. Your warranty is
protected as long as the oil you buy meets the appropriate Ford
specifications (no matter who makes it). My owner's manual has the
following to say on engine oil:
"Only use oils "Certified For Gasoline Engines" by the American Petroleum
Institute (API). To protect your engine's warranty use Motorcraft SAE 5W-20
or an equivalent 5W-20 oil meeting Ford specification WSS-M2C153-H."
Most makers of quality oil explicitly state that they meet this
specification for at least one grade of oil. The chances of having a
warranty claimed denied because you used a good quality API certified 5W30
oil instead of 5W20 oil are virtually nil. Ford would need to prove that the
viscosity difference was responsible for the damage and this is not going to
happen. Most of the engines for which the 5W20 oil is specified are
mechanically identical to engines where 5W30 was the recommended oil just a
few years ago. I know of at least two cases where dealers recommended the
use of thicker oil than 5W20. If you go in with a specific complaint (like
lifter noise, or piston slap) there is a good chance the dealership will
insist that you use 5W20 oil before they will consider diagnosising the
problem. Very few engine failures during the warranty period are oil related
If anything, you should see a slight increase. I use 0W30 in place of 5W20
year around. Great stuff. There are no negative consequences other than,
possibly, cost. One may be able to argue that synthetic oil isn't justified
given your set of circumstances. I'll leave that possibility for others.
I went with the Mobil1 5w30 simply because my retailer sells it in the five
quart container at a savings over buying the 5w20 in separate quart
containers. in regard to fuel efficiency, my car's system is reporting a
loss of about 10% mpg under identical driving conditions over the last
On Tue, 31 Jan 2006 13:16:08 GMT, Backyard Mechanic
It is basically a farm subsidy program in disguise. It is
not possible that it is cost effective when you lose
performance and efficiency while paying more per gallon
production cost. Here in GA, the Feds have compelled us to
used the KA fuel blend even though the research folks from
several of the research institutions have concluded that
another cheaper to produce in greater volume and more energy
efficient blend without ethanol that we were using was what
we needed to most effectively reduce pollution in this
Only consequence I can think of is that by the time your engine
accumulates 300,000 - 400,000 miles, the rest of the car will be rusted
out or falling apart.
If the Taurus is driven regularly and for distance driving(35K-40K mi.
per year), you can get 18,000 to 20,000 miles per oil change too.
Somewhere in your owners manual, you will find a chart sugggesting which oil
viscosities are recommended for which temperature ranges.... A little tough
for me to check our tech site since I'm in Edmonton and doomed to using
"turtlenet" for the next three days.
Advice to all... the owners manual is an absolute wealth of information....
yet it remains to be the most expensive unread book in print...
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