Why are Synthetic Oils met with ignorance and skepticism in a high-tech world?

Are Synthetic Oil Ignorance, Skepticism and Myths the results of Corporate Strategies and Technology Censorship?

Why use synthetic oils?It’s a valid question, because choosing high-performance synthetic oils for your personal vehicles and fleet is as much of a slam-dunk decision as buying a 4k Ultra HD TV instead of a 1970’s CRT TV like your grandparents watched.  And everyone should be using nanofiber oil filters instead of 1940’s paper media.  But why isn’t the decision just that clear, that simple?  It should be.  After all, you can buy a video drone at Walmart, we carry smartphones linked to watches, and computer programming is in every bit of technology we touch and hear.  With such high technology everywhere, there must be better filtration technologies than wood-pulp filter paper, and better lubricants than what can be separated from 3% of the decayed-plant remains of underground crude oil.

It’s not a big stretch to believe that, is it?  The fully trained experts know it’s true.  So why don’t all engineers, motorists, power-sports riders, and fleet managers trust synthetic lubrication technology? Why don’t they all know the superiority of specific constructed-molecule designs in true synthetics, and how anyone can spin on a nanofiber oil filter for an instant 70% wear-rate reduction?  They should know, because synthetic oil technology has been in the US market since at least 1970, and nanofiber filtration was already available for most vehicles before the iPhone 4 was introduced.

But they don’t, and it’s not plausible that this technical blind-spot is mere unguided coincidence.

Let’s pull back the curtain and consider what’s really going on in the automotive lubrication and filtration market. I’ve been puzzling over these things and investigating during my 15+ years as an AMSOIL dealer with 25 years in automotive engineering.  How can it be that the vast majority of engineers and drivers know so little about the far-superior  synthetic lubrication technology that was introduced to the US automotive market by an American company 45 years ago?  (Here’s a good review of the differences between petroleum and synthetic oils.)

What if, like the Wizard of Oz’ throne room in Emerald City, those in control hide the machines they have constructed with mechanisms to allow them to appear impressive and cool, while sounding wise and being helpful, and seemingly above any question of expertise or honesty, but hiding their agenda to censor technology awareness and guide consumer and corporate spending into their pockets. Maybe?  But, that’s crazy because a long-term PR campaign like that might cost… billions?  No person, corporation or cartel has that much money and that big a motive… or do they?

Since the 1890’s, the petroleum industry has invested hundreds of trillions of dollars in removing and processing ancient underground deposits of crude oil into fuel, lubricants, and thousands of products including plastics.  They have oil wells, pipelines, tanker ships, offshore drill platforms, and of course massive refineries with huge tank storage volumes.  It seems as if in the 1970’s, “big oil” realized they have immense built-in profit motivation to keep people from learning about synthetic oil and fuel technologies, and they had untold fortunes they could spend on psychological marketing strategies and legal tactics to keep everyone in the dark, harvesting the technology facts and locking them in controlled environments with limited, restricted public access.

For example, Exxon-Mobil produced just one synthetic oil – Mobil 1 – in limited quantities with high pricing, perhaps partly to overshadow AMSOIL’s market introduction two years earlier, and to control the market messaging about synthetic oils to limit the market adoption rate. The overwhelming petroleum-oil response was to badmouth, downplay, and spread fearful myths about the risks of trying synthetic engine oil, for more than 20 years.  Not until the 1990’s did all the major oil brands finally have a synthetic oil, yet many were hard to obtain without special order, and were mainly limited to racing use and exotic imports.

If such conspiracy seems too theoretical, consider these known examples of big-oil interference invisibly blocking and censoring real technologies, behind the scenes:

AMSOIL protects turbochargers 3 to 4 times better than Royal Purple and Mobil 1, and had ZERO LSPI events in GM’s dexos1®Gen 2, the auto-industry’s best available engine test as of Sept 2018.

Do you know that better, cheaper fuels exist than standard gasoline and diesel fuel?  About 2005, two global companies from Germany and South Africa came to Montana at the invitation of Governor Brian Schweitzer – a former research scientist.  After coal sample testing and economic analysis, they presented that they could build plants to turn America’s vast quantities of cheap, unwanted high-sulfur coal into sulfur-free diesel fuel of higher quality than petroleum diesel, and profitably sell the CTL diesel fuel for less than $1.50 per gallon!

Developed in the 1920’s, coal-derived jet and diesel fuels were part of Germany’s war machine in the ’40’s.  Germany and Africa have refined the technologies for years, and the USA has the world’s largest coal reserves which could power the entire globe for the next 250 to 500 years.  Despite compelling facts, big profit incentives, and Governor Schweitzer driving his diesel pickup on this fuel, not one single plant was built in the U.S.

Fracking vs coal mining: Care to guess which one is environmentally better, and cheaper?  Advanced “clean coal” technologies are real, but you wouldn’t know it because the oil industry and socialists have a war machine to keep them from going mainstream and providing better, cheaper power generation than natural gas (petroleum well out-gassing) which had been so worthless that it was burned off 24/7 in huge flames beside the oil-wells, even into the 1970’s).

Did you know that for at least three decades the rule-of-thumb in the Society of Automotive Engineering (SAE) has been that synthetic oils have 10 times the film strength of petroleum oil base stocks?  This means that synthetics inherently, unquestionably provide better wear protection – especially valuable during the zero oil pressure of engine starting, and drivetrain shock-loading events such as from pot-holes and railroad tracks. Obviously, the oil companies all knew this.  Evidently they didn’t want their captive markets to learn they had better options. 

But here you are!  So, let’s do an end-run around Big Oil’s technical-knowledge blockade and plunge into facts, shall we?

AMSOIL has guaranteed the 25k mile/1-year drain interval since the 1970’s.  Europe has used 15-25k oil change intervals for nearly two decades, and various European and OEM companies have acknowledged that 30,000 mile drain intervals are probably realistic – including General Motors.  Yet surprisingly, I observe that most people not only know nothing of this, but struggle to wrap their brain around how AMSOIL can legitimately guarantee and warranty synthetic oil protection performance with 25,000 mile drain intervals (severe service at 15,000 miles).

An even greater struggle for vehicle owners is to believe they can responsibly use 15k mile and 25k mile drain intervals in their own vehicles, despite the fact that while they do it they are lowering their engine wear rates by more than 75% – thereby QUADRUPLING the remaining available life of their vehicle for mechanically trouble-free miles.  Several have admitted to me that while they believe intellectually that it’s ok, they can’t shake the FEELING that if they don’t change their oil frequently, they are being irresponsible or at least neglectful, in not taking proper care of their car. 

That’s completely illogical, since cutting engine wear by 75% IS taking the best care of their engine, and clearly the most responsible choice.  But then, since they are conditioned to fear and reject 2x to 5x longer drain intervals, and since they don’t take the fuel economy improvement into account, they never realize that the best synthetics are cheaper to use.  They see per-quart cost, then assume that using high performance synthetics would be too costly.

I’m convinced that the main obstacle to owners making smarter vehicle maintenance choices is a psychological bulwark of FEELINGS and emotional perceptions which have been created by entrenched long-term campaigns of petroleum marketing strategies to keep consumers captive through ignorance and fear. It appears that we’ve been the unwitting target of head-games.

So, let’s cover the simple, basic question that everyone asks:

Why are AMSOIL Motor Oils capable of extended drain intervals?

Essentially, there are three reasons which combine together:

  • First, AMSOIL synthetic oils, fluids and greases are designed for maximum possible protection and performance.  All AMSOIL Signature Series Synthetic Motor Oil “base stocks” are made of purpose-built molecular structures of specific designs whose character includes very high resistance to the destructive effects of heat and shear stresses.  These are uniform molecules which lack the huge variations and poor characteristics in random petroleum-oil structures that can be readily chopped apart or oxidized.  AMSOIL synthetic oils do not break down like petroleum oils because they are NOT petroleum oils.  Because an ideally designed synthetic lubrication molecule has vastly superior robustness, it naturally lasts far, far longer than a petroleum oil ever could.
  • Second, to complement the high-performance synthetic base-stock oil, AMSOIL assembles the highest quality additive packages possible: more costly additives which are proven to retain their beneficial properties for a long time without breaking down, even under the worst possible conditions.
  • Third, AMSOIL’s EaO nanofiber oil filters remove 98.7% of 20-micron wear particles at a 20 micron level, and a large percentage of 15 micron particles.  SAE automotive research published in the 1980’s proved that a 70% wear-rate reduction would come from 15 micron filtration, if it was ever made practical.

Together, this triple-crown of ultimate synthetic performance in base-stock, additives and filtration means that AMSOIL Motor Oils can provide far longer drain intervals than conventional lubricants, without ANY compromising of superior performance and protection.

THINK YOUR WAY TO FREEDOM:  If AMSOIL engine oil, after 25,000 miles, still exceeds competitor performance from a new bottle, and the wear particles are being superbly filtered out of the engine oil, then… why should you change your oil any sooner?

WHY does AMSOIL still recommend their top Signature Series synthetic oils for 25k-mile/1-year or 15k/1-year drain intervals, and still warranty their oil performance at those long oil changes?  Even more crazy, how can they warranty their performance for an unlimited time when oil sampling analysis is used to verify the oil condition?  Here’s the secret:

The warranty costs AMSOIL nothing, because ALL the data proves that their oils haven’t broken down and still prevent engine damage, while minimizing wear.  Oh, and since the annual warranty claims average roughly … zero … except once per decade when AMSOIL covers repairs for a customer while the OEM delays before admitting that the problem was a defect in either design or manufacturing – and had nothing to do with the engine oil.

You might say that AMSOIL can provide their insane warranty because they have so superbly designed their lubricants that they have engineered all the risk out ! 

It’s not theory, it’s not marketing.  Their global-benchmark engineering excellence is constantly proven over and over by AMSOIL’s most critical customers with the most severe lubrication service demands.  Since the highest horsepower boats, motorcycles, cars, diesel trucks, ATV’s and racing machines of all kinds trust AMSOIL to provide exceptional superior lubrication protection and performance, I’m pretty sure you and I are well covered, my friends!

The reality of technical facts turns skeptical concerns completely on their head: overall, the combined AMSOIL oil and Ea nanofiber filtration typically delivers wear rate reductions well over 80%.  Two current examples are the Nordic Waste diesel fleet, and the Vegas taxicab fleet.  But ANYONE can prove it to themselves with data from their own vehicle, simply by taking a sample of the AMSOIL synthetic oil when you change it, and sending it to a lab for analysis.  (Cost is about $30.)  If you want to get serious about this, take a sample of your current oil as you drain it to install AMSOIL – with that baseline, it’s much more eye-opening.

HOW CAN YOU FREE YOUR MIND FROM EMOTIONAL MIND-GAME MARKETING CHAINS, TO SAVE MONEY AND TAKE BETTER CARE OF YOUR VEHICLE?

Save up to 25 percent and get exclusive offers as an AMSOIL Preferred Customer PLUS exclusive help from a former OEM headquarters senior engineer

Here’s how: Use oil sampling analysis data to convince yourself.  It’s a powerful way to free yourself from marketing manipulation: if you can do it, make yourself do ONE full extended drain interval, and pull an oil sample after 1 year or 15k/25k miles, then see what the laboratory analysis tells you.  If you can’t handle that the first time, then test your first sample when you are getting uncomfortable – but don’t change the oil unless the testing shows you need to. Then test your AMSOIL motor oil every 5k miles until you find it approaching the end of its service life, but change your EaO oil filter at the 15k or 25k for it’s type, or 1 year, whichever is sooner.  Yes, you can change your oil filter without changing the oil.  Just spin it off, partly fill the new one with fresh oil, spin it on, run the engine for a minute, then top off your oil.

That valuable scientific exercise will do the trick: countless drivers who do a lot of highway driving have found that the lab tells them to keep driving on the same AMSOIL synthetic engine oil after 25,000, 30,000, 35,000, sometimes even 40,000 miles.  The owner of the Million Mile Van was pretty nervous about 25k mile drain intervals until he pushed his first AMSOIL synthetic engine oil change to the point where the lab report told him to test the oil again with 43,000 miles on it!  If you have wondered how ordinary people can become passionate about AMSOIL’s engineered performance, imagine being in their shoes!

Slowly it dawns on them why AMSOIL not only warranties their synthetic performance for such long drain intervals, but also warranties their synthetics for a much longer drain interval or none at all, if that’s done with the safety of oil sampling analysis: the truth is that in most cases AMSOIL’s mileage life is much longer than what it’s rated for, but AMSOIL is conservative in order to protect drivers in worst-case severe duty applications.

The results of using AMSOIL synthetic lubrication technologies are very predictable, proven weekly in more than a million fleet miles with hundreds of oil samples, while delivering 5-15% better fuel economy, lower operating temperatures and reduced operational costs: wear-metal ppm’s are very low and the drained 
AMSOIL still outperforms most name-brand oils when they are poured from just-opened bottles.

If your mind isn’t blown yet, here’s even better news.  How about using AMSOIL for free, or being paid to use it!

The stunning reality for the majority of vehicle owners and fleet managers, is that the fuel savings are far more than, or equal to, the cost of the AMSOIL synthetics. Calculations like those below show how annual oil changes are actually less expensive than with petroleum oil, but that’s without 2-10% fuel economy improvements.  So, despite the per-quart price and the $15 or $20 oil filter, using AMSOIL may not only be free – it probably pays you to use it.

Are you still SURE that staying with your “trusty” petroleum oil is a wise idea?

AMSOIL Savings Cost Calculator 2015


In closing, please understand:

Our mission is to arm you with the technology-knowledge to make better, lower-cost decisions about your vehicle maintenance and operating expenses – including spending less money on fuel and repairs.  Decisions that benefit YOU, as well as the environment, by using up to 87% less engine oil and 2-10% less fuel.

That’s the purpose of our free vehicle maintenance page. It helps you easily look up info for optimally maintaining your vehicle while spending less money than you do now, explains what your options mean, and even tells you the key secrets on how to drive 500,000 miles while avoiding ever repairing your transmission, differential, or hydraulic power steering.  Plus, we tell you the secret options on buying at wholesale pricing and having products delivered to your door in 2-4 days.

Perhaps most importantly, that page also tells you what shouldn’t be a secret but is never talked about and is rarely addressed even by dealer service personnel: a simple, inexpensive annual maintenance item that will make your vehicle safer, reducing accident risk and damage severity by avoiding the biggest silent, invisible contributor.


AMSOIL – the First In History and In Quality

    • First to develop an API rated 100% synthetic motor oil (1972).Amsoil Research Orange Dragstrip Car

    • First to introduce the concept of extended drain intervals, with a recommended 25,000-mile/12-month drain interval.

    • First to produce synthetic motor oils for diesel engines.

    • First to produce synthetic motor oils for racing engines.

    • First to produce synthetic motor oils for turbocharged engines.

    • First to produce synthetic motor oils for marine engines.

    • First to manufacture synthetic gear lube for automotive use.

    • First to manufacture a 100:1 pre-mix synthetic 2-cycle oil.

  • First to manufacture a synthetic automatic transmission fluid for automotive use.

More about AMSOIL’s Excellence and Amazing History

AMSOIL - the Official Oil of the Diesel Power Challenge and the Ultimate Callout Challenge

MONEY TO YOUR BOTTOM LINE

  1. Standardized test data from the most reliable & trusted tests in industry.
  2. Personal experience.

Combine those two, and when they both agree, you will have no doubt about the superior performance of AMSOIL products.

We’ve got the data. Why not combine that data with YOUR personal experience, so that you KNOW the results are as accurate as you made them yourself? Contact us, and we’ll help.

Sure, you can keep buying the mediocre performance of the famous mainstream brands that fill most store shelves. But know that when you do, those oils are costing you a lot more money per year than buying the high-performance AMSOIL solution.
Bottom line? AMSOIL saves you money.

(We save a LOT of money with these AMSOIL “secrets”, and thought you’d like to know them, too.)

Recommendations and Related Articles:

Typical advantages of AMSOIL synthetic motor oils and filters:

  • Save time and money with extended oil drains;AMSOIL is Devoted to Protection
  • boost fuel economy 2-10%;
  • lower operating temperatures;
  • reduce engine and component wear by over 70%;
  • triple the remaining life of your lubricated mechanical systems & components (“triple” is conservative).

In nearly every case, AMSOIL‘s synthetic lube and filter products provide best-technology solutions that far exceed OEM specifications. And they provide optimum solutions considering the three greatest automotive insider secrets for vehicle maintenance. That is why we recommend AMSOIL products.

You will not get any of these benefits with conventional petroleum oil !!!!!

AMSOIL is proudly made in the U.S.A.

AMSOIL is privately owned by patriotic Americans

My AMSOIL Garage tracks your oil changes and maintenance for ALL your vehicles for FREE

AMSOIL 75% better protection against wear and horsepower loss

A view of some of Lavon Miller’s most impressive Firepunk Diesel trophys – all won using AMSOIL diesel oil, ATF, and gear oil. Click to scroll down to Lavon’s video interview.

Preventing the LSPI Super Knock Grenade in Turbo TDGI Engines

LSPI Super-Knock Will Soon Damage Newer Turbocharged T-GDI Engines in Your Neighborhood, Maybe In Your Driveway

How do you protect your 2013+ turbocharged gas engine from “super-knock”, or Low Speed Pre-Ignition (LSPI) damage, which is caused by normal driving?

Vehicle manufacturers know LSPI damage in new T-GDI (turbocharged gas direct injection) engines is a serious risk and have temporarily programmed vehicle software to “detune” the engine below the intended level of engine horsepower and fuel economy, in order to avoid LSPI-inducing conditions. Doing so, however, limits fuel efficiency.  The SAE, API, ASTM and OEM’s will soon issue a new oil grade with new tests to prove oils prevent LSPI (as it turns out, it’s one of the most difficult tasks that engine oils have ever been called upon to do).

Soon afterward, to extract maximum efficiency from their advanced power plants, OEMs will implement software updates (expected in 2019) to unleash more power and improved fuel economy, along with much higher susceptibility to LSPI. New cars sold after this will have the updates, and vehicles serviced by dealers will get the updates.  But I don’t know that we can control this as consumers, or even that we will always know.  It’s possible that some of these updates may happen wirelessly overnight, as your vehicle sits in your garage or driveway.

We are pleased with how AMSOIL has worked hard to fully prepare for these future OEM updates, protecting their customers’ cars, trucks and fleets by reformulating their engine oils long before new testing standards are finalized.  Proving it can fully protect turbocharged direct-injected engines, AMSOIL entire new line of synthetic engine oils have all achieved 100 percent protection against LSPI in the engine test required by the GM dexos1®Gen 2 specification.

We are pleased with how AMSOIL has worked hard to fully prepare for these future OEM updates, protecting their car, truck and fleet customers by reformulating their product line long before new testing standards are finalized.  Proving it can protect turbocharged direct-injected engines, AMSOIL entire new line of synthetic engine oils have all achieved 100 percent protection against LSPI in the engine test required by the GM dexos1®Gen 2 specification. (AMSOIL protection goes further than that, too, with important protections that other oil companies don’t consider. We’ll explain.)

dexos1® oils vs. dexos1®Gen 2 oils

Please know that hundreds of oils have passed the older dexos1®Gen 1, often just shown as dexos1® on labels.  Beware, because dexos1® oils don’t come anywhere near passing dexos1®Gen 2.  If it does not say “Gen 2”, it must NOT be used in a T-GDI engine.

What does it really mean to pass dexos1®Gen 2 testing?  Gen 2 tests for very low turbo deposits, PLUS low LSPI occurrence. While several dozen oils are already certified to GM’s spec, ahead of an official industry standard test, dexos1®Gen 2 certification does not require 100% LSPI protection.  Few people understand what this means, but we think this point will eventually prove to be crucial for vehicle owners.  Here’s why:

  1. Oils can have a specified number of LSPI events and STILL pass GM dexos1®Gen 2.
  2. Other than test data provided by AMSOIL, consumers will NOT be told how well an oil perform:  concealing lubrication performance in the industry’s standardized testing is how petroleum companies keep consumers from understanding the need and value of true constructed-molecular-design synthetic lubricants.
  3. Because the piston-stresses of LSPI events can be severely high, there is potential for occasional LSPI events to create cumulative microstructure damage in the pistons as mileage gets higher, leading to sudden fatigue-fracture piston failure.

Premature Timing Chain Wear in T-GDI Engines

Still another growing T-GDI issue is rapid timing chain wear on some of these engines.  In fact, a Ford technical service bulletin (#14-0194) acknowledges timing chain wear as a problem in certain vehicles equipped with its popular 3.5L EcoBoost® engine.  (However, the bulletin does not reveal that switching to AMSOIL Signature Series synthetic engine oils will eliminate this wear problem.)  The wear due to occurring due to oil soot generation levels which can run on the level of older diesel engines, soot content which most oil formulations besides AMSOIL have not protected for because these engines aren’t diesels, and because even the latest oil specs have not addressed it.  What this also means is that the size of diamond-hard agglomerated soot particles in many oils will eventually be recognized to be causing more T-GDI accelerated wear areas than just timing chains!

For all these reasons, for best protection against soot wear and accumulated LSPI fatigue failures, we recommend using only AMSOIL engine oils, and to NEVER add any oil additive to ANY engine oil in TGDI turbo’d engines, and to regularly use a high-performance fuel additive like AMSOIL P.I.

That’s the short summary.  But we need to dig into the crucial details, and sobering facts, before you really wish you had known more.

Why is LSPI such a big deal, when engine knock has been around since at least the 1960’s, mainly in hot-rod tuning which included advancing the ignition timing?  Because it’s different and worse, and it may already be sitting in your driveway.

The “super-knock” slang for LSPI hints at how its’ combination of new technologies mainstreams engine knock into commuter driving, and increases the damage severity.  The potential exists for ordinary drivers to accelerate from a stop-light to get in the correct lane, and find themselves paying the tow-truck a fraction of the costs they will soon face to repair or replace their engin

LSPI is somewhat like a rattlesnake with a missing rattle.  It’s as if you can go through your normal day unsuspecting of any risk, and suddenly with no warning like a rattlesnake bite, find yourself in a bad situation:  you don’t know how much venom was injected, but the painful news seems to grow worse by the hour.  But, a better analogy is a hand grenade.

Would you throw a grenade in your engine air intake and then start the engine?

Of course not!  And that’s why you don’t want LSPI – because it is an uncontrolled explosion, whose power to shred your engine comes from the worst possible combination of circumstances.

It’s agreed that under normal conditions expected by OEM engineers, LSPI should rarely, if ever, occur with adequate power to cause damage.  That’s the plan.  However, those “normal expected conditions” rely on a lot of sophisticated interactive engineering to create two new, novel achievements: that the combustion area will stay clean and free of deposits, and that both the fuel quality and the engine oil formulation will do their part to prevent deposits and small residue areas of unburned fuel.  And according to Lubes and Greases in early 2018, the industry still doesn’t understand LSPI yet: although they know some things that help, and other things that make it worse, they don’t understand why.  See any risk there?

To understand the importance of these questions and the magnitude of potential problems, consider that T-GDI engines are now dominant throughout nearly every OEM lineup as either the primary or an optional engine. (Think Ford, GM, Chrysler, Toyota, Nissan… just name every OEM.)  Here’s one typical example that will help you understand LSPI severity: Green Car Congress reports that BorgWarner’s regulated two-stage (R2S) turbocharging technology is now improving the performance and fuel economy of Ford’s new 2.0-liter TDCi diesel engine, the first Ford engine for passenger cars equipped with a two-stage turbocharging system. The sequential bi-turbo setup boosts the lightweight 2.0 L engine to an amazing 207 hp output that 15 years ago took a 3.0 L engine that weighed over twice as much.  Yet in the 2.0L marketplace, 207 hp is a tame power level. The 180 hp 1.8 L in the 2002 Audi TT also had a factory-tuned version that put out 225 hp.

THE “SUPER-KNOCK” THREAT CONDENSED TO ONE PARAGRAPH:

As the accelerator pedal is pushed, Direct Injection controls enable dynamically advancing the ignition spark timing and modifying the timing, volume and rate of gas injected, and a turbocharger boosts the pressure of fuel & air going into the cylinder, but pre-ignition explodes the fuel before spark-plug activation while the piston is still rising in compression, and Low Speed rpm puts the highest pre-ignition cylinder pressure near top-dead-center (TDC) where the piston can’t move quickly enough to lower the pressure spike.  The pressure spike is higher because more fuel was injected, and the ignition front is larger and much faster.  There are still more compounding factors, such as thinner, lighter pistons.  So LSPI is a combined worst-case situation which is the “perfect storm” recipe for engine damage, not only because the force applied to the piston and piston rings can be several times higher than they are designed to handle, but because broken piston piston pieces can bounce around the combustion chamber and out the exhaust port – into the turbocharger where the impact with multiple turbo-blades spinning at 10,000 to 250,000 rpm can send high-velocity turbo blades through the engine compartment and even completely through the car hood.

Of course that “cannot happen” because there are sensors and control logic to minimize the severity of what could happen, and turbochargers almost never explode outside of dyno/track race-tuning.  All true.  But this is the point: the power is there, the mechanisms are there, and engineers, sensors, and control logic cannot always predict and compensate for every situation without error.  However much uncertainty and risk lives in the combined synergic details of a particular turbo GDI engine model year and software revision is unknown. Let’s all hope the bigger problems are not under YOUR hood.

“Super-knock” has serious damage potential even when systems minimize or silence the catastrophic drama.  In less than two seconds, LSPI could scrap an engine block, heads, pistons, and one or two turbochargers.  Seconds later in a worst-case scenario that every OEM hopes cannot happen, the aftermath could even force you to flee your burning car.

AMSOIL protects turbochargers 3 to 4 times better than Royal Purple and Mobil 1, and had ZERO LSPI events in GM’s dexos1®Gen 2, the auto-industry’s best available engine test as of Sept 2018.

No, this is definitely NOT a situation that OEM engine chiefs want to be in.  But this is the corner where the mandated federal fuel-economy regulations have pushed OEM’s.  The required engineering intensity is on a level that used to exist only on the race track, the runway, or the launch pad. But the engine oil, the fuel, and the vehicle maintenance are all important interactive factors which can only be tightly controlled by a professional racing team.

Why Oil Additives are a VERY Bad Idea in the Brave New World of LSPI “Super-Knock”

After OEM installation of new software, engines running with a motor oil that is not formulated to combat LSPI will be at great risk of damage, and it can be severe.  The OEM’s and industry drivetrain engineers all agree on that fact.  But they also agree that engine oils which are developed to prevent LSPI will enable controlling and minimizing LSPI occurrence.

HOWEVER, one important risk factor which is getting little attention is aftermarket engine-oil additives.  At DMT Technical, we expect that many oil additives will imbalance the finely-tuned oil formulations, enabling LSPI either immediately or gradually as the engine oil ages before the next oil change, and creating a wave of super-knock engine rebuilds which WILL NOT be covered under warranty.  Vehicle owners who learn this the hard way will be shocked at the cost of engine repair or replacement.

Best Recommendations of DMT Technical and UltimateSyntheticOil to Prevent LSPI Damage

These three recommendations minimize the risks of LSPI damage in a turbocharged T-GDI engine:

  1. Use AMSOIL engine oils because as mentioned above, they have been rigorously developed to prevent LSPI.  In the best currently available industry testing (GM dexos1®Gen 2 engine test), all AMSOIL engine oils for recent gasoline engines didn’t simply “pass”, but had ZERO occurrences of LSPI and protected turbocharger performance at the highest levels.  And – shocking fact – AMSOIL is the only oil company who warranties their oil performance against damage.  Here’s where to get the best oil recommendations for your specific vehicle.
  2. DO NOT USE ANY engine oil additive.  For more info on the BEST way to get maximum engine protection, here’s the single best overview of oil additives – and many people agree.
  3. Use a very good fuel additive.  We recommend the extensively tested AMSOIL P.I. (performance improver), not only for its ability to effectively clean the entire fuel system, injectors, combustion chamber, pistons and piston rings whose cleanliness is important to avoid LSPI, but also for its easy use, low cost, and demonstrated fuel-economy improvements.

Uncertain about AMSOIL?  No problem, because we’ve done years of work to help you with that!  Here we pit Michael Phelps against AMSOIL’s performance, and explain why AMSOIL’s superiority is more impressive, more trustworthy and more highly credentialed than even Michael Phelps with more Olympic Gold Medals than any athlete in history. (Yes, really.)

Our Opinion of T-GDI Impact in the Oppressively Regulated Automotive Market

Turbocharged GDI engines have been coming into the market fast beginning about 2013, spanning 1.0 L, 1.4 L, 1.6 L, 1.8 L, 2.0 L, 2.4 L, 2.5 L, 2.7 L, 2.8 L, 3.0 L, and 3.2 L – to name a few. These are in most cases completely new engine designs, fielded not only by Hyundai, Kia, Honda, Toyota, Nissan and Mitsubishi, but also by GM, Ford, Chrysler, Fiat, Porsche, Mercedes Benz, Audi, etc.  In some of the latest models they are coupled with 11-speed automatic transmissions (I wish they were kidding). Increasingly, the newest models use two turbos to maximize performance and fuel economy.  WHY?

Our studied analysis is that OEM’s have been given no choice.  They are all in the same global-market “boat”, hijacked in the same central-planning totalitarian coercion that has often destroyed nations and threatened the globe more than once.  No OEM wants to protest about durability concerns when their honesty could backfire and torpedo their sales in the face of their traditional competitors or the fast-rising electric vehicle (EV) market.  When taking this situation as a whole, analytical, technically-savvy consumers and engineers are bound to grow concerned about the medium and long-term cost-of-ownership viability and warranty viability of these engines.

Is this just alarmist “sky is falling” worry?  Maybe, but don’t bet on it.  The dark reality is that the totalitarian fuel economy mandates are forcing new vehicles to have intensively complex engineering requirements with loads of new technologies, rushed to market without adequate time to fully develop or understand the interactions of multiple radical changes in multiple system designs and technologies which are all being combined together for the first time.  To be clear: those CAFE mpg mandates carry crippling financial penalties which force the situation to get worse with every new model year.

To illustrate, one of the most effective design development tools in automotive engineering was displayed in the 2000’s era by Ford’s “D-FMEA with Robust Linkages” (Design Failure Mode Effects Analysis).  Ford found that by evaluating the interaction of every engineered sub-system with the content and design of every connected or adjacent system, they could make vast improvements in 1st-model-year vehicle quality and durability.  But in the mandated new climate, successfully retaining Robust Linkage analysis is unlikely. It will tend to become an OEM culture-casualty in the engineering wars that will ultimately prove very costly to both consumers and OEM’s.

Take this 2015 F150 truck with 2.7 L EcoBoost video story for example, that was purchased because it was cheaper than the 5.0 L engine (at the dealer) and got better fuel economy, has a graphite engine block, a plastic composite oil pan (adds strength and cuts weight) & lots of other new cool tech.  The owner reports that at 4,000 miles it had an oil leak, from the oil pan bolts, which the dealer replaced.  A thousand miles later, the same problem, the same fix again. (The forums know about the problems, but not the dealer?)  It towed great in the mountains, but then needed a fourth oil pan.

Then while towing again, something happened, the oil pressure dropped to zero. Added oil, drove it back to the Ford dealership, they wanted to run an oil consumption test.  Limp mode engaged, and it turned out that a chunk of exhaust valve had broken off.  [“Danger, danger Will Robinson!”]  Naturally, it scored the cylinder wall (and did other damage).  So they replaced the engine.   And it ran flawlessly for the next 10k miles, with some towing in Colorado. But the owner is concerned about keeping the truck past the 60k mile warranty.

This House Committee Report detailed the ugly saga of OEM’s new CAFE minefield, which taxpayers fund out-of-pocket at dealerships and repair shops.

It sounds as if the dealer made no mention of LSPI, and did not detail the full extent of the damage such as to the piston(s) and turbocharger.  But it’s likely that LSPI caused the damage, and essentially totaled the engine.

I’m not picking on Ford but using them as an example, because these issues will not be unique to Ford – they are unique to turbocharged gas direct-injection engines.  Do I think the OEM’s will “iron out” the T-GDI wrinkles?  Yes, but no, because almost every year OEM’s and their supply-chain are forced into another bunch of not-quite-fully-proven tech change combinations, all to drive average CAFE mpg upward fast enough to stay out of bankruptcy.

I see nothing that suggests it will get better, and the only glimmer of hope is that President Trump’s administration might decide to tackle this crippling situation, and might be successful.  Until the auto industry is rescued from this corruption which appears deliberately conceived and targeted to destroy the automotive industry, I expect the reality of the cool new technologies rolling off dealer lots will only get worse for everyone.

For those unaware, the North American auto industry was illegally hijacked by the machinations of the prior regimes “car tzar”  and coerced to sign up to what one congressman referred to as a slow-motion-suicide pact.  A congressional sub-committee staff investigative report (pdf link at right) which detailed the ugly realities was a significant factor in why I decided to not only leave OEM headquarters, but get out of auto industry design & manufacturing.