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Discussion Starter #21
Your manual should state either a 10W30 or 10W40 grade. I use AMSOIL small engine oil, a full synthetic, that is made for severe duty use in all my small engines. Most folks forget to do regular maintenance and this oil has a considerable long protection margin should you forget to change it out regularly. Here is a link and if you can't find it locally delivery is usually a couple of days if you order on-line. Works for me and I've been an AMSOILuser for over 30 years. Dutchy
https://www.amsoil.com/shop/by-product/motor-oil/4-stroke/?zo=331384
Sorry for the absence. Password issues. :)

Thanks for all the discussion guys! It really helped me in choosing the right oil.

On this subject, the manufacturer of my generator suggests an oil change every 50 hours. During extended outages that is every other day.

Using a highly rated and recommended synthetic oil does that allow longer time between oil changes. If so, what would you recommend?

Appreciate all your contributions.
 

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On this subject, the manufacturer of my generator suggests an oil change every 50 hours. During extended outages that is every other day.

Using a highly rated and recommended synthetic oil does that allow longer time between oil changes. If so, what would you recommend?
If it's a V-twin it probably has an oil filter, correct? 50 hours is probably a good number if it's running a bit now & then and then sitting a long time, but for continuous operation I'd think you could go a lot longer. I'd look at it at 50 hours, and if it still looks fairly clean, keep running it until it doesn't.

And when you get filters, get the best (smallest micron rating) one you can find, like NAPA Gold, Mobil 1, or similar. That's arguably more important than the oil you use.
 

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Sorry for the absence. Password issues. :)

Thanks for all the discussion guys! It really helped me in choosing the right oil.

On this subject, the manufacturer of my generator suggests an oil change every 50 hours. During extended outages that is every other day.

Using a highly rated and recommended synthetic oil does that allow longer time between oil changes. If so, what would you recommend?

Appreciate all your contributions.

Generally if used oil is analyzed an oil change is recommended when the TBN is reduced to half of what it was when the oil was new (ie AMSOIL small engine oil is 8.5), and when ppm for iron reaches 100, etc. Would be interesting to see some samples for similar situations, but the cost of the testing usually is more then a simple oil change for a small engine like that of your generator. However, 50 hours is a long time in reality. It usually is way more than a 2 day period. In a power outage, most folks wouldn't run their generator every minute of every hour of every day. The one main reason being concerned over fuel usage and the unknown end of the crisis. One never knows quite how long the outage is so the concern for me is always do I have enough fuel?. However, in a pinch a good oil, usually a synthetic, will easily provide a 100 hours of decent protection. Dutchy. UOA link below

https://www.amsoil.com/shop/by-product/other-products/oil-analysis-services/?zo=331384
 

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Discussion Starter #24
If it's a V-twin it probably has an oil filter, correct? 50 hours is probably a good number if it's running a bit now & then and then sitting a long time, but for continuous operation I'd think you could go a lot longer. I'd look at it at 50 hours, and if it still looks fairly clean, keep running it until it doesn't.

And when you get filters, get the best (smallest micron rating) one you can find, like NAPA Gold, Mobil 1, or similar. That's arguably more important than the oil you use.
Thanks for your input and recommendation of oil filters. I will certainly look at micron ratings. (Didn't even know of such a thing)

It is a v-twin and does have a filter.
 

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Discussion Starter #25
Generally if used oil is analyzed an oil change is recommended when the TBN is reduced to half of what it was when the oil was new (ie AMSOIL small engine oil is 8.5), and when ppm for iron reaches 100, etc. Would be interesting to see some samples for similar situations, but the cost of the testing usually is more then a simple oil change for a small engine like that of your generator. However, 50 hours is a long time in reality. It usually is way more than a 2 day period. In a power outage, most folks wouldn't run their generator every minute of every hour of every day. The one main reason being concerned over fuel usage and the unknown end of the crisis. One never knows quite how long the outage is so the concern for me is always do I have enough fuel?. However, in a pinch a good oil, usually a synthetic, will easily provide a 100 hours of decent protection. Dutchy. UOA link below

https://www.amsoil.com/shop/by-product/other-products/oil-analysis-services/?zo=331384
Thank you for your input!

It is possible we could find ourselves in a situation where running the generator 24/7 would be a legitimate need. Although, I can where that certainly wouldn't be 100% of the time. And yes, if fuel was an issue then that would limit the time the generator is on.

I appreciate the sharing of all the numbers. I work well with that kind of info. :tango_face_smile:

Thanks again.
 

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You guys seem to be knowledgeable about oil. I bought a new predator 9000 yesterday. The books says to use 10W – 30 above 32° F 5W – 30 at 32° F or below. While in storage my garage never gets below 47 degrees. But during an outage in Colorado the gen would be moved outside and you can bet the temp would be below 32. So which weight oil should I use?
 

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Rick,
I would look at the AMSOIL 10w30. Open the link and then click on technical info than click on Data Bulletin. Scroll down to where you can see the characteristics of all three grades offered for small engnes. You can see that all three pour down to about -40C (-39 to -44) with the 10w30 having a Fire point 264C. All three grades will work fine, but I would prefer to use the 10w30 because it covers the cold/warm temps so well.

This is a tough oil, built to use in Commercial situations, where there is a lot of abuse due to the many types of construction or emergency situations and owners (or employees) forgetting to do regular service. You can order AMSOIL online if you can't find it locally. That's what I do and it arrives in a day or two. Dutchy
https://www.amsoil.com/shop/by-product/motor-oil/4-stroke/formula-4-stroke-10w-30-sae-30-small-engine-oil/?code=ASEQT-EA/?zo=331384
ps. Break in your new generator with a regular oil for the first 20 hours or so. Don't be afraid to run it with a good load on it after the first 1/2 hour or so, like an electric heater or similar. (Always run some type of load when exercising your genny and kill the appliance prior to shutting down, so that it doesn't loose it's magnetism.)
 

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thank you very much, I have just been browsing though the battery maintainer's online and they might do the trick during the winter months if the battery isnt great in the cold.. Im guessing I can leave the battery maintainer connected when running the generator? if so I will somehow sorted so its permanently attached to the battery and the mains.

I can see me having a powercut on a cold winters day and nothing happens when I turn the key........ I am hoping the charging of the battery when doing my monthly runs of the generator will be enough to keep the battery good enough during the winter months and wont let me down on a freezing day when I need the generator for real.... But yes I dont think the generator will want to start easy when its freezing or below, as it takes a few more seconds then normal if I leave the generator standing longer than a month without running it... I would of thought with all the fussing I do over my generator, (as I have never owned something with a engine, as Im in a wheelchair) I thought it would start first touch every time.

If I have problems I might also try buying a battery, as Im guessing generators come with real cheap batteries?
I have one of these installed on everything I have with an electric starter., actually two on my diesel truck with two batteries.
https://smartercharger.com/collections/vehicle/products/ctek-mus-4-3-test-and-charge

My big 11000 W Honda came with a rather cheap lawn mower type battery that did not last much over a year, replacement with a similar type gave same result. I finally found a gel cell type designe for motorcycles that I managed to get into the small space available and it's going on year 3 now.

I also have one of these installed on my generator to disconnect the battery from any circuit that might drain it.

 

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You guys seem to be knowledgeable about oil. I bought a new predator 9000 yesterday. The books says to use 10W – 30 above 32° F 5W – 30 at 32° F or below. While in storage my garage never gets below 47 degrees. But during an outage in Colorado the gen would be moved outside and you can bet the temp would be below 32. So which weight oil should I use?
Briggs & Stratton says synthetic 10w-30 or 5w-30 is OK in all their engines at any temperature. All the Honda engines I have specify 10w-30. Your engine isn't Briggs or Honda, but one splash-lubricated small engine isn't going to be much different than any other regarding oil. One advantage of synthetic oil is that it doesn't thicken nearly as much at low temperatures. So I use synthetic 10w-30 in all my small engines at any temperature. I might use synthetic 5w-30 in cold weather, if it didn't increase oil consumption much.
 

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You guys seem to be knowledgeable about oil. I bought a new predator 9000 yesterday. The books says to use 10W – 30 above 32° F 5W – 30 at 32° F or below. While in storage my garage never gets below 47 degrees. But during an outage in Colorado the gen would be moved outside and you can bet the temp would be below 32. So which weight oil should I use?
I would go by the temp at which the engine is stored. Once running it is going to be well above any of the temperatures you mention so the 10w-30 would be fine, If it is turned off and gets "cold soaked" below that 32 then i would stick with the 5w-30.
 

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I would go by the temp at which the engine is stored. Once running it is going to be well above any of the temperatures you mention so the 10w-30 would be fine, If it is turned off and gets "cold soaked" below that 32 then i would stick with the 5w-30.

The grade of oil that an OEM recommends is the primarily the ambient temp while the equipment is in use, and the ambient temperature for storage/inactivity is secondary. Yes, you want good flow at startup, so a lower first number addresses that, and the higher second number addresses the heat related stresses. A good Synthetic will have a wide temperature range of protection. An easy check is to look for the pour point temp and the fire point temp, among other characteristics, of your favourite oil grade/brand and compare to other grades/brands. (look for a MSDS sheet or Data sheet that every reputable manufacturer has) Even though there are standards for each grade, they vary by brand and quality... Dutchy
 

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The grade of oil that an OEM recommends is the primarily the ambient temp while the equipment is in use, and the ambient temperature for storage/inactivity is secondary. Yes, you want good flow at startup, so a lower first number addresses that, and the higher second number addresses the heat related stresses. A good Synthetic will have a wide temperature range of protection. An easy check is to look for the pour point temp and the fire point temp, among other characteristics, of your favourite oil grade/brand and compare to other grades/brands. (look for a MSDS sheet or Data sheet that every reputable manufacturer has) Even though there are standards for each grade, they vary by brand and quality... Dutchy
My thinking is that with a multi grade oil, the lower number indicates a "thinner" oil for better flow under cold conditions, and the higher number is thicker to compensate for natural thinning as the temperature of the oil increases. If you consider especially a liquid cooled engine, which has a thermostat, they run at basically a consistant hot temperature give or take 10-20 degrees, I would think an air cooled engine would be more dependent on ambient temperature to determine actual running temperature.
 

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I have just changed from SAE30 to 10-40w oil due to the weather getting colder and it might be me, but I think it might have improved the starting as it appears to start quicker now.
 

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I'm willing to bet that if you'd gone to a premium Synthetic, while keeping the same grade, that you would have noticed the same difference. A premium Synthetic will cover the extreme temperature range of operation that most OEMs recommend, thus eliminating the need for several grades to cover the different seasons or environments. This thread has been an interesting discussion so far... Dutchy
 

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I'm willing to bet that if you'd gone to a premium Synthetic, while keeping the same grade, that you would have noticed the same difference. A premium Synthetic will cover the extreme temperature range of operation that most OEMs recommend, thus eliminating the need for several grades to cover the different seasons or environments. This thread has been an interesting discussion so far... Dutchy
My 2003 Ford diesel specifies 15w40 oil. At my first change I changed to Rotella full synthetic 5w40. It seemed to turn over easier and quicker in cold weather. Now at 180,000 miles , probably rather low mileage for an almost 17 year old diesel truck, absolutely no engine problems. I believe in the synthetic oil, running it in everything I have, my wife's car the lawn mower, my generators and even the little two cycle hand held equipment. One of my string trimmers and my chain saw are over 30 years old now and still going strong. I buy top quality equipment and take care of it to the best of my ability.
 
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