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#1973641 - 08/02/10 09:50 PM Synthetic oil in a riding lawn mower
synthetic_crazy Offline


Registered: 06/23/10
Posts: 793
Loc: TX
We have a 13 horse Briggs/Stratton and have always used the 30 weight Briggs brand oil. I was thinking the other day about oil(hmmm, not unusual for a BITOG fan!LOL)and was curious if anyone has ever used an automotive synthetic oil in a riding lawn mower. Would consumption increase?
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#1973656 - 08/02/10 10:00 PM Re: Synthetic oil in a riding lawn mower [Re: synthetic_crazy]
odie Offline


Registered: 04/27/10
Posts: 1654
Loc: New York
None as of yet . Have used PENNZOIL Platinum 10w-30 and a current fill of SHELL Full Synthetic 5w-30 in the recently purchased BOLENS with the 13.5 H.P. by B.&S. and no consumption . Mow close to 3 acres in some nasty heat .


Edited by odie (08/02/10 10:01 PM)

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#1973660 - 08/02/10 10:05 PM Re: Synthetic oil in a riding lawn mower [Re: odie]
Johnny Offline


Registered: 05/27/02
Posts: 14013
Loc: Retired | Wausau, WI
A good friend of mine does commercial mowing and uses Pennzoil Platinum 10W-30 in all of his equipment, even the push mowers.

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#1973661 - 08/02/10 10:06 PM Re: Synthetic oil in a riding lawn mower [Re: odie]
Robenstein Offline


Registered: 12/23/09
Posts: 3240
Loc: Central IA
I usually run Mystik HD30 which is a syn blend in my stuff. Always worked great.
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#1973664 - 08/02/10 10:09 PM Re: Synthetic oil in a riding lawn mower [Re: odie]
pidster Offline


Registered: 12/11/06
Posts: 548
Loc: ontario canada
Dont have a riding mower but generally use synthetic automotive oil in my push mower, and my snowblower which has i think a 9.something HP Briggs motor, works fine. Only ever used 1 bottle of oil labeled for use in mowers, a straight 30wt forget the brand. Can get synth car oil on sale for much cheaper and its better oil. Conventional 5w30 burns off very quickly in the little 4HP Briggs in the mower, synth almost zero and that little rig is about 7-9yrs old now. Basically if you use conventional in these air cooled, hot running motors use a straight 30. If synth, go ahead with a 5w30 or 10w30, deals with the heat just fine.

Definitely more than good enough and probably cheaper than the Briggs oil if bought on sale.

Has worked for me as long as I've been mowing lawns and throwing snow. Motors are clean and running like new, and they're definitely not high end pro grade equipment either.
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#1973675 - 08/02/10 10:21 PM Re: Synthetic oil in a riding lawn mower [Re: synthetic_crazy]
Corvette Owner Offline


Registered: 01/22/03
Posts: 1614
Loc: Waldorf, Maryland
My Snapper 11 HP 28 inch rear riding lawn mower says synthetic oil is pe

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#1973678 - 08/02/10 10:22 PM Re: Synthetic oil in a riding lawn mower [Re: synthetic_crazy]
Jasper8146 Offline


Registered: 04/25/10
Posts: 157
Loc: Lenexa, Kansas
I have used Valvoline Synpower 5w-30 in a Sears Craftsman self-propelled mower with zero consumption in over a year.

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#1973680 - 08/02/10 10:24 PM Re: Synthetic oil in a riding lawn mower [Re: Johnny]
bmwtechguy Offline


Registered: 06/15/04
Posts: 2526
Loc: South Carolina
Air-cooled engines in extreme heat or heavy/commercial service: I would consider using a 5W-40 HDEO synthetic such as Rotella or a shear-stable 10W-30 such as Amsoil's small engine oil. The main reason to use something other than a starburst energy-conserving syn PCMO is wear protection/film strength during heavy use or extreme heat. These 2 specific oils have higher ZDDP levels and higher viscosity for hot running air-cooled engines.

I would rather use a non-syn HDEO than a syn PCMO for severe service due to the HDEO's higher viscosity and anti-wear chemistry.

Of course for regular/normal use, a good syn PCMO may be all that is really needed. Most commercial guys seem to usually be cutting grass that barely needs cut anyway, vs. some of us that push our equipment hard right up to the limits, and often. I use Schaeffers 9000 5W-40 HDEO full syn in all my 4 cycle equipment that I push hard. I use conventional 15W-40 in an old diesel tractor for field use.

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#1976573 - 08/05/10 09:23 AM Re: Synthetic oil in a riding lawn mower [Re: bmwtechguy]
Chriznat20@msn.com Offline


Registered: 11/23/04
Posts: 851
Loc: Michigan
This is my 2nd season using Amsoils 10w-30 synthetic small engine oil in my 13.5hp Briggs riding lawn mower engine.

As far as I can tell, its working great. The mower doesnt consume any oil at all, I have a very large yard I cut too and in some areas the grass can be pretty thick. The grass gets cut 2x weekly at about 1.5 hours each time.

I use the Amsoil syn small engine oil in my push mower and snowblower too.


Edited by Chriznat20@msn.com (08/05/10 09:23 AM)
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#1976971 - 08/05/10 04:04 PM Re: Synthetic oil in a riding lawn mower [Re: Chriznat20@msn.com]
rainman49 Offline


Registered: 11/04/03
Posts: 378
Loc: Alabama
Using Mobil 1 5w-40 TDT in the Briggs 26hp ELS engine on my Scag Freedom Z. I'm in LA (Lower Alabama)and it gets unbearably hot down here, so I opted for the extra protection.
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#1977123 - 08/05/10 06:17 PM Re: Synthetic oil in a riding lawn mower [Re: rainman49]
HM12460 Offline


Registered: 05/26/07
Posts: 1464
Loc: West Michigan
Been a long time user of the mobil 1 TDT. Thinking about trying the Rotella T-5 10/30.
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#1977184 - 08/05/10 07:09 PM Re: Synthetic oil in a riding lawn mower [Re: HM12460]
countryboy9799 Offline


Registered: 02/02/08
Posts: 162
Loc: SW MN
I wish I could find Mobil 1 TDT around here, I think one walmart has it that I have found it in. What are you guys paying for a gallon of it?
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#1977193 - 08/05/10 07:16 PM Re: Synthetic oil in a riding lawn mower [Re: countryboy9799]
Blumurder Offline


Registered: 09/11/09
Posts: 303
Loc: Magnolia, De.
I run MC 5w30 in my Kohler
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#1981216 - 08/09/10 09:36 PM Re: Synthetic oil in a riding lawn mower [Re: Blumurder]
rclint Offline


Registered: 09/01/08
Posts: 1026
Loc: Georgia
I have posted about this many times, look in your owners manual.... if your engine requires or calls for a 30 wt oil the use it during summer months. I have found that HDEO oils in HD 30 are by far the best for engine wear, and cleanliness... I have also seen what can happen to a "synthetic" PCMO when used in hot summer in an air cooled engine.... it makes a mess of engine internals if it becomes thin getting by rings (and it will) causing a extremely hard to remove goo/gunk atop the piston/head chamber area. I have no idea why this happens, I have seen engines with bad rings blow oil by causing very clean piston tops/head chamber area, however this has not been the case when the rings are in good shape..

This is from several engine tear downs, or head removal for routine maintenance which should be done every couple of years (2-3) to remove carbon build up.

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#1981260 - 08/09/10 10:06 PM Re: Synthetic oil in a riding lawn mower [Re: rclint]
tig1 Online   content


Registered: 01/03/09
Posts: 9850
Loc: Illinois
I use M1 in my 20 year old Honda Self propelled mower. I have a large lawn so it gets a lot of hours every year. I change in the spring and the oil stays very clean all summer long.
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