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Difference between A3/B3 and A3/B4? #4566960
11/07/17 04:16 PM
11/07/17 04:16 PM
Joined: Apr 2016
Posts: 1,537
Oregon
1JZ_E46 Offline OP
1JZ_E46  Offline OP
Joined: Apr 2016
Posts: 1,537
Oregon
Can someone please explain to me the difference between A3/B3 and A3/B4? Most "euro" oils contain both specifications, however, in looking at high-mileage oils, Castrol EDGE High Mileage 10W-40 is A3/B4 while Mobil 1 High Mileage 10W-40 is A3/B3. Is one specification better than the other? Thanks guys.

Edit: I did search the forum, but couldn't find any definitive answer.

Last edited by 1JZ_E46; 11/07/17 04:18 PM.

2007 X5 4.8i: M1 HM 10W-30
2016 Countryman S: EDGE 0W-30
Re: Difference between A3/B3 and A3/B4? [Re: 1JZ_E46] #4566966
11/07/17 04:22 PM
11/07/17 04:22 PM
Joined: Apr 2017
Posts: 1,480
Ontario, Canada
mightymousetech Offline
mightymousetech  Offline
Joined: Apr 2017
Posts: 1,480
Ontario, Canada
A3/B3
https://www.lubrizol.com/Lubricant-and-F...es/ACEA-A3B3-10

Quote:
ACEA A3/B3 oils are Mainline lubricants. They are designed for general usage use in a wide range of gasoline and light duty diesel engines. ACEA A3/B3 oils are typically used in older vehicles as they do not provide the minimum performance demanded by the latest OEM specifications.


A3/B4
https://www.lubrizol.com/Lubricant-and-F...es/ACEA-A3B4-10

Quote:
ACEA A3/B4 oils are Upper Mainline lubricants. They are designed for a use in high performance gasoline and light duty diesel engines and are typically used in newer vehicles as they provide the minimum performance demanded by many OEM specifications.


A3/B4 is a much higher specification.

Last edited by mightymousetech; 11/07/17 04:23 PM.

Mighty Mouse Tech
BMW Tech, Former Acura Tech
2010 Civic Si Castrol 0W40, Redline MTL
2013 BMW 135i M Sport Edition Castrol 0W40, Redline MTL
Re: Difference between A3/B3 and A3/B4? [Re: 1JZ_E46] #4566973
11/07/17 04:25 PM
11/07/17 04:25 PM
Joined: Apr 2012
Posts: 9,384
Kendall, FL
wemay Offline
wemay  Offline
Joined: Apr 2012
Posts: 9,384
Kendall, FL







'18 KIA Sportage LX AWD: Mobil Super Synthetic 10w30
'13 Hyundai Santa Fe Sport 2.0T: EDGE 5w30
Re: Difference between A3/B3 and A3/B4? [Re: 1JZ_E46] #4566974
11/07/17 04:26 PM
11/07/17 04:26 PM
Joined: Oct 2002
Posts: 36,296
Great Lakes
Quattro Pete Offline
Quattro Pete  Offline
Joined: Oct 2002
Posts: 36,296
Great Lakes
A3/B3 has a TBN minimum of 8.
A3/B4 has a TBN minimum of 10.


'02 530i (Edge 0W-40)
'15 Q5 3.0T (Edge 5W-40)
'18 Charger SRT (FF)
Re: Difference between A3/B3 and A3/B4? [Re: Quattro Pete] #4566987
11/07/17 04:37 PM
11/07/17 04:37 PM
Joined: Apr 2016
Posts: 1,537
Oregon
1JZ_E46 Offline OP
1JZ_E46  Offline OP
Joined: Apr 2016
Posts: 1,537
Oregon
Originally Posted By: Quattro Pete
A3/B3 has a TBN minimum of 8.
A3/B4 has a TBN minimum of 10.


Where do you find EDGE HM 10W-40 for less than $10 /quart? Did it solve any oil burning or leaking issues in your 530?


2007 X5 4.8i: M1 HM 10W-30
2016 Countryman S: EDGE 0W-30
Re: Difference between A3/B3 and A3/B4? [Re: Quattro Pete] #4567022
11/07/17 05:17 PM
11/07/17 05:17 PM
Joined: Jul 2015
Posts: 4,624
Down Under
SR5 Offline
SR5  Offline
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Posts: 4,624
Down Under
Originally Posted By: Quattro Pete
A3/B3 has a TBN minimum of 8.
A3/B4 has a TBN minimum of 10.

Yes as QP says, the most obvious difference for PCMO application is TBN with A3/B4 having the higher value. Otherwise they are both high SAPS, high HTHS (>3.5 cP), Euro grade oil.

In M1 speak, the A3/B4 would be the EP (extended performance - longer OCI) version.

If you qualify for A3/B4 you also qualify for A3/B3 and so can claim both, but not the other way around. I think they put the lesser spec (B3) on the higher spec (B4) just to help those shopping, who don't know the difference and are looking for what is in the owners manual, most likely with an older car. I can't see any reason for a modern Euro car to spec B3 now days when B4 is everywhere. However Europe seems to be going for the mid-SAPS C3 oil as their standard spec oil now days, which is pretty much what the GM Dexos2 (high HTHS) oil seems to be based on.

Some API SN oils also say they qualify as SM and SL etc. Same thing as saying a B4 oil also qualifys as B3. It's more to make it clear to the customer.


Penrite Vantage 10W40 SN & A3/B4 + Wesfil-Cooper Z154
Re: Difference between A3/B3 and A3/B4? [Re: 1JZ_E46] #4567063
11/07/17 06:16 PM
11/07/17 06:16 PM
Joined: Oct 2002
Posts: 36,296
Great Lakes
Quattro Pete Offline
Quattro Pete  Offline
Joined: Oct 2002
Posts: 36,296
Great Lakes
Originally Posted By: 1JZ_E46
Originally Posted By: Quattro Pete
A3/B3 has a TBN minimum of 8.
A3/B4 has a TBN minimum of 10.


Where do you find EDGE HM 10W-40 for less than $10 /quart?

Advance Auto Parts sometimes has it on sale for $5.50/qt.

Quote:
Did it solve any oil burning or leaking issues in your 530?

Oil burning may have reduced a bit. Leaking - not so much.


'02 530i (Edge 0W-40)
'15 Q5 3.0T (Edge 5W-40)
'18 Charger SRT (FF)
Re: Difference between A3/B3 and A3/B4? [Re: Quattro Pete] #4567074
11/07/17 06:36 PM
11/07/17 06:36 PM
Joined: Apr 2016
Posts: 1,537
Oregon
1JZ_E46 Offline OP
1JZ_E46  Offline OP
Joined: Apr 2016
Posts: 1,537
Oregon
Originally Posted By: Quattro Pete
Advance Auto Parts sometimes has it on sale for $5.50/qt.


Thanks. I'll keep a look out for it.

Just curious, any reason why you don't use Mobil 1 High Mileage 10W-40? Seems to be more readily available and cheaper since WM stocks it in 5 quart jugs.


2007 X5 4.8i: M1 HM 10W-30
2016 Countryman S: EDGE 0W-30
Re: Difference between A3/B3 and A3/B4? [Re: 1JZ_E46] #4567085
11/07/17 07:07 PM
11/07/17 07:07 PM
Joined: Oct 2002
Posts: 36,296
Great Lakes
Quattro Pete Offline
Quattro Pete  Offline
Joined: Oct 2002
Posts: 36,296
Great Lakes
Quote:
Just curious, any reason why you don't use Mobil 1 High Mileage 10W-40?

It does not meet ACEA A3/B4, which is what I was looking for. smile

I was trying to find an HM oil that is not too far off from BMW's LL01 spec. The LL01 spec uses ACEA A3/B4 as baseline. But if you don't run very long OCI, it probably does not matter much.


'02 530i (Edge 0W-40)
'15 Q5 3.0T (Edge 5W-40)
'18 Charger SRT (FF)
Re: Difference between A3/B3 and A3/B4? [Re: Quattro Pete] #4567093
11/07/17 07:23 PM
11/07/17 07:23 PM
Joined: Apr 2016
Posts: 1,537
Oregon
1JZ_E46 Offline OP
1JZ_E46  Offline OP
Joined: Apr 2016
Posts: 1,537
Oregon
Originally Posted By: Quattro Pete
Quote:
Just curious, any reason why you don't use Mobil 1 High Mileage 10W-40?

It does not meet ACEA A3/B4, which is what I was looking for. smile

I was trying to find an HM oil that is not too far off from BMW's LL01 spec. The LL01 spec uses ACEA A3/B4 as baseline. But if you don't run very long OCI, it probably does not matter much.


That was my assumption. I am "old-school" in that I only run 5k intervals, so a TBN of 8 vs 10 really isn't relevant. If I can't find the EDGE on sale at AAP by the time my next oil change is due, I'll go with the M1. Also, from what I have found on this site, M1 has higher anti-wear additives compared to the EDGE (900-1,000 compared to ~750).


2007 X5 4.8i: M1 HM 10W-30
2016 Countryman S: EDGE 0W-30
Re: Difference between A3/B3 and A3/B4? [Re: 1JZ_E46] #4567105
11/07/17 07:35 PM
11/07/17 07:35 PM
Joined: Oct 2002
Posts: 36,296
Great Lakes
Quattro Pete Offline
Quattro Pete  Offline
Joined: Oct 2002
Posts: 36,296
Great Lakes
Quote:
Also, from what I have found on this site, M1 has higher anti-wear additives compared to the EDGE (900-1,000 compared to ~750).

Edge uses more boron, which is anti-wear additive. Both oils have a decent amount of phosphorus and zinc which are also used as anti-wear agents. I made a quick comparison here:
https://bobistheoilguy.com/forums/ubbthr...ge_#Post4251474

EDIT: And of course Edge also includes titanium which Castrol is touting as a protective agent. Of course that could be mainly marketing mambo jumbo.





'02 530i (Edge 0W-40)
'15 Q5 3.0T (Edge 5W-40)
'18 Charger SRT (FF)
Re: Difference between A3/B3 and A3/B4? [Re: Quattro Pete] #4567179
11/07/17 08:45 PM
11/07/17 08:45 PM
Joined: Apr 2016
Posts: 1,537
Oregon
1JZ_E46 Offline OP
1JZ_E46  Offline OP
Joined: Apr 2016
Posts: 1,537
Oregon
Originally Posted By: Quattro Pete
Edge uses more boron, which is anti-wear additive. Both oils have a decent amount of phosphorus and zinc which are also used as anti-wear agents. I made a quick comparison here:
https://bobistheoilguy.com/forums/ubbthr...ge_#Post4251474

EDIT: And of course Edge also includes titanium which Castrol is touting as a protective agent. Of course that could be mainly marketing mambo jumbo.


Nice comparison. The detergent add-packs are very different. Not sure if I like M1's... it's very different than any other LL-01 oil I've seen. All LL-01 oils I've seen are high calcium, low magnesium, with about 750-1,000 each of Zn and P. Leaning towards EDGE, if I can find it (my sump holds 9 qts! plus a couple for top-offs crzy )


2007 X5 4.8i: M1 HM 10W-30
2016 Countryman S: EDGE 0W-30
Re: Difference between A3/B3 and A3/B4? [Re: 1JZ_E46] #4567341
11/08/17 01:20 AM
11/08/17 01:20 AM
Joined: Jul 2016
Posts: 1,090
Europe
SonofJoe Online content
SonofJoe  Online Content
Joined: Jul 2016
Posts: 1,090
Europe
The difference between an A3/B3 10W40 and an A3/B4 is actually quite a lot.

First off, the 8 vs 10 TBN thing is the most visible difference but in reality it's probably the least significant. The imposition of higher TBN was politically driven to differentiate these oils from Low SAPs oils.

To meet both the ACEA B3 & B4 specs, engine oils must be put through their paces on the 60 hour VW TDI diesel test. Without getting overly technical, a B4 oil must leave the pistons cleaner with less ring stick. To achieve this, you generally need to put more Ashless Dispersant in a B4 oil.

Now all things being equal, putting more Ashless in an oil, increases it's Noack volatility. The 72 hour Peugeot TU5 test that you need to pass for ACEA A3 doesn't like high Noack. So a B4 oil, with higher levels of ashless, typically needs more synthetic base oil in the mix to bring the Noack back to something that is acceptable to the TU5. This extra synthetic directionally reduces VII loading (which is a good thing).

So, relative to an A3/B3 oil, an A3/B4 10W40 will contain...

...more metallic detergent (for TBN)
...more ashless dispersant (for Tdi)
...more Group III (for TU5)
...less VII polymer

Although much of this primarily manifests itself as better performance in diesel engines (with no PDFs), the oil will also be better for gasoline engines.

However, expect the A3/B4 10W40 to cost more..

Re: Difference between A3/B3 and A3/B4? [Re: 1JZ_E46] #4567352
11/08/17 01:51 AM
11/08/17 01:51 AM
Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 2,260
Malaysia
zeng Offline
zeng  Offline
Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 2,260
Malaysia
Thanks SoJ.
Strictly in terms of requirements of testing sequences , can the same be said of that a A3B4 SN/SM has similar advantages comparing against SN/SM oils ?

Re: Difference between A3/B3 and A3/B4? [Re: zeng] #4567358
11/08/17 02:07 AM
11/08/17 02:07 AM
Joined: Jul 2016
Posts: 1,090
Europe
SonofJoe Online content
SonofJoe  Online Content
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Posts: 1,090
Europe
Originally Posted By: zeng
Thanks SoJ.
Strictly in terms of requirements of testing sequences , can the same be said of that a A3B4 SN/SM has similar advantages comparing against SN/SM oils ?


A pure SM/SN oil will not have been tested & proven in any diesel engine tests. As such, these oils tend to be lacking in Ashless Dispersant.

Although it's not absolutely the case, it fair to say that an A3/B4 will give you SM/SN 'for free' but the reverse is NOT true.

So yes, an oil that claims SM/SN/A3/B4 will have the listed advantages over a pure SM/SN oil.

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