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SAE 30 vs 15w40 #4891572 10/09/18 04:48 AM
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dlundblad Online Happy OP
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I have a 50 year old air cooled Kohler engine that specifically calls for SAE 30.

Of the 2, which modern oils would be better to run in this situation?

I realize SAE 30 is slightly harder to find, but let's take that out of the equation for conversation sake. cheers


03 Jeep WJ 4.0 202k Edge 10w40 HM Fram XG16
02 Volvo S60 2.4T 186k M1 0w40 Mahle OX149D
97 Chevy Blazer 4.3 158k M1 EP 10w30 Supertech ST3980 (Ecore)

Re: SAE 30 vs 15w40 [Re: dlundblad] #4891578 10/09/18 05:12 AM
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Ducked Offline
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No shear
No VII degradation products
No doubt about what the manufacturer recommended
No brainer

Re: SAE 30 vs 15w40 [Re: dlundblad] #4891598 10/09/18 06:41 AM
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ofelas Offline
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Amsoil ACD in my 22hp Kohler.


R12 in the summer, Webasto in the winter, and cassette tapes all year.
Re: SAE 30 vs 15w40 [Re: Ducked] #4891603 10/09/18 06:48 AM
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zrxkawboy Offline
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Originally Posted by Ducked
No shear
No VII degradation products
No doubt about what the manufacturer recommended
No brainer


Agreed - SAE30 for sure


"Think of all the Ford owners who will someday want an automobile." John Dodge

Re: SAE 30 vs 15w40 [Re: dlundblad] #4891632 10/09/18 07:34 AM
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Even on my modern three year old Honda mower engine that calls for 10W-30, SAE 30 works better for me. Honda does say SAE 30 can be used at 50 degrees and above from what I remember. It drinks PYB 10W-30. Briggs SAE 30 no noticeable consumption like night and day difference.


1992 Toyota Pickup--Quaker State Advanced Durability 10W-30--Motorcraft 910S
Re: SAE 30 vs 15w40 [Re: dlundblad] #4891652 10/09/18 08:04 AM
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A 10w30 diesel motor oil would be my choice. It would be at 10w for the first 5 minutes only. Or, use 15w40 if thick makes you feel better.

Last edited by Snagglefoot; 10/09/18 08:11 AM.

If you want the job done right......do it yourself.
Re: SAE 30 vs 15w40 [Re: dlundblad] #4891657 10/09/18 08:16 AM
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30 for me, it works.briggs warns that the multigrades will burn off (my words)


These products are all new every year?? They are a revolution!!! Razor blades, mens shirts, TVs, wiper blades, gutter guards, hearing aids... according to the ads. But also all new last year
Re: SAE 30 vs 15w40 [Re: dlundblad] #4891664 10/09/18 08:30 AM
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Eddie Offline
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There are some low grade 30 weights out in the market that arn't suitable for anything but the oil can. If a 30 is spected for diesel use then OK, otherwise use a stout 10w30 (T5) or a 15w40. JMO. B&S recommends a 5w30 Synthetic for ALL it's engines.Ed


2014 CX5 Touring 2.5L :-)
Re: SAE 30 vs 15w40 [Re: Eddie] #4891748 10/09/18 10:03 AM
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Originally Posted by Eddie
There are some low grade 30 weights out in the market that arn't suitable for anything but the oil can. If a 30 is spected for diesel use then OK, otherwise use a stout 10w30 (T5) or a 15w40. JMO. B&S recommends a 5w30 Synthetic for ALL it's engines.Ed



You make a good point about low grade 30's.

I'd use PYB, NAPA or Rotella.


03 Jeep WJ 4.0 202k Edge 10w40 HM Fram XG16
02 Volvo S60 2.4T 186k M1 0w40 Mahle OX149D
97 Chevy Blazer 4.3 158k M1 EP 10w30 Supertech ST3980 (Ecore)

Re: SAE 30 vs 15w40 [Re: dlundblad] #4891765 10/09/18 10:30 AM
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440Magnum Offline
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Since I have the exact same situation, I'll tell you what I've been using for the past 10 years: Rotella T6 5w40. Old air-cooled engines aren't picky about precise viscosity quite so much as they are about temperature tolerance, viscosity stability, and resistance to sludge formation, detergency, etc. since the sump runs un-filtered.

My big problem with current SAE 30s is that they're only available two ways: 1) low-end oil that I wouldn't put in my worst enemy's lawnmower, let alone my own... 2) high-end boutique racing oils. T6 is a commodity oil that fits the bill perfectly, and has worked in my air-cooled engines for a lot of hours now.


'66 Dodge Polara & '69 Dodge Coronet R/T both 440/727
'08 Ram 1500 4.7/545RFE
'12 Challenger SRT8 392/6-speed
'99 XJ 4x4 4.0/AX15, '14 WK2 4x4 3.6/8HP
Re: SAE 30 vs 15w40 [Re: 440Magnum] #4891849 10/09/18 11:44 AM
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racin4ds Offline
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Originally Posted by 440Magnum
Since I have the exact same situation, I'll tell you what I've been using for the past 10 years: Rotella T6 5w40. Old air-cooled engines aren't picky about precise viscosity quite so much as they are about temperature tolerance, viscosity stability, and resistance to sludge formation, detergency, etc. since the sump runs un-filtered.

My big problem with current SAE 30s is that they're only available two ways: 1) low-end oil that I wouldn't put in my worst enemy's lawnmower, let alone my own... 2) high-end boutique racing oils. T6 is a commodity oil that fits the bill perfectly, and has worked in my air-cooled engines for a lot of hours now.


Except T6 5W40 is NOT a SAE30WT and is not the oil it used to be either... they have stripped a lot of the good stuff from it over the years to meet the dumb EPA/insert BS org.

Shell/Rotella still makes a good SAE30 and Amsoil has some great offerings as well.


Just say NO to thin oils and M1!
05 F350 Powerstroke
05 Hyundai Tucson
08 Legacy GT
Re: SAE 30 vs 15w40 [Re: dlundblad] #4891862 10/09/18 11:57 AM
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Rotella 15w-40 if you can’t find a 30w you want to use.


2014 Hyundai Elantra
2014 Hyundai Elantra GT

A 55 Gallon Drum And A Shovel Can Solve A lot of Life's Little "Problems"
Re: SAE 30 vs 15w40 [Re: dlundblad] #4891878 10/09/18 12:14 PM
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Delo 400 30 wt.

Re: SAE 30 vs 15w40 [Re: dlundblad] #4892015 10/09/18 03:40 PM
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SAE 30, there really is no alternative. As stated, no VI to shear, extremely heat tolerant. I disagree about only 2 types, cheap and boutique. SAE 30 is available lots of places, TSC has their house brand, Rotella 30 weight is available almost everywhere oil is sold including WM, and they have their house brand SuperTech fleet as well. Mobil 1630 at Rural King, LubeKing is at Farm and Home. I’m running Mobil 1630 in all my OPE now.

Last edited by beanoil; 10/09/18 03:41 PM.
Re: SAE 30 vs 15w40 [Re: dlundblad] #4892333 10/09/18 09:27 PM
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Warstud Offline
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Originally Posted by dlundblad
I realize SAE 30 is slightly harder to find


Walmart has Rotella T1...Rural King has 3 different brands of SAE30

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