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Seemingly Negative Experience adding Seafoam to oil. 5.3 Yukon #4943030 12/04/18 06:34 AM
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Gasbuggy Offline OP
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I added Seafoam to the oil (M1 0W30 AFE) in my 02 Yukon XL. 5.3 LS engine, 175,000 miles. It has the common piston slap, a rather severe case.
Even hot it has a slight bit of it, sometimes I wonder if it is a lifter tap. The truck runs great though and hardly burns a drop of oil. The noises have remained the same for the past 15k, since I got it. After watching a page called Project Farm, seemingly do an unbiased test, Seafoam in the oil quieted down the valvetrain in the test truck. (Video below). Seafoam won't help piston slap but a lifter issue it may.

Prior to the addition of Seafoam, my oil was at 5300 miles and was a clear amber. I added 6-7 oz of Seafoam and put a couple hundred miles on a few days. No changes, aside from slightly darker oil on the dipstick. I had written it off as not effective. 5 more days and I'm past the 400-mile mark, planning to change the oil somewhat soon. I picked a girl up to get lunch and do a few other things. While I'm waiting for her to come outside I notice my hot idle oil pressure is down. About 4 pounds down. I can't trust the OEM gauge for perfect accuracy but it was lower than normal. I shut it off, check the oil, it's full and a bit darker. She comes outside while I've got the hood up wondering if everything is ok. I tell her I was just checking the oil since I was waiting so long...

We drive about 30 minutes and when I park my idle oil pressure is even lower than before, I'm at 23 instead of my usual 29. I get out and I can smell that hot engine smell as I walk past the front. Smells like when an older car that is running low on oil or a car with an electric radiator fan that isn't working and is running a bit warmer than usual. Also noticeable is all the metal noise "tinking" cooling down, like an old car or motorcycle would do. My coolant temp was normal. I feel fairly certain the Seafoam was creating extra friction or had thinned out the oil too much.

Eventually, I got it home and drained the oil, no debris came out, nothing suspect was left on the bottom of my clean drain pan.

PP 10w30 went in. Full heat soaked hot idle oil PSI is back to normal.

Perhaps it was coincidental, I'm fairly skeptical though. The engine was not liking something and if I didn't add the Seafoam I would have ran that oil for another 2000 miles easy.



Cadillac CTS-V 6.2L 10w30PP
Volvo P1800 Euro L
76 Mercedes 300D Rotella T4
Series III Land Rover VWB
02 Yukon 10w30 PP
01 P71 M1 EP-HM 0W20
95 Accord - 386k. Mobil 2 RIP
Re: Seemingly Negative Experience adding Seafoam to oil. 5.3 Yukon [Re: Gasbuggy] #4943040 12/04/18 06:57 AM
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AZjeff Offline
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Originally Posted by Gasbuggy
I picked a girl up to get lunch and do a few other things...


Forget the Seafoam, how did this work out?? cheers

Did you think about using the Lucas product?


86 Samurai 1.3 leftovers
14 RAV4 2.5 5W-20 PP
18 Nissan Titan 5.6 DI, QSUD

The most important thing to do in your life is to not interfere with someone else's life. - Frank Zappa

Re: Seemingly Negative Experience adding Seafoam to oil. 5.3 Yukon [Re: AZjeff] #4943048 12/04/18 07:14 AM
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joekingcorvette Offline
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Originally Posted by AZjeff
Originally Posted by Gasbuggy
I picked a girl up to get lunch and do a few other things...


Forget the Seafoam, how did this work out?? cheers



Ha! That was downright hilarious.

To the OP: If the oil got quite a bit darker I would say the seafoam cleaned out the engine and probably helped.


2005 Chevrolet Corvette
2014 Ford F-150 4x4 supercrew
2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited (wifes)
2012 Honda Civic 4 door (my daily driver)
2007 Lund Tyee Grand Sport Mercury 115HP 9.8HP
Re: Seemingly Negative Experience adding Seafoam to oil. 5.3 Yukon [Re: Gasbuggy] #4943060 12/04/18 07:44 AM
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demarpaint Offline
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The Seafoam probably thinned the oil, a lot which would explain the oil pressure drop. I wouldn't add Seafoam to the sump for that reason. If for some reason I did, it would be for a idle flush only, no driving the vehicle and no more than 10 minutes in the sump.


God Bless Our Troops

Re: Seemingly Negative Experience adding Seafoam to oil. 5.3 Yukon [Re: Gasbuggy] #4943088 12/04/18 08:23 AM
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RyanY Offline
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Did the lifter noise (or other noise) go away after the seafoam? I have had mixed results with it...very effective in my lawn mower but not in cars. Kerosene or Motor Flush for a 10 min idle (as demarpaint suggested above) seems to be as effective as anything else ive tried for reducing lifter noise.


2007 Cadillac CTS 3.6L >123k miles (Valvoline synthetic HM + ACDelco PF2129G)

2012 Honda Odyssey EX-L >100k miles (Pennzoil Platinum 5W-20 + STP S6607XL)
Re: Seemingly Negative Experience adding Seafoam to oil. 5.3 Yukon [Re: Gasbuggy] #4943159 12/04/18 09:55 AM
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Donald Offline
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I would never add Seafoam to the oil. Only to the gas.


2015 Subaru Forester 2.5 engine/CVT
2015 Ford F250 w/Powerstroke
2016 Subaru Crosstrek CVT (wife's)
Re: Seemingly Negative Experience adding Seafoam to oil. 5.3 Yukon [Re: Gasbuggy] #4943188 12/04/18 10:23 AM
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Muskieteer Offline
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Try MMO next time that will take care of that noise! popcorn


2019 Toyota Camry
2008 Toyota Tundra
Re: Seemingly Negative Experience adding Seafoam to oil. 5.3 Yukon [Re: Gasbuggy] #4943213 12/04/18 10:55 AM
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andyd Offline
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Just curious, Did the tap go away? For my last BMW, I ran 20w50 dino year round. Come December, I would add a pint of MMO to oil. Granted all the car has is an idiot light. But there were no strange smells or sounds. I couldn't even smell the wintergreen when I sniffed the dip stick. I know, Adding MMO to oil is OLD school. The bottle says it can used up to 20% in oil. I used 1/2 of that, 10% . It was enough to allow the car to start at 0F. It rarely gets to zero here, due to the ocean. Going to 10w30 is a step in the right direction. The take away from using Sea Foam is that the insides of the 5.3 are squeaky clean. No need for any more flushing. grin2


'16 Camry LE STP synth 0w20 and STP filter. the Fridge

1994 Ranger ,the Rat, 5w30 dino, STP filter

'16 Camry SE, Valvoline HM 0w20 and OEM filter
Thick oil is better grin2
Re: Seemingly Negative Experience adding Seafoam to oil. 5.3 Yukon [Re: Gasbuggy] #4943268 12/04/18 11:58 AM
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The Seafoam did it's job by the color change. 29 hot idle down to 23, no biggie ... If it had dropped to 10 I'd be concerned. It came back with an oil change, all is good.

So, with 170K on it, why not switch up to 15W-40 HDEO? It should help with the piston slap some. Still thin enough to cold start easily. Seems like the next logical move ...


Formerly in marine engineering. In an earlier life I owned my own petroleum tank truck, and hauled for the majors and independent's.
Re: Seemingly Negative Experience adding Seafoam to oil. 5.3 Yukon [Re: BrocLuno] #4943276 12/04/18 12:06 PM
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dogememe Offline
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Originally Posted by BrocLuno
The Seafoam did it's job by the color change. 29 hot idle down to 23, no biggie ... If it had dropped to 10 I'd be concerned. It came back with an oil change, all is good.

So, with 170K on it, why not switch up to 15W-40 HDEO? It should help with the piston slap some. Still thin enough to cold start easily. Seems like the next logical move ...

Why run a 15w-40 just because it has high mileage?? I'm running 10w-30 on my 276k Silverado and I'm actually gonna go down to 5w-30 next time so I can run the same oil in both my vehicles.


2010 Ford Escape 2.5 ~98K Miles
Valvoline 5W-20 from Valvoline Instant Oil Change.
Re: Seemingly Negative Experience adding Seafoam to oil. 5.3 Yukon [Re: andyd] #4943395 12/04/18 02:37 PM
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gfh77665 Offline
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Originally Posted by andyd
Just curious, Did the tap go away?



He just said "He picked a girl up to get lunch and do a few other things..."

Re: Seemingly Negative Experience adding Seafoam to oil. 5.3 Yukon [Re: Gasbuggy] #4943412 12/04/18 03:05 PM
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The piston slap/knock is due to hypereutectic pistons that expand as they warm up, which is why it quiets down after a few minutes of run time and is worse in colder weather

drive it another 200K miles.

Re: Seemingly Negative Experience adding Seafoam to oil. 5.3 Yukon [Re: krismoriah72] #4943436 12/04/18 03:29 PM
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OVERKILL Offline
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Originally Posted by krismoriah72
The piston slap/knock is due to hypereutectic pistons that expand as they warm up, which is why it quiets down after a few minutes of run time and is worse in colder weather

drive it another 200K miles.


No, the slap is due to bulk-fit pistons with short skirts. Hypereutectic pistons, by virtue of their silicon content, expand/contract less than forged or cast slugs. Part of the reason for the development of hypereutectic pistons was to be able to tighten up the piston/wall interface for less blow-by and superior emissions performance.

Now, the reason they quiet down is indeed due to the pistons expanding, but the scenario would play out the same regardless of piston material choice.


2019 RAM 1500 Sport - Mobil 1 EP 0w-20, FRAM Ultra
2016 Grand Cherokee SRT - Ravenol SSL 0w-40, FRAM Ultra
Re: Seemingly Negative Experience adding Seafoam to oil. 5.3 Yukon [Re: Gasbuggy] #4943465 12/04/18 04:17 PM
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meep Offline
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I've run seafoam in the sump for entire OCIs in used high mileage volvos, among others. never more than half a bottle and never less than a 10-30 oil. I've seen it slowly help clean them up; it's no miracle but helpful in small amounts. Over time, consumption in one of these went from 1 qt every 1000 miles to 1 qt every 7500 or so. If I use the whole bottle, it's only to idle for an hour as a flush, or the last 500 miles (gently) before an OC.


2018 F150
2015 crv (wifey!)
Re: Seemingly Negative Experience adding Seafoam to oil. 5.3 Yukon [Re: Gasbuggy] #4943837 12/05/18 04:25 AM
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Gasbuggy Offline OP
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This got quite a response! The tap didn't go away or change pitch. It's my loud piston. This truck piston slaps so bad on a cold morning that it triggers the knock sensors. The worst LS engine slap I've heard. People stare at you when it starts up cold. I think its kind of funny. I plan to try Mobil Delvac 15w40 on the next change. (I bought 10 gallons during that $7 a gallon rebate they had) but viscosity doesn't seem to impact the piston slap. I've run Maxlife 10w40 before. With the supposedly cold winter coming, I decided to use a 30wt for this change. I did add a full bottle of Liqui Moly MoS2 to the PP, we'll see if that helps anything. I've never really messed around with oil additives in my cars before.

I'm a lot smoother than my engine so the day date went well. pic of the girl sitting in the Yukon.


[Linked Image]


Cadillac CTS-V 6.2L 10w30PP
Volvo P1800 Euro L
76 Mercedes 300D Rotella T4
Series III Land Rover VWB
02 Yukon 10w30 PP
01 P71 M1 EP-HM 0W20
95 Accord - 386k. Mobil 2 RIP
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