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5W-30 OK for Alaska in 2.8L GM Duramax? #5315368 01/06/20 11:35 PM
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dogememe Offline OP
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My buddy has a 2018 GMC Canyon Denali diesel. Headed to Alaska for about 10 days next week. Right now according to the weather it's -40F up there! OMG!! But it should be a few degrees warmer next week.

We're going to do an oil change before we go. Currently it has whatever oil the dealer uses. We're going to use Dexos2-certified Pennzoil Euro 5W-30 from Walmart with an ACDelco filter. Will this be OK? Or do we need to hunt down a 0W-30? Thanks.


2010 Ford Escape 2.5 ~102K Miles: Castrol Magnatec 5W-20, Wix Filter.
2001 Chevy Suburban 5.3 ~290K Miles: Valvoline Maxlife 10W-30, ACDelco Filter.
Re: 5W-30 OK for Alaska in 2.8L GM Duramax? [Re: dogememe] #5315382 01/07/20 12:22 AM
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0w40 Dexos 2 is available and recommended for that temperature.

Re: 5W-30 OK for Alaska in 2.8L GM Duramax? [Re: dogememe] #5315401 01/07/20 01:11 AM
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SteveG4 Offline
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Dogememe,

5W-30 should be okay if the truck has a block heater. This diesel truck coming up the Al-Can MUST have a block heater!

If it's much below zero, plan on staying at hotels with bull-rails (pull-up-to railing with 120 VAC outlets at each parking spot for vehicle block heaters, battery warmers, etc). Plug into bull-rails every chance you get. If it's below -15 or -20 degrees F, plug-in your vehicle and go out and start and run it every 3 to 4 hours (once in the middle of the night and warm it up). This is no joke -- especially if you don't know how it does in the deep cold.

Most hotels/motels in the bush have these bull-rails offered to their guests as a courtesy/convenience. But, it's best make sure though before laying down your money for a room! For that matter, plan on staying at well-traveled hotels/motels along the way. And this is most important: plan on stopping at a motel before too late at night! Most of the proprietors don't stay up all night long at the desk, nor do the bush gas station operators along the Al-Can distribute gas/diesel at wee hours in the morning. They're closed down!

BTW, most of those motels open through the winters in N. British Columbia, the Yukon, and the bush Alaska communities are well-traveled though. Please plan on getting fuel at every town, village or remote fuel-up open along the way, especially north of Fort Nelson. Gas/fuel stations get might thin north of there -- especially in the wintertime! Bring along two new filled 5-gal yellow fuel jugs with you in the back of the truck (make sure they have good anti-gel supplement in them). You'll thank me if you run into a bind and have to camp out in the cab of the little truck overnight. That fuel will come in handy in order to stay warm and still be able to make it to the next fuel stop the next day. Sometimes those fuel stops can be 200 to 250 miles apart in the winter along the Al-Can -- several gas stations close down in the winter!

Moreover, take easy to make and eat or already prepared food, water, coffee, a small packable gas stove and matches for soups and stuff, paper bowls and plates, good sleeping bags, parkas, insulated gloves, long-johns, warm hats that cover ears, light snow-pants, and layerable fleece. God forbid you breakdown. It could be hours before someone mosies along!

Drive on no less than snow or A/T tires that have the severe snow service rating. You'll be driving through MOUNTAINS in the winter. The N. British Columbia Rockies and further north can be a pain-in-the-backside to drive though if there's a recent snow or if you're caught in a storm. This is especially the case if you're not used to driving on snow and ice conditions. Watch the weather forecasts each day for the road ahead -- ask in the towns at the motels, gas stations, and restaurants what the weather is like for the day or next day. Bring a properly inflated full-sized spare tire. Reinflate the spare in the cold weather along the way, for it will lose much pressure as compared to the warmer, Lesser-48 states.

And for God's sake, buy a 2019 MILEPOST book! It will tell you what you need to know about the Al-Can Hwy and help you know what's ahead and PLAN for it! https://www.amazon.com/MILEPOST-201...s=milepost&qid=1578380127&sr=8-1

This is off the top of my head.... from someone who recently lived and worked in Alaska for 25 years, and has driven up and down the Al-Can Hwy 7 times -- two times in the dead of winter like you're doing! I still own a home in Palmer, Alaska, 55 miles NE of Anchorage.

God Speed! And please don't take my advice for granted. I could very well BITE you where you don't want it!

Steve G.
- a crusty old Alaskan that doesn't have much patience for Cheechakos! Look up "Cheechako"



Somewhere between Alaska and Wisconsin...
2006 Silverado LT Crew Cab 4WD & 2013 Equinox AWD
Re: 5W-30 OK for Alaska in 2.8L GM Duramax? [Re: CleverUserName] #5315403 01/07/20 01:14 AM
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SteveG4 Offline
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Originally Posted by CleverUserName
0w40 Dexos 2 is available and recommended for that temperature.


Could very well be.
Threadstarter: Please check with your Chevy/GMC dealership about severe cold-rated oil for expected below zero temps in the Yukon and Alaska. Hopefully, you'll be lucky and that cold weather will have moved down and into the lower-48 states by the time you get there.

YOU MUST HAVE A BLOCK HEATER INSTALLED BEFORE DRIVING INTO THE HEART OF CANADA! Because once you turn east from the Vancouver area and head into the mountains, it'll be too late to consider it. It'll be too expensive and time consuming to install. wink

I know, I've driven to Alaska (in the winter) from Seattle. I've crossed over the US-Canada borders at I-5 just north of Blaine, WA, the Eureka/Roosville crossing in NW Montana, Sweetgrass, Montana, and Portal, ND.

Make sure you have your Passports on you. That's a must. Passport cards might work; they might not. It's best to call the state department to find out... and best to have a squeaky clean background/record if you wish to cross into Canada.

Good luck!


Somewhere between Alaska and Wisconsin...
2006 Silverado LT Crew Cab 4WD & 2013 Equinox AWD
Re: 5W-30 OK for Alaska in 2.8L GM Duramax? [Re: dogememe] #5315412 01/07/20 01:46 AM
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After further review and visiting the Dexos website, I found these Dexos2-rated oils for the "global" market:

Mobil 1 ESP ExxonMobil Oil Corp. dexos2™ 0W-40 GB1A0917015 Global
Mobil 1 ESP Formula ExxonMobil Oil Corp. dexos2™ 5W-30 D20002GA015 Global
Castrol Edge Castrol Ltd. dexos2™ 0W-30 GB2C1210082 Global
Castrol Edge Castrol Ltd. dexos2™ 0W-30 GB2C1210082 Global
Castrol Edge Castrol Ltd. dexos2™ 0W-40 GB2C1214082 Global
Castrol Edge Turbo Diesel Castrol Ltd. dexos2™ 0W-30 GB2D0327082 Global

I might have missed a few 0W's...

Threadstarter: Please check with your Chevy/GMC dealership about severe cold-rated oil for expected below zero temps in the Yukon and Alaska. Hopefully, you'll be lucky and that cold weather will have moved down and into the lower-48 states by the time you get there.


Somewhere between Alaska and Wisconsin...
2006 Silverado LT Crew Cab 4WD & 2013 Equinox AWD
Re: 5W-30 OK for Alaska in 2.8L GM Duramax? [Re: dogememe] #5315417 01/07/20 02:11 AM
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Another thing... each of you bring polarized, deep-tinted sunglasses, preferably prescription if you need them. I like the dark brown-tinted polarized ones myself. With 100% snow covered roads and scenery -- with EVERYTHING white all the time -- even on cloudy days you'll need them. Sunny days will blind you. Trust me. You'll thank me later.


Somewhere between Alaska and Wisconsin...
2006 Silverado LT Crew Cab 4WD & 2013 Equinox AWD
Re: 5W-30 OK for Alaska in 2.8L GM Duramax? [Re: dogememe] #5315449 01/07/20 04:55 AM
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If it’s Pennzoil you like, I would go to 0w30 LX. It’s suitable for both diesel gasoline engines. If it’s truly -40 it will make the difference. If you are crossing the border at Sweetgrass, that means you’ll be driving past Calgary and Edmonton. Calgary will be -20 f which is pretty darn cold for that city. If you need a hotel in Calgary there are plenty of new hotels just north of the airport at reasonable prices. Edmonton is going to -26 and Fort Nelson will be -36 f . When at Fort Nelson, it’s still another 1300 miles to Anchorage. Make sure you have proper cold weather attire. Also, don’t leave any bottles of pop in the vehicle over night. They will freeze and explode. Ask me how I know. Refer to my posting on the Arctic Front yesterday. You couldn’t have picked a colder time to go north! Good luck and post some photos along the way!
shocked2 shocked2

56568883-74E9-4569-976F-6B3B678BE40F.jpeg
Last edited by Snagglefoot; 01/07/20 05:22 AM.

If you want the job done right......do it yourself.
Re: 5W-30 OK for Alaska in 2.8L GM Duramax? [Re: dogememe] #5315459 01/07/20 05:36 AM
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Which border crossing are you planning on? If it’s northern Idaho, PM me and I’ll buy you coffee at Timmies in Cranbrook. Also, once in Canada buy some windshield washer fluid that is good for -40 . Use up the girly man stuff and put in the good stuff. Do yourself a favour and air up your tires when it’s still decent outside. Airing up at -40 is painful. Buy a 5 dollar antifreeze checker and check your antifreeze. If in doubt, turkey bast your coolant jug and put in 100% antifreeze in the jug. It will disperse through the system. if you do the block heater they can touch you up then. I’d go to -45 F. If at all possible avoid night driving. That’s when you’ll truly get the coldest temps. Sunset is at 4:30 PM in Fort Nelson. Best be in your hotel room by then. smile

Last edited by Snagglefoot; 01/07/20 06:03 AM.

If you want the job done right......do it yourself.
Re: 5W-30 OK for Alaska in 2.8L GM Duramax? [Re: dogememe] #5315468 01/07/20 06:13 AM
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Editors note. Like Steve G4, I’ve lived in the north; Fort St.John, Fort Nelson, and have worked in Inuvik and Tuktoyaktuk. PS. Why not ask Fawteen if he wants to drive up with you? LOL

Last edited by Snagglefoot; 01/07/20 06:17 AM.

If you want the job done right......do it yourself.
Re: 5W-30 OK for Alaska in 2.8L GM Duramax? [Re: dogememe] #5315488 01/07/20 06:39 AM
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I_4 Offline
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Great advice from Steve G4. Nice 24 hour hotel café in Palmer. The only car trouble from MA to AK I had was a puncture just outside of Palmer. (summer trip) I would add a good tire repair kit, good small 12v compressor, tow strap. The trip in the winter should be real fun!


2007 BMW 328 Ams Euro 5W-40
2005 Honda Civic Si EP3 Ams Sig 5W-30
2000 Mazda B3000 (winter)
1992 Mazda Miata (summer/HPDE) Ams Z-Rod 10W-30
1990 Volvo 240DL
Re: 5W-30 OK for Alaska in 2.8L GM Duramax? [Re: dogememe] #5315491 01/07/20 06:42 AM
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[Linked Image]


2007 BMW 328 Ams Euro 5W-40
2005 Honda Civic Si EP3 Ams Sig 5W-30
2000 Mazda B3000 (winter)
1992 Mazda Miata (summer/HPDE) Ams Z-Rod 10W-30
1990 Volvo 240DL
Re: 5W-30 OK for Alaska in 2.8L GM Duramax? [Re: dogememe] #5315502 01/07/20 06:53 AM
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Danno Offline
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For additional insurance, I recommend a stick on oil pan heater if 100 to 150 watts. Wolverine is a good brand. Block heaters only warm the coolant with minimal to no impact on oil temps.


2019 Jeep Grand Cherokee Summit 5.7L Hemi
2019 RAV4 Limited Hybrid
2016 Sorento SX V6 AWD
2010 Mazda 3 2.0L
Re: 5W-30 OK for Alaska in 2.8L GM Duramax? [Re: dogememe] #5315511 01/07/20 07:00 AM
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Donald Offline
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Originally Posted by dogememe
My buddy has a 2018 GMC Canyon Denali diesel. Headed to Alaska for about 10 days next week. Right now according to the weather it's -40F up there! OMG!! But it should be a few degrees warmer next week.

We're going to do an oil change before we go. Currently it has whatever oil the dealer uses. We're going to use Dexos2-certified Pennzoil Euro 5W-30 from Walmart with an ACDelco filter. Will this be OK? Or do we need to hunt down a 0W-30? Thanks.


Owners manual has a oil viscosity /temp chart.

In the winter I would go by lowest expected temp.

Synthetic oil will be easier starting.

Last edited by Donald; 01/07/20 07:00 AM.

2015 Ford F-250 w/Powerstroke
2016 Subaru Crosstrek CVT (wife's)
Re: 5W-30 OK for Alaska in 2.8L GM Duramax? [Re: dogememe] #5315515 01/07/20 07:03 AM
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Don't forget to throw a coffee in the air when you get there.

Last edited by Snagglefoot; 01/07/20 07:04 AM.

If you want the job done right......do it yourself.
Re: 5W-30 OK for Alaska in 2.8L GM Duramax? [Re: Danno] #5315519 01/07/20 07:08 AM
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Originally Posted by Danno
For additional insurance, I recommend a stick on oil pan heater if 100 to 150 watts. Wolverine is a good brand. Block heaters only warm the coolant with minimal to no impact on oil temps.


Not a bad idea. It's less work than popping a freeze plug and putting in an element. ( I had that done to mine ten years ago.).


If you want the job done right......do it yourself.
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