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Cat C-12 reman long block oil #5340745 02/04/20 10:39 AM
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Axle Offline OP
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I'm getting a remanufactured long block in my semi truck and was looking for some advice for oil selection. I like 10w-30 and it is an approved grade in the Caterpillar OMM published in 1997. There are no Cat ecf requirements listed in the manual, only CH4 or CI4 I think. I like the cold flow of 10w-30 but I'm concerned that it might not be the best for going through mountains in the summer. I pull refrigerated freight from Chicago area to Raleigh NC every week so mountains out there have me running full boost for 10-15 minutes at a time. Another thought that had crossed my mind was to switch between 10w-30 in the winter and run 15w-40 in the summer.

I have Rotella 15-40 and 10-30 available at a local farm supply store and there is a Schaeffer dealer about 35 minutes away. I really like the Schaeffer 10-30 9012 and their 711 but the Rotella 10-30 can be bought for a few dollars per gallon cheaper. There are a couple other 15-40 brands available at the farm store as well. Also the Cat brand 10-30 and 15-40 is competitively priced with other places but the dealer is about 35 minutes as well.

I'd like to use a Donaldson DBL7505 oil filter and I think the 10-30 might flow easier through that filter than 15-40 would.

So will a CK-4 oil work good with my pre-emissions engine or should I look for a more classic tailored oil? Is 10-30 up to the task of pulling mountains at full boost in the summer grossing 75,000+ or would it be advisable to switch to 15-40?


04 Dodge 2500 5.9l CTD-Valv PB 5w40/Donaldson DBL7349
98 Pete 379 Cat C-12
Re: Cat C-12 reman long block oil [Re: Axle] #5340774 02/04/20 11:04 AM
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mker Offline
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Cat.com have your filter 1r1808 on special ship free when you buy 4. This is the upgrade of the original 1r0176 for your c-12 and it is called “ high efficiency filter”. It filters down to 50% at 10 micron and above 95% at 20 micron. They claim it has about the same dirt holding capacity at 150 grams.

Rotella t4 15w40 ck4 claims to have better wear protection than previous formula. Rotella t5 15w40 semi synthetic claims to have 37% better wear protection than previous formula. T6 5w40 full,synthetic claims 43% better wear protection.

T5 ck4 for summer and t6 ck4 for winter would be my choice if you don’t mind spending little more money.

Last edited by mker; 02/04/20 11:05 AM.
Re: Cat C-12 reman long block oil [Re: Axle] #5340856 02/04/20 01:01 PM
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ecotourist Offline
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How many miles before the need for a long block?


2000 BMW 528i 5MT M Sport
2007 Honda Accord EX-L 4Door V6 6MT
Re: Cat C-12 reman long block oil [Re: ecotourist] #5340892 02/04/20 01:35 PM
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Chris142 Offline
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Originally Posted by ecotourist
How many miles before the need for a long block?

Not many with a C12! I wanted to ask the O.P. how well that engine has been. The company I worked for had 20 of them. All 20 were so much trouble that all 20 trucks got returned early. I even got stranded by one for 2 days in death valley.


02 Wrangler Napa high milage 10w40
87 F250 Valvoline 15w40
07 fjcruiser Car lube plus 10w30
Z400 castrol T 10w40
Can am Maveric edge 5w40
57 case tractor Chevron sae30
Re: Cat C-12 reman long block oil [Re: Axle] #5340893 02/04/20 01:35 PM
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Axle Offline OP
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The engine had a little over 1.6 mil miles. One in-frame after it blew a head gasket. An in-frame would have been preferable, unfortunately Caterpillar doesn't make a kit for my serial number.


04 Dodge 2500 5.9l CTD-Valv PB 5w40/Donaldson DBL7349
98 Pete 379 Cat C-12
Re: Cat C-12 reman long block oil [Re: Axle] #5340896 02/04/20 01:45 PM
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I just bought it about six months ago and pulled food grade tanker with it and got over 7 mpg. I was told by the previous owner that he never really had any problems with it and it always got great fuel economy. I went with a long block because it needed rods and main bearings, a cam, cam bearings, a new head, new lifters, new rocker assemblies and valve bridges. Lots of stuff basically.


04 Dodge 2500 5.9l CTD-Valv PB 5w40/Donaldson DBL7349
98 Pete 379 Cat C-12
Re: Cat C-12 reman long block oil [Re: Axle] #5340902 02/04/20 01:55 PM
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Chris142 Offline
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Originally Posted by Axle
The engine had a little over 1.6 mil miles.

That's amazing. Ours didn't make 100k without a major break down. Most of the others blew up by 200k.

All were driven by professional drivers including me. The series 60 detroits ran forever. The cats were 430/445 hp.


02 Wrangler Napa high milage 10w40
87 F250 Valvoline 15w40
07 fjcruiser Car lube plus 10w30
Z400 castrol T 10w40
Can am Maveric edge 5w40
57 case tractor Chevron sae30
Re: Cat C-12 reman long block oil [Re: Axle] #5340930 02/04/20 02:40 PM
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ecotourist Offline
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Thanks. That's a lot of miles.

You're probably wise to get a long block. Less opportunity to need "something else" later.

How well does the truck itself stand up?


2000 BMW 528i 5MT M Sport
2007 Honda Accord EX-L 4Door V6 6MT
Re: Cat C-12 reman long block oil [Re: ecotourist] #5340980 02/04/20 03:43 PM
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Axle Offline OP
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Originally Posted by ecotourist
How well does the truck itself stand up?


She's not a show truck, but the interior is in good shape. I just installed an espar bunk heater and a new legacy seat. She's an old Hoffman Transport truck so she has a pretty distinct paint job, as faded as it is. Someone cut in front of me a while ago and bent my bumper out, I bent it back but there's still a crease and she needs two new hood fenders. Other than that everything is in really good condition.


04 Dodge 2500 5.9l CTD-Valv PB 5w40/Donaldson DBL7349
98 Pete 379 Cat C-12
Re: Cat C-12 reman long block oil [Re: Axle] #5341001 02/04/20 04:01 PM
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2013ecof150 Offline
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If you wanted something that filters even better than a 1R1808 you can use a 244-4484. It’s supposed to have an even higher efficiency. I use them when I service heavy equipment all the time, they are a very well built filter

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