Find Answers to your most frequent questions about lubricants. For additional assistance, don’t hesitate to contact us.
The components of our oils have been proportioned to reach an optimum result. Add an additive may create unecessary blends and even harmful. Certain manufacturers even forbid to inorporate an additive in the oil.
The answer to this question depends on the technology used. Although some older vehicles allow the same lubricant to be used for both the engine and the gearbox, new vehicles require different products for each.
Follow the manufacturer's recommendations.
Petrol and diesel engines have different lubrication requirements. During development, lubricants undergo a number of tests, some common to diesel and petrol engines and others specific to one or the other type, that categorize their performances. At the end of this process, they are awarded an API or ACEA/CCMC compliance standard. These specifications characterize the acceptable functioning of the lubricant in each type of petrol or diesel engine. Lubricants for four-stroke engines usually comply with both petrol and diesel specifications. For example, an API SJ/CF lubricant meets petrol specification SJ and diesel specification CF. But this does not necessarily mean that it will perform in the same way in both petrol and diesel engines. This is why Elf has developed specialized ranges, optimized either for petrol or for diesel.
Lubricants are always optimized to meet the requirements of international classifications (API, ACEA). However, there are many ways of formulating a specific type of lubricant. Mixing two oils that have equivalent properties will not pose a problem, but final performance cannot be guaranteed. All market oils (petrol engine or diesel, mineral or synthetic) are mixable. However, a blending of two oil qualities lower the superior quality.
No, because motorcycle four-stroke engines do not operate under the same conditions as those of cars (higher engine rpm and temperature). The engine lubricant can also be used to lubricate the gearbox and the clutch, which requires a formula with EXTREME-PRESSURE ADDITIVES. On the other hand, passenger vehicle lubricants contain DETERGENT ADDITIVES with a high ash content. In motorcycle engines, these cause deposits to form on the valve train and the piston crowns, which can result in valve burning or piston perforation.
During normal vehicle operation, oil is vital to ensures leak tightness between the combustion chamber and the crankcase. The oil pressure indicator shows how well this is being done.
An unusual drop in oil pressure can result from either lower engine oil viscosity due to dilution by fuel (injector problem or use at low load) ; too little oil in the lubrication system (due to an oil leak, excess oil consumption, or failure of the oil circulation pump) ; or even mechanical part wear.
The engine oil level should be checked regularly to prevent incidents. A small amount of the oil that circulates in the engine is always burnt (an engine in good condition consumes between 0.2 and 0.5 liters of oil every 1,000 kilometers), but successive top-ups are no substitute for an oil change.
Accordingly, it is natural that an engine consumes a small amount of oil, which can be offset by top-ups between oil changes; however, excessive need for top-ups can be an indication of mechanical problems (leaks, etc).
Any vehicle owner knows that lubricants are vital to the correct operation of your engine :
Additives bring their help, with the detergent and dispersant addives, and the additives against corrosion.
Product labels provide a considerable amount of information about lubricant performance.
More about : How to read the label on a drum
A good quality oil provides motorists with a number of benefits :
In the area of technology, engine lubricants must consistently evolve toward higher performance levels, linked to engine advances, use, manufacturer requirements, and requirements of users and law-makers :
Conditions of operation also involve :
Semi-synthetic and synthetic oils are made from non-conventional bases using sophisticated chemical processes which confer special properties to the finished product. First, the high level of viscosity of the base oils used gives the finished lubricant remarkably stable viscosity whatever the temperature. This property is one of its major advantages over mineral oils, made from conventional bases which require a greater number of additives in order to improve viscosity. The stability of lubrication in all temperatures guarantees optimum efficacy in the cold starting phase which is particularly demanding on the engine ? as well as under conditions of extreme heat. Synthetic-based lubricants show greater resistance to oxidation, which gives them longer effective life thus guaranteeing longer engine life. The use of non-conventional bases, finally, permits the elaboration of more fluid lubricants, without being more volatile; resulting in a reduction of oil consumption.
Therefore, choosing a synthetic based oil is the technologically advance choice, for greater efficacy, longevity and controlled oil consumption.
A multigrade oil is one whose properties have been artificially modified to reduce changes in its viscosity with temperature changes. A multigrade oil will be more fluid at low temperatures and thicker at high temperatures than a monograde oil.
Concretely, that means that
Multigrade oils provide better engine protection at low and high temperatures than monograde oils, in that they maintain optimum viscosity over the engine operating temperature range.
In order to fulfil the lubrication and shaft cooling needs of the turbo-compressor, oil must answer to very strict criteria. The shaft reaches, a very high temperature, due to the proximity of the exhaust gasses, a very high temperature. Oil must lubricate the shaft continuously otherwise the high temperatures would permanently damage it and the temperature would then very rapidly reach very high levels.
These conditions mean the oil has to offer considerable detergent property, an important resistance to oxidisation and deposit formation, but especially very high a thermic stability. The use of SYNTHETIC oils is therefore the most recommended solution in these conditions. Turbo-compressors are characteristic of the diesel engines, as it is very easy for petrol engines to reach the same power level by other means, such as electronic injection, cylinder head multi-valves, etc.
The reply is clear and net: NO.
This challenge has been met by the CATALYTIC CONVERTER, whose role is to complete the combustion of the exhaust gas just before they escape into the atmosphere. In order to respect the environment oils must offer a high lubrication property, better detergent and dispersant properties as well as a low sulphur and phosphorous content. These properties are essential for oils that will be used in vehicles equipped with catalytic converters. The use of a non adapted oil can damage the catalytic converter. Synthetic lubricants are highly recommended because of the intrinsic properties of their base.
The oil change is an essential operation in maintaining a vehicle in top condition :
Oui, il faut adapter la viscosité en fonction des conditions d'utilisation du véhicule, de l'environnement et des conditions climatiques.
If you carry out your own oil change, you will need a 5-litre container, given that the average capacity of the sump is 4.5 litres.
If you are topping up between oil changes, a 1 litre container will suffice: it is practical, easy to use and cheaper.
In closed containers stocked at over 0°C, your oil will retain all its qualities. However, it is recommended that opened containers be well closed in order to avoid contamination by water.
Pour it in the backyard ? It?s against the law !
The quality of oils and their biodegradability have improved but these products are filled with particles of pollution which can be harmful to the environment. You may deposit your oil in special containers which can be found in the parking lots of supermarkets or at your neighbourhood garage.