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· 1993 range rover lwb - Roman Bronze
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I've been hearing nothing but good things about Rotella oil. So I did my research and can only find that owners of discovery 2 and 3 are the only ones giving it reviews and it seems they're the only ones whose happy with it. So here's my questions:
1. I noticed its for Diesel engines and I along with most of us have V8, sooooo is it safe to use it?????

2. Are there any range rover classic owners out there that has used it and what are your thoughts?


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Even though it is for Diesel oil, it is still safe to use in a V8. It only means that it has been formulated towards diesel engines. Therefore, there are a lot better oils out there for a V8 that are actually formulated towards them rather than a diesel engine.

The argument towards Rotella for a Rover V8 was based on a lot of bad information and urban myths about zinc requirements for the cam in a rover V8 and supposedly other oils with lower zinc levels were somehow no good.

So will it do any harm, No. Is it the best oil for a rover V8, No.

You might read this http://www.penriteoil.com.au/images/PENR0138_Penrite_Zinc Tech Bulletin.pdf
 

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I've used 15w40 Diesel oils in my old V8 Rover for years. I've found that Diesel oils tend to have a better detergent package and are able to hold sludge forming deposits better than most mineral gas oils.....and the old V8 can get to be quite a dirty engine. But it's all personal preference, I don't use it in the wife's LR3.

The old Rover V8's are simple units with quite a big variance in clearances/tolerances so almost any oil is going to work. Whatever you decide just be sure to change it often.

Rotella is one of the better oils IMO.

My 2c.
 

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It's a good oil for flat tappet engines that need a higher shear level. You want at least 3.5. This is a good read.
When they changed the oil specs there was a lot of mis-information out there. Unfortunately there were a number of people (like on discoweb) that believed it. You should not believe everything you read on the web.

Here is my standard reply when this subject is brought up from time to time. It is mainly a quote from the people who actually set the oil standards.

Here are some of my posts from these older threads.

**************************************************
AERA/AERSCO (Engine Builders Association)
AERA Technical Services Departmart
Diesel engine oils produced before January 2007 had a CI-4 oil designation and offer higher levels of Zinc and wear preventive additives than passenger car oils.
BUT, after January 2007, the CJ-4 oil designation for new truck engine manufacturers mandates oils with a reduction in Zinc.
Do not break-in a flat tappet camshaft and lifters using Rotella T CJ-4 15w-40.


A further point about how good a lubricant Rotella is. The less wear and friction, the better performance and fuel economy you will get. Of 3 oils tested below, Rotella provided the worst fuel economy by up to 5%. At fuel prices today, Rotella's cheap purchase price will be negated each time you fill up with fuel.

Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department
North Carolina State University for NC Department of Administration, Energy Office

At 1200 rpm, Royal Purple oil was about 4.5% more fuel efficient than Shell Rotella 15W/40, and about 2.5% more efficient than Amsoil. At 1600 rpthe Royal Purple oil required about 5% less fuel than Shell Rotella 15w/40, and about 3% less fuel than Amsoil




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This following article was produced by SAE, you know the people that actually set the oil standards. You should note that the current grade oils must prove that they do not affect wear on flat tappet cams to get the SAE rating. But read an article from the experts on the current oil standards rather than from the chicken littles of this world.

"How about some real facts about Zinc levels from a SAE paper titled "How Much ZDP is Enough?". It is SAE document #2004-01-2986 if you care to locate it and read in greater detail.

Engine Oil Mythology

Myths are ill-founded beliefs held uncritically by interested groups. Over the years there has been an overabundance of engine oil myths.

All of these myths have a common theme; newer oils are bad. And this brings us to the latest myth – new “Starburst”/ API SM engine oils are bad for older cars because the amount of anti-wear additive in them has been reduced. This one has gotten big play in the antique and collector car press lately. The anti-wear additive being discussed is zinc dithiophosphate (ZDP).

Before debunking this myth we need to look at the history of ZDP usage in engine oil.

ZDP has been used for over 60 years as an additive in engine oils to provide wear protection and oxidation stability. Unfortunately, ZDP contains phosphorus, and phosphorus is a poison for automotive catalysts. For this reason ZDP levels have been reduced by about 35% over the last 10-15 years down to a maximum of 0.08% for “Starburst”/API SM oils.

Zinc dithiophosphate was first added to engine oil to control copper/lead bearing corrosion. Starting in 1942, a Chevrolet Stovebolt engine with aftermarket copper/lead insert-bearing connecting rods was used for the standard engine oil qualification test. The insert-bearings were weighed before and after test to evaluate weight loss due to corrosion. The phosphorus levels of oils that passed the test were in the 0.03% range.

In the mid-1950’s, Oldsmobile got into a horsepower war between its Rocket engine and the Chrysler Hemi. Both companies went to high-lift camshafts and both got into camshaft scuffing and wear problems very fast. There were three solutions: 1) better camshaft and lifter metallurgy, 2) phosphating the camshaft, and 3) increasing the phosphorus level from ZDP up to the 0.08% range. In addition, the industry developed a battery of oil tests (“Sequences”), two of which were valve-train scuffing/wear tests.

Knowing that this higher level of ZDP was good for flat-tappet valve-train scuffing and wear, some oil companies, thinking that they were offering the customer additional protection dumped even more into the oil. It was soon learned, however, that, while going above about 0.14% phosphorus might decrease break-in scuffing, longer-term wear increased. Further, at about 0.20% phosphorus, the ZDP started attacking the grain boundaries in the iron, resulting in camshaft spalling.

In the 1970’s, the ZDP level was pushed up to the 0.10% phosphorus range because it was a cheap and effective antioxidant. The increased antioxidancy was needed to protect the oil in Cadillacs pulling Airstream trailers from thickening to a point where the engine could no longer pump it. Recently, the need for this higher level of ZDP to protect the oil from thickening has been greatly reduced with the introduction of modern ashless antioxidants that contain no phosphorus.

Enough history. Getting back to the myth that “Starburst/API SM oils are no good for older cars, the argument put forth by the myth believers is that while these oils work perfectly well in modern, gasoline engines equipped with roller camshafts, they will cause catastrophic wear in older engines equipped with flat-tappet camshafts.

The “Starburst”/API SM oil standards were developed by a group of OEM, oil additive company, and oil company experts. When developing any new engine oil standard, the issue of “backward compatibility” is always of great importance. Indeed, the group of experts spent a lot of time researching this issue. In addition, multiple oil and additive companies ran “no harm” tests on older cars with the new oils; no problems were uncovered.

Beyond the “no-harm” testing, the new “Starburst”/API SM specification contains two valve-train wear tests. One is the Sequence IVA, which tests for camshaft scuffing and wear using a 2.4L Nissan single overhead camshaft engine with slider finger followers. The wear limits for this test were tightened from those of the previous oil specification, even though the old spec had a higher, 0.10%, phosphorous limit. The second test is the Sequence IIIG, which evaluates cam and lifter wear. For this test, a current-production, GM Powertrain 3.8L engine with the valve train replaced with a flat-tappet system, similar to those used in the 1980’s, is used. The only reason for using this older valve-train design is to ensure that older engines are protected. All “Starburst”/API SM oil formulations must pass these two tests.

In addition to the protection offered by these two valve-train wear tests and the “no-harm” testing, a review of the knowledge gained over the years in developing previous categories also indicates that no problem should be expected. For example, the new “Starburst”/API SM oils contain about the same percentage of ZDP as the oils that solved the camshaft scuffing and wear issues back in the 1950’s. They do contain less ZDP than the oils that solved the oil thickening issues in the 1960’s, but that is because they now contain high levels of ashless antioxidants, which were not commercially available in the 1960’s.

The oil’s ZDP level is only one factor in determining the life of an older camshaft or a new aftermarket camshaft. Most of the anecdotal reports of camshaft failures attributed to the newer oils appear to be with aftermarket camshafts. Breaking in extremely aggressive aftermarket camshafts has always been a problem. The legendary Smokey Yunick wrote that his solution to the problem was to buy multiple camshafts and simply try them in a slave engine until he found one that survived break-in without scuffing.

Despite the pains taken in developing special flat-tappet camshaft wear tests that these new oils must pass and the fact that the ZDP level of these new oils is comparable to the level found necessary to protect flat-tappet camshafts in the past, there will still be those who want to believe the myth that “new oils will wear out older engines.” Like other myths before it, history teaches us that it will take about 75 years for this one to die also. "
 

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Been using it for over 100k miles in various RRC/110, no oil related failures. It does the job and it's reasonably priced.

Before rotella I used unicorn tears but they became cost prohibitive.

Also it's been disscussed to death for all rover engines, RRC, P38, D1 and D2.
 

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Talking oil standards is a pretty dry subject and one with a broad scope for personal interpritation and preference. In old engines I've found frequent changes with mineral oil to be as effective as anything else......and I've tried the high dollar stuff.

I wish the engineers put this level of effort into producing a decent waterless coolant at an affordable price.
 

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Talking oil standards is a pretty dry subject and one with a broad scope for personal interpritation and preference. In old engines I've found frequent changes with mineral oil to be as effective as anything else......and I've tried the high dollar stuff.

I wish the engineers put this level of effort into producing a decent waterless coolant at an affordable price.
It was more to give the history and what level of zinc has proved to be more than adequate and how too much zinc can actually cause issues for your motor and not improve it.

As it stated in the first section of the post, less fuel economy is caused by increased friction etc of a particular oil. Therefore, by a comparison to a couple of other oils, rotella increases the wear compared to more suited oils. Rotella is cheap for a reason.

Overall, is it going to make that much of a difference, probably not. That is why I stated that it will do no real harm in using it. But it is certainly not the best oil to use in our V8's.

I would not even consider any 15W/40 oil overly good in todays environment. Not when you can get 15W/60 or 15W/50 oils that will offer the same (if not better) when the engine is cold, but offer a lot better protection once the engine warms up. Rotella is a very low tech oil. It is like arguing that a commodore 64 computer is a good computer in this day and age.
 

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I hear what your saying Ian and I'm not disagreeing, well not really. The cost-benifit ratios of the 'super oils' is what I have trouble justifying.

My old Rangie is worth what? $10k, maybe? but is 20 years old and I use it fairly hard off road. It's not show car but I understand the high costs of not maintaining it as well as possible.

So I buy the reasonable quality diesel oil and a decent filter and change it often. Like every 3 months. Works for me. I've recently had the heads off mine and found no undue wear at all. Even the cam looked good and you get some serious cold start situations up here in Western Canada.

My 2c.
 

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I hear what your saying Ian and I'm not disagreeing, well not really. The cost-benifit ratios of the 'super oils' is what I have trouble justifying.

My old Rangie is worth what? $10k, maybe? but is 20 years old and I use it fairly hard off road. It's not show car but I understand the high costs of not maintaining it as well as possible.

So I buy the reasonable quality diesel oil and a decent filter and change it often. Like every 3 months. Works for me. I've recently had the heads off mine and found no undue wear at all. Even the cam looked good and you get some serious cold start situations up here in Western Canada.

My 2c.
The way I figure it is that I know it costs me over $3,000 to just put rings and bearings, plus heads into the motor.

You don't need to change your oil any more often than 5,000 miles. At 15 miles to the gallon you will go through 350 gallons and at $4 per gallon it will cost you $1,400 in fuel. A 5% better fuel economy from a better oil will save you $70.

Then what is the cost of the motor packing up at an inconvenient time or place.

Just on the fuel saving alone more than pays for the cost of the better oil.

I do not go over the top with the oil I use. I have always used Penrite oils for everything in my cars and it is an middle end oil. I simply do not think is worth the risk and hassles of using a cheap oil. But that is just me.

For me to do an oil and filter change would cost me around $50 US.

When I am talking about increased wear you might be talking about getting 170,000 miles out of a motor instead of 190,000 miles. So it is not something that will stand out and bite you when you look inside the motor. But the more important thing to me is that I know by oil temps, etc, that I put my motor under a lot off stress off-road and I can't afford for it to go bang in the places I go. It is simply often too difficult to recover the vehicle.
 

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The standard interval over here is 3 months or 5,000km. Whatever comes first.

The thinking behind that is the corrosive nature of the combustion by products (worse in older and/or worn engines) held in suspension within oil can eat out the bearings surfaces etc.

I use either Rotella or Castrol 15w40 mineral oils. Not bargain no name cheap but not as costly as Royal purple etc. Any thicker grade and you have trouble getting it turn over in winter up in the frozen North.

IMO a Rover V8 is much more likely to leave you strandard with no warning due to cooling problems rather than through gradual wear resulting from the use of Shell Rotella as opposed to a more expensive oil.

If I cared more about mpg gains I would probably throw in a 200/300TDI......Or drive a Honda car weekdays. I get around 16-17mpg with the old V8 on a good day so I'm ok with that considering all the non mileage friendly mods I've done.



If I could afford it I would run the Evans waterless coolant.
 

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Any thicker grade and you have trouble getting it turn over in winter up in the frozen North.
15w40 and 15w60 have the same viscosity when cold, that is 15.

IMO a Rover V8 is much more likely to leave you strandard with no warning due to cooling problems rather than through gradual wear resulting from the use of Shell Rotella as opposed to a more expensive oil.
I wish that was the case. I have never had to tow a Rangie out of the bush due to overheating. I have had to recover one from a very step hill after the motor threw a bearing out the side of the block. The vehicle right up the back in the photo below had the blown motor, the one in front of him had only 2WD, so I had to winch both of them out behind me.

But again, I am not saying that you should not use Rotella and it is obviously keeping you happy.
 

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15w40 and 15w60 have the same viscosity when cold, that is 15.
Yeah, I know. I was referring to 20w50 grade oils although looking back I never actually typed that. I Should have been more specific.

Interesting about the broken Rangie. Was the failure found to be caused by the brand of oil used?

If I ever built up and blueprinted a brand new engine I would probably consider using a high end oil to protect the investment. But for now I'll stick with what works in the old war horse.
 

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Yikes! Even duct tape can't fix that.

I purchased a parts LWB RRC 4.2L with a holed block like that. On the one I bought it was lack of oil pressure from a failed oil pump that caused the problem.
 
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