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Old 09-13-2005, 12:01 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default 0-20w oil

So, just how important is it to use the Honda 0-20w motor oil vs. a 5-20w over the counter oil in my next oil change? Is the Honda product a synthetic? If I buy generic 5-20w should I change it as usual, every 3000?
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Old 09-13-2005, 08:04 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Depending on how cold it gets where you live, the 5W-20 will work fine. As has been discussed previously, the difference between 0W-20 and 5W-20 is only going to be "noticable" on start up. Once the oil begins warming up, your engine won't know the difference between the 2. In VERY cold climates I would definitely want a 0W-20 synthetic. Since Mobil 1 is no longer available in 0W-20, I believe Penzoil is the only other manufacturer making a 0W-20 full synthetic. The Honda 0W-20, is NOT synthetic but perfectly accecptable if you want to stick with Honda's reccomended weight oil for the Insight. However, I suspect the cost of Honda's non-synthetic is probably only slightly less than a full synthetic. I last paid $4.29 Qt for Mobil 1 when it was available. Being that you will be using less than 3 Qts, it really shouldn't be a $$ issue, at least not for me.
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Old 09-13-2005, 09:42 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I was just up at my Honda dealer last weekend and I saw they had a quart of 5w-20 oil out in a display cabinet. Do the Civic or Accord hybrids use this? I didn't ask if they had any 0w-20 but Honda's oil is made by Exxon/Mobil so maybe they're being forced to switch the factory spec to 5w-20.
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Old 09-13-2005, 07:11 PM   #4 (permalink)
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The second the engine oil starts to get warm, which is like like in seconds, the weight of the oil has changed. So as you've already been told, the 0W is only required for extreme cold contiditions with starting. As the oil heats up it's weight changes. 5W oil is more than enough for most areas because it is also good for down into the minus temps.
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Old 09-13-2005, 07:24 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I have an oil temperature gauge in my Miata, and it takes about 15 minutes for the oil to get warm. The water in the radiator warms up in about 3 minutes or so, but that's mostly cooling the cylinder head. The oil is cooling the block and the pistons, which only get really hot under a heavy load--autocross or hot summer highway driving.

I suspect that it's worth it to use 0w-20 oil if you can get it.
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Old 09-13-2005, 07:50 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kapps
I was just up at my Honda dealer last weekend and I saw they had a quart of 5w-20 oil out in a display cabinet.
the parts department at the dealership has a little laminated placemat thing on the countertop who illustrates in a bar-graph fashion which oil weight for which car, based on year. *iirc*, no car *changed* its reccomended oil weight for the duration of a bar. i think it went to the '05 model year.
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Old 09-13-2005, 10:03 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dougie
I have an oil temperature gauge in my Miata, and it takes about 15 minutes for the oil to get warm.
What you have to realize is the oil changes temperature almost immediately and depending on how your oil temp gauge is marked, you might not see an indication of the change for 15 minutes. The oil will change in temperarture before the coolant will.
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Old 09-13-2005, 10:46 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I think 0w 20 not being available is a farse... I see it in most shops and whenever I ask the shops if they have stopped making it I get a blank look...
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Old 09-13-2005, 11:00 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Are you sure about that? My Miata has an aftermarket oil temperature gauge with a probe in the crankcase. The lowest marking on the gauge is 140 degrees F, and it normally runs at about 160--after a loooong warmup. The highest it's ever been is around 220.

The regular water coolant mostly cools the heads and the upper part of the cylinder. It gets up to temperature in just a few minutes, and then is controlled by a thermostat.

But the oil cools the bearings and the bottoms of the pistons. There's no thermostat, so under most conditions the oil runs pretty cool, especially in the all-aluminum Insight engine.

The oil weight measuring temperature is 100 degrees, so the majority of the time the oil--at least in my Miata, as measured by my gauge--is running pretty cool.
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Old 09-13-2005, 11:29 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dougie
The lowest marking on the gauge is 140 degrees F, and it normally runs at about 160--after a loooong warmup. The highest it's ever been is around 220.
And at what tempurature do you think oil weight changes? Lower than 140 degrees. So my point is it doesn't matter what your gauge shows because the oil changes weight well before you see the gauge needle move.
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