Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 05-24-2023, 11:40 AM   #1
Senior Member
 
Sharpseadog's Avatar
 
City: Bellingham Wa
Vessel Name: Tinka
Vessel Model: Mariner/Helmsman 38
Join Date: Jun 2015
Posts: 116
Oil change

I have a Cummins QSB 5.9. Last season I only put 125 hours on fresh oil & filter change. The manual specifies oil change interval as annual or 250 hours. I've always believed that the annual interval was based on "frequent shorter runs" where oil may not reach high enough temperature to evaporate moisture. In my case, I've always run engine long enough to avoid moisture contamination.

My question is: does engine oil really degrade when engine is not operated for extended period? I realize that 4 gallons of Delo 400 15w-40 is not a major expense in the scheme of things, but I also want to avoid unnecessary waste. I'm thinking of operating another 100 to 125 hours in the next 5 months and changing the oil at the end of the season. What do others advise?
Sharpseadog is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2023, 12:02 PM   #2
Guru
 
City: Newport, R.I.
Vessel Name: Hippocampus
Vessel Model: Nordic Tug 42
Join Date: Jul 2020
Posts: 3,312
Issue is zincs more than oil or coolant. Some engines like the Cummins QSC need to have the after cooler and fuel/oil cooler anodes replaced every three months regardless of engine hours. We’re at around 200hrs. At that point so just do the whole damn thing. The fuel filter is big bucks but the rest reasonable. While we’re at it replace the impeller every six or 9 months. Also a chunk of money. Use T4 but given these intervals may back down to something cheaper that Cummins says is OK. If we winter haul regardless of hours do a oil change. Maybe not the filters depending upon hours. Depending upon g how long we’re going to be out of the water take out impellers so they don’t get a set.
What you’re worrying about is acid and other contaminates in the oil not the oil breaking down. So you need to think about how much damage will be done with no hours and just sitting which depends upon how long it sits. That why I like an oil change immediately before going on the hard.
Hippocampus is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2023, 01:03 PM   #3
Guru
 
guy with a boat's Avatar
 
City: SoCal and Vancouver Island
Vessel Name: Tortuga
Vessel Model: Nordhavn 63
Join Date: Aug 2016
Posts: 597
Most qualified recommendations are to change the oil no less than annually. We put new oil and filters in all the powerplants every fall, regardless of hours. I will be doing mid-season oil changes this year since we will be running lots of miles and hours.

For us, the zincs are on their own schedule. Impellers get replaced every spring on the gens and every other spring on our wing engine. Our main is keel cooled so no zincs.

Bottom line is, as you mentioned, oil is cheap and not worth running old oil that may/does contain contaminants from use that lessens its ability to protect your expensive engines. I think annual oil changes are necessary regardless of minimal hours and fully heating the engine at each run.
guy with a boat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2023, 01:18 PM   #4
Guru
 
mvweebles's Avatar
 
City: Saint Petersburg
Vessel Name: Weebles
Vessel Model: 1970 Willard 36 Trawler
Join Date: Mar 2019
Posts: 5,968
I change my oil at least annually just because it's a prevailing recommendation, and it's cheap and easy to do.

However, I have seen nothing to suggest that oil goes bad with age. There are no expiration dates on oil, but I suppose the additives could settle out if they are in suspension. But even then, they would mix quickly. It's been a while since I've had an oil analysis done but I don't think they adjust for pure age of oil vs engine hours.

Would be interesting to see an oil analysis on 100 engine hours at 6-mos vs 3-years.

Peter
__________________
M/V Weebles
1970 Willard 36 Sedan Trawler
mvweebles is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2023, 01:36 PM   #5
Guru
 
SteveK's Avatar
 
City: Gulf Islands, BC Canada
Vessel Name: Sea Sanctuary
Vessel Model: Bayliner 4588
Join Date: Jul 2019
Posts: 3,937
Have the oil tested and let the report tell you if it needs to be changed. Oil and engines have come a long way since the replace annually opinions were valid. I use Blackstone.
__________________
SteveK
You only need one working engine. That is why I have two.
Sea Sanctuary-new to me 1992 Bayliner 4588
SteveK is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2023, 02:10 PM   #6
Guru
 
tiltrider1's Avatar
 
City: Seattle
Vessel Name: AZZURRA
Vessel Model: Ocean Alexander 54
Join Date: Aug 2017
Posts: 3,724
I change oil filters every 250 hours. I change oil every 125 hours or annually. My engines only spec oil changes every 250 hrs.
tiltrider1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2023, 02:52 PM   #7
Guru
 
Nomad Willy's Avatar
 
City: Concrete Washington State
Vessel Name: Willy
Vessel Model: Willard Nomad 30'
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 18,660
I didn’t use synthetic oil so that should say I should change more often.

I also adhere to changing more often because it’s a known standard for maximum engine life. Nobody can argue that dirty contaminated oil is as good as clean new oil.

I changed twice a year and did some cruising in winter. Kept the engine compartment well above 40 degrees. That probably reduced condensation.

If you do abnormally high hours like going to Alaska and back most of the time I did an additional change mid summer at a stop where you stay a few days.

I always had enough new oil for more than one oil change. Stuff happends.
__________________
Eric

North Western Washington State USA
Nomad Willy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2023, 06:08 PM   #8
TF Site Team
 
Bacchus's Avatar
 
City: Seneca Lake NY
Vessel Name: Bacchus
Vessel Model: MS 34 HT Trawler
Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 7,275
These " discussions" are always interesting... especially when there is little data or analysis results included.
I always see the argument that oil is cheap and cleaner oil HAS to be better than dirty.
News flash it is hard to tell the difference visually between oil at 25 hrs, 50 hrs, 100 hrs vs 150 hrs.
If you subscribe to the oil is cheap insurance and 100 hrs is better than 200 hrs...
How can you argue with the sentiment that 50 hr change "better" for your engine than 100 hrs?
Where does it stop getting better? 25 hr oil is notably black in diesels so changing then better than waiting to 50 hrs!

Synthetic... why? Contaminants aren't less in synthetic?

Why are boats that much different than OTR trucks where best practice is to manage oil changes based on analysis?
Why don't you hear the argument that "analysis is cheap insurance" as often as the "oil is cheap insurance"
Are owners doing analysis and ignoring the results & recommendations or is it they distrust the (scientific) analysis results & recommendations and therefore don't subscribe to analysis as a useful management tool?
__________________
Don
2008 MS 34 HT Trawler
"Bacchus"
Bacchus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2023, 06:21 PM   #9
Guru
 
Pete Meisinger's Avatar
 
City: Oconto, WI
Vessel Name: Best Alternative
Vessel Model: 36 Albin Aft Cabin
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 2,904
In some occasional years of very low usage I skip the year end oil change. Probably should do it annually but...

pete
Pete Meisinger is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2023, 06:39 PM   #10
Guru
 
SteveK's Avatar
 
City: Gulf Islands, BC Canada
Vessel Name: Sea Sanctuary
Vessel Model: Bayliner 4588
Join Date: Jul 2019
Posts: 3,937
After I got a report that said there is some salt water in the oil, I changed the heat exchanger and then the oil. Had I just changed the oil at regular intervals would I keep the salt water from hurting the engine as the exchanger leaked faster.
__________________
SteveK
You only need one working engine. That is why I have two.
Sea Sanctuary-new to me 1992 Bayliner 4588
SteveK is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2023, 06:49 PM   #11
Senior Member
 
City: Jacksonville
Join Date: Mar 2023
Posts: 242
I have read LOTS of these oil change threads over the years. I think the "hours" recommendation are just a a CYA thing from the manufacturers. It is like the sticker the place that changes my car oil sticks on the windshield saying to change again in 3000 miles. No harm in doing that other than to your wallet, but does it really make any difference?

In this case a 100 hours could mean 2000 miles at 20 or only 700 mile at 7. Does that seem to need the same oil change frequently?
Don L is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-25-2023, 05:20 AM   #12
Guru
 
City: NC
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 1,192
Recently got the used oil analysis back from from diesel in the truck. The report was good and the oil I took out of the truck was still good.

Oil was in use for 11,500 miles. The manual says to change at 5,000 miles for highway driving. Normally, I change around 15,000-16,000 miles, and I am still getting rid of good oil.

The oil was in use for almost 3.5 years. I changed the oil before the pandemic hit, then did not drive very much during lock down, and lost track of time on the oil.

Per the oil test results, I could have kept the oil for another 5,000 miles, at a minimum, which likely would be another year or so.

How one uses the engine impacts the oil and when the oil needs to be changed.

Later,
Dan
dannc is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-25-2023, 05:25 AM   #13
Guru
 
City: Newport, R.I.
Vessel Name: Hippocampus
Vessel Model: Nordic Tug 42
Join Date: Jul 2020
Posts: 3,312
As,said by many hours is the wrong metric to use concerning engines. For engines many think how much fuel goes through the engine makes more sense. Similarly for anodes hours is wrong. It doesn’t matter if the boat is sitting or moving whenever you have dissimilar metals sitting in an electrolyte (salt water) there’s a risk of corrosion as it’s a battery. So for anodes it’s time not hours. The products of combustion are water and CO2. Even with common rail combustion is incomplete. Of course that’s worst for naturally aspirated mechanical engines. Friction (and wear) primarily occurs at start up and when lubrication isn’t keeping up adequately with internal motions of the engine components. A engine running at 1200rpm adequate to produce oil pressure in excess of lubrication needs is having less wear and stress on oil days on end then an engine run 6-8 hours 2 or 3 times a week at varying loads . In the first case oil viscosity is ideal as is oil flow compared to load. In the second case not so much. Most of us have M4 or M3 engines. Most of us use our engines intermittently. Many of us have SD hulls and widely vary engine and turbo loads. In short we do what we can in our use pattern to maximize wear. Few of us can monitor fuel usage beyond looking at it instantaneously on our fuel flow gauges or looking at total gallons purchased per unit time or tank gauges. We do log fuel use in our log as do many but not the multi factorial information of fuel use c/w engine and turbo load. Oil and it’s additives breakdown with high temp and load. Particulate and contamination from incomplete combustion in the main. To my thinking there’s too many weeds to find the flower. I don’t have the inclination to sort off how far I can go before a oil and filter change. I just want to know I’ve not gone too far. So I take the simple way out and use hours to determine intervals (knowing it’s wrong) and even when it might be excessive due to low use change oil filters at 6 m.
If expense rises would get a centrifuge and stop discarding oil . If specing a high use blue water boat would install a centrifuge in order to be able to carry less oil in storage.
Hippocampus is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-25-2023, 09:25 AM   #14
Senior Member
 
Cold Duck's Avatar
 
City: Discovery Bay
Vessel Name: Cold Duck
Vessel Model: MS 350 Trawler, 1997
Join Date: Jul 2022
Posts: 237
Quote:
Originally Posted by dannc View Post
Recently got the used oil analysis back from from diesel in the truck. The report was good and the oil I took out of the truck was still good.

Oil was in use for 11,500 miles. The manual says to change at 5,000 miles for highway driving. Normally, I change around 15,000-16,000 miles, and I am still getting rid of good oil.

The oil was in use for almost 3.5 years. I changed the oil before the pandemic hit, then did not drive very much during lock down, and lost track of time on the oil.

Per the oil test results, I could have kept the oil for another 5,000 miles, at a minimum, which likely would be another year or so.

How one uses the engine impacts the oil and when the oil needs to be changed.

Later,
Dan
I agree with this philosophy. Just changed the oil in my 2010 Jeep Grand Cherokee with just 20,000 miles and 3 years on it. I use the same philosophy with my boats. I have engines running since 1983 and I have never had an oil related problem with any engine and my engines are clean. I run from 15hp Hondas to 1350 hp twin turbo MTUs. How you use the engine can affect the term for change. I think oil change specs are way too stringent, but after all the BS, you have to decide what you want to do. I personally am very intimate with my engines, watching them, listening to them and tinkering with them all the time.
Cold Duck is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-25-2023, 09:47 AM   #15
Guru
 
Nomad Willy's Avatar
 
City: Concrete Washington State
Vessel Name: Willy
Vessel Model: Willard Nomad 30'
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 18,660
Contamination from moisture over time probably does more oil damage than most else.
__________________
Eric

North Western Washington State USA
Nomad Willy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-25-2023, 10:23 AM   #16
Senior Member
 
City: Jacksonville
Join Date: Mar 2023
Posts: 242
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nomad Willy View Post
Contamination from moisture over time probably does more oil damage than most else.
Which is probably from short engine run times and more common I would think to a sailboat coming/going than a power boat. If it even really is more than a myth.
Don L is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-25-2023, 10:34 AM   #17
Guru
 
City: Newport, R.I.
Vessel Name: Hippocampus
Vessel Model: Nordic Tug 42
Join Date: Jul 2020
Posts: 3,312
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nomad Willy View Post
Contamination from moisture over time probably does more oil damage than most else.
Yes important to consider. Think boats that arenít used frequently have more troubles in all aspects including this than boats that are used.
Hippocampus is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-25-2023, 10:42 AM   #18
Senior Member
 
City: Jacksonville
Join Date: Mar 2023
Posts: 242
I think/fee boat engines not used often enough suffer more from internal rust than from water condensation in the oil
Don L is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-25-2023, 11:26 AM   #19
Guru
 
rgano's Avatar
 
City: Southport, FL near Panama City
Vessel Name: FROLIC
Vessel Model: Mainship 30 Pilot II since 2015. GB-42 1986-2015. Former Unlimited Tonnage Master
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 4,703
Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveK View Post
Have the oil tested and let the report tell you if it needs to be changed. Oil and engines have come a long way since the replace annually opinions were valid. I use Blackstone.


The oil testing is cheap compared to changing it and filter.
__________________
Rich Gano
FROLIC (2005 MainShip 30 Pilot II)
Panama City area
rgano is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-25-2023, 11:38 AM   #20
Guru
 
psneeld's Avatar
 
City: Ft Pierce
Vessel Name: Sold
Vessel Model: Was an Albin/PSN 40
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 26,881
Quote:
Originally Posted by Don L View Post
Which is probably from short engine run times and more common I would think to a sailboat coming/going than a power boat. If it even really is more than a myth.
https://www.machinerylubrication.com...hygroscopicity.

"Oils by nature are hygroscopic, which means they absorb moisture from the air. The tendency of an oil to undergo this process is known as hygroscopicity."
psneeld is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


» Trawler Port Captains
Port Captains are TF volunteers who can serve as local guides or assist with local arrangements and information. Search below to locate Port Captains near your destination. To learn more about this program read here: TF Port Captain Program





All times are GMT -5. The time now is 09:58 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2023, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0
Copyright 2006 - 2012