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Old 5th August 2009, 07:21   #76
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Oil going black in a hurry is a diesel engine characteristic. Should not happen in a modern petrol engine like the Esteem's to quite the same extent, but in itself is not something to worry about as long as you are sure that 1) all the old oil was removed2) New oil of the right quality and quantity was added, with a good new oil filter and 3) the engine is behaving normally in every other way. One reason here could be that the old oil was not all taken out.
Which is the reason for overfilling, in most cases, I imagine. Indian garages, even the good ones, are very lax about following good service protocols. The simplest thing to do to ensure a complete drain is to do it first thing, as the car comes in, when the oil is at its operating temperatures. At those temperatures, the oil flows out in a hurry from all nooks and corners as well. But it is also very hot, so the operation needs extra care, and it means that the garage people cannot dawdle over their cups of tea and chat which is their major preoccupation in the absence of a good work ethic. And the profit motive driven practice of using engine flushes is another reason, because that is another opportunity for the engine to not be totally empty before the new oil is poured in.
The second reason for overfills, is the philosophy that if the new oil is good for the car, a little extra for luck is even better. As if it was vitamins. Which too by the way are either poisonous or expelled through sweat/urine when consumed in excess! Most frustrating, and short of standing there while the refill is happening, you are almost certain that the car will come back with an overfill of oil. That you then need to take out, and in a car sump, it is not easy to extract by a syringe. Which means another visit, because oil levels above the max mark on the dipstick are a very bad idea. That is why the mark is called max! Ideal level would be halfway between the two marks.
Just one of the many charms of living in India!
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Old 5th August 2009, 09:37   #77
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gansan View Post
Else find out the capacity of the old Zen. I think both must be having the same engine.
Zen was a 1000cc engine but from the Esteem stable. the engine of the M1000 was related to the Gypsy! It is an iron block as against the Aluminium block in the Esteem & Zen.

@sawyer: Agreed. the oil does get dark but I have never seen it go almost jet black in my Esteems, Zens, Accent or Santro. I change oil once a year - about 7000-8000km.

Last edited by sgiitk : 5th August 2009 at 09:38.
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Old 5th August 2009, 10:05   #78
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A corollary to the API SC/SF saga! I called up the Any Time Maruti toll free number to thrash this matter out. I asked them why was the MGO filled at their workshops just FC grade, while the Alto manual itself recommends SF - SH grades. The person who took the call told me to pose such "technical" questions to MOS number, where their "experts" can address them. So I called the MOS number for Chennai and the guy who took the call too was unable to answer this, and he in turn gave me a mobile number of another "expert" who can handle it. When I called that number,the call landed at - surprise,surprise - ABT Maruti! So I have come a full circle and landed where I started! This "expert" seemed to be not even aware of the various API (SC - SM) classifications and kept on repeating "it is only 20/40 oil sir".

Finally he has taken my mobile number and said their Technical or works manager will call me to clarify the matter!
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Old 5th August 2009, 10:25   #79
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Check the IOC site. For under Approvals they state for the Hyundai oil -

Hyundai Motors India Ltd for all Hyundai vehicles namely Santro, Accent, etc.

In the case of the MG oil it reads

Servo Super MG oils are approved by leading auto manufacturers like-
TELCO, Ashok Leyland , Mahindra & Mahindra, Bajaj Tempo, etc.



no mention of Maruti!!! Need one say more. While the Hyundai oil is API-SG the Maruti Oil os API-CC.

Last edited by sgiitk : 5th August 2009 at 10:27.
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Old 5th August 2009, 10:34   #80
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A corollary to the API SC/SF saga! I called up the Any Time Maruti toll free number to thrash this matter out. I asked them why was the MGO filled at their workshops just FC grade, while the Alto manual itself recommends SF - SH grades.
Sorry for the typo. That should be "SC" grade.

@sgiitk
So this oil suits diesel engines more. But Maruti has a tie-up with IOC for supply of lubes, and their workshops use only this oil. I saw huge barrels of this stock at ABT Maruti yesterday. All the barrels labelled just "Maruti Genuine OIL", no specs mentioned.
IOC, Maruti ink deal for lubricants marketing - Corporate News - livemint.com

Now, a rehash of the specs from the respective websites of the oil co's. All except SERVO clearly state it is API SF grade.
Indian Oil Corporation :: Automotive Lubricating Oils
MGO 20W - 40 (MARUTI GENUINE OIL)
JIT SINGH CHANDOK ,Automobile Lubricants Goa - India
Castrol India - MGO

Last edited by Gansan : 5th August 2009 at 10:52.
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Old 5th August 2009, 12:12   #81
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gansan View Post
A corollary to the API SC/SF saga! So I have come a full circle and landed where I started! Finally he has taken my mobile number and said their Technical or works manager will call me to clarify the matter!
Gansan,

This is really sad that something like this has happened. For all you know, the works manager will also not have an answer to your question. A simple example - The former works manager (he was transferred in Feb this year) at my MASS didn't know what fully synth oil was when I went to him with 3 bottles of Mobil 1 to get it filled in my Alto. His standard reply was - "Outside oil not allowed". It took the Asst. Customer Service Manager to come there and explain it to him.

I'm keen to know if you got to the bottom of this, so please do update.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sawyer View Post
Ideal level would be halfway between the two marks.
This is right. I have noticed that the oil level stabilizes just above the half way mark after about ~1,500 to 2,000 kms of driving and stays at that level till the next change.
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Old 5th August 2009, 13:47   #82
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Hi,

Quote:
Originally Posted by gpa View Post
This is right. I have noticed that the oil level stabilizes just above the half way mark after about ~1,500 to 2,000 kms of driving and stays at that level till the next change.
After close to 9000+kms after an oil change, my Marina oil level is about 1.5mm below the max mark.

This was the oil level just when it went for the 50000kms service:


Last edited by trrk : 5th August 2009 at 13:54.
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Old 5th August 2009, 14:10   #83
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A related question.
The indica(old NA) has capacity of 4.3 liters of engine oil.
From past some time Mobil has started giving out Super 1000 TM CH4 engine oil in 4.5 liter packs.
So every time I change engine oil, I have around 200ml more.
Is 200ml extra oil worrysome?
In the dipstick, the oil is proablbly very little(less than a mm) above the max level when checked on cold engine
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Old 5th August 2009, 15:23   #84
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You can take a cough syrup bottle as they usually come in 200ml and whenever you open new container, just fill that bottle first then pour rest of the oil. You can keep this for lubricating mechnical parts or topping up.
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Old 5th August 2009, 16:10   #85
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post
Is 200ml extra oil worrysome?
In the dipstick, the oil is proablbly very little(less than a mm) above the max level when checked on cold engine
tsk1979,

I would say that 200ml of oil is extra and should be drained out.
The oil pump clearances in engines are tight. As the pump operates, atmospheric pressure in the oil reservoir, pushes oil through the pickup screen and into the pump.

When you have excess oil, since the oil cannot be compressed, the pressure can then skyrocket and destroy the circuit.

Most engines when overfilled with oil tend to be noisier and also have uncharacteristic vibrations.

Cheers,
gpa
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Old 5th August 2009, 19:38   #86
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I would actually pour out 500ml, and give the balance to the garage. Use it to top up after the car comes home, after seeing what the dipstick has to say. In theory, you will be driving home with 300 ml less oil in the sump, and that is no issue at all. It is a much smaller issue than having 200ml over the sump capacity in the engine. And the entire sump capacity is available only if all the old oil has been scrupulously drained out. A rare event.
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Old 5th August 2009, 22:08   #87
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sawyer View Post
I In theory, you will be driving home with 300 ml less oil in the sump, and that is no issue at all. It is a much smaller issue than having 200ml over the sump capacity in the engine.
You said it. Slightly less oil is better than slight more. Never, ever, overfill. For more info read this fantastic guide at

Car Bibles : The Engine Oil Bible in the sub-section

"What happens when an engine is overfilled with oil?"

Now you know why I absolutely hate technicians/service centres that fill oil over the recommended quantity.

Rgds,
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Old 6th August 2009, 06:39   #88
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Spent two hours yesterday, getting my Pajero's oil level back to max! The sump capacity is supposed to be 7.8 litres, and the last time around, I gave the guys there 7.5 litres of oil, got the car back with reading of a cm above max. Went back and got the extra drained out, without thinking much about it. This time around, I thought I will do the smarter thing, and gave them 7 litres of oil.
Lo and behold, I get the car back with the same reading on the stick. I went back to the garage and blew a fuse. This time around, they were a lot more attentive, even concerned to find out the reason. One theory floating around was whether injecting compressed air from the filler end will be a way of getting all the old oil out. Maybe, maybe not. What I believe is still the key, is opening the drain plug when the engine is hot, and then allowing the oil to drain until the interval between individual drops of oil dripping out goes up to 30 seconds or so. And I am not sure that this protocol is followed with rigour at most places.
This time around, again I had them drain out close to 300 ml of oil, to get down to the max mark. Which means that the engine took in 6.7 litres of oil, in theory. I now have the following possibilities to consider.
1. The engine still has 1.1 litre of used oil circulating in it. The most likely thing, but I am not sure that the service station did such a bad job of draining the old oil. I saw them at work, and oil is drained after the car is raised a long way on the electric ramp, allowing the man to stand under the sump. And they do wait till the oil stream dwindles to drops. Will this allow over a litre of oil to stay in the sump?? Doesn't look to be so.
2. The sump capacity figure of 7.8 litres mentioned in the handbook is wrong.
3. The bottles of oil that I bought from the official Castrol outlet had more than the marked amount of oil in it. Either overfilled by Castrol, or a case of spurious oil overfilled somewhere else. Not likely, but something to worry about too!
The only thing I can do now is to insist that the next time, the entire operation is carried out before my eyes.I have now earned the right to do this, in violation of their rule of no customers in the service bays, now that they know me and have seen this happen twice.
Point of the post is to only point out how paranoid I am about excess oil in the engine!
PS: Another thought that just occurred to me right now is that maybe the car is not held perfectly horizontal when it is hoisted up on the ramp. A slight incline in either direction could hold old oil back in the sump. Which means that the next time, I will insist that they bring the car down from the ramp, fully disengaged from it with all four wheels resting on the ground, with the drain plug open, and see if more oil comes out by doing that. Damn, I should have thought of this yesterday!
Any other thoughts that I should see to the next time the oil is changed?

Last edited by Sawyer : 6th August 2009 at 06:42.
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Old 6th August 2009, 07:49   #89
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Shell Helix super does not state it is a synth oil on the label. So can we safely assume it is mineral? The sales guys are not well informed about this. The Shell India website is also silent about this. Shell Ausralia website however mentions it as mineral.
Shell in Australia - Shell Helix current range

Can we safely assume it is mineral in India too? If it happens to be semi synth by chance and we use it in a new (1000 KM) car, what will happen? I would like to clarify this before I make the switch.
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Old 6th August 2009, 09:08   #90
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About the fills. Are you sure they are not pocketing your oil, and putting int heir stuff from a barrel and that is pre metred.

@Gansan: Go ahead do not lose sleep over it. If it is anything at or above SF (I guess it should be SJ) then you are Ok for 10,000km / 12 months.
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