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Re: Problem with re-refined motor oil on mountain roads



Motors oils are blends of base stock oils, antiwear additives, anti
oxidation additives, and viscositiy improvers(VI).  There are probably small
tweaks of other chemical aditives, but these are the common ones. VI are
polymers that are sensitive to temperature.  They help stabilize the
viscosity of engine oil over a wide temperature range. In simple terms, the
oil/polymer blend is relatively thin when it is cold (for easy start ups).
As the engine heats up, the polymer expands causing the oil to maintain its
protective viscosity  at operating temperatures, hence multi-grade oils
(5W-30, etc).
Seperating out all the additives particularly the polymers in a re-refining
process may be difficult. Different oil blenders use different polymers, and
they are all co-mingled at the re-refiner.  Since these polymers are
temperature sensitive, cold weather and re-refined base stock with polymers
could be the source of the performance problem with these re-refined oils.

Lubrizol Corp in Wicklick, Ohio (Cleveland area) is the world's largest
manufactureer of lubricants additives and would likely have more info on
this.

John Sparks
836 Shawnee Trace Court
Cincinnati, OH 45255
(513)232-8877
cincyjs@fuse.net
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Lara Sutherland" <sutherland@informinc.org>
To: <p2tech@great-lakes.net>
Cc: <scot@newdream.org>
Sent: Tuesday, September 02, 2003 10:11 AM
Subject: Problem with re-refined motor oil on mountain roads


> I'm forwarding this query for a friend who is not on P2Tech. Please send
all responses directly to
> scot@newdream.org :
>
> At the National Institute of Governmental Purchasing (NIGP) conference
> last week, a woman with the Colorado Department of Transportation told me
> they were having a problem using re-refined motor oil in the huge trucks
> they use to keep the mountain roads clear of snow.
>
> She reports no problems with re-refined oil in similar trucks used in
> other parts of the state, but suspects the severe cold and elevation might
> be part of the problem. They're currently using virgin motor oil for these
> trucks without any problems.
>
> She claims it is not just a local fleet manager fighting the use of
> re-refined oil.
>
> Can anyone provide an explanation as to why re-refined motor oil would
> perform any differently than virgin oil under these conditions?
>
> Thanks.
>
> Scot Case
> Director of Procurement Strategies
> Center for a New American Dream
> 505 Penn Street, Suite 306
> Reading, PA 19601
> 610 373-7703
> scot@newdream.org
> www.newdream.org/procure
>
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