Parts Catalog Accessories Catalog How To Articles Tech Forums
Call Pelican Parts at 888-280-7799
Shopping Cart Cart | Project List | Order Status | Help

Go Back   PeachParts Mercedes ShopForum > Technical Information and Support > SL Forum

LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 02-03-2007, 05:01 PM
regsatx's Avatar
Registered User
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 202
Motor Oil For 560SL in South Texas??

What motor oil would you guys suggest for my climate in my 560. I have a lot of 5w40 Mobil 1 which I use in my 300SD. Can I use this with no ill effects in the SL? Suggestions/advise please.

ALSO...can I use Dextron III in the SL's trans and power steering the SD?

Reply With Quote
Old 02-03-2007, 05:06 PM
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: NC
Posts: 2,862
I use Mobil 1 0W 40 in my 560SL here in the north east 5W 40 should also be fine.

John Roncallo
Reply With Quote
Old 02-03-2007, 05:59 PM
Registered User
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 293
In South Texas....I would use 15W-50 Synthetic or 20W-50 Dino. Dextron III is correct for the transmission and power steering. DOT 4 brake fluid.
All the best,

J. P. Mose
1968 250SL
1970 280SE 3.5 Cabrio
1987 560SL
1990 560SEL
Reply With Quote
Old 02-04-2007, 05:18 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: S. Texas
Posts: 1,237
Where are you in S. Tex. I am near Corpus Christi.

Reply With Quote
Old 02-04-2007, 08:01 PM
page62's Avatar
Registered User
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Luckenbach, Texas
Posts: 436
I use Carquest 20w50 in my 450SL. I tried 15w40 last year, but it was just too thin for our climate -- the oil pressure would drop uncomfortably while waiting at stoplights in 100 degree heat. And I think Mobil 1 is likely a waste of money in this case. I don't put enough miles on the car between changes to justify it.

Unlike more modern vehicles, the heavier oils are right for these engines. Note that I use Mobil 1 0w40 in my late-model Benz's.
'01 SLK320, '79 450SL & '01 C320 -- What? 3 Mercedes? I am DEFINITELY crazy!!!
Reply With Quote
Old 01-02-2009, 06:49 PM
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Florida
Posts: 39
climate affect on motor oil viscosity

Here's a cure for all you folks who have to run heavier oil in your engine because you live in the warmer climates; swap motors and install a water cooled engine! Water cooled engines have a thermostat that regulates the running temperature of an engine and keeps the temperature in the neighborhood of 185 to 195.
Here's a bit of trivia you might consider. Formula cars which run as high as 16,000 rpms operate on 0W-5 oil. NASCAR uses 0W-5 in their engines during qualifying runs. Both consider engine oil to be a lubricant. It doesn't take much of an oil film to lubricate. Of course, if your engine is worn out and you have rods and mains banging around, you might need a cushion to soften the slamming rather than a lubricant to lubricate!
Reply With Quote
Old 01-03-2009, 08:12 AM
Deltacom's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Edge of the Abyss
Posts: 335
Although the original post of this thread is nearly 2 years old, the subject matter remains of interest to readers. I feel it pertains to add the content of a post regarding oil changes wich was posted by a fellow member of this forum way, way back, but I cant trace the original thread to which it belongs to make reference to but some of you might be more successful in the search facility.


Oil change myths and other folk-lore debunked

Well, I have just read 4 pages of opinions and conjecture about the lubricating properties of engine oil versus engine wear characteristics. I'm going to postulate that there are two primary factors concerning 'excessive' engine wear, the operating temperature while operating and the amount of sulfuric acid in the oil when the engine is off and cold. After I get your blood boiling over those topics, I will pontificate about several other visual indicators that mainly turn off the 'average' automobile aficionado, such as varnish and sludge, which sometimes is also referred to as 'dirt'.

Oil is used to both lubricate and cool the moving parts of an engine, keeping friction, which causes wear, to a minimum.

Oil temperatures lower than the minimum viscosity value, even under no-load, low rpm conditions, can cause wear to increase by a factor of 8 to 10 times depending on the viscosity of the oil at the low extreme (the '10W' portion of the 10W-30 viscosity specification). Excessive wear on bearing surfaces will continue until the oil is heated to flow properly and provide the necessary oil film, or friction barrier. Do not confuse the oil temperature with the coolant temperature. An automobile engine's oil does not reach operating temperature until the vehicle has traveled an average of eight miles. The coolant temperature is reached within a mile or two because the cooling system thermostat stops the flow of coolant to the radiator until the coolant reaches the minimum temperature. Oil temperature thermostats are used only with aircraft piston engines, for obvious reasons (if it quits, you can't get out and walk).

Oil temperatures higher than the maximum viscosity value (the '30' portion of the 10W-30 viscosity specification) causes the oil's lubricating properties to break down which in turn allows friction surfaces to heat up past the temperature limits of the metal itself, causing severe failures such as piston seizure and bearing failure that may ruin the entire engine. In this case, the high temperature thins the oil excessively, decreasing the friction barrier and allowing the bearing surfaces to come in contact with each other.

Temperature factors seldom cause engine wear to the extent that enthusiasts cringe with embarrassment because of low-mileage overhauls. Unless a given enthusiast lives near a highway and cannot wait for the engine to warm up sufficiently before he blasts down the road at ninety miles per hour, he will normally be spared the humiliation.

Any respectable auto maintenance manual, like Chilton's, Motor Manual or that other one that I should remember the name of, will contain a section with photos dealing with the deadly substance (to piston engines, anyway), sulfuric acid. If you have not read about sulfuric acid, do so because you cannot consider yourself a REAL enthusiast without knowing what the number-one engine killer is. That would be akin to calling yourself a Christian, but having no knowledge of Satan.

Sulfuric acid is created in your engine oil pan (sump, if you insist on euro-speak) without your doing any more than driving the less-than eight miles per day to and from work each day. I will not repeat the factors that cause its formation--look it up and spare me the effort of copying it into this thread. Take it from me--the previous thread's definition is factual unless you want to split a few hairs. Sulfuric acid mostly affects the metallic compound commonly known as 'babbit', that is, the very soft material used for engine bearings--main bearings, rod bearings, cam bushings, etc. These bearings, after a prolonged attack of sulfuric acid, look like they were decorated by an insane etcher. Instead of flat, smooth surfaces, the bearings look like an etch-a-sketch surface created by children. Because the bearing contact area has been reduced by as much as 40-50%, the bearings wear out much faster, requiring an early major engine overhaul.

Sulfuric acid does not go away on it's own--it will not evaporate--if the oil is not changed, the damage continues to occur. For this reason alone, vehicle manufacturers recommend the oil change every umpteen-ump miles OR three months. The three months is to ensure that any sulfuric acid is eliminated at least every three months.

Several others in this thread have ventured to say 'old folks' are responsible for the myths concerning the frequency of oil changes versus engine wear. I'll counter that assertion with my opinion that most enthusiasts, except the most diligent (age notwithstanding) do not know what the hell they are talking about. To prove my point, search this thread for the term 'sulfuric acid'. If I recall correctly, there were, at the very most, two occurrences (at least one, though). Then, to really prove that you want to learn about this particular subject, do an Internet search on the same term and any of the keywords from this thread that tickle your fancy, such as 'motor oil' (NOTE: I do not think 'dino oil' will get you any results--by the way, who coined that trite term? Dawn Rainforest? While you are at it, see if any oil companies are dumb enough to posit that their super-duper 100% extra-virgin synthetic oil will prevent the formation of sulfuric acid. If you spot any, expect them to follow up with an announcement that their new handy-dandy in-the-privacy-of-your-driveway invention will rejuvenate your piston rings and replace the babbit in your engine bearings by adding their brand of 'motor honey' to your oil and molybdenum pills to your gas tank. With their super additives, spark plugs that fire in oil, a propeller under your carburetor and an ionizer on your gas line, you will be ready to challenge the Challenger to a race to space.

People continue to misconstrue the facts concerning this experiment. The cabs did NOT travel less than eight miles, shut down, cool off, drive eight miles, etc. They ran, albeit mostly at idle, at least 18 hours per day BUT THEY DID NOT COOL OFF--HENCE THEY EXPERIENCED NO 'EXCESSIVE WEAR'. Neither do city busses, tractor-trailer rigs, police cars, UPS trucks or on-the-road salesmen's cars. This is not rocket-science here.

Another note on temperature and oil viscosity--Here in the Southwest U.S., the weather gets hot--really hot. Despite this fact, the manufacturers up in Detroit insist that 10W-30 oil is fine for summer-time driving, Possibly so up north, but down here when the asphalt road temperatures reach 130+ degrees and you are tooling along at 80+ miles per hour with your air conditioner blasting, the highway speeds will wreak havoc with your engine oil. Because the temperature rarely drops below freezing in winter and stays above 95 degrees in our six-month long summer season, I use 20W-50 oil exclusively. Especially when the temperature is less than 50 degrees, I try to loaf along if possible before getting on the highway, to let my engine oil at least get warm. If you pay attention to your engine, you can tell when it gets warm and is ready to go.

Varnish is mainly an indication of a neglectful owner. I think of it as hard sludge. I may be wrong, but the only harm I have seen from varnish (if you want to consider it harm) is that it builds up in the piston ring grooves, but in fact it may actually increase the tension on those tired piston rings.

Sludge is a yucky, gunky substance that can clog the oil return passages and/or PCV valve, but is mainly an ugly reminder of a dastardly neglectful previous owner. If so, you should have spotted this abuse before you purchased the car, because if the previous owner neglected something as important as engine oil changes, you can be sure other maintenance was not performed either. A quick and easy way to spot sludge on any car is to examine the underside of the oil filler cap and inside the oil fill hole, usually in the camshaft/rocker arm cover. Evidence of varnish and high heat can be revealed by examining the oil and transmission dipsticks above the level marks for varnish and discoloration.

Deltacom ~ Absit Iniuria Verbis ~
Reply With Quote
Old 01-03-2009, 11:18 AM
Gurunutkins's Avatar
Certified Idiot
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Seattle WA
Posts: 496
I have to agree with all that deltacom says. I use shell rotella synthetic 5 w 40 in my 350 and 450. The link below may well form part of the original article you used. it was written for motorcyclists. very well written article and factual, if you have a spare 20mins read it, its worth it, bikers with mainly air cooled engines have to be very picky about their oils

61 Austin mini
67 Lotus 7
74 450sl
76 Cadillac 8.2l (501 ci)

some new cars

megasquirt conversion on:
djet 74 450sl
cis 76 450sl

the best view is always from the point of no return
Reply With Quote


Thread Tools
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 On
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 07:44 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0
Copyright 2018 Pelican Parts LLC - Posts may be archived for display on the Peach Parts or Pelican Parts Website -    DMCA Registered Agent Contact Page