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  1. #1
    Established Member Two Rings
    Join Date
    Oct 07 2008
    AZ Member #
    33915
    Location
    Earth

    Type of Oil when running E85?

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    While researching type of oil to use for my soon to be E85 run RS3, I came across this article. ( https://pubs.rsc.org/en/content/arti.../ra/c7ra00357a ) My Master's Degree is in Reliability Engineering and I'm certified in Machinery Lubrication, and in my opinion, this article touches on exactly what one should know when it comes to how E85 affects the wear of our engines. Don't pay attention to some of those youtube videos showing things like how slowly an oil pours or drips at various temperatures.

    In short, there's actually less friction when the ethanol content increases, but this is due to taking layers off the surface acting almost like soap. However, the corrosion level increases due to high acid level (TAN). Therefore, for those using E85, it would behoove us to look at synthetic oils with high TBN (Total Base Number) to offset the high acidity content that E85 produces when mixed with oil.

    Having said this, what type of oil are you guys using? I've been looking at Motul 300V due to the TBN of 11. There are folks saying that due to double Ester content, E85 causes this oil to become jelly-like; however, I have found no evidence of any adverse affects via oil sampling.

  2. #2
    Established Member Two Rings
    Join Date
    Mar 09 2018
    AZ Member #
    415241
    My Garage
    2018 RS3, 2013 Mazdaspeed3, 2007 Acura TSX
    Location
    San Leandro, CA

    I'm not running E85 but every car is a little different... I would shorten your OCI and send a sample to have it analyzed.

    I did a short 3k oil change on the OEM Castrol Edge LL03 and the TBN = 4. Other than that my results were great.
    I don't see how this oil can last the recommended 10k OCI or maybe it can? Chemistry is complicated...
    -

  3. #3
    Established Member Two Rings
    Join Date
    Oct 07 2008
    AZ Member #
    33915
    Location
    Earth

    What oil weights are you using? Motul Sport came out recently and looks very promising but only offers 5w40 as the closest match.

  4. #4
    Established Member Two Rings
    Join Date
    Mar 09 2018
    AZ Member #
    415241
    My Garage
    2018 RS3, 2013 Mazdaspeed3, 2007 Acura TSX
    Location
    San Leandro, CA

    5W-30, Castrol Edge LL03 is 504/507 spec oil

    I'm running 0w-40 Mobil1 now. M1 or Castrol 0W-40 what I usually use since it's inexpensive and readily available locally. I usually do 5k OCI.
    -

  5. #5
    Established Member Two Rings
    Join Date
    Oct 07 2008
    AZ Member #
    33915
    Location
    Earth

    Just ordered Motul Clean. Better TBN than Clean + but doesn't build up carbon like X-cess.

  6. #6
    Active Member Two Rings
    Join Date
    Dec 23 2007
    AZ Member #
    23588
    Location
    Alabama

    This is actually a topic I was going to touch on and ask about. Iíve been running E85 in lots of my vehicles for a long time and never really could find a straight answer on oil type and frequency of changes. In my 997 I just change it yearly which is about every 2500 miles. Toyota recommended 3k oil changes on their FFVs, but thatís with non-synthetic cheap oil for all their appliance owners. I was thinking 5k on the RS3 which looks like that will be every 5-6 months based on meh usage the first 3k miles. Iím about 50/50 93 to E85 fill ups.

  7. #7
    Established Member Two Rings
    Join Date
    Mar 12 2015
    AZ Member #
    319978
    My Garage
    2015 Acura RDX
    Location
    San Antonio, TX

    Quote Originally Posted by A418t81 View Post
    This is actually a topic I was going to touch on and ask about. Iíve been running E85 in lots of my vehicles for a long time and never really could find a straight answer on oil type and frequency of changes. In my 997 I just change it yearly which is about every 2500 miles. Toyota recommended 3k oil changes on their FFVs, but thatís with non-synthetic cheap oil for all their appliance owners. I was thinking 5k on the RS3 which looks like that will be every 5-6 months based on meh usage the first 3k miles. Iím about 50/50 93 to E85 fill ups.
    Hey A41, any issues on your vehicles running E85? The challenge I have is that it is readily available where I am, but I am hesitant to only fill up on it. Is there any sort of upkeep one would need to do versus just filling up on say 93 octane?
    On order: 2018 Catalunya red Audi RS3 with carbon inserts, RS Design package, dynamic package and technology package



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