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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just for the 1st gen guys...seen this posted in other sections.

Ford specifies 5w-20 for '91 and up CVH engines. I'm wondering if anyone here has tried that?

Personally, I've been using 5w-30 year round. I never actually read what Ford recommended for the late model 1st gen engines, I just went with 5w-30 because it was easy to find, and never had issues in my engine. I've been wondering if 10w-40 would improve things or not, as Ford recommends it until -10F all the way up to 100+F air temps. I can say that on hot days my oil pressure dropped a little, but that was with the 400S filter. Has anyone tried the different weights and seen a difference in fuel economy, engine smoothness, or power?

Another thought is this: Ford specs the 1.6 and 1.9 as taking 4 quarts of oil with the filter....my dipstick registers me as being a half quart low then, and about 1 quart when using the FL-1A. Has anyone else had this issue...wondering if my car has been cobbled to the point of having some wonky oil dipstick.

Another note: found out the 400S filter was spec'd by Ford to flow 3 gallons per minute without bypassing. The FL-1A is spec'd for 7 gpm, and that it seems the stock Motorcraft ones are the same stuff as a PureOne filter...makes it a cheap way to get some great filtering.
 

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Mine has always taken 4 1/2 quarts. The thing about original specs is that different people write different manuals, sometimes the engineers that designed the car write the specs, othertimes it's bean counters or lawyers trying to save a buck or protect themselves from liability. So you get confilicting information from the company.

Speaking of which, did I ever post the hilarious slipcover to my 86 owners manuals?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Well, I did manage to cross-reference it all between shop manuals, Chilton, and online, although Haynes left out that info. Both '81 and '89 shop manuals say 4 quarts, as do all Chiltons for 1.6 and 1.9 engines. The Shop manuals also recommend 10w-40, online says 5w-30. Haynes says nothing again. I just wonder what Ford was thinking. I mean, that last half quart is inconsequential imo, but I just wonder why the dipsticks I've always seen read perfectly full on 4.5 quarts.
 

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I hate using 5 weight oil. It seems to be to thin to the point that the valves seem to tap for a moment upon start up. That bothers me. I have always used 10w-30 in the winter and 10w-40 in the summer. I might give up some gas mileage for the piece of mind.
 

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I use 10w40 year round in all my Escorts except for the '88 Pony. The only reason I don't use 10w40 in it now is becuase a few years ago I had a chance to buy about 10 cases of 20w20 at a flea market for $.65 a quart, so for the last few years I've been running 20w20 in it. I've always used 10w40 in all my cars ever since I bought my first car in '77 and have always got good service out of the engines.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Actually the 0-40 was pretty nice. I had almost instant oil pressure at start up, and I didn't have lower oil pressure on hot days (talking 110+F stuck in traffic). Granted, it was Mobile 1 synthetic. To date I've never run conventional in the engine, that included the break in period.

I wouldn't go for 20w-20 in a CVH just because it seems to be way too thin. I noticed in the girlfriend's Fusion that 5w-20 is thin enough, and if it's not driven for a half a week, the startup is noisy..as in rod knock until the pressure gets up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
The low number isn't so much the issue...it just means the oil is easier to pour in colder temps. The upper number is what the viscosity changes to once heated up. Or at least that's what I've always read. 20w-20 doesn't change viscosity, it's the same whether hot or cold, so it'll be a little hard to pump up in cold weather, and won't be as "sticky" as a heavier oil once hot. So yes, 20 is thicker than 10, but with the first number the lower the better as it pumps up faster. Once the oil heats up, the higher the number, the better the protection, essentially. That's why I liked the 0-40....I was getting about 20 psi of oil pressure as soon as I started cranking. And on the super hot days, I'd get 60 psi at 2k rpm, whereas it drops to about 50 with the 5w-30. Mind you that's sitting in traffic, once I'm on the highway the airflow under the car cools the oil off and my pressure goes right back up.

I found some more info in the shop manual. Ford mentioned that 5w-20 isn't good for "sustained high speeds." Maybe something was changed for later years to have it recommended. I will say that the stuff is like water going in, and doing a hot oil change is like having black pee pour out of the car....super thin. That explains the funky sounds from modern engines imo.

Also, 20 weight oil is the same as ATF in terms of viscosity/thickness. 30 weight is supposedly on par with a very light gear oil, and 40 weight has the viscosity of a 80 or 90 weight gear oil.
 

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I've used a combination in my Fords. I used 10w-40 in an old straight six that had blow-by issues and that helped it use less oil. In my Escorts I've always run 10w30, recently switching to 5w30, and now 5w20 because I can get an oil change for free at work if I use that viscosity. I also have started using BG's MOA oil additive and it has started to clean my engine out and give better gas mileage as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
What's in that MOA oil additive, Farcas? I've thought about adding moly or graphite to the engine oil at times, though I've not done it yet. Once I get some moly in a can, I'll try adding that. I've also heard that GM has an oil additive that ads the ZDP back to oil, so it will protect non-roller cams better.
 

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I'll check out one of the cans when I get back to work, don't know off hand. I've used all of BG's products, though and had good results. I've used their tranny cleaner, tranny conditioner, induction system cleaner, fuel system cleaner, coolant flush, and coolant sealer. It's what we use at work on our 30k services.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
At least I know I don't need an engine cleaning...I dropped the oil pan when I replaced the rear main...sooo clean. The only buildup was by the rear main retainer gasket; that was minimal and flaked right off. I guess this is what regular maintenance and synthetic oils do. 30k and dead clean still, although my exhaust ports were a little sooty. I might do a seafoaming soon enough and see what comes out.
 

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That's getting close to a goal of mine - to eventually own a brand new car, and be such a meticulous ass about maintenance that it makes my wife sick :)

A new engine must feel kinda like that. I'd sure take amazing care of a new engine if I did as much work as you had.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
A new engine just feels like it has more pep, and that's about it. What I find annoying about mine is its lumpy idle, but the only thing that remedies the issue is removal of the ICM. Other than that, I really like it. I'm also wanting more power, as it's a bit weak for me. I can't imagine a tired out CFI model with either an auto or the base model 4 speed...that has got to be dog slow.
 

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Yeah, I've driven a few of the latter - 3spd auto and 4 spd stick. Actually got into Escorts back in high school when my buddy got his first car, an 87 wagon 3spd auto. It was slower than balls, but tough as nails. I later owned my first, a 4spd stick with a nasty valve tick. It wasn't half as bad as the auto, and could do decent off the line if you really hammered it. You could hang out in first and second gear FOREVER, too!
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
See, I didn't get that experience with mine since it had the GT tranny in it from the 1st day I got it. I did mange to put it against an '83 EXP with the 1.6 EFI engine and five speed. I put him to shame, badly. I was also able to stay dead even with a Mustang GT in 1st gear...and then lost my butt in 2nd. So, they can't be all too slow with a good gear set. What model do you have in your LX anyway? You'll see the sticker on the top of the tranny, toward the end of it. It should give the model, along with a build date. Then we can see what gears you have. We also have to find a place to line our cars up and give 'em a go.
 

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UnexplodedCow said:
...I can't imagine a tired out CFI model with either an auto or the base model 4 speed...that has got to be dog slow.
This might open a can of worms, but for day to day city driving, with these small light cars, I don't think there's a hill of beans of difference whether you have a 4 or 5 speed. I was raised on 60's and 70's cars and the norm then was only 3 speeds, with 4 speeds reserved for the so-called muscle cars, the GTO's, 442's, SS Chevelle's, Roadrunner, etc. And remember, those cars had heavy chrome plated steel grills, bumpers, headlight housings, body and window trim, and everything else, rather than the lighter weight plastics used for everything on today's cars, so the cars were a lot heavier back then.

In reality, logically, the number of gears really needed for day to day city driving should have decreased over the years rather than increased, well, provided they had used more gears originally, which they didn't. For many years I drove a 3/4 ton Van with a lot of heavy equipment in it and it only had a 3 speed manual. That truck could really have benefited from having more gears than my 4-speed lightweight Escort would.

Every time you say something like this, Noall, to the effect of "Oh wow, golly gee wiz! 5 speeds are such an improvement over 4 speed escorts, I can't even imagine having only 4 speeds", I have to laugh and think back about the 60's and 70's cars, lol. On my 4 speed, there seems so little difference between 2nd and 3rd, I've considered skipping 2nd or 3rd entirely and just shifting from 1st to 3rd, or 2nd to 4th, etc.

Will
 
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