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Username Post: What oil to use        (Topic#359481)
Gold Supporting Member
Posts: 28
Loc: Wylie, TX
Reg: 12-26-19
01-15-20 08:46 PM - Post#2784459    

Me again. Last question tonight.

I had my oil change place do an engine flush and oil change since I just bought the 98, but plan to start changing my own oil again. With 205k miles, what is your favorite type oil? The Late Great Tom Brown from Parker Road Automotive had me using Castrol Conventional 20w50 in my last truck, that had well over 200k, with a quart of Lucasoil every second change.

I know some of you swear by the synthetics, but I haven't made the jump yet.


Maury French
Wylie, TX
1998 Chevy ECLB 5.7 Vortec

Posts: 205

Reg: 05-01-14
01-16-20 05:14 AM - Post#2784465    
    In response to mauryfrench

A friend explained synthetics to me this way: you have a room full of balls of all different sizes from ping pong to basket balls. That's non-synthetic oil. Synthetic oil is a room full of ping pong balls - all the same size.

If the truck has always run non-synthetic oil it is best to stick with it. Otherwise, you can get all kinds of leaks - gaskets, seals, etc. - where the basket balls used to seal those gaps you'll have ping pong balls going to that same location.

New car? Use synthetic.

That's my 2 cents worth.

Posts: 158

Reg: 10-13-11
01-17-20 03:17 PM - Post#2784553    
    In response to thx1138v2

An engine flush? I always believed money was being flushed when they did those. But really, with that amount of miles. I dont think it matters. Just use the right viscosity and change it every 3k and use a good filter. I always use either Wix or AC Delco on my Chevy and Jeep. I started using Max Blend in the Chevy because it was affordable. I dont think my truck knows the difference between ping pong balls and soccer balls with a blend you get a little of both.

Valued Contributor
Posts: 3141

Age: 47
Loc: West Michigan
Reg: 02-18-12
01-17-20 04:45 PM - Post#2784558    
    In response to mauryfrench

Stop running heavy oil. GM specs 5w30 or 10w30, 5w30 was factory fill. You probably don't need the Lucus snake oil either. That could be why your truck only lasted 200K miles.

99 K3500 RCLB

Very Senior Member
Posts: 4440

Reg: 12-29-02
01-17-20 05:54 PM - Post#2784563    
    In response to mauryfrench

Pick a top shelf oil and stick with the 5W30 GM recommends. 20W50 is ridiculously thick for your engine.

Synthetics are great, but you have to extend the change interval to get the full value from them. 3k miles is even a rather short interval for today's conventional oils and it's way too short for synthetic oils.

Gold Supporting Member
Posts: 28
Loc: Wylie, TX
Reg: 12-26-19
01-18-20 12:10 PM - Post#2784597    
    In response to 65_Impala

Thanks, all.

5W30 conventional it is from now on. I do love the basketball/ping pong ball analogy!

Maury French
Wylie, TX
1998 Chevy ECLB 5.7 Vortec

Frequent Contributor
Posts: 1495
Age: 60
Loc: Murphy N.C.
Reg: 01-25-14
01-18-20 04:43 PM - Post#2784609    
    In response to mauryfrench

I used 5w30 Kendall GT1 in a 90 I bought new and gave to a grandson after driving it for 18 years and 400k.

Posts: 170

Reg: 10-27-16
01-26-20 10:25 AM - Post#2785208    
    In response to junkman104

My 1990 that I bought new has 330,000 on it now. All original, valve covers have never even been off. I have always ran the cheapest oil that I can find. 5-30, 10-30, 30 whatever. Any brand, generic, no name etc. Any time I get into an oil debate, I show them my odometer - the proof is in the pudding as they say. Oil companies are GREAT at marketing. They can really make you believe there is some magical quality that their oil has that the others don't. Then some will tell you that such and such race cars or teams use this or that oil - guess what, they're sponsored by that oil company. And finally, my last thought is that since the early 1960's when Positive Crankcase Ventilation came to be, engines are basically sealed from the dirty environment. They see combustion gases from blowby, but stay very clean now. Back in the day (I'm old) you would change the oil and it would be dirty and sludgy. Nowadays, even with the cheapest oil you can find the oil looks pretty clean coming out compared to back then. And it's not the oil that has changed, it is the PCV system that did it. A few years ago, I had a 1994 Ford Thunderbird with 300,000 miles on it. It was beat and ready for the crusher. It leaked oil so bad it was always empty. So I figured I would just drive it with no oil until it blew up. I literally drove with no oil on the dipstick for another 40,000 miles until it wouldn't pass smog anymore, then I took it to the junkyard. Oil is highly overrated. Now I need a nap.

"2nd Year" Gold Supporting Member
Posts: 75
Loc: California
Reg: 06-19-18
02-01-20 02:32 PM - Post#2785617    
    In response to go_hercules

My 1994 350 that I've had since new was always changed at 5,000 mile intervals with the 5w-30 conventional oil. After 260,000 miles I decided to rebuild & modify the motor, as kind of a bucket-list thing. The old motor was fine; perhaps a bit tired. I used conventional oil for break-in, so far about 10,000 miles worth. I do add the ZDDP product to help the flat-tappet cam stay nice. I've heard the roller cams don't need the ZDDP. Thinking about switching to synthetic while the motor is still fresh, but haven't fully decided yet.

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