used engine oil + winter storage why is it a bad idea ?

WildHorse

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As the title states, why is it a bad idea not to change your engine oil before going into winter storage again ? I mean, You don't change trans fluid, diff fluid or anything else, right ? I know Ford says change before. Let it sit, then change again before you take it out in the spring. But you talk to most oil companies, they say you're fine. Just change it in the spring. Does Motorcraft oil have properties that cause it to break down more? I've taken engine apart that sat for 10+ years and everything inside was just fine. Any insight to this ? Thanks.





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Warpath

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As the title states, why is it a bad idea not to change your engine oil before going into winter storage again ? I mean, You don't change trans fluid, diff fluid or anything else, right ? I know Ford says change before. Let it sit, then change again before you take it out in the spring. But you talk to most oil companies, they say you're fine. Just change it in the spring. Does Motorcraft oil have properties that cause it to break down more? I've taken engine apart that sat for 10+ years and everything inside was just fine. Any insight to this ? Thanks.
I believe it has a lot to do with moisture build up from sitting.
 

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As the title states, why is it a bad idea not to change your engine oil before going into winter storage again ? I mean, You don't change trans fluid, diff fluid or anything else, right ? I know Ford says change before. Let it sit, then change again before you take it out in the spring. But you talk to most oil companies, they say you're fine. Just change it in the spring. Does Motorcraft oil have properties that cause it to break down more? I've taken engine apart that sat for 10+ years and everything inside was just fine. Any insight to this ? Thanks.
because there is a good chance your used engine oil to have metal particles which mean that they collect on the bottom of your oil pan then when you run your engine again this oil with the particles run through your whole engine. To be fair I did 1 track day with my new oil before having car in winter storage but still the oil is like few days from new new. I did that last year as well. Probably drived the car every 2 weeks or so for like 30 minutes as the weather was not that bad.

From the manual:

  • Change the engine oil and filter prior to storage because used engine oil contains contaminates which may cause engine damage.
 

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What I've always been told and read is the oil collects combustion byproducts as well as metal particulates and just the general crud engines accumulate along with moisture. All those things combined can create an acidic condition that can cause damage.
I'm not sure I believe it but it's what I've always heard.
I say that because the instructions are much the same for winterizing a marine engine and, for years, I wouldn't change the oil until spring and I never had any trouble.
 

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It depends on how long the car is going to sit.

If it's for 10 weeks, it's fine. If it's for 6 months, then change the oil.

I'd imagine even in the Great White North (take off, hoser), there's enough clear/sunny days to get the car out and about once or twice a month.

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WildHorse

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Manual also says to change your brand new oil before fire up too for extended storage. So basically - Fall change the oil. Let that brand new oil sit all winter. Then change that Brand new oil in the spring with brand new oil. Sounds legit.

More legit:
"to summarize, oil does not "spoil", and non-use certainly doesn't sever the long chain molecules. Yes, moisture that accumulates from combustion by-products should be vaporized off once in a while, but oil is not hygroscopic, and extended storage will not add bad things"

And that moisture will collect at the bottom of the oil pan.

So how is particulates sitting in a oil pan any different than those same particulates circulating throughout the engine. All of it passes through the filter before going to vital engine components.

Also with modern synthetics, the risk of oxidation or acidity in super minimal at worst. Just wanted to see who still subscribe to the 1970's era.
 

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What would be wrong with, draining for storage, leave dry > put big red sign on steering wheel NO OIL

Spring comes along fill and go?
 

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What would be wrong with, draining for storage, leave dry > put big red sign on steering wheel NO OIL

Spring comes along fill and go?
You need to start the engine every 10-14 days in order for the battery to charge according to the manual.

I personally change before winter put it in storage drive it for a few miles every 10-15 days if there is no snow and then in spring is my yearly service anyway so I just do that when I take the car out in March. Overall I'm changing oil often because of the track so this change is not big deal.
 

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I believe it has a lot to do with moisture build up from sitting.
Moisture really only builds up when you drive for short periods of time. I think it's more of an old school of thought when oil was less stable. If the engine is being run and nothing is going on, chemically nothing should really change.
 

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You need to start the engine every 10-14 days in order for the battery to charge according to the manual.

I personally change before winter put it in storage drive it for a few miles every 10-15 days if there is no snow and then in spring is my yearly service anyway so I just do that when I take the car out in March. Overall I'm changing oil often because of the track so this change is not big deal.

I would do that just to hear it run, have 2 other hotrods I start during the winter


I just thru that out to see what would come back.
 

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I change it in the spring... that's it for the year. I don't drive enough to warrant changing it more often (2000 miles a year).
 

Warpath

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Moisture really only builds up when you drive for short periods of time. I think it's more of an old school of thought when oil was less stable. If the engine is being run and nothing is going on, chemically nothing should really change.
No doubt, but if it was ran then stored for several months not being ran, then the engine cannot get the moisture out. It will collect in the oil and start creating acid. Now how much and what kind of damage I don't know. That was explained to me why oil has a time/mile which ever comes first interval. Not that the oil goes bad but the contaminates that are introduced to the oil effect it's life. But again what do I know, I'm definitely not an engineer.
 

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Saw that in the manual too - never done it. I usually just change it either before or after (whenever it is due). I take her off the road for the winter (battery disconnected) to save on the insurance costs.
 

NoVaGT

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.......if it was ran then stored for several months not being ran, then the engine cannot get the moisture out. It will collect in the oil and start creating acid.......
Engine oil is not hygroscopic. It's not going to attract moisture.

Ford is just being stupid with their recommendations. They're based on tech from the 1930s.
 

Warpath

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Engine oil is not hygroscopic. It's not going to attract moisture.

Ford is just being stupid with their recommendations. They're based on tech from the 1930s.
It's not that it attracts it, it's that moisture collects inside the block after the block cools.
 

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