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Tractor Engine Oil Viscosity Recommendations

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8x56mn
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 167 Watkins Glen NY
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2008-01-28          150845


OK, this oil business is driving me nuts, what weight, how cold, yada yada. I have a B2150 1990 vintage that starts no matter how cold by running the glow plug for 5- 10 seconds. I changed the oil recently and put in 15-40. I live in upstate NY and it does get down to around 0-F on occasion. My question, am I using the wrong weight oil, always put in 10w-30 before, but wondering if that was wrong.I also understand that in the winter I shouldn't let it idle for periods of time, is that true?

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randywatson
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 109 texas
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2008-01-28          150847


extended idleing is not good for tractor, REPEAT EXTENDED (HOURS) not precluding for warm up or cool down purposes.

re oil use diesel rated per owner manual recommendations for outside temps.

FYI if you use the incorrect viscosity oil for winter it will cause the bypass valve to open until the oil heats up, thinning enough to run through the filter,

basically the slower flowing oil will get to the critical areas slower in winter causing excessive wear.

If you use the wrong viscosity oil in the hot periods it will heat and become to thin to provide proper protection.

Keep in mind oil flowing through the pressureized system provides a constantly flowing cushion between moving metal parts limiting friction.

Dirty oil = grit inside areas where .0003 clearance is allowed for the "flowing cushion" of oil

thin oil = running out of .0003 clearance to fast, not providing the cushion

thick oil = not enough flow through the .0003 clearance to allow for proper cooling to prevent thermal breakdown of lubricating properties
....

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Murf
Join Date: Dec 1999
Posts: 7209 Toronto Area, Ontario, Canada
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2008-01-28          150851


First off, the oil itself, there is no problem using 15W40 oil in your machine, PROVIDED, it meets the minimum API ratings for that type of engine.

On the Kubota website there is some info on the FAQ page about that the official word right from them is;

"Q: I can't find diesel-rated 10W30. Can I use 15W40?
A: Yes, many of our customers use 15W40 engine oil in their Kubota diesels. Just make sure whatever oil you use has an API rating of CF or higher."

As for the idling question, it depends on the reason for the idling as to whether or not you should let it idle, and for how long. If you have just finished some heavy work, FEL work or snow blowing for instance, letting the machine idle at just higher than normal idle speed for a little while to allow the engine and hydraulics to cool down some is a good idea. Likewise at minus God-knows-what degrees when you first start the machine up to do something it is a good idea to let it run at about 1,400 -1,600 rpm for a few minutes to warm up a bit and get things flowing before you start to work the machine.

At any temperature though, extended periods of idling is not particularly good for any engine, especially a diesel since the engine doesn't stay at a proper running temperature, or burn cleanly at a cold idle.

Best of luck. ....

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8x56mn
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 167 Watkins Glen NY
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2008-01-28          150853


Thanks for the replies. About idling, I'm talking about idling for no more than 1/2 hour intervals at the most while doing something else rather than shuting off and then restarting. So it sounds like from reading the post that 15W40 is OK, you see what I mean, seems like there are a lot of opinions even when you talk to the dealors ....

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Murf
Join Date: Dec 1999
Posts: 7209 Toronto Area, Ontario, Canada
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2008-01-28          150856


Our machines routinely idle for periods of a half hour and so far have suffered no ill effects from it.

In our case by the time the operator allows enough time for cool down, then has a break or meal, then allows it to warm up again too much time is lost.

Instead our procedure is to set the machine to a fast idle, about 1,400 rpm and park the machine.

Best of luck. ....

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8x56mn
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 167 Watkins Glen NY
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2008-01-28          150861


That brings up another question regarding "cool down". The temperature gage this time of year never gets up to what I would consider hot! I have been letting it idle at 1000 rpm's do you think I should increase the RPM's and waste fuel? For instance I start the tractor at 1000 RPM's and waite for the engine to smooth out,then back out of the shed and pull over to the wood shed, lower the bucket down and then load the bucket with wood, all the time leaving tractor at idle speed of 1000 RPM's. I then drive over to the house with the bucket raised and park it to unload, again with idle at 1000 RPM's, the tractor temperature gage never get past halfway, actualy less, am I hurting my machine? ....

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Murf
Join Date: Dec 1999
Posts: 7209 Toronto Area, Ontario, Canada
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2008-01-28          150862


Kubotas are notorious for having VERY efficient cooling systems, in the hottest weather they will not overheat unless the rad is plugged up with debris.

I wouldn't say you're 'hurting' the machine, but IMHO it would be better off if the idle was set to about 1,300 - 1,500 rpm until the temp. gauge comes up off the end post.

BTW, a faster idle doesn't 'waste fuel' on a cold engine, it gets it to temperature FAR faster than not speeding it up will and that will, in the end, use a lot less fuel. A cold engine uses a lot more fuel than a warm engine would to do the same amount of work.

Best of luck. ....

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____________________________________________________________________________________
Tractor Engine Oil Viscosity Recommendations

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8x56mn
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 167 Watkins Glen NY
TractorPoint Premium Member -- 5 Tractors = Very Frequent Poster

2008-01-28          150865


Thanks Murf, that good information:)I will follow your advice. ....

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Art White
Join Date: Jan 2000
Posts: 6898 Waterville New York
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2008-02-01          151005



Doing the work with the loader with the firewood would not load the engine enough to make it labor in turn make heat. The 2150 should be fine doing the work but I don't like extrended idling more then five minutes.
When you run diesels cold they tend to glaze the cylinder walls reducing the sealing of the rings which in turn will cause loss of power and oil consumption.
To do your job for an extended time I might recommend a piece of cardboard in front of the radiator but be sure it covers the whole radiator and you put a round whole in the center of where the fan draws from. To only put a half sheet or cover partially makes the fan blades flex continously which will weaken them and cause failure. ....

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8x56mn
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 167 Watkins Glen NY
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2008-02-01          151012


Thanks Art, this tractor is my first diesel and I have to say it has been absouloutly bullet proof so far. It just turned 2000 hrs. Love orange ....

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greg_g
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 1816 Western Kentucky
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2008-02-01          151025


I currently own 3 diesels; two off-road, one on-road. Temps here run from below 0F in the winter, to either side of 100F in the summer. All three engines run Rotella-T 15W40 year 'round. Two of them have 80C thermostats, the 3rd is a 70C. Idling any for 30 minute periods won't hurt them a bit. Matter of fact, I split wood for hours (TPH hydraulic splitter) with my KM454 throttled to little more than fast idle (~1100 rpm).

This time of year I warm them up at fast idle (~900 rpm) till I see 40C on the metric temp gauges. I actually have to work them to get the coolant temp higher than that. In warm weather, I don't bother with cool down at all when the temp gauges say 70C or 80C respectively. When they've been worked hard enough to run higher than thermostat rating, then I let them cool down - before shutdown. The cooling systems are very efficient, so that doesn't happen very often

//greg// ....

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auerbach
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 2168 West of Toronto
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2008-02-02          151035


To explain the "right kind," in the designation "CF" the "F" is like a date stamp and the "C" means "Compression [Ignition]," engineer-speak for diesel. Diesels generate more ash than gas engines (one reason your oil turns dark soon), and the "C" assures the additives handle this. You could use gas-engine oil in your diesel if you changed it at 50 instead of 100 hours.

Viscosity is temp related. A "5" oil flows like water when cold but is too thin for a hot motor. A "50" protects a lugging engine in the desert, but when cold it flows like molasses. Single-weights hold their properties a little better than multiple-viscosities, so if you use the latter don't leave it beyond 100 hrs. If the climate is warm, you have starting aids, and you run for long periods, use straight 30 or 40. If the opposite, a 5/50 synthetic. If average, a good year-round compromise is 15/40.

The manual for an older tractor might not mention multi-viscosities, as they are recent. ....

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Art White
Join Date: Jan 2000
Posts: 6898 Waterville New York
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2008-02-02          151036



Talking on the multi viscosity, many older designed tractors owners manuals don't talk about multi viscosity for two reasons. The first is the fact that they didn't have it when the book was printed and the second one, there are many that weren't built with tolerences for a multi weight oil! That comes from a oil company's engineer! With a mechanical pressure gauge you can actually watch the oil pressure get lower with the break down of the viscosity enhancers under hard use. The lowest weight listed of a multi weight oil is the base weight of the oil. The higher weight is reached by additives meant to thicken the oil.

One again I'll say that a tractor manufacturer oil will normally be a higher quality then a truck or car oil. I do know that some ag companies do have some lower priced oil the same as the shell rotella line. Shell also hass higher grades that are better and more comparable to the higher grades oils. Cars run at 30% load and RPM, trucks at 60% and tractors are normally at 90%load and rpm.

For most of central NY knowing that about two years ago we had temps in the -20's for several weeks I recommend a ten weight base oil. For most engines I will say to use the multi weight during the winter but under hard use of summer go to a fixed weight. ....

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