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Master BS'er
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Discussion Starter #1
This is the first I've heard about this, but definitely keep it in mind in the future.

CK-4 Diesel Update

Recently diesel engine oils changed from the decade old CJ-4 formulation to the new CK-4 formulation. While intended to be an upgrade, the new formulation has been met with resistance and even an outright “do not use” warning from Ford Motor Co.

The new CK-4 specification went into effect in December of 2016. Just before the launch of this new specification, Ford issued a service bulletin stating that Ford 6.7L diesel engines should not use the new CK-4 oil. In fact, Ford issued a new oil specification closely aligned with the previous CJ-4 spec and called for the use of CJ-4 oils meeting the new Ford specification for their 6.7L diesel engines. Ford identified wear issues as the reason for abandoning the new CK-4 oil specification.

What is the underlying issue with the CK-4 oil? Previous API diesel oil specifications, like the decade old CJ-4, had to pass the ASTM Sequence IIIG valve train wear and oxidation test. This is no longer true of the new CK-4 specification. The Sequence IIIG test measures flat tappet cam and lifter wear as well as other parameters. The significance to both Ford and other users of diesel engine oils is directly tied to the absence of the Sequence IIIG test.

Diesel engine oils have historically contained higher levels of the anti-wear additive ZDDP. With more oil marketers wishing to supply “universal” oils that meet both API SN requirements for gasoline engines as well as API CK-4 requirements for diesel engines, the levels of ZDDP have dropped in some CK-4 oils. Without the Sequence IIIG flat tappet cam wear test, it appears some of these lower ZDDP diesel oils are causing increased wear in diesel engines. This should be a word of caution for all users of diesel engine oil, regardless if you’re using it in a 6.7L Ford or not.

Engine Pro Technical Committee with special thanks to Driven Racing Oil
 

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Master BS'er
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Discussion Starter #2
I'm not sure how that's going to work because the EPA wants ZDDP out of oils. They've been cutting it lower and lower over the years. This is why you need to add ZDDP to break in oil to break in the cam.

So the EPA is probably not going to like Ford's telling people not to use this new oil. This could get interesting to watch.
 

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You really don't need it on newer hydraulic stuff.
Mainly just old outdated flat tappet....

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Master BS'er
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Discussion Starter #5
And ZDDP is still recommended on all setups for break in oil. But I was unaware that diesels were supposed to have higher levels.

It's interesting that Ford found accelerated wear with the newer oils. I wonder where they were more prone to wearing. Cam lobes? Crank bearings?

I'd like to see it for myself.
 

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That’s why a lot of diesel people like myself run rotella oil. A lot of zinc in it and it’s reasonably priced. Run it in my x my 460 motorhome and my 460 jet boat.


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There was a big thread on this a while back on BITOG, and basically what it boiled down to was the new spec had not been fully tested and vetted by Ford engineers, so they could not recommend it. As they've been testing each application and passing, they have updated the list of engines it is approved in. So, eventually, it may be approved for all Ford engines across the board.
 

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This is a very interesting conversation to me. I said this on the "other" Ford Truck Forum. It is just my personal experience. I am just going to leave this here as information from my own experience and tell me what you think....bear with me LOL My Superduty is my fourth 7.3...for the last two months, my truck has had a VERY slight hiccup.....not even noticeable to anyone but me because I drive it every day. I checked everything we usually do before my trip (UVCH pins, OHM injectors, injector torque, etc). Based on experience, I got to thinking about the new CK-4 oils and noticed that the odd idling/running issue coincided with the CK-4 changeover. I know that zinc and phosphorus are pretty important in diesels, especially our older 7.3s, so it got me thinking that maybe I am having an oil issue (had so many in the past, I figured WTH). So, I went to Supertech 15w-40 to put a CJ-4 back in there and because there VOA shows a very robust additive package. I was going to go with Tractor Supply (same manufacturer) that a buddy of mine uses, but no stores in my area at the time, so Walmart it was. I changed it in the parking lot. Fumoto valves make things easy LOL.....annnnnyways, noticed on start up and about a minute of idling....different truck....or I should say, same truck I was used to. I wasn't convinced until I towed 200 miles, stopped for fuel, and it was idling so smooth and quiet with no gearshift shake or odd misses.

Sooo, here is my own personal geek theory. Our engines are driven by the HEUI. If the newer CK-4 oils, such as Rotella, have less of what is needed, such as zinc, phosphorus, magnesium, it possibly creates "flat spots" for the lack of a better term. If an injector, driven by oil to fire, gets a flat spot, it performs subpar or slightly misses/bobbles. It's the only thing that makes sense to me. The rest of my trip after the oil change produced a truck that performed well under WOT loaded pulls, and idled well when stopped for fuel on cool down. I have also experienced this kind of issue with other oil on this truck that was subpar, but it was even a bigger issue and very noticeable right away. I could be crazy, have placebo effect, or whatever, but it seems to be a real world problem. Maybe my truck is just a picky beeyatch.

Anyways, thanks for letting me geek out on oil for a bit. Let me know what you think, or anyone else if they want to chime in.
 

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Master BS'er
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Discussion Starter #9
Well, as far as flat spots, I'm gonna have to go with no. It should be incompressible no mater what the levels of zinc. I believe ya it ran a little better, but t I couldn't explain why.

What I know about zinc is it adds to the lubricity a bit. Like graphite. It's needed for flat tappet cams or solid lifters. Not many of those around anymore accept the performance market and even most of those are solid rollers instead. ZDDP is recommended to break in the cam of any engine, even roller cams. But we can't run ZDDP all the time or it'll damage the cat. That's why ZDDP is not used anymore.

Apparently diels benefit from higher levels of ZDDP and I'd like to know why but the article didn't say. I'm guessing it has to do with higher spring pressure maybe? Not sure. I'm not even sure what typical spring pressures are for either platform, so that's just a guess. Diesels will typically have a little more inertia in the valve train at lower rpms do to the beefier parts. So I'd guess the springs pressures are a little higher than gas but I don't know that either.

Just speculating.
 

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Native Californian
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Maybe the other oil foamed a bit more than what you run now. That would be my guess. Foam is bad for hydraulics.
Could be, but my question is would it be due to the new formulation? Either way, it was a very noticeable difference in how the engine performed.
 

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Master BS'er
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Discussion Starter #12
Not sure. Oils have all kinds of different additives. Different ones for different applications. Maybe this newer oil has more anti foam additives. Maybe it's a detergent thing. Got me man.

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