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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hey everybody! I just wanted to share my impressions and thoughts on Red Line products.

Full disclosure: I do not work for them and do not get any sum of money by talking about their products. Also, I'm not trying to sway you towards Red Line or force you to get Red Line nor will I be discouraged if you choose another company since that is YOUR CHOICE. No flaming on my thread please. :)

While in a search for the best products that I could possibly have for my car, since I intend to keep my car for my lifetime, I have decided to ask Butch, the ultimate car guru, about what he uses. After talking to him about his Avalanche, he has told me that he only uses Red Line in is Avalanche. Red Line is used in serious high performance vehicles that make thousands of horsepower. After talking with him and other people that specialize in oils, I have made my choice to switch out my Mobil 1 0w-40 and my Castrol BOT 328 oil for Red Line products. Butch did tell me that Mobil 1 is not a bad oil, but Red Line is a better, more expensive oil.

The first product I added to my car was the Red Line Water Wetter. Overall, the product has done what it said it would do. Nothing more, nothing less. So far, so good! :D

The second product I added to my car was Red Line fuel system cleaner. I added this product at my 3k mile mark. I was adding Chevron Techron every 3k. Chevron Techron is the original fuel system cleaner. Red Line has taken that product and went further with it. When I added that to my empty tank and filled up with what I always fill up with (Shell V-Power), my car seemed to idle a bit smoother and did seem to be a tad more peppy. I have no scientific information to prove this, or it could be me trying to think to expect something, but a seat of the pants feeling is telling me that it did smooth the idle out and give it a bit more pep. A quote from an Amazon user:
As far as I know, every effective fuel system cleaner on the market uses a class of compounds known as polyether amines (PEA), in varying proportions, to effectively clean deposits from fuel system components, and particularly from fuel injectors, which can quickly impact engine efficiency and performance when not operating correctly. My understanding is that these compounds were first developed by Chevron and sold under the Techron name, and have since been made available to other blenders of fuel treatment products. Until recently BG 44K, Chevron Techron Concentrate, Gumout Regane Fuel System Cleaner, Amsoil P.I. Performance Improver Concentrate, and Redline SI-1 (among others) listed polyether amines on their Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) in proportions varying from approximately 25% to 50%. Most of these products no longer list PEA on their MSDS, having changed their terminology to disguise the precise nature of their products' constituent components. Whether PEA is still contained in those products is a matter of uncertainty. As of this writing Redline's SI-1 MSDS still specifies that the product contains 30-50% PEA. Consequently it is one of the few remaining fuel system cleaner products that undoubtedly does contain PEA in significant quantity.

I have been able to test the efficacy of fuel system cleaners in one of my own vehicles using a method I stumbled on after having its injectors professionally cleaned while out of the vehicle. The car in question uses a Bosch engine management system that reports fuel injector data to an on-board computer, which then uses that data to calculate and report instantaneous and average mpg to the driver. I noted after the professional cleaning that the accuracy of the reported mpg, when used to measure average mpg over each full tank of fuel, improved suddenly from a prior error of around -3% - -5% (that is, the reported mpg was ~3-5% below the actual mpg, or typically just over 1mpg low) to an error as close to zero as I could measure (that is, usually between -1% and 1%, fluctuating above and below a perfect "match"). This can be explained on the basis that the engine management system will compensate for a dirty injector by holding the injectors open slightly longer during each combustion cycle, in order to admit the proper amount of fuel. The on-board computer interprets that as a slightly higher rate of fuel consumption, reporting a lower-than-actual mpg figure.

After several thousand miles - not long - the perfect mpg accuracy I'd noticed began to deteriorate, likely indicating that the cleaned injectors were beginning to suffer from some sort of renewed impedance to fuel flow. Out of a desire to retain near-perfect injector performance, and also out of curiosity, I started experimenting with various commercially-available fuel system cleaners and keeping records of the results at each fill-up.

Leaving out the long details, I'll simply say here that the results were surprisingly clear and unambiguous. Each time I went several tanks without using a fuel system cleaner (usually as a result of simply forgetting to use it or not taking the trouble), the on-board computer (OBC) accuracy would deteriorate. This would fluctuate from tank to tank, of course, as a result of inevitable measurement errors, but the trend was very clear even over a small number of fill-ups. Returning to the use of a fuel system cleaner (Chevron Techron Concentrate, Gumout Regane or SI-1, all of which at the time did contain PEA), the accuracy would improve again very quickly - within 2-3 fill-ups. I began using the SI-1 exclusively seven months ago based on its apparent cost-effectiveness and since then I have reduced the quantity I use in each tank to the current 1oz per ~15gal fill-up. The results remain unambiguous. If I use this small amount of SI-1 consistently, the accuracy of the on-board computer is excellent, with an average error of below 1%, or a fraction the error rate seen when not using such a product.

Based on the above I feel I can confidently conclude that SI-1 works very well, even at reduced treatment rates, at keeping fuel injectors clean. Fuel system types and injectors will vary, and other parts of the fuel system - for example intake valves and combustion chambers - might benefit from higher treatment rates (or, conceivably, might not benefit at all). Actual engine efficiency will not vary nearly as much as injector cleanliness, since the engine feedback system normally corrects for imperfect injector flow rates. However, as the flow is more greatly impeded, or impeded differentially among the individual injectors, mpg will be affected to some degree. I feel it is well worth the tiny cost to consistently use a small quantity of SI-1. Other benefits, such as to combustion efficiency as a result of combustion chamber cleanliness, to volumetric efficiency as a result of intake valve cleanliness, and to fuel system lubrication, probably exist as well although I can not evaluate them and have not attempted to do so. Other fuel system cleaners may work as effectively, or nearly as effectively, but I do not believe them to be as good in terms of value per dollar spent.

In my experimentation I did try some less expensive fuel system cleaners, those not containing PEA. They appeared to have no effect. I can not categorically state that only PEA-containing fuel system cleaners work, of course, but my observations did match the conventional wisdom on this point. I also experimented with using top-tier fuels only, without any additional fuel system cleaners. The results were the same as when using non-detergent (Costco and others) fuels. I don't doubt that top tier fuels contain small amounts of cleaners and will keep a fuel system functionally and acceptably clean, but the quantities involved are reputed to be tiny and my observations seem to indicate that even a small amount of additional additive is far more effective.
So far, so good! :D

The third product I ordered was the Red Line MT 90 gear oil. This is what Red Line recommends replacing the gear oil with. I ordered three quarts of Red Line gear oil from Amazon and received free two day shipping because I'm an Amazon prime member. After feeling the gears shift hard and jumpy when the gear oil is cold, I was really curious to see how the MT 90 would perform versus BOT 328. Butch told me I shouldn't expect anything. I picked up Butch and drove around for quite some time to warm up the gear oil to make sure all the particles were suspended in the oil so when we drained it, the particles would come out better and more effectively. We drained the gear oil and collected a sample for my Blackstone thread referenced below. After adding the MT 90, we went for another drive and immediately, I noticed that going down a hill without giving the car any gas, it was much smoother. Butch even noticed the difference. The car did shift smoother and cruised smoother. The next day when I had to go to school and was going up my hill with the MT 90 still cold, it didn't hard jerk the shift. It was very smooth...not as smooth as when it warms up, but much, much smoother than that of the BOT 328. From what I have read, "lifetime fills" are only good for 100k miles. Personally, I would never let any oil, no matter how "lifetime" it was, be in my car for that amount of time. Based on my recommendation, Bill Hitchcock and Gary Bryers both purchased this oil. I can't wait to hear what they both think of this oil changeover since Gary already changed his gear oil once (or twice) before. So far, so good! :D

The final product I purchased from them, the most expensive purchase, was the Red Line 0W-40 high performance motor oil. The reason that this oil is more expensive is because this oil has polyol esters.

Here is more information on polyol esters:
The term "polyol esters" is short for neopentyl polyol esters which are made by reacting monobasic fatty acids with polyhedric alcohols having a "neopentyl" structure. The unique feature of the neopentyl structure of polyol alcohols molecules is the fact that there are no hydrogens on the beta-carbon. Since this "beta-hydrogen" is the first site of thermal attack on diesters, eliminating this site substantially elevates the thermal stability of polyol esters and allows them to be used at much higher temperatures. In addition, polyol esters usually have more ester groups than the diesters and this added polarity further reduces volatility and enhances the lubricity characteristics while retaining all the other desirable properties inherent with diesters. This makes polyol esters ideally suited for the higher temperature applications where the performance of diesters and PAOs begin to fade.

Like diesters, many different acids and alcohols are available for manufacturing polyol esters and indeed an even greater number of permutations are possible due to the multiple ester linkages. Unlike diesters, polyol esters (POEs) are named after the alcohol instead of the acid and the acids are often represented by their carbon chain length. For example, a polyol ester made by reacting a mixture of nC8 and nC10 fatty acids with trimethylolpropane would be referred to as a "TMP" ester and represented as TMP C8C10.


Each of the alcohols shown above have no beta-hydrogens and differ primarily in the number of hydroxyl groups they contain for reaction with the fatty acids. The difference in ester properties as they relate to the alcohols are primarily those related to molecular weight such as viscosity, pour point, flash point, and volatility. The versatility in designing these fluids is mainly related to the selection and mix of the acids esterified onto the alcohols.

The normal or linear acids all contribute similar performance properties with the physicals being influenced by their carbon chain length or molecular weight. For example, lighter acids such as valeric may be desirable for reducing low temperature viscosity on the higher alcohols, or the same purpose can be achieved by esterifying longer acids onto the shorter alcohols. While the properties of the normal acids are mainly related to the chain length, there are some more subtle differences among them which can allow the formulator to vary such properties as oxidative stability and lubricity.

Branched acids add a new dimension since the length, location, and number of branches all impact the performance of the final ester. For example, a branch incorporated near the acid group may help to hinder hydrolysis while multiple branches may be useful for building viscosity, improving low temperature flow, and enhancing oxidative stability and cleanliness. The versatility of polyol esters is best understood when one considers that multiple acids are usually co-esterified with the polyol alcohol allowing the ester engineer to control multiple properties in a single ester. Indeed single acids are rarely used in polyol esters because of the enchanced properties that can be obtained through co-esterification.

Polyol esters can extend the high temperature operating range of a lubricant by as much as 50 - 100°C due to their superior stability and low volatility. They are also renowned for their film strength and increased lubricity which is useful in reducing energy consumption in many applications. The only downside of polyol esters compared to diesters is their higher price; they are generally 20 - 70% higher on a wholesale basis.

The major application for polyol esters is jet engine lubricants where they have been used exclusively for more than 30 years. In this application, the oil is expected to flow at -54°C, pump readily at -40°C, and withstand sump temperature approaching 200°C with drain intervals measured in years. Only polyol esters have been found to satisfy this demanding application and incorporating even small amounts of diesters or PAOs will cause the lubricant to fail vital specifications.

Polyol esters are also the ester of choice for blending with PAOs in passenger car motor oils. This change from lower cost diesters to polyols was driven primarily by the need for reduced fuel consumption and lower volatility in modern specifications. They are used in 2-cycle oils as well for the same reasons plus biodegradability.

In industrial markets polyol esters are used extensively in synthetic refrigeration lubricants due to their miscibility with non-chlorine refrigerants. They are also widely used in a variety of very high temperature applications such as industrial oven chains, tenter frames, stationary turbine engines, high temperature grease, fire resistant transformer coolants, fire resistant hydraulic fluids, and textile lubricants.

In general, polyol esters represent the highest performance level available for high temperature applications at a reasonable price. Although they cost more than many other types of synthetics, the benefits often combine to make this chemistry the most cost effective in severe environment applications. The primary benefits include extended life, higher temperature operation, reduced maintenance and downtime, lower energy consumption, reduced smoke and disposal, and biodegradability.
So after taking the car, one again, for a long drive to get the motor oil at operating temperature, we drained the oil (which took awhile because the drain plug was really seized on there), took a sample for the second Blackstone test, filled up, refilled, and refilled the K&N oil filter (three times because the oil starts to get absorbed by the filter and the level goes down. Slightly tapping the filter on the ground helps get the oil in the filter better.), put the K&N oil filter on the car, cleaned out the plug screen with brake cleaner, reattached the screen to the plug, put the plug on the car and tightened it up just enough. Then, we added the one gallon of Red Line to the car. YOU DO NOT NEED TO TAKE OUT THE .3 QUARTS ON MOTOR OIL! THERE HAS BEEN DEBATES ABOUT OVERFILLING, BUT OVERFILLING IS TYPICALLY ONE TO TWO QUARTS OVER OEM SPECS. Some cars, according to Butch, actually like to be overfilled a little. Anyhow, we checked the level and it was right at the top of the full line and I went on my merry way. So far, so good! :D

Now, since I have Red Line products protecting my car and making my car run more efficiently, I feel as though I am a Red Line junkie. If you have used Red Line products, I would like to hear what you guys think of them. Thank you for reading! :D

Blackstone Tests for both oils: http://www.smartcarofamerica.com/forums/f25/two-blackstone-tests-38799/
 

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Take a look at some of the Am**il threads (the ones that survived); hopefully we don't head down that path again. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Take a look at some of the Am**il threads (the ones that survived); hopefully we don't head down that path again. :)
That's why I put this under the full disclosure portion:
Also, I'm not trying to sway you towards Red Line or force you to get Red Line nor will I be discouraged if you choose another company since that is YOUR CHOICE. No flaming on my thread please. :)
If they like Amsoil, they can keep using it. Barney O uses it and that is his choice and I don't hate him for it or dislike him in any way for using it nor will I try and convince him otherwise. I'm sure Amsoil is a great oil that works for those that use it and if those that use it want to keep using it, I'm sure they will be happy with their oil just like I'm happy with Red Line.

Honestly, those stupid enough to argue over oils and create enemies on threads in forums that then get closed down because of the stupidity want to act stupid, they shouldn't be on forums arguing over oils.
 

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Mobil 1 is fine with me. I change my oil every 7,000 miles. I always used 91 octane Phillips 66 gas. Smart doesn't recommend any other additives. My car lasted 3 years now without any issues. I'm happy. Mobil 1 , is really good for 15,000 miles. Smart wants 10,000 miles out of it.
 

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That's why I put this under the full disclosure portion: If they like Amsoil, they can keep using it. Barney O uses it and that is his choice and I don't hate him for it or dislike him in any way for using it nor will I try and convince him otherwise. I'm sure Amsoil is a great oil that works for those that use it and if those that use it want to keep using it, I'm sure they will be happy with their oil just like I'm happy with Red Line.

Honestly, those stupid enough to argue over oils and create enemies on threads in forums that then get closed down because of the stupidity want to act stupid, they shouldn't be on forums arguing over oils.
Brett,Just to clarify things I'm using Amsoil in the tranny and using Mobil 1 in the engine.:)
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Paul, thank you for the clarification and smark, the oil might be able to go 15k, but how effective is the oil filter at 15k?
 

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I'll look into it for the next oil change at 18k. I should change the gearbox oil then too.

I'm not familiar with any Amsoil threads, but whatever the historical precedent is, let's try to stay civil.

It sounds like Red Line's main advantage (that they're advertising, at least) is high-temperature stability and low viscosity change with temperature. I'll get an oil temp gauge in there (among many others) during the pre-turbo ECU project, but it's still good to be able to take it to higher temps without it breaking down. Low viscosity change with temperature is very important to me; I'd much rather try to keep it out of mixed-mode/boundary lubrication in the first place than just find something with lots of ZDDP and hope for the best. That should be much easier to manage while still having fun if the viscosity is more consistent. :)
 

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I was about to say it.....Amsoil, Amsoil!!! (for the X-Files fans out there you'll catch on - Roswell, Roswell!! :)).

I like Amsoil, Royal Purple, Mobil 1 etc. Call me an oil slut.
 

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Is it getting hot in here or is it just me?
Oil sluts, cars, lubrication, slippery men. They're bound to be slippery if their changing and spilling or wearing oil.
Is a Crisco party about to break out?
I think I need a cigarette! :D
Thanks for Red line read, Brett. Maybe we could talk about oil more often. :D
 

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Is it getting hot in here or is it just me?
Oil sluts, cars, lubrication, slippery men. They're bound to be slippery if their changing and spilling or wearing oil.
Is a Crisco party about to break out?
I think I need a cigarette! :D
Thanks for Red line read, Brett. Maybe we could talk about oil more often. :D
 

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smartcar111:

I support you! Redline is in our new (18K) FJ Crawler. A nice product.

Kermit is just selling one of his smarties and trying to catch the new son in law at the same time? :D
 
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