Is an ultra-low ash engine oil possible?

There are many concerns you face as a fleet manager. This past year and a half have been especially hard for many businesses that have faced shutdowns, restrictions, and reduced work.

Now things are moving again, which means you’re going to need your trucks and equipment on the road ready to work. Investing in semi-trucks and heavy-duty equipment is a major expense for your business. These pieces of machinery cost hundreds of thousands of dollars, and you rely on it for transportation and work. Downtime or maintenance issues directly affect the productivity of your business, and that’s not easy, especially now.

As a Central Valley California fuel and lubricant supplier, we work with many customers who manage large fleets. The number one thing they want is to keep their trucks and equipment moving, but they often have to pull their trucks from the rotation for routine maintenance, especially for DPF filter issues.

DPF Filter Overview
The DPF is the diesel particulate filter. These filters are designed to lower emissions by capturing particulates before they are released into the air. Over time, these filters clog up with particulate matter, especially ash. Truck engines are designed to burn off this ash and build up soot using a process known as regen, where the engine runs extra hot. Sometimes this can be done passively while the truck or equipment is on the road, and other times it must be done while the equipment idles and the engine runs. Even with the regen process, DPF filters still clog up quickly, and then they must be removed, cleaned, and in some cases, replaced. It’s a costly process that takes a few days. If you want to get the most out of your truck, you want to make sure that you can go as long as possible before you have to service your DPF filter.

Dangers of Ash Build Up
To extend intervals between DPF filter service you need to prevent ash buildup. Ash build-up is caused by the burning of engine oil and the metallic additives in engine oil like calcium, magnesium, zinc, phosphorus, molybdenum, and boron. These additives are included to provide extra engine wear protection, oxidation stabilization, and oil life extension. Additives like these are actually good for your engine. They are designed to prevent piston damage, reduce deposits, and increase fuel efficiency. But over time, these metallic additives cause ash build-up, leading to increased maintenance, DPF filter cleaning, reduced fuel economy, and eventually, engine damage.

Can you reducec the amount of ash in the oil?
So, how can you keep the benefits of additives while reducing the ash that builds up in your DPF filter? That’s the question that fleet managers struggle with. The additives in engine oil help protect the whole engine and reduce the amount of fuel you use. You don’t want to give up that benefit. But at the same time, ash build-up is a huge issue. Some experts recommend simply reducing the CK-4 conventional oil that you use. The logic is that the less oil used, the less ash is produced. The problem with that type of thinking is, you can’t control how much oil your engine needs, and you’ll still miss out on the benefits of properly lubricating your engine.

Chevron scientists go to work to create low ash oil.
The scientists at Chevron have struggled with this dilemma. For years, they’ve investigated and studied this problem to try and find a solution. Is it possible to create an engine oil with all the benefits the additives provide, but that produces less ash? Scientists at Chevron undertook the challenge and created an ultra-low ash engine oil over several years with extensive testing. To do this, they started by experimenting with how much ash they could take out without sacrificing the engine oil quality and the additive benefits. Unfortunately, an ultra-low ash oil that didn’t meet the performance requirements wasn’t good enough. During the testing process, Chevron scientists meticulously studied and measured each engine component to see the effects as more ash was removed. Eventually, they found a baseline that allowed the team to reformulate their engine oil formula with all of the additive benefits but with significantly less ash.

Base Oil Quality is Key
Part of this experimentation process was selecting the right base oil. Since Chevron has oil reserves and refinery facilities, the research team chose high-quality refined oil. Chevron’s commitment to the highest quality base oil helped the team create a significantly better product with much less ash. The resulting product was the Delo® 600 ADF engine oil line.

Delo® 600 ADF
As a Chevron market partner, we proudly share their top products with our customers. Delo® 600 ADF engine oil is an ultra-low ash heavy-duty diesel engine oil is great for Tier IV Final and 2017 Greenhouse gas compliant engines. It’s Chevron ISOCLEAN® Certified so you know that it’s clean and free of contaminants straight out of the container. It offers extended emissions controls for your DPF Filter by increasing service intervals by up to 2x! The low metallic ash build-up also helps to improve fuel economy and still provides exceptional deposit control for pistons and turbochargers. If you’re serious about reducing your maintenance costs and service intervals, it’s a fantastic oil for your engine.

We love Chevron products
As a fuel and lubricants supplier, we’ve worked with many customers over the years, and engine maintenance issues are always top of mind for fleet managers. Our role is to provide your business with the best lubricants for your equipment and working needs. We want you to be able to keep your trucks and equipment on the road safely as long as you can. That’s why we love Chevron products.

The scientific team at Chevron works tirelessly to improve and test their inventions to create superior products. They don’t just look at a problem like the ash build up and say, ‘well, I guess that’s just the way it is.’ No, they see the problem, study it, and work to create a product like the Delo® 600 ADF oil that fixes the problem and provides superior engine protection. It’s why we always feel confident recommending Chevron products to our customers and why our customers always keep ordering them. Chevron’s oils are just that good.