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Old 24-01-2014, 20:04   #1
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Oil For New Yanmar 3YM20's

I am about to bring two new yanmars online and I wanted to know if there was a consensus about what oil to use. The service manual states use API CD or better SAE 10W-30 or 15W-40.

I would like to pick a brand and type that is readily available so that I can keep things consistent over the life of these engines.

If I ask 1000 people, will I get 1000 answers?
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Old 24-01-2014, 20:53   #2
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oil for new Yanmar 3YM20's

Rotela 15-40, and yea you might 500 or so answers. Some people get nuts about oil, the engine really really can't tell. Use good stuff, change brands if ya want. My new 3gm30 now has 31 hours and a oil change is days away. I'll do it every 100 hrs after the break in.
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Old 24-01-2014, 21:02   #3
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re: Oil For New Yanmar 3YM20's

You should pick the viscosity based on the range of temperatures you expect (look in the owner's manual). As for the brand, I would trust Shell Rotella T and Chevron Delo 400 oils. I'm pretty sure other heavy duty oils meant for Diesel fleet applications would be just as good.
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Old 24-01-2014, 21:42   #4
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re: Oil For New Yanmar 3YM20's

Shell Rotella, T (straight 30 weight) or 15-40. T will provide better protection, as less viscosity modifiers, provided the engine is within the temp range of straight 30. But 15-40 works just about as well.

I run 15-40 in winter and straight 30 weight spring to fall.
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Old 25-01-2014, 11:02   #5
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Re: Oil For New Yanmar 3YM20's

Yanmar specifies 10W-30 or 15W-40 only. I wouldn't use straight 30, at least until the engines are past the warranty period.

10W-30 is good for colder temperatures (-4F to 86F) and 15W-40 for warmer (5F to 104F). If you're going to stay in Oregon, either one should be fine, but I'd use the 15W-40.
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Old 25-01-2014, 12:18   #6
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Re: Oil For New Yanmar 3YM20's

Take a look at Rotella 5W-40 synthetic, pretty sure it's not a pure syn oil though as that would be really expensive
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Old 25-01-2014, 12:21   #7
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Re: Oil For New Yanmar 3YM20's

In normal oils the higher viscosity spread is achieved with additives, additives that break down well before the base stock oil does. A straight weight oil will fare better in heavy use than a multi-vis oil will.
Synthetics break this rule though
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Old 25-01-2014, 12:31   #8
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Re: Oil For New Yanmar 3YM20's

Another Rotella user. My oil burner is a Cummins but I did put a Yanmar, out of a John Deere, in my daughter's Mazda.
3 cylinder and 70 + MPH. Not bad @ 40 city and 50 mpg Hwy..!!!! 😁
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Old 25-01-2014, 17:23   #9
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Re: Oil For New Yanmar 3YM20's

Use a good quality diesel rated oil per the manual. For my trucks and tractor, I have used Delo, Shell, and JD. Mostly Shell 5w-40 and lately JD 0x40 oil. The Shell 5w-40 is a semi synthetic and the JD is a full synthetic. I switched to JD because it is a slightly better oil and a few years ago, was cheaper in a 5 gallon bucket than the Shell in 1 gallon jugs. I got slightly better MPG with the 5w-40 and 0w-40 oils compared to 15w-40 oils. Using UOA(Used Oil Analysis), I run the oil to 12,000-14,000 miles vs 5,000 per the truck manual.

The price of the JD oil has gotten higher the last few years so I might go back to using the Shell 5w-40 oil since I can get it on Amazon.

A big advantage to me is that 5w-40 or 0w-40 oil starts MUCH easier in cold weather than 15w-40 oil. The first set of numbers is the weight of the oil when cold. In the past, I would use an engine block heater prior to starting my truck engines. The block heater is no longer needed with the 5w and 0w oils. The block heater cost me about 50 cents a day and quickly adds up and pays for the higher cost synthetic. I had no problems starting my truck the last few weeks even with the temperatures down to 6F.

Not sure if you need this cold weather ability on a boat in OR. Personally, I would be more likely to use the a xxw40 oil than xxw30 oil but I would check the temperature range in the manual.

FYI, my JD tractor has a Yanmar engine which has been flawless. My tractor dealer, who are really good people, told me that the Yanmar was a great engine with very few problems. The JD engine that replaced the Yanmar was not so reliable. My Yanmar uses no oil what so ever.

Later,
Dan
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Old 25-01-2014, 17:35   #10
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Re: Oil For New Yanmar 3YM20's

Do not break in an engine on synthetic oils.
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Old 25-01-2014, 17:47   #11
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Re: Oil For New Yanmar 3YM20's

There is a good article here:

Oil for yacht engines

The most important thing is to change the oil regularly.
There is an argument that high performance oils (full synthetic) are not beneficial and may even be harmful for our yacht engines.
It is difficult to evaluate these claims, but a good quality mineral oil of the right grade, changed frequently seems the best option.
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Old 25-01-2014, 17:47   #12
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Re: Oil For New Yanmar 3YM20's

Quote:
Originally Posted by sy_gilana View Post
Do not break in an engine on synthetic oils.
That used to be gospel but many new engines are shipped with synthetic oils.

Synthetic Oil | Frequently Asked Questions

Having said that, I would not use synthetic in a new engine since some engines require a short break in period and it would be very expensive to throw away synthetic oil with a limited number of hours. Even if the manual did not specify a shorter run time on the oil during break in, I would likely change out the oil early. My Yanmar has a short break in period and I have always changed out the oil early on new engines. Oil aint cheap but it is cheaper than an engine.
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Old 25-01-2014, 17:54   #13
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Re: Oil For New Yanmar 3YM20's

Quote:
Originally Posted by sy_gilana View Post
Do not break in an engine on synthetic oils.

Old wives tale, many, many of the more expensive automobiles come with Syn as a factory fill. I wish that syn was so slippery it would prevent break-in, then there would be absolutely no doubt as to it's value
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Old 25-01-2014, 18:03   #14
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Re: Oil For New Yanmar 3YM20's

I agree with Noelex,

Change it often and always before the engine sits for a while. Change it while hot and if short on money change the filter every other oil change.

My auto shop teacher taught me this and has worked with all my engines except the slant six in my 68' Dodge Dart were I did not follow his advice. I ended up with a connecting rod as a paper weight after that.
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Old 25-01-2014, 18:10   #15
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Re: Oil For New Yanmar 3YM20's

I'm firmly in the synthetics are a waste of money crowd. There is aldo chance they do more harm than good in older marine diesels. Even in car applications it's a scam. Regular time tested oil is actually super good that's why the oil industry has had to try so hard to convince us we need a more expensive product. People who like it think it's great and claim all sorts of benefits and attribute it to the synth. For whatever reason they got conned and won't be convinced otherwise.
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