Oil Specifications! Approval VS. Meets Requirements… Round 1 FIGHT!
This should be fun!
Obviously this presents a few challenges for us as we have been doing oil changes with this oil, while our receipts and front signage reflect that we use Castrol, BUT THIS IS NOT OUR TOPIC FOR TODAY!!!
This started an internal debate amongst, the front staff and myself. It has been difficult for me to explain that a oil company can make a claim to meet a specification, and it actually has not been tested to meet that specification, or have an OEM approval for that matter, and what the difference is.
So, I pose the question;
What are your thoughts on meets requirements vs. OEM approval.
We don't mess around. We get the OE approved fluids and make sure our clients know that. I would also toss in that we don't do all that many straight oil changes, meaning it is a rare occurrence a vehicle is dropped off with the sole purpose of having an "oil change".
Before this new front staff we have now, and when we were using mainly Castrol/Mobil1/LiquiMoly products, we stuck to OEM approvals, but things have obviously gone to the wayside......
From a purely legal C.Y.A. standpoint, you better have OEM approved oils. "Meets requirements" means absolutely nothing. I have seen some bottles of oil labeled with the words "Meets engine wear specifications of Dexos/Ford WSS etc etc" So the label is telling you that the oil passed one portion of one test of the requirements from the oem. That oil isn't the proper oil, regardless of what
OEM approval would be more who the OEM is in bed with such as Mercedes and Mobil 1. The will have a standard that will include their testing procedures, as long as the oil has met those standards under those testing procedures I see that as meets requirements.
Claiming to meet or exceed manufacturer specifications does not mean it actually meets manufacturer specifications. Modern day pirates are out there to take your money with all kinds of claims. This is especially true with automatic transmission fluids. I have seen companies claim to meet or exceed manufacturer ATF specifications, they will even go as far as showing you 5 or 6 specification line
As a point of clarification, I am of the thought if it is not OEM approved, it doesnt "cut the mustard". Really I wanted to hear the different viewpoints, but mainly the different "whys and why nots."
We use individual qt/liter bottles for this exact reason. OEM's no longer warranty engine repairs like they once did. I had a good friend that worked at a GMC dealer and if an engine failure was under warranty the first thing they did was send off an oil sample as well as checked the oil filter. I still haven't convinced the boss to use OE filters but in the long run for engines under warranty
We've actually had some mis shipped boxes of oil come from the dealer. I was reading the label one day and noticed it only had a S for spark engine rating instead of the C for compression (diesel). I told our parts guy about it and he called the dealer and they were convinced it was correct. I kept bothering them about it and finally took it all of the shelf so it could be taken back. And yes…
Wow! I bet that was a surprise finding out that your oil supplier has basically been lying to you. I hope that situation gets worked out in your favor. We have adopted a policy at our shop that we use oils that carry OEM approvals. It has to have the approval for my liability sake and I also don't want to cause any engine damage due to using the wrong oil. "Meets or exceeds" may or may not mean
One more thing...you might check with your state's division of measurement standards for enforcement on this issue.
You might have to find out how "good" the oil supplier's insurance really is.
If it meets the spec it's fine. Since it's illegal for the OE's to say "you must use Brand X oil" they came up with this "OE approved" jargon to try and persuade you into using Brand X. The approved companies paid BIG $$$$ to get on the list. Any company that sells a product that "meets spec ###" is legally obligated to be telling the truth. I don't get up in the morning assuming everyone is
Hi Geoff, The companies with "OE Licensed" oils/fluids did not pay BIG $$$$ to get on a list, they paid big money to have their product tested to determine if it actually meets all of the manufacturer specifications. Oils/fluids that meet all of the specifications (not just a few of them) receive a license number which must be printed on the packaging. That testing is very comprehensive, time