“On the Box”
Jeremy Meyer

Over the past few years, Team AMSOIL has truly lived up to its name by taking on a “Team” approach.

For the past four years, snocross team owner Steve Scheuring has helped AMSOIL implement a generator oil change program at the Loretta Lynn’s Amateur Nationals motocross event.

In our new partnership with Monster Energy Supercross, off-road truck driver Scott Douglas not only helped bring our new toter home to the first round in Anaheim, he brought his AMSOIL Cup-winning truck to display at the second round in Phoenix.

Meanwhile, offshore powerboat racer Bob Teague is helping with logistics as we store our display rig at his shop in Southern California.

Off-road truck driver Mike Oberg was on display at the AMSOIL World Championship Snowmobile Derby, even taking his truck around the ice oval for a few “practice” laps in front of the sold-out stands. We want to thank all of the partnerships that are helping showcase AMSOIL both on, and off, the track.

When AMSOIL signed on as the Exclusive Official Oil of Monster Energy Supercross, the company knew the sport had an exceptional fan base that would cram coliseums built for other sports such as Major League Baseball and the National Football League.

After the first two rounds of the 2011 season, it’s the growing legion of fanatics that has been the most impressive stat for AMSOIL. In Anaheim, a sold-out crowd of 45,050 watched the world’s best riders go bar-to-bar. In Phoenix, attendance was up 20 percent at Chase Field as 51,064 devoted supporters took in the down-to-the-wire finish. Just as important for AMSOIL exposure, those events brought almost 50,000 fans through the pit party and past the corporate AMSOIL display.

“The crowds were magnificent,” said AMSOIL Race Program Manager Jeremy Meyer. “At Anaheim, it was a mad rush once the gates opened, and everyone had to walk past the AMSOIL booth to enter or leave the pits. Phoenix was also great, as the general public was allowed to walk right in front of our booth before entering the stadium.”

Outfitted with a 48’ Renegade toter home and a 20’ Stacker trailer, AMSOIL is crisscrossing the country in 2011. At the heart of the supercross display is the opportunity to win Team AMSOIL rider Kevin Windham’s bike. The bike, which will be an actual race-ridden Honda CRF 450 from the most popular rider in supercross, will be given away at the end of the year through a text-towin campaign. K-Dub’s Honda will be on display inside the AMSOIL booth at each round, and fans young and old are provided the opportunity to have their pictures taken with the #14 ride.

“The K-Dub bike is a wonderful promotion,” said Meyer. “It helps generate interest in our booth to the 20,000-plus fans at each round, and it also drives new customers to and our social media outlets. If the first two rounds are any indication, the promotion is helping AMSOIL and its Dealers find new customers.”

Along with supplying information on AMSOIL and its products, a simple child’s game rounds out the display this year. The AMSOIL Airplane Challenge is generating interest and leads at a frenetic pace. At each round, fans can fold a paper airplane and throw it through a target for a chance to win a Traxxas/ AMSOIL R/C truck. In Phoenix, the game was set up right next to the actual Scott Douglas AMSOIL Ford F-150, helping showcase the company’s involvement with the Traxxas TORC Series presented by AMSOIL. Douglas was in the Phoenix area as part of a Traxxas display for the Barrett-Jackson Auto Auction in Scottsdale, and was an excellent draw for race fans.

“Having Scott in the booth in Phoenix really tied everything together,” said Meyer. “He has a lot of fans on the West Coast, and he was busy answering a lot of questions about AMSOIL. We are already looking at other places we can bring in additional AMSOIL racers to help us promote.”

In February, the tour begins moving east, with races in Texas and Georgia, as well as the final stops in California. For fans who cannot attend, Monster Energy Supercross can be watched each weekend on either CBS or SPEED.

Amsoil is Official Sponsor of Monster Energy Supercross Series
As the Exclusive Official Oil of Monster Energy Supercross, AMSOIL boasts a significant presence at each round.

“The Bird” Flies With AMSOIL

Former baseball great Mark Fidrych
joins AMSOIL for a great cause.
Mark Fidrych

He traded playing on the baseball diamond for playing on Michigan snow years ago. He’s now helping Wertz Warriors and AMSOIL give young people something to remember.

In 1976 a young, quirky pitcher named Mark Fidrych broke into the Major Leagues with the Detroit Tigers. “The Bird,” as he was known, was, to say the least, an odd duck. His antics of talking to the ball and housecleaning on the mound drove opposing teams crazy, but made him a darling with media and fans.

Last winter he joined the Wertz Warriors Snowmobile Club and the Michigan Special Olympics in an annual charity ride. The event co-sponsored by AMSOIL Direct Jobbers Mike Ellis and Tom Kirby takes people, mostly kids, with disabilities on a snowmobile tour through the Michigan countryside.

Fidrych was the American League MVP and Rookie of the Year in 1976.

Wertz Warriors Snowmobile Racing Team Mark Fidrych Special Needs Event
Last year’s event was the
20th for Wertz Warriors.
The event gives people with special needs a unique opportunity.


Synthetic 20W-50 Motorcycle Oil

Amsoil SAE 20W-50 Motorcycle Oil

AMSOIL Synthetic 20W-50 Motorcycle Oil (MCV) is recommended for air- or liquid-cooled four-stroke engines, including Harley-Davidson®, Buell®, KTM, Ducati®, Aprilia®, BMW®, Triumph® and other motorcycles specifying 15W-50 or 20W-50 engine oil or SAE 90, GL-1 gear oil. Its superior shear stability provides unsurpassed protection for high performance engines, transmissions and primary chaincases, performing like gear lube without the negative effects extreme-pressure additives.

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Synthetic 10W-40 Motorcycle Oil

Amsoil SAE 10W-40 Motorcycle Oil

AMSOIL Synthetic 10W-40 Motorcycle Oil (MCF) is recommended for liquid- or air-cooled four-stroke engines, including Honda®, Kawasaki®, Yamaha®, Suzuki®, BMW®, Husqvarna®, Victory® and other motorcycles specifying 10W-40 or 20W-engine oil or SAE 80W/90, GL-1 gear oil. Its superior shear stability provides unsurpassed protection for high-performance engines and transmissions, performing like a gear lube without the negative effects of extreme-pressure additives.

AMSOIL 10W-40 Motorcycle Oil provides maximum wear protection regardless of the operating conditions, resisting breakdown and sludge and carbon deposits. It provides extended service life of up to twice the manufacturerrecommended change interval (miles/hours) or one year, whichever comes first.

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Synthetic SAE 60 Motorcycle Oil

Amsoil SAE 60 Motorcycle Oil

AMSOIL Synthetic SAE 60 Motorcycle Oil (MCS) is recommended for early-model air-cooled V-Twin engines, including Harley-Davidson® Knucklehead, Panhead, Shovelhead and big-bore motorcycles specifying 60-weight motor oil or SAE 140, GL-1 gear oil. Its superior shear stability provides unsurpassed protection for high-performance engines and transmissions, performing like a gear lube without the negative effects of extreme-pressure additives.

AMSOIL SAE 60 Motorcycle Oil provides maximum wear protection regardless of the operating conditions, while resisting breakdown and damaging sludge and carbon deposits. It provides extended service life of up to twice the manufacturer-recommended change interval (miles/hours) or one year, whichever comes first.

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Synthetic 10W-30 Motorcycle Oil

Amsoil SAE 10W-30 Motorcycle Oil

AMSOIL Synthetic 10W-30 Motorcycle Oil (MCT) is recommended for liquid or air-cooled four-stroke engines, including Honda®, Kawasaki®, Yamaha® and Suzuki® motorcycles and scooters, as well as Arctic Cat®, Can-Am®, Honda®, Kawasaki® and Suzuki® ATVs and UTVs, specifying 10W-30 engine oil or SAE 80, GL-1 gear oil. Its superior shear stability provides unsurpassed protection for high-performance engines and transmissions, performing like a gear lube without the negative effects of extreme-pressure additives.

AMSOIL 10W-30 Motorcycle Oil provides maximum wear protection regardless of the operating conditions, while resisting breakdown and damaging sludge and carbon deposits. It provides extended service life of up to twice the manufacturer- recommended change interval (miles/hours) or one year, whichever comes first.

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The AMSOIL World Championship Snowmobile Derby took place January 13-16 at the AMSOIL Eagle River Derby Track in Eagle River, Wis. and featured one of the most exciting races in the event’s 48-year history, with Team AMSOIL ice oval racer P.J. Wanderscheid coming out on top and making history in the process.

The event kicked off Thursday with practice and time trials, where Wanderscheid clocked in third fastest. Friday featured the Friday Night Thunder program, where pole position in Sunday’s feature race was at stake. After winning his eight-lap heat race, Wanderscheid took the early lead in the 16-lap final and didn’t look back, taking the win, securing the pole position in Sunday’s feature and earning a day of rest and preparation on Saturday.

Starting Sunday with practice laps, Wanderscheid clocked in with the fastest time. The World Championship race featured a different format this year, increasing from 25 to 30 laps that were split into two sections. Drivers raced 15 laps, took a five-minute pit session, then resumed the final 15 laps with a staggered start according to how drivers finished the first 15 laps.

Upon the start, AMSOIL-backed driver Gary Moyle jumped out to the early lead with Wanderscheid close behind. Moyle led the entire 15 laps, with Wanderscheid narrowing the gap slightly on lap 13. After the pit stop, Moyle and Wanderscheid thrilled fans with an epic battle for the title as they continually exchanged the lead. Wanderscheid took the lead for good on lap 29, taking the win and going down in history as the only racer to win four AMSOIL World Championships. Moyle took second, followed by ice oval racing legend Jacques Villeneuve.

Team AMSOIL found further success on the snocross track, where AMSOIL racers swept the podium at the Friday Night Thunder Pro Stock final, with AMSOIL/Scheuring Speed Sports racer Robbie Malinoski taking the win, followed by AMSOIL/Judnick Motorsports racers Ross Martin and Mike Bauer in second and third respectively. Malinoski also took third in Friday’s Pro Open final behind Justin Broberg and Brett Turcotte.

On Sunday, Martin took the Pro Stock final win, followed by Malinoski in second, Kaven Benoit in third and AMSOIL/ Scheuring Speed Sports racer Darrin Mees in fourth. Sunday’s Pro Open final featured an exciting battle between Martin and Turcotte, culminating with an awe-inspiring charge by Martin from the final turn to the finish line for the win. Turcotte finished second, Broberg third and Malinoski fourth.

Amsoil Team Racer Wanderscheid

Amsoil API CJ-4 Diesel Oil Outperforms in Field Study

Amsoil Diesel Oils

With the help of Duluth, Minn.-based refuse hauling company Nordic Waste, AMSOIL put its Premium API CJ-4 Synthetic 5W-40 Diesel Oil (DEO) and four competing API CJ-4 diesel oils to the test. The objective was to prove the AMSOIL product’s superior performance in Total Base Number (TBN) retention and shear stability, two characteristics that correlate to extended service life and enhanced wear protection. Results show that AMSOIL Synthetic 5W-40 demonstrated excellent TBN retention and was the only oil to remain within its specified viscosity range throughout the test interval.

Field Study Parameters
The five oils were consecutively tested in the same 2006 International 7400 rear-loading refuse hauler practicing drain intervals of 300-plus hours. Oil samples for testing were drawn every 50-75 hours. The vehicle was subjected to hauling up to 22,000 pounds of refuse up and down the steep hills of Duluth 12 hours per day. It encountered frequent stops and red-lined starts and maintained extended red-line operation during the process of unloading.

Placing further strain on each oil, the truck’s 7.6L Navistar DT466 engine employs a hydraulically actuated, electronically controlled (HEUI) system that uses engine oil pressure to operate the fuel injectors. HEUI systems can raise oil pressure to as high as 3,500 psi, shearing less robust oils. Once sheared, permanent viscosity loss results, leading to increased volatility and oil consumption, deposit formation and increased engine wear.

Results – Total Base Number
Higher TBN levels well into service indicate increased levels of the additives responsible for neutralizing acids and dispersing soot. Oils that demonstrate higher TBN levels over longer periods are capable of providing increased protection throughout extended drain intervals.

As chart 1 shows, AMSOIL Synthetic 5W-40 was a top-performing oil in the area of TBN retention. It is important that the slope of the TBN trend line be gradual and span the entire life of the oil. While some oils experienced sharp declines, indicating poor performance, AMSOIL Synthetic 5W-40 maintained high TBN levels throughout the drain interval to provide effective engine protection.

Results – Shear Stability
AMSOIL Synthetic 5W-40 Diesel Oil outperformed the competing oils in the area of shear stability (chart 2). Even after 371 hours in service, it was the only oil to remain within the intended viscosity range, measuring 12.5 centistokes (cSt). In contrast, all four of the competing oils sheared out of grade before 168 hours of operation, with the Chevron and Valvoline products shearing out of grade prior to 100 hours. AMSOIL Synthetic 5W-40’s increased shear stability allows for superior wear protection and long-lasting engines.

Balanced Formulation
As the test results show, today’s stricter emissions regulations and advanced engine technologies make engineering a diesel oil that balances TBN retention with shear stability a serious challenge. For example, while Valvoline Premium Blue Extreme demonstrated TBN retention on par with AMSOIL, its viscosity after 93 hours was lower than the viscosity of AMSOIL Synthetic 5W-40 after 371 hours. Similarly, Shell Rotella T6 maintained viscosity well but was the poorest-performing oil in the area of TBN retention.

AMSOIL Premium API CJ-4 Synthetic 5W-40 Diesel Oil resists viscosity loss and provides superior TBN retention throughout drain intervals up to three times original equipment manufacturer recommendations, or longer based on oil analysis. It allows operators to realize increased engine protection throughout extended drain intervals for longerlasting engines, reduced downtime and maximum cost savings.

Amsoil TBN and Viscosity Test Charts for Diesel Oil

AMSOIL and Scheuring

A Recipe for Success Just add Snow

Amsoil Racer Justin Tate
Team AMSOIL rider
Justin (JT) Tate

If you think the off-season for the AMSOIL snocross team means sipping something cool by the pool while working on a tan, you would be half right. It is a time for some relaxation, but preparations for the next season are never far from their minds.

Team owner Steve Scheuring has been enjoying Denver omelets with Canadian bacon, jetting from Colorado to Toronto, and points in between, nailing down deals and sponsorships for the 2001-2002 season.

World-class riders DJ Eckstrom and Justin Tate will be back in the saddles this season. Eckstrom finished third in World Snowmobile Association Pro Open points last year despite breaking a leg during last year’s hiatus. Eckstrom had minor surgery to remove the steel rod from that leg this summer, but the Proctor, Minnesota native says he feels no ill effects and is ready to go. Tate has spent a little more time on motocross tracks this summer preparing for the gruelling snow circuit. Tate was fourth in overall WSA Pro Stock points.

Dennis (DJ) Eckstrom
The other half of the dynamic duo
Dennis (DJ) Eckstrom

The AMSOIL guns will be among the world’s elite when the X-Games take place in Colorado. Eckstrom pulled off a stunning bronze finish last year at Mt. Snow, Vermont. Expect major media exposure from the guys when they compete again in snocross and the new hillcross. Eckstrom and Tate have a very good chance of doubling up on medals at the February games.

Expect something new trackside as well. AMSOIL/Scheuring Speed Sports set the standard four years ago when it unveiled a tractor and trailer for the team. This year there is a new rig and new look. Already the class of the WSA, the transporter will no doubt be the talk of the pits and garnish plenty of attention from media covering the growing sport.

Team Mastermind Steve Scheuring
Team Mastermind Steve Scheuring

Also new this year will be a new race team shop. Scheuring, with cooperation from the the city of Aurora, Minnesota, has built a state-of-the-art, 3700 sq. ft. building to house the team. On the grounds will be a test track complete with snow-making capabilities.

Tate and Eckstrom are known for their high-flying and hard-charging racing styles and that’s a perfect fit for a new sponsor. The U.S. Air Force is with the team this season.

USAF officials say they want to feature the AMSOIL riders in some public service announcements in 2002. The season kicks off at the Duluth National Snocross during the Thanksgiving holiday weekend.

Amsoil Team Transporter Truck
The Team AMSOIL transporter is a work in progress. The new truck will be a first-class rig featuring a 30-foot AMSOIL logo.

Team Amsoil Truck Interior
It’s looks brand new now, but in a few weeks this trailer will be full of tools, parts and snowmobiles.



Alan Amatuzio Executive Vice President

Automakers continue building vehicles that produce substantially more horsepower, torque and towing capacity than their predecessors, yet the gears and bearings responsible for converting this increased power into wheel rotation remain largely unchanged. To reduce drag and improve fuel economy in some vehicles, engineers have also reduced the volume of gear lube available to cool and protect. The 1996 Ford F-250 Crew Cab, for example, features a 10,500-lb. maximum towing capacity using a rear differential that holds 3.75 quarts of gear lube. The 2011 Ford F-250 Crew Cab, meanwhile, boasts 14,000 lbs. of maximum towing capacity despite a rear differential with a smaller, 3.45-quart capacity.

Increasingly, synthetics are relied upon to meet these higher demands. Some manufacturers now recommend synthetics in the differentials of certain newer vehicles, such as the Chevrolet Silverado and Ram pickup. The heightened awareness of synthetics presents AMSOIL Dealers with great sales opportunities, especially when considering other lubricant manufacturers spend little effort marketing their gear lubes.

Increased Wear Resistance
Differential designs come with inherent suffering points, and it’s here that synthetics prove their worth. In a traditional automotive differential (Figure 1), the input pinion gear concentrates intense pressure on the ring gear, forcing it to turn the side and spider gears. As all the gear teeth mesh, they slide against one another repeatedly, separated only by a microscopic film of lubricant. The constant stress the lubricant film bears can shear lesser gear lubes, causing permanent viscosity loss. Once sheared, the fluid film weakens, ruptures and allows metalto- metal contact, leading to increased friction, accelerated wear and eventual gear and bearing failure.

Typical Rear Differential Diagram

The composition and characteristics of synthetics play a vital role in wear reduction, an area in which AMSOIL synthetic gear lubes excel. Conventional lubes formulated with viscosity index (VI) improvers shear more readily under stress. AMSOIL synthetic gear lubes, however, maintain viscosity better than other conventional and synthetic gear lubes despite rigorous use and contain advanced anti-wear additives for further protection.

Extreme-Pressure Additives
Severe-service applications used for towing, hauling, 4×4 off-road driving and commercial use place even greater stress on gears and bearings. Many drivers operate under severe-service conditions without even knowing it. The sliding motion and pressure on gears can wipe the lubricant away, particularly in spiral-cut hypoid gears. AMSOIL Severe Gear® Synthetic EP Gear Lubes contain extreme-pressure (EP) additives that form a durable iron sulfide barrier on gear and bearing surfaces to guard against metal-to-metal contact in the harshest driving conditions.

Increased Operating Temperatures
Differentials have always run hot, but increases in power and torque coupled with reduced fluid volume and reduced airflow due to improvements in vehicle aerodynamics only worsen the problem. Testing has shown applications simulating trailer towing at 88 km/h (55 mph) at a 3.5 percent grade can experience differential temperatures as high as 188ºC (370ºF). Those readings could be even higher using today’s more powerful vehicles.

Thermal Runaway
As temperatures in the differential climb, gear lubricants tend to lose viscosity, while extreme loads and pressures can break the lubricant film, causing increased metal-to-metal contact and heat. The increased friction and heat, in turn, cause the lubricant to lose further viscosity, which further increases friction and heat. Friction and heat continue to spiral upward, creating a vicious cycle known as thermal runaway that eventually leads to greatly increased wear and irreparable equipment damage.

Here again AMSOIL synthetic gear lubes outperform conventional gear lubes. Not only do they resist viscosity loss due to mechanical shear, they resist thinning at high temperatures better than conventional lubes. In addition, the deposits conventional gear lubes leave behind coat gears and bearings, inhibiting heat transfer and shortening their life spans. What’s more, the lubricant thickens, increasing internal drag and reducing fuel economy.

AMSOIL synthetic gear lubes, however, are engineered in a lab and contain only uniform molecules less prone to volatilizing at high temperatures. As a result, they not only resist thinning in heat to provide better cooling and protective properties, they stay fluid in cold weather to ensure immediate start-up protection. Their uniform molecules also reduce friction, effectively reducing drag and increasing fuel economy.

Extended Drain Intervals
Following the original equipment manufacturer (OEM)- recommended differential drain interval using the OEMrecommended fluid can get very expensive. A 2006 Dodge Ram 1500 (see example below) requires a differential fluid change every 15,000 miles if driven under severe-service conditions, which includes towing, short trips of less than 10 miles and use where temperatures are below 32ºF. AMSOIL Severe Gear Synthetic EP Gear Lube is recommended for 50,000 miles in severe service. Its use in this example saves over $220. In addition, synthetic gear lubes recommended by OEMs are often more expensive. The lower cost of AMSOIL synthetic gear lubes combined with their extended-drain capabilities and superior performance and protection make them the ideal choice.


Severe Gear® Synthetic EP Gear Lube

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Specifically engineered for high-demand applications, including trailer towing, heavy hauling, 4×4 off-road driving, commercial use and racing. Superior film strength combined with extra additives protects gears and bearings from scoring and wear. Resists high heat and possesses excellent cold-flow properties. Outperforms conventional gear oils. Recommended for all types of vehicles such as turbo-diesel pick-ups, SUVs, autos, trucks, heavy equipment and motor homes. Compatible with most limited slip differentials.

Long Life Synthetic Gear Lube

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Specifically engineered for drain intervals up to 500,000 miles as set by equipment manufacturers for over-the-road trucks. Protects against wear and improves equipment life. Excellent all-season summer and winter performance. Outperforms conventional gear oils. Also excellent for passenger cars and trucks. Compatible with most limited-slip differentials.

Synthetic 80W-90 Gear Lube

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High-quality replacement for applications specifying SAE 80W-90 conventional gear lube. Synthetic construction provides improved cold-flow properties, high viscosity index, high heat resistance and excellent wear protection.

Severe Gear® Synthetic Racing EP Gear Lube

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High-viscosity, extreme-pressure gear lube engineered for the demands of severe racing conditions, including off-road truck racing, rock racing, rock crawling, tractor pulling, funny car racing and dragster racing. Protects gears from shockloading and tire shake. Resists sling-off from G-forces and high speeds. Effectively clings to gears, promoting cooler operating temperatures and extending gear and bearing life.


Amsoil Hycraulic Fluid in Back Hoe

Whether due to inexperience with hydraulic systems or lack of knowledge regarding the benefits presented by synthetic hydraulic oils, many Dealers may be passing up opportunities for additional sales. Hydraulic systems are everywhere, presenting countless opportunities to market premium AMSOIL Synthetic Anti-Wear Hydraulic Oils or Synthetic Biodegradable Hydraulic Oil:

  • Garbage trucks
  • Mobile cranes
  • Snow plows
  • Forklifts
  • Dump trucks
  • Excavators
  • Front-end loaders
  • Mobile shears
  • Backhoes
  • Mobile well-drilling and core-sampling equipment
  • Skidders
  • Piling rigs
  • Street sweepers
  • Mobile hydraulic power units
  • Bucket trucks
  • Tow trucks
  • Feller bunchers
  • Scissor lifts

AMSOIL Biodegradable Hydraulic Oil is ideal for applications where high biodegradability and low aquatic toxicity are desired or where leaking, spills or ruptured hydraulic lines may present an environmental hazard:

  • Companies mandated by regulation to use a biodegradable product
  • Municipalities
  • Agricultural applications
  • Federal agencies
  • Golf courses
  • Companies advertising themselves as “green”

Hydraulic Systems Hydraulic systems can look complex and intimidating, but most are relatively straightforward, consisting of a sump, a pump, hoses, valves and either pistons or hydraulic motors. Sump – The hydraulic system’s sump is responsible for holding the oil, providing time for the transferring of heat, and a place for contaminants, including water, to settle.

Pump – The hydraulic system’s pump produces the fluid flow that creates pressure. In most cases, it is the most expensive part in the system. Hydraulic oils are subjected to pump tests to prove their ability to protect pumps under normal operating conditions. Hydraulic systems can have many different types of pumps, but the three most common are gear, vane and piston pumps. Gear pumps are often found on lower-pressure systems and are relatively simple and reliable. As positive displacement pumps, they pump a fixed amount of fluid for every revolution. Although variations exist, a good example is an automotive oil pump. Vane pumps are common on mobile equipment and can be variable or constant displacement. Piston pumps can be found on higher-pressure applications and are more complex and sensitive to contamination than vane or piston pumps.

Hoses – Hoses carry hydraulic pressure and flow to various components, and are perhaps the weakest link in any hydraulic system. Maintenance is often ignored until a problem develops. Hoses fail due to heat, cold, repeated flexing, physical damage and exposure to the elements. Because they are notorious for failing, hoses present a significant challenge to selling customers a premium synthetic hydraulic oil. Many customers do not want to pay a premium price if they believe they will eventually lose most of the oil through a hose failure.

Valves – Valves control the route of the hydraulic flow within the system, sending flow and pressure to components in order to operate them. Pulling a lever back may route fluid to one side of the hydraulic system, causing it to extend a piston, while pushing it forward may cause it to retract. Varnish presents a major problem with valves, causing them to stick or not allowing them to seal properly.

Pistons/Hydraulic Motors – Pistons and hydraulic motors convert the hydraulic flow and pressure into work. Pistons provide linear motion, allowing bulldozer blades to lift and backhoe buckets to tip, while motors convert hydraulic flow and pressure into rotational force, allowing drills to operate.

Common issues associated with pistons and hydraulic motors are internal or external leakage. External leakage results in loss of fluid and possible contamination issues, while internal leakage results in lost efficiency. For example, a bottle jack with its valve only partially closed requires furious pumping to lift an object off the ground and won’t be able to keep it there.

Amsoil Hycraulic Fluid in Caterpillar

Hydraulic Oil
Zinc-containing hydraulic oil is a commonly-used hydraulic fluid, while other applications call for zinc-free hydraulic oil, motor oil or transmission fluid. Hydrostatic hydraulic oil is required when the fluid must also operate the hydrostatic transmission, biodegradable hydraulic oil is often required in environmentally sensitive areas and some applications require fire-resistant hydraulic oils.

Each type of hydraulic oil has unique characteristics, and it’s important to understand what’s required for specific applications. The equipment’s operator’s manual will usually recommend viscosities for the ambient temperatures the machine is operated in or could even recommend a specific oil brand. Dealers can use this information to recommend the appropriate AMSOIL synthetic hydraulic oil. When in doubt, contact AMSOIL Technical Services at 715-399-TECH.

Hycraulic Hauler

Hydraulic Oil Problems Heat and contamination present serious challenges for hydraulic oils. If the system becomes too hot, the oil’s viscosity can thin to the point where the pump is damaged or seals are destroyed. Because conventional hydraulic oil is often less expensive than synthetic hydraulic oil, it is important to emphasize the benefi ts and cost savings AMSOIL synthetic hydraulic oils provide customers.

Heat Reduction – The synthetic construction of AMSOIL synthetic hydraulic oils can reduce heat in hydraulic systems, leading to better viscosity retention, less varnish build-up and oxidation, reduction in component wear (including hoses), longer seal life and better overall system performance.

Cold-Weather Performance – AMSOIL synthetic hydraulic oils have much better cold-temperature characteristics than many petroleum oils. This can be demonstrated to potential customers by comparing the viscosity index, Brookfi eld viscosity and pour point numbers of their conventional oil to the corresponding viscosity AMSOIL synthetic hydraulic oil. Because mobile equipment generally sits out in the elements while on a job site, conventional hydraulic oils can thicken in the cold and lead to damage such as excessive pump wear due to cavitation, blown hoses, broken shafts or extended warm-up times that waste fuel. Use of the proper AMSOIL synthetic hydraulic oil viscosity helps reduce or eliminate many of these issues.

All-Season Functionality – To eliminate some of the problems associated with temperature changes, many mobile equipment owners switch viscosities with the seasons. They may run an ISO VG 22 viscosity oil in the winter and switch to an ISO VG 32 or 46 oil in the summer. AMSOIL synthetic hydraulic oils are highviscosity- index formulations that can eliminate the need for seasonal changes. It’s very possible to run an ISO 32 or ISO 46 successfully yearround in all but the most extreme cold conditions.

Hose Life Preservation – Because many equipment operators consider blown hoses, leaky seals and loss of hydraulic fl uid an unavoidable problem, they may not initially be interested in investing in more expensive hydraulic fl uid they believe will just end up on the ground
. This is usually the most significant obstacle to overcome when trying to sell a premium hydraulic oil to an account.

To counter this mindset, fi rst determine why they lose hoses. If they mainly get snagged, chafed or damaged externally, they will continue to lose hoses until they physically remedy the situation. However, if the hoses and seals are blowing in cold weather or because of deterioration, AMSOIL synthetic hydraulic oils can help. Cold and heat wreak havoc on hoses and seals. Cold, thick fl uid can cause pressure spikes and extremely hot fl uid breaks down hoses and seals over time. The superior cooling and fl ow properties of AMSOIL synthetic hydraulic oils help preserve hose integrity.

Hycraulic Hauler

AMSOIL Synthetic Anti-Wear Hydraulic Oils
AMSOIL Synthetic Anti-Wear Hydraulic Oils effectively inhibit oxidation to help prevent acid formation and viscosity increase, resist carbon and varnish deposits and inhibit rust and foam (providing smooth hydraulic operation). They contain a very effective zinc-based anti-wear/antioxidant additive which controls wear in high-speed, highpressure vane and gear pumps while meeting the lubrication requirements of axial piston pumps with bronze-on-steel metallurgy.

  • Extended oil drain intervals
  • Anti-wear protection
  • Recommended for gear, vane and piston pumps
  • Contain rust, oxidation and foam inhibitors
  • Designed for a wide temperature range
  • Hydrolytically stable and readily separate from water

AMSOIL Biodegradable Hydraulic Oil
AMSOIL Biodegradable Hydraulic Oil (BHO) is a premium-performance hydraulic oil that exhibits high biodegradability and low aquatic toxicity, along with superior oxidative stability, excellent low-temperature performance and outstanding results in laboratory and extended duration pump testing. It contains antioxidants that prolong oil life and foam inhibitors that help promote problem-free operation.

Industry Trends are Forcing SAPS Levels Downward

Dan Peterson
Amsoil Technical Director Dan Peterson

The AMSOIL Technical Services Department gets a lot of questions related to SAPS and why it is important. SAPS is an acronym for sulfated ash, phosphorus and sulfur, the three inorganic additives that provide key performance properties to a lubricating fluid’s detergency, wear protection and oxidation resistance. Total base number (TBN) and sulfated ash have had a strong correlation in past oil formulations, so most of us associate a lubricant’s SAPS levels with its starting TBN level. The appropriate level of SAPS for lubricants has been the subject of debate for the past few years. Lubrication engineers attempt to formulate oils that provide a high level of resistance to acid formation while limiting one of the main acid-neutralizing additives in order to protect exhaust aftertreatment devices. So, what exactly does SAPS do?

While SAPS has outstanding engine protection properties, too much can be detrimental to exhaust after treatment devices.

First, let’s understand the “SA” in SAPS. Sulfated ash is a term used for materials added to lubricants to soak up excess oxidation byproducts and acids created by exhaust gases. Sulfated ash is an important component of diesel oil to ensure long oil life and good engine protection over time. As noted, some oil specifications restrict the sulfated ash content in order to protect certain emissions aftertreatment devices.

The diesel particulate filter (DPF) is a good example of an emissions system device and is a relatively new development in the diesel world. The DPF is a large, honeycomb-type filter designed to capture and burn soot in diesel applications. It filters particulate matter from the exhaust so we don’t have to breathe in harmful material from buses, trucks and other diesel applications.

As the DPF fills with contaminants, pressure builds within the exhaust system. When the pressure reaches a certain level it triggers a DPF regeneration process where soot particles are burned. Materials that don’t burn, like sulfated ash, build up in the filter over time and block the flow of exhaust through the filter. When ash build-up becomes excessive, it must be professionally cleaned. The latest diesel oil specification for 2007 and newer diesel vehicles, API CJ-4, limits the level of sulfated ash for this reason. It is normal and accepted that these filters need to be cleaned, but the new CJ-4 specifi cation limits sulfated ash levels to prolong time between cleanings.

Many European vehicles come equipped with smaller DPFs that do the same job as their large diesel counterparts, which is why the VW 504.00/507.00 engine oil specification limits an oil’s sulfated ash content. AMSOIL European Car Formula 5W-30 Synthetic Motor Oil (AEL) has a lower TBN than many other AMSOIL products in order to meet the VW 504.00/507.00 SAPS restrictions. VW specifies precise SAPS limits, which limits the level of resulting oil TBN.

Now for the “P” portion of SAPS. Phosphorus is a component of what is commonly recognized as an anti-wear agent and oxidation inhibitor, zinc dialkyldithiophosphate (ZDDP). ZDDP is very prevalent in the lubrication industry due to its excellent anti-wear and antioxidant properties. Alternatively, larger quantities of volatile phosphorus contained in ZDDP have been linked to premature poisoning of the catalyst surface of three-way catalytic converters and is a primary reason phosphorus has been limited in certain oil specifications. The VW 504.00/507.00 oil specification limits phosphorus content to help prolong catalytic converter life. While higher phosphorus levels can reduce catalytic converter life, a low-SAPS lubricant is engineered to provide emissions system compatibility in both gas- and diesel-fueled vehicles.

The last “S” in SAPS stands for sulfur. Sulfur compounds are typically associated with anti-wear and extreme-pressure protection, but they can also be a component of corrosion inhibitors, friction modifiers and antioxidants. Excess sulfur can contribute to catalyst poisoning because sulfur is preferentially absorbed by the catalyst sites. When sulfur gets into the exhaust stream, it can poison catalyst surfaces, resulting in formation of particulate matter. Particulates in the emissions system can increase system back-pressure that negatively affects vehicle performance. Sulfur is generally being reduced in diesel fuel and lubricants.

There are a number of very positive benefits of SAPS in lubricants; however, as government emissions legislation imposes stricter emissions limits, the latest and forthcoming oil specifications require reduced SAPS levels to improve the life and performance of exhaust aftertreatment devices.

New materials are continually being developed that provide performance functions similar to SAPS, yet help overcome the detrimental effects SAPS can have on emissions treatment systems. AMSOIL continues to be at the forefront of evaluating new SAPS-replacement materials, and we are challenging the industry on SAPS limits that don’t make sense for consumers.


While torque and horsepower ratings are common vehicle selling points, many consumers don’t fully understand what the ratings mean or the relationship between the two.

Most often measured in pound-feet (lb-ft), torque is a twisting or turning force applied to an object such as a wheel, crankshaft or nut. When tightening a nut with a wrench, for example, the level of torque placed on the nut is determined by multiplying the force applied at the end of the wrench by its length. Applying 100 pounds of force at the end of a one-foot wrench translates into 100 lb-ft of torque, while applying the same amount of force at the end of a two-foot wrench translates into 200 lb-ft of torque.

In automotive applications, torque measures the engine’s ability to perform work. The torque created by displacement of engine cylinders spins the engine crankshaft, and the transmission applies this torque to the wheels of the vehicle, moving it forward. The more torque applied to the crankshaft, the more work the vehicle can do.

While torque measures the turning force produced by a vehicle’s engine and measures the engine’s ability to perform work, horsepower measures how fast the engine can perform the work. Engine horsepower ratings indicate how much power an engine can produce similar to how light bulb wattage indicates how much power the bulb will use.

Steam engine inventor James Watt coined the term “horsepower” in the 18th century for the purpose of comparing steam engine performance to the better-understood performance of horses, which were used as the power sources for everything from transportation to plowing fields and pumping water. It’s believed Watt arrived at the now-standard 33,000 lb-ft per minute (550 lb-ft per second) figure for one horsepower by measuring how quickly a horse turned a gear-driven mine pump and estimating the amount of force the horse exerted to perform the work over a given time.

Torque/Horsepower Relationship
Torque and horsepower are related by the following formula:
Horsepower = Torque x Engine RPM/5252
Plugging various RPM values into the equation provides an idea about the range of power an engine can produce. Because torque and RPM are divided by 5252, torque and horsepower are equal when the engine speed is equivalent to 5252 RPM, while torque is greater than horsepower below 5252 RPM and horsepower is greater than torque above 5252 RPM. The level of horsepower an engine can deliver is directly proportional to the level of torque generated by the crankshaft, which is directly proportional to the total displacement capacity of the engine. Because there is a limitation on the maximum displacement an engine can generate, there is also a limitation on the amount of torque the engine can produce, which in turn sets a limit on the engine’s maximum horsepower. While it’s been hotly debated whether torque or horsepower is more important, it just depends on the driver’s priorities. A vehicle with a higher torque value can perform more work, providing an advantage for pulling trailers or hauling heavy loads, while a vehicle with a higher horsepower value performs work faster, making it bettersuited for highway driving or racing.
Towing VS Horsepower