Originally Posted by jwiegel
were do you keep getting api cert and non cert amsoil is api cert has been and always will be the manufacturer says use what ever oil you need for your application 0w-40w what ever as long as you change it at the right interval the 0-40w depends on out side temp swing and load on the engine maybe i am missing the whole point but all i am saying is use what ever oil you like and what ever wieght your application calls for and you are good no warranty problems
The vehicle manufacturer tells you to use an API certified oil, within a certain viscosity grade (5w-30, 10w-30 etc). Amsoil's SAE series 5w-30 is recommended (by Amsoil) for vehicles, requiring API certified oil, but it isn't API certified. It doesn't have the little symbol on the bottle, nor can it pass the requirements to meet API. The SAE series oil is designed as an extended drain oil which has higher levels of Zinc. The higher Zinc levels prevent it from passing the API certs. The XL7500 6 month 7500 mile oil is API certified, and is your best defense against and warranty hassles.
Here's Amsoil's official opinion on API certification and warranty issues. (You decide for yourself) Last post!
Q. Why aren't all AMSOIL motor oils API licensed?
A. Good question. AMSOIL staffers have recently read some message boards with misinformation regarding this issue. Let us address API licensing in depth, as well as the issue of warranties. Some AMSOIL motor oils are API licensed, some are not. If you're concerned about your warranty and feel pressures to use an API licensed oil, even after reading this answer, then the 5W-30 (XLF), 5W-20 (XLM) or 10W-30 (XLT) XL-7500 or our 15W-40 (PCO) API licensed oils should be your choice. If you are looking for an alternative to frequent oil changes or just want the best performing oil for your car, then one of our top tier non-API licensed synthetic oils are for you. Read on, and decide for yourself.
API Licensing - Passenger Cars - What is it?
An API (American Petroleum Institute) license indicates that a specific motor oil formulation has passed the minimum performance standards as defined by a series of laboratory bench, physical, chemical and engine tests. These tests were selected and minimum performance standards were set by the API Lubricants Committee to address specific areas such as engine wear, deposits, fuel economy, emissions, etc. The committee is comprised of representatives from automobile, oil and additive companies. The current specification is SJ/GF-2, and in July 2001 the first use of SL/GF-3 will begin.
The cost for running a test program for a single passenger car motor oil formulation is from $125,000 to $300,000, depending on if the formula passes the tests the first time through or requires multiple test runs or formula modifications to achieve a passing average. (That amount goes to $275,000 to $500,000 for a Heavy Duty Diesel licensing program on a specific formula.) Once that testing is complete and the formula has passed all of the minimum requirements, it can be licensed for $825 per year for non-members and $625 per year for members. There is also a small royalty fee per gallon sold for all gallons over one million. The length of time between new specifications is now approximately 2 to 3 years, which does not allow a great deal of time to recover testing costs.
Who Licenses What Formulas?
Additive companies, such as Lubrizol, Ethyl,, Infinium and Oronite, develop licensed formulas that they offer to oil companies to re-license. It is inexpensive to re-license one of these formulas, and the majority of oil companies choose to do this to avoid the costs associated with testing. This, however, tends to commoditize the market. The same chemistry is being sold under many brand names. Most of the major oil companies do have their own proprietary formulas developed, tested and licensed. All of AMSOIL INC.'s lubricant formulas are unique and proprietary.
Flexibility In Manufacturing An API Licensed Formula
API licensing was originally developed for mineral based oils, and it affords these oils more flexibility than synthetic oils.
Mineral oils comprised of group I and Group II petroleum basestocks may use a simple program called basestock interchange for added flexibility in manufacturing and purchasing. Interchange means that by completing the proper paperwork and running a few minor engine tests an oil company can choose to buy these petroleum basestocks from many different suppliers. This ensures adequate supply and competitive pricing. However, basestock interchange for Group III and V synthetic basestocks is not allowed. For example, if a formula was tested with an ester (Group V) basestock from a specific supplier, then anyone blending that formula must buy only that supplier's ester. Complete engine testing would need to be performed on the formula using another supplier's ester before an oil company could buy it from that alternative supplier. This additional testing is normally not performed because of the associated costs. This inflexibility makes it very difficult for synthetic lubricant manufacturers to negotiate prices with synthetic basestock suppliers. Click HERE for more information about Group I through Group V basestocks.
There is also something called viscosity grade read-across. Fortunately, this applies to both petroleum and synthetic basestocks although the better cold temperature performance of synthetics makes it more difficult to achieve in some situations. (That's another whole story.) What this means is that if you properly formulate the lubricant for which you have run all of the API tests, there are guidelines that allow you to use that same formula to make 0W-30, 5W-30, 10W-30, etc. viscosity motor oil.
Finally, there is a rule for substitutions in the CMA (Chemical Manufacturers Association) code of practice that allows a small degree of flexibility for all formulas. It allows a company to change the percentages of components in the formula by varying amounts from the original formula with limited testing and paperwork requirements. For example, if the licensed formula used 10% of a certain V.I. improver, you would have the ability to utilize from 9% to 11% of the same V.I. improver for your formula.
Key Limitations For API Licensed Formulas
Phosphorous content - .10% maximum
(API SL; 0W-20, 5W-20, 0W-30, 5W-30, 10W-30 viscosity grades, only)
NOACK volatility - 15% maximum
Click HERE for an explanation of NOACK Volatility
The prevalent sources of phosphorous in motor oils are additives called zinc dithiophosphates (ZDTPs). Currently, these versatile additives act as oxidation/corrosion inhibitors and aid in the ability of a lubricant to reduce wear. The automobile manufacturers, however, have demanded that lubricants contain a maximum of only .10% phosphorous. Their reason is that some manufacturers believe that higher phosphorous content levels will poison the catalytic converters on their cars before they reach 150,000 miles, which is the number of miles that their vehicles will be required to pass EPA emission standards. There has not been total agreement within the automotive and lubrication industry about whether phosphorous levels over .10% actually do harm catalytic converters in the long run. What they have failed to make allowances for is the NOACK volatility of an oil.
The maximum allowable NOACK volatility percentage for the new SL/GF-3 passenger car motor oil specification is 15%. Most of AMSOIL motor oils are in the 5% to 8% NOACK volatility range. Studies have shown there is a correlation between NOACK volatility, oil consumption and the amount of phosphorous from motor oil that will end up in the exhaust gasses. Therefore, oils with higher levels of phosphorous but with low volatility, such as AMSOIL motor oils, present no more risk to catalytic converters than low phosphorous oils with higher NOACK volatility. This has also been demonstrated for years in actual application through state mandated exhaust gas testing on our Dealers' and customers' high mileage vehicles using AMSOIL synthetic motor oils. State inspectors are continually amazed at the low emissions levels generated by vehicles using AMSOIL products. So much for poisoning catalytic converters.
AMSOIL INC. has determined that the reduced wear and extended drain intervals achievable with phosphorous levels higher than the API limit of .10% are real benefits for the consumer, and pose no risk to catalytic converters. AMSOIL motor oils, except for the API licensed XL-7500 5W-30, 5W-20 and 10W-30 viscosity grades, all have greater than .10% phosphorous levels, and therefore, cannot be API licensed.
Why Some AMSOIL Synthetic Motor Oils Are API Licensed And Some Are Not
1. Full API licensing puts AMSOIL INC. in an inflexible position. Not only would we find it necessary to buy formula components from specific vendors and be at the mercy of their pricing, we would not be able to make any major improvements to the lubricant formulas for 2 to 3 years, without new testing and the associated costs. To solve this problem, the API must establish basestock interchange guidelines for synthetic basestocks just as they have for other basestocks, as well as develop interchange guidelines for other components too.
2. Full API licensing would impose strict phosphorous limitations on our motor oils. This limitation is the main reason most AMSOIL motor oils are not API licensed. AMSOIL INC. currently disagrees with this limitation and feels strongly that the reduced wear and longer oil and additive life achieved through higher levels of properly balanced phosphorous content is more important than the arbitrary API phosphorous limit that does not give any consideration to the NOACK volatility level of an oil. When chemistry is developed that will provide superior engine wear protection with reduced phosphorous levels, or Noack volatility considerations are put in place, then the phosphorous level will become a non-issue.
Warranties And API Licensed Motor Oils
Fortunately, the law does not allow manufacturers to "void your warranty" simply because of the brand of oil you use, the specifications it meets or the miles you drive between oil changes. To be specific, they cannot deny to fix your broken radio, faulty valve or cracked piston because you used an AMSOIL non-API licensed motor oil, or because you've gone more than 3000 miles since your last oil change. Denial of warranty coverage must be specifically due to an oil related failure. All courts of law will find against any manufacturer or dealership that tries these warranty shenanigans. If any automobile dealership insinuates that your warranty will be void if you use AMSOIL products or utilize extended drain intervals, let AMSOIL INC. know the name of the Dealership, the address, the owner's name and the name of the employee that made this statement. Mail to:
Attention: Technical Services Department
Superior, WI 54880