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Tuesday, June 14, 2022
How to Use Extended Drain Intervals to Your Advantage
No heavy-duty operator wants to find out that they are draining oil prematurely or throwing away an oil filter that still has life in it. That’s particularly true these days, with supply chain issues continuing to make finding parts a challenge.
In the current environment, finding a way to stretch part supplies and avoid unnecessary waste is key. With this in mind, here are a few things fleet owner/operators should ask themselves:
Are You Following Recommended or Extended Drain Intervals?
Many OEs don’t recommend going over a certain mileage before a change is required. However, anytime a truck is brought in for maintenance, it results in repair costs and an additional expense in lost downtime for fleets.
Having a better understanding of approved extended drain intervals can help fleets save money in two ways. First, it allows you go a little longer between oil and oil filter changes, reducing your expense on additional oil and filters. Second, it allows you to coordinate other preventative maintenance requirements so that you only have to take a truck offline once, instead of multiple times.
Is the Extension Drain Interval Backed Up by Oil Analysis?
Changes in engine and oil technology have allowed many manufacturers to extend oil drain intervals from 30,000 miles up to 60,000, 70,000 and even 80,000 miles in some cases. But many owner/operators may be hesitant to test such limits.
A comprehensive oil analysis can help determine the ideal change interval because it takes several factors into account – operating conditions, maintenance practices and oil quality, to name a few.
Is the Correct Filter Being Used for the Application?
To protect an engine during an extended drain interval, high filter efficiency is crucial to removing contaminants that can wear down engine components. Filter capacity is also important to consider because the filter needs to be able to hold those contaminants past the service interval. Lastly, low flow restriction will help fuel economy by putting less pressure on the oil pump, while providing faster lubrication at start-up.
The components of the filter itself should be built to withstand longer change intervals as well. Silicone constructed O-rings and gaskets last longer than filters built with nitrile material, for example. To prevent the filter media from degrading and collapsing over a longer period of time, filters made with a full synthetic media and wire backing are recommended.
Luber-finer synthetic Full Flow Oil Filters cover all major engines including Cummins, Mack Volvo, Detroit Diesel, Caterpillar, PACCAR and International. To meet the need for extended drain intervals, Luber-finer offers XL (Extended Life) filters with 45% more capacity compared to standard oil filters and Time Release Technology (TRT) filters that provide a controlled release of a highly concentrated oil additive that helps slow oil degradation and prolong oil quality over 40,000 miles.
For more information or to find an oil filter for your specific application, click here.