Oil additives in old engines

Technical information and Q&A applicable to all years and models of Goldwings
  • Sponsored Links
Post Reply
User avatar
Posts: 1
Joined: Thu Dec 20, 2018 2:19 am
Location: Clifton, NJ
Motorcycle: 1982 GL1100A Aspencade

Oil additives in old engines

Post by Ximonatt » Thu Dec 20, 2018 7:26 am

I fully understand that the vast majority of oil additives are nearly or completely worthless in modern engines. But I've noticed that most of the discussions on this say something like ""no engine built in the last 25 years will see any benefit from <product X>""

A friend asked me to help him change the oil in his early '70s classic truck engine and brought up the subject, and both of us have heard the ""no engine built in the last 25 years will see any benefit from <product X>"" notices from consumer testing organizations. Both of us vaguely think we've heard claims that some of these things actually were useful in old low-tech engines. (Think no electronics beyond spark plugs and large cast iron blocks that have massive amounts of excess steel because they were made before weight savings mattered.)

I know there are several here with passionate knowledge on the subject, so I figured I'd ping the lounge: Are there any oil additives that would be beneficial for a 40ish year old engine? If so what? He's putting enough $$ into restoring the vehicle that a few buck for magic-motor-honey would be worthwhile if they actually helped the old engine.

FWIW, the engine starts great, puts out decent power, but has a few minor clicking sounds that might be valve noise. He hasn't torn into the engine, and wants to work on the interior before prioritizing the engine.

User avatar
Posts: 1418
Joined: Thu Oct 30, 2008 2:46 pm
Location: Lake Oologah Indian Territory USA
Motorcycle: '02 GL1800

Re: Oil additives in old engines

Post by AZgl1800 » Thu Dec 20, 2018 8:40 am

I would avoid any of the 'honey' products, like STP.

I would instead, recommend the proven brands of oils that are labeled for "High Mileage" engines.

I am using Mobil-1 "High Mileage" Synthetic for "older engines" in my 2001 Suburban, it is a 5w40.
No leaks anywhere, I change it annually with about 4k to 5k miles on it.

the truck is used mostly to pull our Toy Hauler on summer vacation trips....

In my 2002 gl1800, I am using Rotella T6 in 5w40, it is a full synthetic.

Valvoline has a very popular High Mileage engine oil that I used for years in other vehicles.

Posts: 1081
Joined: Fri Jan 02, 2015 7:28 pm
Location: Amity. Ar
Motorcycle: 2010 GL1800
2004 Suzuki DR200

Re: Oil additives in old engines

Post by DaveO430 » Fri Dec 21, 2018 5:59 pm

No additives are needed with modern oils. The only thing you might want to use would be something to clean out the engine then change the oil.

User avatar
Posts: 7
Joined: Thu May 11, 2017 7:28 pm
Location: Hickory corners, Mi
Motorcycle: 1983 GL1100 Interstate

Re: Oil additives in old engines

Post by fcmusician » Sun Jan 13, 2019 11:03 pm

I own a 2000 Freight liner (Detroit series 60). Bought it in 2003. Still drive it today with over a million three hundred thousand on it. Started using Lucas oil additive in 2005 with oil changes at every 12,000 to 14,000 miles. Still runs smooth as ever.

Post Reply