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  1. #1
    Gold Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Posts
    385
    Location
    Southern Maine
    Tractor
    Cub Cadet 7234

    Default Portable Generator Oil Recommendation

    I've got a Honda Generator with a 8 HP Honda motor on it. I haven't had to change the oil until its use this weekend for about 27 hours. I put Castrol in it previously. Is their better oil to use in a small gasoline engine? Is synthetic any better? Generators seem to use a little oil so if it uses very much the synthetic could get expensive. I know this is a CUT forum but thought this might be a good place to ask this.

  2. #2
    Bronze Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Posts
    70
    Location
    westchester county n.y.
    Tractor
    kubota BX-22.......couple of sears riding mowers that the neighbors were throwing away at one time or another.

    Default Re: Portable Generator Oil Recommendation

    others may disagree but i would use whats on sale using a name brand.

    i usually buy the enough for the year for all my equipment so i do not mix different oils.

    buy a couple cases on sale.

    synthetic has its believers and its uses but i personally have not used it and all my stuff is still running.

    just my .02

  3. #3
    Elite Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Posts
    3,373
    Location
    Goffs Corner, KY
    Tractor
    IH 2444

    Default Re: Portable Generator Oil Recommendation

    I am not sure, but I ran my 5500W gen for one tank with the oil that came with it and then changed to Castroil synthetic. I figured I would be most likely to need it when it was cold and since it is pull start it might pull easier with the synthetic. Also it does not hold much so the cost for the synthetic is minimal. will let you know how it turns out. I have only run it for a couple of hours since the change.

    Ben


  4. #4

    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Posts
    112
    Location
    Mississippi
    Tractor
    4330 Kubota, 600 ford

    Default Re: Portable Generator Oil Recommendation

    I put Mobile One in mine the last time I changed it. teddy

  5. #5
    Silver Member Jaeger's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    114
    Location
    Southern Pennslyvania
    Tractor
    '05 Kubota L5030 HST, '94 Kubota B7100 HST 4WD (sold 2011),

    Default Re: Portable Generator Oil Recommendation

    I second the use of Mobil 1. Cheap insurance.......J

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Posts
    27
    Location
    Central Florida

    Default Re: Portable Generator Oil Recommendation

    As long as you are dilligent in changing the oil, any "normal" oil will work just fine. Synthetics are good oils but they do not "agree" with everything.

    The main advantage with syns is that they are formulated to withstand very high oil temps, and they do.

    After the Mobil 1 fiasco (Cadillac vs. Mobil Oil - Cadillac's faulty engine but Mobil paid for them), 20 years ago, none of the oil manufacturers and distributors will tell you to ignore the engine manufacturers recomendations.

    One of our trucks is a GMC HD with a 454 gas. It has 200+ on it and never had a problem. It gets 7 qts of synthetic, Mobil or Castrol, whatever is available EVERY 10,000 - 12,000 miles. The truck does 200-300 miles per day and taking it in for an oil change once a week is almost impossible (We do not use quick lubes). Still purrs like a kitten.

    On the other hand, we also have International diesels (T444E) that we only use 15-40. 5 gallons (not qts) of synthetic gets expensive. A couple have more miles than the GMC.

    My suggestion is to try it. Watch for leaks (synthetic is fussy about seals). If you do not see any leaks after the engine has run for some time, you are okay. If in doubt, just use a high grade oil SAE-SH rated motor oil and you still will be okay.

    I hope this helps.

  7. #7
    Gold Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Posts
    385
    Location
    Southern Maine
    Tractor
    Cub Cadet 7234

    Default Re: Portable Generator Oil Recommendation

    Thanks for all your input. I feel Bugsy is right on the mark. If you are conscientious and change the oil as required most oils will probably do just fine. I got rid of 1987 Chevy Celebrity 2.8 liter wagon 4 years ago and it had 352,000 miles on it. Nobody believed me when I told them or they looked at the odometer. I changed the oil at 3000 miles for the first several years of use and then finally went to a 4000 mile change. The engine ran well and didn't start any amount of oil seepage on the garage floor to well over 200K. The best car I have ever had and it just had consistent, routine maintenance performed. The engine was never torn down or the tran. It was overcome by that New England cancer called rust so I finally begrudingly got rid of it. That said I will either use a good grade of regular oil or go with the syn. I'm still trying to decide. Maybe the syn would be a good trial although the generator doesn't get much use.

  8. #8
    Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Posts
    32
    Location
    Western Oregon
    Tractor
    JD 1070

    Default Re: Portable Generator Oil Recommendation

    Gas generators can run continuously at high RPM. They are also called upon in bad conditions like ice stroms.

    I would baby it and use a good synthetic like Mobil 1. That's what I use in mine.

  9. #9
    Elite Member BobRip's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    4,357
    Location
    Powhatan Va.
    Tractor
    2000 Power Trac 422

    Default Re: Portable Generator Oil Recommendation

    My generator with the B&S engine requires me to use 30 weight oil above 40 deg F and 10W30 below 40 deg. However you can use a synthetic across the entire temperature range. I generally only change oil once a year on the generator since it is only used for power outages, I use Mobil 1 and one oil will work all year around.

    Bob Ripley

  10. #10
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Posts
    1,163
    Location
    Upstate NY, USA
    Tractor
    Kubota L3710 HST and a Kubota ZD21 60Pro

    Default Re: Portable Generator Oil Recommendation

    I run Mobil1 synthetic, 0W30 and change the oil annually. Some years my gen set gets tons of use, (50+ hrs), other years hardly any. I do start it on a monthly basis and put a load on the generator for 10 - 15 minutes.

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