Even when everything is running smoothly, maintaining a fleet of high life-cycle heavy duty trucks is no easy or inexpensive task.
However, with the API [American Petroleum Institute] category change from CJ-4 to CK-4, high life-cycle heavy duty rigs using CK-4 oils can stay on the road longer by reducing the amount of costly downtime, extending oil drains and, most importantly, enhancing fuel economy.
The CK-4 difference: Although many OEMs still allow the continued use of CJ-4, experts recommend heavy-duty fleet owners switch to the enhanced CK-4 category to protect their diesel engines.
These API engine oil categories, CJ-4 and CK-4, differ in their performance attributes, which contribute to a vehicle’s overall fuel economy and operating capacity.
In fact API CK-4 oils must pass two additional new engine tests that are not part of the previous CJ-4 engine testing sequence. The advanced technology in CK-4 oils are specifically formulated to protect against oxidation, engine wear, viscosity loss—as a result of shear—and degradation caused by high operating temperatures. Oxidation leads to sludge, and sludge leads to engine difficulties.
Benefits to your high-life rigs and bottom line: Full synthetic lubricants can be an investment, but by using CK-4 category oil you can see an improvement in your equipment and a significant return on investment down the road.
Thanks to their highly synthetic refined base oils and advanced additive technologies, CK-4 synthetic oils stand up better to drastic thermal changes, oxidation and oil aeration.
Because of this, using full synthetic or synthetic blend CK-4 fluids means fewer oil changes and less wear and tear on your engine during those long duty cycles.
By protecting your engine from abrasion and increasing fuel economy, CK-4 lubricants ensure your rig stays on the road longer for less expense.
Test your oil with oil analysis: Even with increased oil drains and premium product protection it is important to keep an eye on engine and equipment performance by using oil analysis regularly
Oil analysis will tell you exactly how your engine is wearing and help you spot potential problems before they lead to unexpected downtime. Getting an oil analysis every 15,000 miles is a good rule of thumb, but an analysis should be conducted no less than every time you get your oil drained
Keeping rigs on the road is important for your bottom line. Using CK-4 oils can help you maximize your fleet’s efficiency and extend the life of your engine regardless the age of your fleet.
—Andrew Hamilton is technical services and quality manager for Cenex brand lubricants. With more than 25 years of industry experience, Andrew is an expert on a wide array of lubricants products as well as the ever-changing needs of fleet equipment.