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Engine News and Tips: What Is Engine Sludge?

October 29th, 2009

Engine sludge is the thick, dark substance that can build up and clog the oil passages within engines. Sludge build-up can lead to reduced gas mileage, decreased engine performance and, in some cases, engine seizure. Once sludge builds up in an engine, it is difficult, if not impossible, to remove!

Mobil 1 engine oil.

Mobil 1 engine oil.

WHAT CAUSES SLUDGE?

1. Extending oil drains: Mechanics and industry experts suggest you follow your manufacturer’s oil drain recommendation for your type of driving. However, you cannot go wrong using the 3,000 mile or 3 month, whichever comes first, drain interval rule. Either way, regular oil change intervals are the best thing you can do for your engine. If you extend your oil changes, you are leaving your car vulnerable to dangerous sludge build-up.

2. Driving styles: It all depends on how hard you drive your car or truck and it’s intended purposes. Hard driving causes the oils to get hotter and breakdown, causing sludge.

3. Environment: Excessive heat and humidity as well as excessively cold weather can contribute to sludge build-up.

4. Several other factors: Many newer engines can be prone to sludge, and several other driving behaviors such as towing a trailer or boat can cause sludge.

The Toyota Sienna Van has complaints of engine sludge issues. In reality, Toyota has avoided presenting why this may be an issue. The bottom line is that the most common way an engine builds sludge is by not changing the engine oil regularly or perhaps using a conventional oil instead of synthetic oil.

Realistically speaking, using conventional oil and not changing it regularly is a recipe for disaster. The factory oil fill are synthetic engine oils. Plenty of lubrication joints use conventional oils (much cheaper) where synthetic oil is needed. Which can cause sludge problems and subsequent engine failures. Make sure you ask for synthetic engine oil, or go somewhere else.

GotEngines.com is in the business of selling engines. However we provide this type of information as a courtesy. There is no joy in dealing with a person with an engine failure, especially a premature failure. Call 1-866-320-1065..

One Response to “Engine News and Tips: What Is Engine Sludge?”

  1. sara says:

    Thanks for explaining–my mechanic has referred to this but explained it very well.

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