Jan 7th, 2017 7:52 amgbill2004 Deal Addict Apr 18, 2013 3529 posts 1625 upvotes Canada

Jan 7th, 2017 7:52 am


The owners manual says SAE 5W30 oil. Does this need to be oil specific for small engines or can I use regular car oil?
Jan 7th, 2017 10:26 amariskDeal Addict Nov 12, 2006 2180 posts 1184 upvotes London

Jan 7th, 2017 10:26 am


It is the same (subject to below) as car oil, in that it doesn"t use oil specifically for small engines.It"s more that it is made for specific applications and has appropriate specs.If you use terms like "small engine" oil, some might interpret that a 2 cycle oil, which is mixed with the fuel in a 2 cycle engine.I"m sure you have a 4 cycle.I suspect there are other specs listed as well, which have letter designations. (and terms like detergent, non-detergent)Also go by them.People will have differing opinions, but I use synthetic.The reasoning is that it maintains its viscosity better over a wider temperature range.Your snow blower will go from cold as ice to full throttle within minutes.There are a lot of demands on that oil, plus if it is thick due to cold it may be more difficult to start.Even if you see minimal benefit, the cost difference on that amount is not much.

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Jan 7th, 2017 11:15 amgbill2004 Deal Addict Apr 18, 2013 3529 posts 1625 upvotes Canada

Jan 7th, 2017 11:15 am


Jan 7th, 2017 11:57 amMacGyverDeal Addict
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Mar 8, 2002 4232 posts 875 upvotes Ottawa

Jan 7th, 2017 11:57 am


SAE means Society of Automotive Engineers. The 5W30 designation is an SAE standard for grading oil viscosity at two temperatures. For snowthrower oil, your manual should recommend a two letter rating like SJ or SN. As long as the oil you buy meets the 5W30 and meets or exceeds the letter rating in fine print on the back of the bottle, it"s fine. Example, if the blower calls for minimum SJ, then SK, SL, SM, SN etc will also work.
Jan 7th, 2017 12:51 pmengineeredDeal Experns Feb 11, 2007 17210 posts 19102 upvotes Oakville

Jan 7th, 2017 12:51 pm


+1 for synthetic. Well worth the cost. You may also want to consider 0w30 syn for better cold weather starting.
Jan 7th, 2017 6:16 pmwill888Deal Expert Dec 12, 2009 21319 posts 9745 upvotes Toronto

Jan 7th, 2017 6:16 pm


I don"t think it"s worthwhile to use synthetic oil in a snowblower. The number of operating hours between oil changes is so short that any oil will do. The big problem with small engines like those used in a snowblower is the rings are no where near as good as in a car engine. This plus the fact that snowblower engines run really rich means there"s lots of blowby contamination. After a year or two, the oil is really watery and needs changing.
Jan 7th, 2017 6:31 pmengineeredDeal Expert Feb 11, 2007 17210 posts 19102 upvotes Oakville

Jan 7th, 2017 6:31 pm


will888 wrote: ↑I don"t think it"s worthwhile to use synthetic oil in a snowblower. The number of operating hours between oil changes is so short that any oil will do. The big problem with small engines like those used in a snowblower is the rings are no where near as good as in a car engine. This plus the fact that snowblower engines run really rich means there"s lots of blowby contamination. After a year or two, the oil is really watery and needs changing.
The main reason to use synthetic is for the better protection at startup. It should also protect better if it"s being contaminated from blow-by. There isn"t much oil in a snow blower, so the extra cost is minimal especially when with something like Motomaster synthetic (made by Shell).
Jan 7th, 2017 7:53 pmteboreDeal Guru Feb 9, 2006 12428 posts 7020 upvotes Brampton

Jan 7th, 2017 7:53 pm


I use 0w30 synthetic in all my 4 strokes just because it"s what I have on hand. However it looks like it has higher quality additives usually the oil looks very light almost brand new and the viscosity doesn"t vary much from ew oil out of the bottle. I used to use 5w30 regular house brand oil for the changes and it used to come out darker and thicker end of the season. Pure anticdotal but it was interesting to me.I change the oil in my 4 strokes before storage. Mower end of summer blower end of winter etc.
Jan 8th, 2017 10:27 amdirtmoverDeal Addict Nov 2, 2005 4314 posts 1582 upvotes WFH

Jan 8th, 2017 10:27 am


Use regular car oil. Change it as recommended and synthetic versus a premium brand versus Walmart own brand will make zero difference. Wear and tear due to using one oil versus another is not what"s ultimately going to take that engine out.If using synthetic makes you feel better by all means go for it. It won"t do any harm.
I have a 27" Craftsman snowblower with B&S engine, and the manual recommends to use the following engine oil based on "temperature anticipated before next oil change":1) 5w30 or 10w30 for temperature range -17C to +4C2) Synthetic 5w30 or 10w30 for temperature range -33C to +4CAs OP lives in Manitoba and the winter temperature will likely dip below -17C. Synthetic engine oil is recommended.Find below is a chart comparing types of engine oil for temperature range:
Jan 9th, 2017 1:20 amzeon64Sr. Member Jan 3, 2013 598 posts 231 upvotes Winnipeg

Jan 9th, 2017 1:20 am


I am using synthetic 0w30 oil in my Brigs and Stratton 250cc snowblower for the second winter now. Very happy. I am considering going to 5w30 as I have the world"s smallest leak and it may help but most likely not.
will888 wrote: ↑I don"t think it"s worthwhile to use synthetic oil in a snowblower. The number of operating hours between oil changes is so short that any oil will do.
The 11hp Tecumseh motor on my snowblower was noticeably easier to pull-start on the coldest days, after switching to 0W30 synthetic. The better quality oil is doing no harm to the motor, while allowing me to put off fixing the electric starter, well worth an extra couple bucks in oil.
Jan 9th, 2017 9:01 ammake_shiftNewbie Dec 29, 2008 96 posts 16 upvotes Kitchener

Jan 9th, 2017 9:01 am


I had this discussion with the local dealer shop when I rebuilt my engine this year. They indicated that you could use regular car oil. They said the same kind of things need to be watched if you had dino oil then switch to synthetic, sometimes that can cause a leak. Other than that, they sold me the "snowblower" oil they had, which had a few additives to help with cold weather starting and running...
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I bought it...and it starts every time on first pull now, but not necessarily because of the oil.
Oct 26th, 2018 5:01 pmemanon86Sr. Member Aug 14, 2010 602 posts 371 upvotes Toronto

Oct 26th, 2018 5:01 pm


My snowblower uses the same oil. SAE 5W-30. I"ve been buying Motomaster SAE-5W30 for years from Canadian tire, this year I can"t find that exact one. All I can find is Motomaster 5W30. This is pretty much the same right? It"s just minus the SAEThis is what I"ve been buying for years:
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And this is what I just bought from Canadian tire:https://www.canadiantire.ca/en/pdp/moto ... 81728.htmlThis will work just the same correct?
Oct 26th, 2018 5:25 pmrogerrabbit168Deal Addict Feb 25, 2007 2746 posts 515 upvotes

Oct 26th, 2018 5:25 pm


Got a jug of Castro synthetic when it was on sale from Costco, changed two snowblowers oil and the lawnmower, easy start and the price difference when it’s on sale and the oil that is require is no brainer. Still have like 2 liters lefft for next oil change
Same thing. I would buy 1 gal. walmart brand 5-30 ( 0-30, 5-20- does not really matter here) about 10$ on sale or better synthetic for about 24$ a gatogether .Does not have to say snowblower on it. Regular for cars is good.
Considering that my snow thrower does not have an oil filter on it (nor an air filter for that matter) I don"t worry too much about the oil I buy. Any 5W30 on the shelves in Canada seems to be of good enough quality and I change it often enough that it"s always fairly clean. Used synthetic briefly until I realized that easier starting - the only benefit - was irrelevant since I use the electric start (I paid for it and I"m going to get my moneys worth!). At 22 years of age the thrower just keeps chugging along.

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Oct 28th, 2018 8:08 amgbill2004 Deal Addict Apr 18, 2013 3529 posts 1625 upvotes Canada

Oct 28th, 2018 8:08 am


Oct 28th, 2018 10:43 amwill888Deal Expert Dec 12, 2009 21319 posts 9745 upvotes Toronto

Oct 28th, 2018 10:43 am


I base it on usage. The past couple of years, the snowblower has seen very little use and so no oil change. The oil still looks super clean.
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