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Hicks Oils 845 N. Hickory Sales: (314) 525-2568 DuQuoin, IL 62832 Operations: (618) 542-5431 Total Base

Hicks Oils 845 N. Hickory

Sales:

(314) 525-2568

DuQuoin, IL 62832

Operations:

(618) 542-5431

Total Base Number (TBN) Retention

Detergent and dispersant additives help control and suspend contamination in motor oil. These contaminants are introduced to the oil from combustion byproducts, incomplete combustion and poor quality fuels. These contaminants are acid in nature. The Total Base Number (TBN) of an oil is a measurement of the oils alkalinity, or more simply stated, a measurement of an oils ability to control acidic contaminants.

In traditional terms, higher TBN values are viewed as having the ability to hold more acidic contaminants than a lower TBN product. This leads to the idea that higher TBN products provide longer service or drain intervals. Intuitively this idea has validity. In regards to TBN values, equipment manufacturers such as Cummins® recommend changing the engine oil when one of the following occurs: TBN falls below 2.5 (via ASTM D-4739), ½ the original TBN value, or when the Total Acid Number (TAN) value exceeds the TBN value 1 .

One concept that the noted convention of higher TBN values lead to longer drain intervals does not take into account is the TBN retention of an oil. The majority of motor oils currently on the market use a detergent package utilizing a calcium based, magnesium based, or a mixture of the two additives as their detergent package. It has been found that all detergent packages do not have the same ability to hold acidic contaminants, which can be noted as an oils TBN retention. This statement is demonstrated by a lab simulation using sulfuric acid (H 2 SO 4 ) to simulate acid build up during a drain interval from oil contaminants.

Hicks Oils 845 N. Hickory Sales: (314) 525-2568 DuQuoin, IL 62832 Operations: (618) 542-5431 Total Base

This simulated test shows two oils both starting with the same TBN (via ASTM D-4739). After a 20,000 mile service simulation it is clear: the all magnesium detergent package dropped a considerably larger value in TBN when compared to an all calcium detergent formulation. This lab simulation demonstrates the positive attributes of an all calcium detergent package. By following the engine manufacturer’s recommendation of changing the oil when the TBN of the oil has fallen below 2.5, or half the value of the original oil TBN value, the service interval will be longer using an all calcium detergent package.

1 Cummins® Service Bulletin: Cummins® Engine Oil and Oil Analysis Recommendations, P-17, dated 2/12/2008

Revision December 29, 2011

An ISO 9001:2008 Certified Company

Hicks Oils 845 N. Hickory Sales: (314) 525-2568 DuQuoin, IL 62832 Operations: (618) 542-5431 A similar

Hicks Oils 845 N. Hickory

Sales:

(314) 525-2568

DuQuoin, IL 62832

Operations:

(618) 542-5431

A similar comparison between the types of detergent packages should be made measuring the TAN of the oil.

Hicks Oils 845 N. Hickory Sales: (314) 525-2568 DuQuoin, IL 62832 Operations: (618) 542-5431 A similar

Conclusion:

One can see that the TAN of the mixture magnesium/calcium detergent package showed significantly higher TAN values when compared to a lower TBN product from a calcium based package after simulated drain interval using sulfuric acid. Following the equipment service guide, the oil should be changed when the TAN exceeds the TBN. This lab simulation shows that an all calcium based product maintains lower TAN values when compared to a magnesium based product of higher initial TBN.

Drain intervals cannot be determined by initial TBN values alone. Lab simulations have demonstrated calcium based detergents maintain their TBN values better than magnesium or a blend of magnesium/calcium detergent package.

Because calcium based detergents are demonstrated to have higher TBN retention and a smaller increase in TAN, it is possible to achieve a longer drain interval with a lower TBN calcium based product than products with a higher TBN that utilize a magnesium or magnesium/calcium blend detergent package.

Oil analysis should always be used, and manufacturer’s guidelines should always be followed when determining service or drain intervals.

Statement:

All API CJ-4/SN products produced by Hicks Oils utilize an all calcium based detergent package. This approach to formulation creates products with excellent TBN retention which provide extended protection of the engine from acidic byproducts during the service interval of the oil.

Revision December 29, 2011

An ISO 9001:2008 Certified Company