Update!!!! 900/9-3 Oil Specs and Issues - SaabCentral Forums
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NG900 & OG9-3 Workshop NG900 (1994 to 1998) & OG9-3 (1999-2002) & '03 Convertible Technical Forum

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  #1  
Old 23rd September 2006
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Default Update!!!! 900/9-3 Oil Specs and Issues

I figured I'd sticky this since I've posted it several times. Here's a list of motor oils that are either ACEA A3 certified (Saab's requirement for 2000-2002 9-3's and 9-5's plus the Viggen) or are otherwise known to be stout enough to handle the harsh environs in the potentially sludge prone B205/B235 engines. This list is based on US oils. If you are outside the US and have a T7 car, look for the ACEA A3 spec on the back of the oil container.

Brian's Recommended Oils for T7 SAABs

AMSOIL Euro Formula 5W40
Shell Rotella T Synth 5W40
Valvoline Maxlife Synthetic 10W30
Valvoline Synpower 5W40
Valvoline Synpower 20W50
Castrol Syntec 0W30 (only available at Autozone)
Castrol Syntec 5W40
Castrol Syntec 10W40
Castrol Syntec 5W50
LubroMoly VollSynthese 5W40
Mobil1 0W40
Mobil1 15W50 EP
Mobil1 High Mileage 10W40
Mobil1 TurboDiesel 5W40
Mobil Delvac1 5W40 (mainly at truckstops)
Pennzoil Platinum Euro Formula 5W40 (hard to find)
Redline 5W30
Redline 5W40
Redline 10W30
Redline 10W40

For the Canadians, per ParaMedic_Saab's request, I'll addd
Esso XD-3. That's an 0W40, IIRC. Very highly thought of north of the border.


If you notice, there are not a LOT of 30 weights on this list. 30 weights have a hard time meeting the A3 standard that Saab prefers you use b/c most of them are formulated on the thin side of the 30 weight range (I've learned). Most US 30 weights are on the low side of the range for fuel economy concerns.


As for the NG900, I'd recommend a synth as well. Even the 2.3 n/a can have oil issues if not properly maintained though the overall frequency appears to be lower than the later cars. However, I don't think you'd need to seek out a synth that meets the A3 spec on these cars. That opens up a larger variety of oils in the 30-40 weight range. Oils such as Mobil1 5 and 10W30, the other grades of Castrol Syntec, Quakerstate Synths, Pennzoil Platinum 5W30, etc.


As for capacities...

2.0 and 2.3l engines: 4.2 qts or 4 liters
2.5l V6 engine: 4.8 qts or 4.8 liters

Last edited by bkrell; 16th July 2007 at 08:28 AM.
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  #2  
Old 27th December 2006
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FWIW, in the latest issue of Nines, Chuck Andrews (Andrews of Princeton) has related in his ongoing series on the 9-5/9-3 engine failures that he has yet to test a 9-3/9-5 keeping adequate oil pressure with a 30 weight synth oil. Now, I don't know if he's tested the thicker 30 weights such as Castrol Syntec 0W30 (German Castrol), Redline 5W30, or Valvoline Maxlife Synthetic 10W30, but I'd think twice about using any of the thinner ones...a la Mobil1.... It appears Chuck has discovered that even new from the supplier replacement oil pumps for the T7 cars don't remedy the situation.
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  #3  
Old 2nd May 2007
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For owners of the ng900 and 99 9-3 as has been posted in the performance board Mobil 1 synthetic 10w-30 does not hold up to saabs oil pressure specs. At operating temp and 2000 rpm I only had 30 psi when I should have 40.

So it is best to stay away from most 10w-30's for b204/b234 motors as well.
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Old 3rd May 2007
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For now, I'm leaving Valvoline Maxlife Syth 10W30, Castrol Syntec 0W30, and Redline 5W30 in. They are on the high end of 30 weight and I'd like to see them tested in a car before I de-list them over pressure concerns. FWIW, Mobil1 5W30 is also a tad thicker these days.

The Castrol Syntec 0W30 (the famed German Castrol) may be hard to come by soon in the US anyway, as Autozone appears to have stopped selling it.
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Old 3rd May 2007
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FWIW

Motul 8100 Eco-energy 5w30 makes my lifters tick on a hot engine. (Most like also due to low oil pressure, not to mention probably bad lifters.)

I have since switched back to Mobil 1 0w40. No more lifter noise (except for in the morning).
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Old 3rd May 2007
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You can add LubroMoly Voll Synthese 5W40 to the list, now available through NAPA.
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  #7  
Old 3rd May 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Saaboheme
You can add LubroMoly Voll Synthese 5W40 to the list, now available through NAPA.
I can't find ANY data on the stuff but it looks like alot of places sell it, especially ones that specialize in VW/AUDI stuff. Got any spec sheets?
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Old 3rd May 2007
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LubroMoly VollSynthese has a good reputation. I've seen isolated cases of people complaining about varnish, but you can never take anecdotal evidence for that much....
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  #9  
Old 22nd May 2007
Sued1 Sued1 is offline
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I have put Royal Purple 10W30 for the last 2 oil changes & before that Mobil 1 10W40 on my 2002 9-3 SE with 110,000 miles. What should I be using for hot climate (Florida)?
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Old 22nd May 2007
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Check your manual first. My 99 9-3 with b204 says for temps above 60 consistently to use 15w-50 or 20w-50. I'm running 10w-40 right now and when its fully warm with temps of the low 90's here in southern indiana its getting down to what 10w-30 ran when it was in the 60-70 temp range.



This was after only a 5 minute drive with outside temps in the 92 region. Car had been sitting for only 2.5 hours while i was at training for my new job but prior to that was fully hot. With another 10 minutes of driving, even regular easy driving, idle woulda been down to 12-14 psi region.
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Last edited by NahumCC; 22nd May 2007 at 07:40 PM.
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  #11  
Old 23rd May 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sued1
I have put Royal Purple 10W30 for the last 2 oil changes & before that Mobil 1 10W40 on my 2002 9-3 SE with 110,000 miles. What should I be using for hot climate (Florida)?
I agree with Nahum. In Florida, I'd be running something like M1 15W50 (NOT M1 15W50 Extended Protection), Castrol Syntec 5W50, or Maybe Valvoline Synpower 20W50. That isn't a blanket statement for ALL cars. There are plenty of folks running 0W20 in Miami in the summer with NO problems. But for our cars.....
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Old 23rd May 2007
ParaMedic_Saab ParaMedic_Saab is offline
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BK, need to add some Esso XD3 up on your list for us Canadian saabers
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  #13  
Old 25th May 2007
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Done! How's that?

If anyone has any other oil they see that deserves consideration, let me know.
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  #14  
Old 26th May 2007
ParaMedic_Saab ParaMedic_Saab is offline
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Thanks dude and yes there is a 0w30 and 0w40. I use the 30 in the winter, as its closer to a 40, and the 40 int he summer as its closer to a 50
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  #15  
Old 15th July 2007
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Ok to add to the list here.

Valvoline SynPower 20w-50
Valvoline SynPower 5w-40

Both meet ACEA A3. Here is a link to the list of the SynPower oils (the two above are the only ones that meet it) that gives a good list of specific info about them.

http://www.valvoline.com/products/Synpower.pdf
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  #16  
Old 16th July 2007
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Will do! Synpower (Valvoline synth, at least) was the first synth I ever used in a car-10W40 in my old 320i.
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Old 16th July 2007
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Mr. Krell:

I still do not see LubroMoly Voll Synthese 5W40 on the actual list.
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  #18  
Old 16th July 2007
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D'oh! On its way. And as a side note, I don't believe the M1 10W40 HM has the A3 spec, but I'd be willing to bet it's a fine oil. ExxonMobil makes some serious claims about it being able to clean up deposits in high miles engines. I'd love to see someone out there put it to the test.
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  #19  
Old 29th July 2007
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Your right that the HM M1 10w-40 isn't A3 spec. Also in a bit of a quandry as I recently said somewhere that the M1 15w-50 synthetic had the A3 spec and while looking for 5qt containers found them at walmart without the A3 spec and it was the same with the individual quarts. So i'm gonna run back to the place I bought my 15w50 M1 that had the A3 spec on the back of the bottle and make sure there aren't two different version.
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  #20  
Old 29th July 2007
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M1 redesigned this oil to be used in hi-po apps. I doubt they cared if it was A3 b/c that's a Euro spec....just like their HM and diesel oils are capable of meeting the spec. FWIW, the 0W40 meets it and look at how it sheers down. It's a virgin oil spec and while a good indicator, can't promise performance.

Last edited by bkrell; 29th July 2007 at 06:42 PM.
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