Winter Lubrication

Combustion in any engine generates water vapor. When starting and warming up in cold weather, especially in freezing or cold weather, the vapor that gets into the crankcase condenses to water before the crankcase is hot enough to exhaust the vapor through the outside breather. If engine is run often enough to get the crankcase thoroughly warmed up, most of this water is again vaporized and blown out through the breather. A moderately driven engine, making short runs and seldom allowed to thoroughly warm up, will accumulate increasing amounts of water in the oil tank. This water will, in freezing weather, become slush or ice and if allowed to accumulate, will block oil lines and damage the engine. Water mixed with oil for some time forms sludge that is harmful to the engine and causes rapid wear of various working parts. In winter the oil should be changed more often than in normal weather. Any engine used for short runs, particularly in commercial service, must have oil changed frequently and tank thoroughly flushed to remove water and sludge, before new oil is put in tank. The farther below freezing the temperature drops, the shorter the oil change interval should be.

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