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Old 07-20-2003, 02:26 PM   #1
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ATF mixed with engine oil..does it work?

I recently took my car to the dealer to have the engine cleaned (not the IROC). They hooked it up to a machine and itís supposedly cleans all of the nasty deposits inside the engine, combustion chamber, throttle body and injectors. The car seems to run better.

After I had done this, a friend mentioned that pouring a quart of ATF does the same job. He says you pour a quart into the crankcase, run the car for a day or so, then give your car an oil and filter change. This is supposed to clean the sludge from your engine.

Has anyone ever tried this, and what were your results?

I hear shady dealers mix this stuff with oil to make lemons run better. I guess it swells up rubber gaskets, and makes things run better for a little while anyway.
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Old 07-20-2003, 02:44 PM   #2
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It definitely works. It's a very high detergent formula, so it eats the sludge off of things and suspends it in the oil, where it can be drained instead of just accumulating. It does no harm to leave it in over the long term; actually may make the engine run better, by improving th eoperation fo hydraulic lifters.
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Old 07-20-2003, 03:08 PM   #3
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just did an intake gasket on my father's S10 pickup and i mixed ATF with oil after reading several recommendations on here about it.
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Old 07-20-2003, 03:10 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally posted by RB83L69
It definitely works. It's a very high detergent formula, so it eats the sludge off of things and suspends it in the oil, where it can be drained instead of just accumulating. It does no harm to leave it in over the long term; actually may make the engine run better, by improving th eoperation fo hydraulic lifters.
i would not leave it in for any prolonged peroid of time.





besides, you know its eating sludge off the engine. do you really want that sludge thats now suspended in the oil getting pumped around everything, between your bearings, in tight clearances, ect???
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Old 07-20-2003, 03:57 PM   #5
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If you could leave it in all the time oil manufacturers would have added it
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Old 07-20-2003, 04:00 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by SIMON HOLTBY
If you could leave it in all the time oil manufacturers would have added it
bingo.

i would imagine that ATF would be a part of the "higher miliage engine" oil market if that was the case....
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Old 07-20-2003, 04:11 PM   #7
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Well, as I am fond of posting, I have 4 cars.... the youngest one is my wife's 91 Cadillac, it only has 210,000 miles on it.... there's also a 74 454 Caprice convertible with 260,000 miles on it, and the oldest one, a 78 El Camino 305 with 345,000 miles. That's a little over half a million km on that one, for you guys across the pond, and the intake manifold has never even been off of it.

The El Camino and the convertible have ATF in their oil more or less continuously, for 15 years or more. Neither of those cars has had any significant motor work yet (they've both needed timing sets, that's the biggest problem they've had). I'm not sure yet about long-term effects or what happens after high mileage yet though. I'll let all you guys know how it does after another decade or 2, and maybe a hundred thousand or so more miles.

And yes, I'd alot rather have that sludge in my oil, it drains every oil change, and doesn't build up in the oil pump screen or drainback holes.

I suspect that the reason you don't see it marketed as a "higher mileage engine treatment" by the oil companies, is that there's no money to be made that way.
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Old 07-20-2003, 04:20 PM   #8
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I'd be in the queue to buy an oil additive that would make my engine last 345,000 miles and I think it would sell quite well. I think there is always going to be someone who gets a high mileage from their engine what ever they add to their oil as long as its only a small quantity.

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Old 07-21-2003, 06:51 AM   #9
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I had lifter tick in my 163K mile 89 beretta. I through in a quart of ATF and ran it for 600 miles till my next oil change. Sometime during that 600 mile run the ticking went away and hasn't been back since.
I did it back then and I'd do it again. I just wonder what the cleaning speed differences would be between ATF and synthetic oil.
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Old 07-21-2003, 08:58 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally posted by Viprklr
I just wonder what the cleaning speed differences would be between ATF and synthetic oil.
I had been using synthetic in my camaro since Jan when I got it. it was cleaning it out, but very slowly. I didnt know just how bad the internal of my engine was untill a few weeks ago. Im now doing cheap oil changes once every 2weeks with one qt of ATF thrown in.
oil was collecting on the top of one of my heads causing burning at start up(cloged drain passage), since I started with the ATF it doesnt smoke nearly as bad, so Id def say the ATF works quicker

BTW I have no intention of doing cheap oil changes for ever. as soon as I find the clog in my head is gone and the engine is cleaned up good Im going right back to Mobil 1.
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Old 07-21-2003, 09:05 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally posted by RB83L69
...The El Camino and the convertible have ATF in their oil more or less continuously, for 15 years or more. Neither of those cars has had any significant motor work yet...
Oh, sure! It works a a temporary "Band Aid" fix, but wait until you get some real mileage on the fleet before you make your final determination. 300K on a SBC is hardly long enough to indicate a trend.

Just think - If you had 300K on one of those "lasts forever" Hondas, you would have been able to pull the head twice already to see what's going on, instead of having to suffer with those "unreliable" American cars for so many years...
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Old 07-21-2003, 09:05 AM   #12
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That's what I would think. If this holds true than on an unkept engine you'd be better off cleaning it with synthetic oil as opposed to ATF to reduce any chances of large chunks breaking off.
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Old 07-21-2003, 09:15 AM   #13
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If you've ever changed oil in a brand new car, the stuff that comes out from the factory looks almost like atf. Atf is has an extremely hi amount of detergent in it because things hydraulic don't respond well to dirt, so if you added it to your oil it would try to do the same thing. I've run it in several of my vehicles and have over 100,000 miles on them, my current 97/f150 has 165,000 miles on it and I just drove it on a 1200 mile trip. So yes, I believe in doing this, and have done it about every 3rd oil change. I also change the oil every 3,000 miles.
Here's another thing to try, When I raced 2 cycle karts years ago I would put the old fuel in my mower at home, (it was a 4cycle engine) that old piece of crap mower lasted 12 years!! So I started putting the used fuel in my truck as well. The oil in the 2cycle is designed to be burned as a fuel so it's no big deal. It acts as a "top oil" lubricant.
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Old 07-21-2003, 05:54 PM   #14
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Well, I think i'm gonna try the ATF in the IROC (http://www.cardomain.com/id/chubbrock ) and let you guys know what happens.

The car sits in storage about 6-7 months every-year, probably since it was new, so i'm hoping there isn't too much slugde.
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Old 07-21-2003, 05:54 PM
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