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Condensation in the oil tank

Discussion in 'Boxers/TR/M' started by Hipporacer, Jan 12, 2022.

  1. Hipporacer

    Hipporacer Rookie

    Jun 26, 2021
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    Julia M Stapleton
    I took my testarossa out today for the first time since its been cold. Got air in the tires and checked oil level before hitting the highway. I noticed some what appeared to be mositure/condensation on the upper end of the stick and cap. Oil level and color seemed fine. Car ran fine and came up to operating temps as normal. Is the condensation anything to be worried about? Air temp was around 48F where I was today.
     
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  3. mccand

    mccand Rookie

    Mar 17, 2020
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    Greg McCandless
    I am not sure, but is your testarossa a Dino testarossa?

    On a more serious note, I have been taught that when driving older cars, it is best to get them good and hot once started, so that any condensation that gets generated or distributed also gets hot enough to evaporate off during cool-down. This approach apparently also is good for oil life. Perhaps when you last drive your testarossa it had not fully warmed up before shutting down, and moisture/condensation had no where to go? (I am speaking somewhat uninformed here so please take it with a grain of salt, tho I do try to have longer rides when I do fire up the Dino or my 360).

    cheers!
     
  4. Rifledriver

    Rifledriver Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Its pretty normal when parked in a humid environment. One reason short trips are not the greatest idea. The cars hold so much oil and have a large cooler with no thermostat. It is really hard or impossible to get the oil hot enough on cold days to boil off and get rid of it. On cold days the hottest my oil gets is sitting idling for a long period. Get up to speed and the needle goes crashing back down to the very bottom. Limit driving in cold weather and as soon as it warms back up take it out get the oil good and hot and change it.

    Oh, and ask a mod to move this to the TR section.
     
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  5. 4right

    4right F1 Rookie
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    Interesting timing of this thread. I was changing the oil in my dry sump 308 a couple of weeks ago. While draining the oil tank, drops of clear water started to drip out while I was loosening the drain plug. Only water was dripping, no oil. I continued to let it drip to see how much water was in there. Maybe a tea spoon at most, but I have never seen that before.
     
  6. vincenzo

    vincenzo F1 Rookie

    Nov 2, 2003
    3,111
    If you drained hot oil, it should have formed an emulsion and looked like a brown milkshake. Getting clear water sounds very peculiar.

    Next time, drain it hot, right after a hot drive.
     
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  8. Veedub00

    Veedub00 F1 Rookie
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    Jun 30, 2006
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    Pull the hose off your air filter housing and take a picture of the end of the hose. If you see any sludgie brown stuff you might be getting water into your oil system. Happened to me in 2020 when my water pump seal failed.
     
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  9. Rifledriver

    Rifledriver Two Time F1 World Champ
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    I have seen that. After sitting long enough some percentage of the water will settle out and sit at the bottom. The emulsified stuff is often foamy so light in weight and collects at the top on the filler cap, filler neck and dipstick.
     
  10. Hipporacer

    Hipporacer Rookie

    Jun 26, 2021
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    Springfield IL
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    Julia M Stapleton
    So I checked the air hose going out from the air filter assembly. It was a pain to get off. And im worried about fraying on the end, so dont really want to mess with it again. But yes there was sludge in the hose. Just a bit. About 5ml worth. It had the appearance of diarrhea kinda. I cleaned it out with a towel and stuck it back on. I dont plan on starting the vehicle till it warms up a bit more. I informed my service center of the issue and am waiting to hear back. His current opinion is the engine is just not getting hot enough. I dont know what to make of it. But it was sorta fun and fullfilling to wrestle with that hose to help diagnose a problem. But would like opinions on what to do next.
     
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  12. V4NG0

    V4NG0 Formula Junior
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    Maybe do nothing? I used to have a very short commute to the office (5 minutes at most). I daily drove a 911 and due to the short commute, it never got up to temp. I could take the oil cap off upon getting home and there would be yellow mayonnaise looking stuff in there. I eventually moved 30 mins away from the office and the yellow mayonnaise went away for good. I owned the car many years and daily drove it. No discernible damage ever occurred, and so perhaps it’s nothing to worry too much about with your car.
     
  13. Rifledriver

    Rifledriver Two Time F1 World Champ
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    #11 Rifledriver, Jan 14, 2022
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2022
    It is difficult for a car carrying over 3 gallons of oil, a large full time oil cooler, and an understressed engine to not continue building and building a higher water content in the oil. I have seen it so bad we had rust issues with internal parts. It can get to be a problem especially if many short trips are taken and the oil is never allowed to get hot. In cold weather it just will never get hot. Even in coastal California with pretty low humidity and not very cold weather in mid winter if I drove the car except at a long idle the needle on the oil temp gauge never moved.

    I don't think doing nothing is the answer for many. Avoid short trips in winter (always actually) Do what you can to get the oil hot from time to time and in spring, take it for a good dive and then change it.

    In some parts of the country evidence of water in the high spots like the oil tank neck or that breather hose is just going to be a fact of life and if that is all it is it isn't the end of the world.
     
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  14. vincenzo

    vincenzo F1 Rookie

    Nov 2, 2003
    3,111
    Next?

    Drive the piss (and “diarrhea”) out of it!

    Min 20 miles.

    Drain it within a couple of minutes after stopping. Get everything ready before your drive.

    It appears to me that your shop is not draining the oil hot. When the oil is hot, the water vaporizes and boils off. Your hose emulsion is not a big concern…. the oil/water vapor cools and condenses as it travels through the pipe.

    Draining HOT oil flushes everything out while debris and water is held in suspension.
    Draining COLD leaves debris and water/emulsion clinging to the bottom of the oil pan…. it will not be drained out.

    Check your coolant for oil.
    Check your water pump drain for drips/ staining.

    After a proper oil change, and long, hot drives it should not return. If it does, you may have a problem….. but this is much less likely than driving style and/or bad oil change procedure.
     
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  15. Hipporacer

    Hipporacer Rookie

    Jun 26, 2021
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    Springfield IL
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    Julia M Stapleton
    Its hard to stress that engine I find. It has a way of staying cool. Even when I have pushed it to what I feel comfortable with its obvious it still has more to give. Its interesting to hear that signs of internal moisture may just be normal. Im certainly open to other opinions. But at least this one sounds benign.
     
  16. Rifledriver

    Rifledriver Two Time F1 World Champ
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    True. While I agree with the above post If it is in the 40's out the faster you go the colder the oil gets at least up to speeds that wont get you arrested.

    The oil cooler works really well.
     
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  17. Rifledriver

    Rifledriver Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Back in the early 70's Mercedes Benz quit equipping their cars built for the US market with oil coolers. Here due to our speed limits just did not get the oil hot enough to warrant it and their bigger motors were really suffering for it. Oils have changed a lot and the gumming up and sticking of the piston rings that was common on their oil cooled cars doesn't happen any more but we still have the same situation otherwise.
     
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  18. V4NG0

    V4NG0 Formula Junior
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    @Rifledriver

    Related topic, what oil weight do you prefer for TRs operating in the southern/warmer half of the country? Does the oil need to have high zinc content as well?
     
  19. Rifledriver

    Rifledriver Two Time F1 World Champ
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    #17 Rifledriver, Jan 14, 2022
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2022
    Since 1975 Ferrari has had zero issues with the engine components that high zinc levels were used to protect. I spend zero time on modern Ferrari's concerning myself with zinc.

    For all 83 and up V8s and 85 and up 12's I use Mobile One 0-40 or 5-40. When I was right down the road from Redline I used their 5-40. Some newer Ferraris call for 10-60 so I use that. If the car was in a hotter climate I might change but in California and Texas both I have never felt I wasn't served well by those. On the track in summer I would feel different.



    These motors do not typically get torn down for lubricated parts getting worn out. They do get broken as an act of human intervention or they are poorly serviced. I had a friend in California who just used it as a car,commuting etc. The odometer broke at about 210,000 miles. Last I asked he estimated it to be near 250,000 and somewhere up near 300,000 he passed away and the car was sold. The motor and trans had never been apart. It was on its 3rd clutch. He owned and vintage raced a group 7 Can Am McLaren so was not a timid driver. Last we went somewhere together it ran great with good power and he said it didn't noticeably use any oil.
     
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  20. V4NG0

    V4NG0 Formula Junior
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    Got it, many thanks for the oil details. It’s encouraging that these cars can go to 300k miles, as mine is driven both frequently and on long trips.

    I’ve been using this oil for a little while now. It doesn’t quite fit with your preferences, and if you believe strongly that its use should be discontinued, please advise. I live in a hot/humid climate that gets nice and cold (mid 20’s to mid 40’s) in the winter.
     

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  21. Rifledriver

    Rifledriver Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Thats great oil for a Daytona. Not so much for a TR. You are better off with synthetic and lower viscosity.
     
  22. V4NG0

    V4NG0 Formula Junior
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    Ok, thanks for confirming
     
  23. vincenzo

    vincenzo F1 Rookie

    Nov 2, 2003
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    Mid 20s to mid 40s…. F…

    Time for a heated garage.
     
  24. V4NG0

    V4NG0 Formula Junior
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    Agreed …and working on it!
     
  25. clean512

    clean512 Formula 3
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    Rifledriver how do you like shell T6 5w 40.
     
  26. Rifledriver

    Rifledriver Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Understand Ferrari uses Shell products because they are paid handsomely to do so. They do make a great coolant but Ferrari doesn't use it.

    Its OK. I am sure its better than what any of us used 30 years ago. All motor vehicle motor oils are by federal law completely compatible but never the less most owners want continuity in their oil. People can get Mobile 1 anywhere if needed. Shell T6 not so much. I quit using Redline for that reason. Redline is in the SF Bay Area. In Northern California you can get it in 7-11 or the grocery store. Not in Texas.
     
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  27. clean512

    clean512 Formula 3
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    Thank you sir for the information
     

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