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ECHO String Trimmer Technical Study

ECHO String Trimmer Technical Study

AMSOIL SABER® Professional Synthetic 2-Stroke Oil resisted performance-robbing deposits and maintained power and performance in ECHO string trimmers.

Published September 2016

Overview Government mandates require modern handheld trimmers and other twostroke equipment to produce less exhaust emissions. To comply, some original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) design their equipment to run on leaner fuel/oil mixtures. Burning more air and less fuel/oil, however, also increases heat. To withstand this intense environment and ensure equipment lasts as designed, modern two-stroke oils must demonstrate improved wear protection and detergency. Objective Demonstrate through lab testing that the latest generation** of AMSOIL SABER® Professional Synthetic 2-Stroke Oil exceeds the increased performance needs of ECHO* string trimmers in particular, and modern two-stroke string trimmers in general. Methodology Testing was conducted on eight ECHO trimmers in the AMSOIL mechanical lab and followed a test plan designed to compare two-stroke oils in simulated real-world conditions. Test duration is designed to simulate an extended length of service. The OEM’s recommended 50:1 mix ratio was followed.

test_parameters

SABER Professional was installed in four trimmers and ECHO Power Blend was installed in another four. Computer-controlled actuators operated the trimmer throttle triggers according to an identical protocol for each unit. Images of trimmers arranged on the test stand are included for reference.

trimmer_engine_set

 

Test administrators monitored engine rpm, spark-plug temperature, exhaust emissions and other parameters to ensure consistent, repeatable operation and gauge overall performance of each trimmer. After 300 hours of operation, the trimmers were disassembled and inspected. Note: Test results published in this Technical Study describe and represent properties of oils that were acquired on the dates listed in Table 1 on the facing page. Results do not apply to any subsequent reformulations of such oils or to new oils introduced after completion of testing. All oils were available to consumers at the time of purchase. Testing was completed in July 2016. The differences in effects between AMSOIL SABER Professional and ECHO* Power Blend* are statistically valid at the 95% confidence interval for exhaust port blockage and spark arrestor screen plugging.  The carbon buildup on pistons was not numerically quantified as part of the study.

Weed trimmer ready for engine testing

The test was run using two engines for each treatment. The study was then replicated using the same n=2 design. Exhaust- port blockage and spark-arrestor screen plugging were compared using a paired t-test. Equipment was run at factory-set conditions and there was no effort to intervene on any problems developed by the equipment outside of recommended maintenance in the owner’s manual. String trimmers arranged

Piston Rings/Piston Skirts

Deposits in the ring grooves can cause the rings to stick and lose effectiveness. Engine rpm can decrease and the engine cab lose compression. Significant compression loss leads to engine failure. Heavy deposits on the piston skirt increase friction and reduce performance.

Piston ring deposits with ECHO and AMSOIL

Deposits appear heavier on the pistons lubricated with ECHO Power Blend. The pistons lubricated with SABER Professional appear cleaner. SABER Professional provided improved detergency and extreme-heat resistance. Both oils guarded against piston ring sticking well.

Piston Crowns/Undercrowns Heavy piston crown deposits can cause preignition and poor performance. While undercrown deposits are unlikely to impede performance, they are an indicator of the oil’s detergency properties. With modern two-stroke equipment running hotter, oils must demonstrate strong detergency and heat resistance to maintain piston cleanliness and peak performance.

piston crowns undercrowns deposits from Echo oil

Pistons lubricated with ECHO Power Blend appear to contain heavier crown and undercrown deposits. In contrast, the piston crowns lubricated with SABER Professional look clean, with low levels of deposits. SABER Professional provided improved detergency and extreme-heat resistance.

Wrist Pins & Bearings The wrist pin and bearing are exposed to extreme heat due to their proximity to the combustion event. Ineffective lubrication can result in deposits, polishing and flat spots on the wrist pin restricting rotation. As the engine works to overcome this restriction, the piston can bear increased pressure, leading to scuffing and eventually failure.

wrist pins

All eight wrist pin bearings demonstrated no issues throughout the test, indicating the oils provided good protection. None of the wrist pins contain flat spots. Both of the oils performed well in this area.


Exhaust Ports

For the engine to run properly and produce maximum power, exhaust gasses must flow freely out the exhaust port during operation. Restricted exhaust causes RPM and power loss, starting difficulties and eventually, failure to operate.

Exhaust ports

SABER Professional demonstrated low exhaust-port deposits. In contrast, all four exhaust ports on the engines using the ECHO product suffered blockage, with two more than half blocked with deposits.

Note: Airflow loss was calculated using a flow bench to measure restriction which was converted to a percentage of flow compared to an unblocked exhaust post.

Spark Arrestor Screens

Exhaust gasses continually flow through the spark arrestor screen located on the muffler which is prone to plugging. Like the exhaust ports excessive deposits on the spark arrestor screen restrict airflow and reduced power.

Spark arrestor screens

SABER Professional demonstrated low spark-arrestor screen deposits. In contrast, screens on the trimmers lubricated with the ECHO product contained higher levels of deposits. The screen from engine 5 was nearly completely blocked with deposits after 239 hours of the 300-hour test and required replacement. On average screens from engines using ECHO Power Blend suffering 4X more airflow loss than screens on engines using SABER Professional 2-cycle oil.

Note: Airflow loss was calculated using a flow bench to measure restriction which was converted to a percentage of flow compared to an unblocked spark arrestor screen.

Main Bearings

The main bearings receive little lubrication given their location in the lower end of the engine. Deposits are an indicator of poor oil detergency. Heavy deposits can restrict bearing rotation and eventually lead to failure.

Echo main bearings

The bearings lubricated with SABER Professional appear to contain fewer deposits.

Crankcases

Oils with ineffective detergency properties can allow deposits to accumulate in the crankcase. During operation, deposits can circulate throughout the engine and reduce performance.

crankcase housing Echo

Crankcase deposits look heavier in the engines using ECHO Power Blend. The engines using SABER Professional appear clean and free of harmful deposits.

RPM & Spark-Plug Temperature

Reduced rpm and spark-plug temperatures are indicators the engine is producing sub-optimal power. This can be caused by heavy exhaust port and spark arrestor screen deposits which restrict air flow through the engine and result in reduced power. The following graphs depict the average rpm and spark-plug temperature of engines at wide-open throttle using SABER Professional and ECHO Power Blend.

Engines using SABER Professional maintained consistent power throughout the study, while the average spark-plug temperature declined slightly. In contrast, the engines using ECHO Power Blend slowly lost power as the study progressed. Similarly, the average spark-plug temperature suffered a drop.

RPM curve Echo string trimmer

Conclusion

As demonstrated in lab testing designed to simulate a full season of real-world use, AMSOIL SABER Professional Synthetic 2-Stroke Oil provides excellent protection for ECHO* brand string trimmers. SABER Professional outperformed ECHO Power Blend* XTended Life* Universal 2-Stroke Oil by providing improved resistance to piston deposits, crankcase deposits and exhaust port blocking. Due to its ability to limit exhaust-port and spark-arrestor-screen deposits, SABER Professional protected against rpm loss 21 percent better, resulting in reliable operation. The latest generation of SABER Professional meets or exceeds the increased performance requirements of ECHO SRM 225 trimmers.

AMSOIL fully supports the use of SABER Professional as a replacement for ECHO Power Blend XTended Life Universal 2-Stroke Oil, and warrants its use according to the AMSOIL Limited Liability Warranty (G1363).

Motorcycle Oil for your Motorcycle?

Harley-Davisdon Street Bob pushed to maximum heat limits

Motorcycle Oil for your Motorcycle? Ok, so it’s different but what makes AMSOIL better?

Motorcycle engines and automotive engines function differently, and the lubricants that service them have different requirements. Six crucial differences between motorcycle and automotive engines are outlined below to illustrate why oil engineered for motorcycles is the best choice for your bike.

  1. Operational Speed: Motorcycles tend to operate at engine speeds significantly higher than automobiles. This places additional stress on engine components, increasing the need for wear protection, and subjects lubricating oils to higher loading and shear forces. Elevated operating rpm also promote foaming, which can reduce an oil’s load-carrying ability.
  2. Compression Ratios: Motorcycles tend to operate with higher engine compression ratios than automobiles, which places additional stress on engine components and increases engine operating temperatures, placing greater demands on motorcycle oil to reduce wear. Higher operating temperatures also promote thermal degradation of the oil, reducing its life expectancy and accelerating the formation of engine deposits.
  3. Horsepower/Displacement Density: Motorcycle engines typically produce more horsepower per cubic inch than automobile engines, which exposes the oil to higher temperatures and stress.
  4. Variable Engine Cooling: In general, automotive applications use a sophisticated water-cooling system to control engine operating temperature. Similar systems can be found in motorcycle applications, but most are air-cooled or use a combination air/oil design. Operating temperatures in air-cooled bikes can skyrocket in stop-and-go traffic, promoting oxidation and causing oil to thin, reducing their load-carrying ability.
  5. Multiple Lubrication Functionality: Many motorcycles have a common sump supplying oil to both the engine and transmission. In such cases, the oil is required to meet the needs of both the engine and the transmission gears. Many motorcycles also incorporate a wet clutch within the transmission that uses the same oil.
  6. Inactivity: Whereas automobiles are used on a daily basis, motorcycle use is usually periodic and, in many cases, seasonal. These extended periods of inactivity place additional stress on motorcycle oils. In these circumstances, rust and acid corrosion protection are of critical concern.

No matter the conditions or the bike, AMSOIL synthetic motorcycle oils deliver the premium protection and performance your bike deserves. They are designed to control oxidation and maintain viscosity at higher temperatures, promote consistent clutch feel and lengthen clutch life, reduce engine stress and control wear and deposits in high-compression, high-temperatures motorcycle applications. V-twin or metric, AMSOIL has you covered.

Now for the Extreme test!! Hold on to your hat for this one, I was so impressed by this I thought I would grab the text from this AMSOIL brochure. So glad AMSOIL added this whole testing wing to the AMSOIL Center with bays capable of doing multiple tests at once. Watch the video which demonstrates the test laid out within the paragraphs.

red hot dynamometerV-Twins Get Hot

Harley-Davidsons* and other bikes with big V-twin engines generate significant heat, especially in low-speed parades, in rally traffic or on long climbs on hot days. Motor oil plays a critical role in cooling these big air-cooled engines, and even more so in low-speed operation with limited wind generated to cool the bike. If the oil can’t withstand the heat, its ability to protect your bike is compromised.

AMSOIL Synthetic Motorcycle Oil Protects in Extreme Heat

To demonstrate its extreme-heat protection qualities, AMSOIL 20W-50 Synthetic Motorcycle Oil was subjected to a dynamometer test designed to simulate conditions even more extreme than the demanding stop-and-go driving conditions of a motorcycle rally or parade route.

A 2012 Harley-Davidson FXDB Dyna Street Bob* motorcycle equipped with AMSOIL 20W-50 Synthetic Motorcycle Oil was subjected to a strenuous low-speed test cycle, with significant idle time broken by short bursts of engine revving and little to no air moving across the cylinders. Like most Harley-Davidson motorcycles, the Dyna Street Bob features an air-cooled V-twin engine, which relies on cooling fins arrayed along the cylinder walls to conduct heat away. To create the most-severe operating conditions possible, the electronic temperature controls, which safeguard the motorcycle when temperatures reach dangerous levels, were deactivated. The combination of low airflow and inoperative temperature controls allowed the test lab to subject the oil and engine components to intense heat not normally experienced in the real world. Cylinder temperatures reached more than 500°F, and oil temperatures exceeded 300°F – temperatures well into the range where oils begin to break down and often lead to catastrophic failure.

500°F is No Problem The extreme temperatures were no match for AMSOIL Synthetic Motorcycle Oil. After nearly 70 minutes of torturous testing and heat exposure, oil analysis revealed no change in oil viscosity and only minor levels of oxidation, TBN depletion and wear (see graphs).

Dyno Test Results

Not only did AMSOIL Synthetic Motorcycle Oil prevent the engine from overheating and seizing during the extreme dyno test, it did so without losing chemical integrity or ability to protect vulnerable engine components. This stands as further proof that AMSOIL Synthetic Motorcycle Oil provides outstanding protection in even the most compromising and severe high-temperature riding and idling conditions, providing peace of mind that your air-cooled V-twin is protected even in low speeds on hot days. Your bike should never get this hot. If it does, AMSOIL has you covered.

Amsoil 20W-50 motorcycle oil Viscosity and Oxidation tests Amsoil 20W-50 motorcycle oil TBN (Total Base Number) and wear metals test results

Want to help us get the word out? Join us as a dealer and earn money from commissions. Check out my dealer page. We offer a LOT of support and AMSOIL University training. See our page on AMSOIL Dealerships.

 

The Only Oil Choice for Turbos – Signature Series

AMSOIL - The Only Choice for Turbos

Visit us for all your oil needs:
Synthetic Warehouse Sioux Falls
4610 W. 12th St.  (12th & G right next to Wendy’s)

New Challenges for Lubricants

The increased slate of issues lubricants have to meet (or will have to) as technologies to lower emissions are required, place the burden of expertise on to the customer. AMSOIL wants to ensure the customer these issues have been addressed long before the standard reaches the marketplace. Other problems which occur in new vehicles such as design flaws or specific engine wear/sludging issues are also addressed by AMSOIL’s technical staff swiftly. The superiority of their knowledge and resources available can result in an immediate solution giving drivers more time in between these known problems requiring repair or often solving the problem entirely in both engine and transmission.

Turbocharger Issues

The industry trend toward smaller engines that deliver increased power and fuel efficiency has been well documented. The AMSOIL Newsstand contains several articles about the key technologies that enable today’s advanced engines – turbochargers, gasoline direct injection (GDI) and variable valve timing (VVT). These articles have mainly addressed how these technologies affect motor oil.

In short, they’re brutal on oil. It’s one of the reasons more automakers are installing synthetics at the factory.

Fuel dilution can be a problem

To summarize, GDI technology locates the fuel injectors directly in the cylinder (hence the name), as opposed to the manifold. This arrangement allows for greater control over injection, allowing engineers to fine-tune engines for greater efficiency and power. A side-effect of this process, however, is fuel contaminating the oil. As fuel is sprayed into the combustion chamber, it can wash past the rings and down the cylinder walls, into the oil sump. Ford* has seen the issue frequently enough to release a technical service bulletin (14-0040) titled “Fuel Odor From Engine Oil and/or Engine Oil Level Overfull” to address F-150 trucks equipped with the 3.5L Ecoboost* engine. Fuel dilution varies by engine type and driving conditions, with some vehicles showing no issues.

There are two main side-effects of fuel in the oil. First, fuel thins the oil, sometimes reducing the viscosity below the specified grade. If not accounted for in the design of the engine, this can affect wear rates and have an effect on systems that use the oil to function, like VVT.

Second, significant fuel contamination increases the rate of oil degradation. For these reasons, oil analysis labs typically condemn oil samples when the fuel content is greater than 5 percent.

Low-quality oils no match for turbos

Many GDI engines are turbocharged (TGDI). Turbos push more air into the combustion chamber, and tuning for efficiency can improve fuel economy, especially when combined with other technologies, such as direct injection. Operating at up to 150,000 rpm on exhaust gases that can exceed 1,000°F, turbos create extreme conditions that can cause low-quality oils to quickly break down, creating deposits and shortening the life of the oil. By 2020, industry experts predict nearly every new vehicle sold will come equipped with GDI technology, and the vast majority will be turbocharged.

Many motorists – and even more in the future – probably see only the tremendous benefits of improved power and fuel economy from their TGDI vehicles. Most don’t realize the toll modern engines take on motor oil.

Like most vehicle manufacturers, AMSOIL has long recommended different service intervals based on “normal” or “severe” driving conditions. Turbocharged vehicles are automatically included in the severe service category due to the extreme heat they generate. To ensure customers have the information they need to properly maintain their vehicles, a notice will soon be added to the AMSOIL Product Guides at www.amsoil.com that reminds owners of turbocharged vehicles to follow the severe-service recommendation. That means customers using Signature Series Synthetic Motor Oil in TGDI engines can extend drain intervals up to 15,000 miles/700 hours/12 months, whichever comes first, and should only extend oil changes beyond that with the guidance of oil analysis.

AMSOIL synthetic motor oil delivers superior protection

As proven in numerous tests, AMSOIL synthetic motor oils deliver outstanding protection for these challenging engines. For example, the TEOST Test (see graph) determines an oil’s tendency to form deposits at high temperatures and is a good indicator of turbocharger protection. In the test, Signature Series 5W-30 Synthetic Motor Oil minimized deposits and easily surpassed API SN requirements. In the extreme heat of the Sequence IIIG Test, Signature Series scored 86 percent better for piston deposits than required by API SN, even after doubling the length of the test.

Oil Deposit tests - Brands compared

Here at our Sioux Falls location we get a lot of Subaru WRX and STI owners who know the trouble the run of the mill synthetic causes if it’s not the true PAO base 100% as AMSOIL Signature Series. With AMSOIL Signature or European Series you never have to worry about coking or burnt deposits caused by other so called “fully synthetic” products as long as you follow the severe service oil change interval. AMSOIL is the key to enjoying long life turbocharged performance.

Even in older cars with turbos (Corvair, Chrysler Laser, Mitsubishi 3000GT and so on) can enjoy better performance using our Signature Series.

clogged oil passages on turbocharger unit.

This would never happen with a top quality synthetic motor oil.

Material from turbo oil passages. Volitile non-synthetic oils will do this.

Material extracted from turbo’s oil ports due to inferior motor oil choices.

Turbo inner workings

The above shows how close the oil gets to extreme exhaust temperatures.

AMSOIL - The Only Choice for Turbos

Visit our Sioux Falls location at 4211 South 12th St. Just down the hill from L and across the street form the Hardees stop.

Call us at 800-579-0580

Note – this link opens an awesome Turbo 101 learning page by Honeywell.

Now this would be fun!! Go for it!

Now this would be fun!! Go for it!

The AMSOIL America Adventure is a 6-day competition in October of 2015. The competition will take teams on an adventurous route filled with intense competition with each evening ending in a new city. As part of the game, and the fun, teams will have no idea where they’ll end up for the night and will have to find and use clues to navigate the route correctly. Daily competitions may include: Performance Driving School, Desert Racing, RC Car Races, and will culminate at the 2015 Monster Energy Cup in Las Vegas.