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A Mechanic's Life - Tales From Under the Hood

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  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    06 CRV
    rt rear rotor/hub/wheel bearing assembly

    Can a seizing (or reluctant to return after brake application) caliper cause a rotor to run warm enough to smell a bit hot, can that cook enough grease out of the way to cause a WB to fail..in about 600 miles over a couple months (10 mi /day at 35 mph and 50 mile trips at 50 mph once a week) or so of that condition?

    This generation of CRV are known to have troublesome rear brakes apparently.

    I have heard strange sounds in the past of a WB going in..well a few cars over the years but one that was the most elusive to determine which end and side was the culprit, was an old Samurai (live axles on frame). Anyway, pretty sure this noise is coming from the suspect right rotor (rubbing, altho is not hot anymore, only gets warm) and the noise is not nearly as discernible/loud now. This is why I can't be sure the WB was affected by this initially hot rotor. I intend to buy a pair of new rear rotors (they incorporate a Parking brake drum also) in any event, and possibly a new caliper if I can't get the new aftermkt pads not grd down enough to fit enough to not drag. The cast positioning tabs had to be grd in order to fit. yes, should have bought OEM.

    The reason I would like an opinion on this is if the WB is shot, it is fairly expensive, as the entire assembly including all suspension and trailing/originating links have to come out. It is AWD. It also houses the stability control sensor pickups. I don't want to get into the WB if you think that a hot rotor is unlikely responsible for causing the WB to go. Car has only 55k miles on it. And rarely has anyone in back seat or loaded heavy.

    Even when it got fairly hot, I could put my hand (end of my fingers reached in) on the centre hub part. But could not do that on the rotor itself, was too hot to touch safely. I put a laser Class 2 temp gauge on the hub one day when I got home but forget what the reading was..I think the hub was about 110 and the rotor was 125 or so..

    I wish I had someone who could hang out the window in the back seat and listen.
    So to sum up:

    - Any tips on discerning a WB sound going, vs a rubbing pads on the rotor?

    - Could that hot rotor take out the WB's? Or is 55k miles and a bad WB not unheard of on these CRV's?

    I know WB often don't last nearly as long as they used to as pursued weight savings have made them all smaller and lighter rotors and hubs/WB etc to save weight.
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,563
    Needless to say, it doesn't meet the specs for my Mustang, my Escape, nor my flat bed. It would be OK for my Sundance and my Ranger. Whether its supposed to meet the specs or not it wouldn't find its way into my Explorer, no way, no how.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,708
    125 isn't very hot. I've seen rotors at the track glowing red hot in the dark and they didn't affect wheel bearings.

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  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    I hope I am not misleading by mentioning that temp, cuz I really can't remember, but feel pretty sure if it was much more than that I would have recalled better..

    I have seen red rotors on bikes, but as with I suspect the race cars, I think the rotors must be a lot farther away from the WB than they are on this CRV. On the bikes of course they are nowhere near the hub which houses the WB's, sitting right out in the open outboard of the hub. It just seems to me that heat radiates inward too right? It has no bias that I am aware of. You know, I haven't had these rotors off...but I bet they house the WB too right? Often Japanese types that incorporate the parking brake drum all as one unit.

    I hope you are right, shiftright. So many noises such as this are hard to pinpoint..this was like a low-pitched rubbling sound and not sure if rubbing pads could make this sound or not. I tired weaving in my lane to try to see if the noise frequency changed, and it did but then started to sound like it was the brakes.

    Looks like I am going to have to pull the entire assembly to be sure. Hope I don't need a torch cuz all I have is propane and that rarely is enough when oxy/acet is the order of the day. And it has been -20- -30 here lately. This is why I am considering a 2nd spare fuel sipper. In the end I think would offset the insurance and rest of assoc costs of running an extra vehicle, as I need a light tower and I need AWD for winter. Be great if I had a spare car and then could work on this when it warms up more. Just can't do it when it is this cold.
  • busirisbusiris Posts: 3,490
    edited February 2013
    BMW Long-life rating LL-01 Approved Synthetic Oils for the US Market:

    Castrol Syntec European Formula SAE 0W-30

    Mobil 1 SAE 0W-40

    Pennzoil Platinum European Formula Ultra SAE 5W-30

    Valvoline SynPower SAE 5W-30


    Speaking just for myself, the only oil I've ever been able to find on a store shelf on that list was the Mobil 1 SAE 0W-40.

    I've found similar labeled oil, but not exact matches.

    In my case, I use official BMW Castrol oil purchased from the dealer in my BMW products. I can buy it for roughly the same price ($6.25/quart), and the dealership is only 8 miles from my house.

    To me, it seems like a no brainier to do it that way, especially since I also buy the filter from the dealership.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,708
    no, don't work under adverse conditions--that often leads to job less than well done.

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  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,563
    Castrol Syntec European Formula SAE 0W-30

    Yep, notice it specifies the European formula, the Mobil 1 actually does as well and so does the Pennzoil.

    Mobil 1 SAE 0W-40

    Pennzoil Platinum European Formula Ultra SAE 5W-30


    So that leaves Valvoline. You'll notice it listed as SynPower MST on the link Steve provided and that is correct, that Valvoline is approved by BMW. But is the one that you find in the parts store the one that is approved, or is it the North American version that is not?

    Valvoline SynPower SAE 5W-30


    Hmmm
  • busirisbusiris Posts: 3,490
    edited February 2013
    All I can say is that, in my limited effort to find BMW approved alternatives, the only one that was a complete match (with the appropriate LL blah blah blah specifications was the Mobil 1 SAE 0W-40. (I'm not an oil expert, but I can match up letters and numbers from a label to a document denoting required parameters and specifications.)

    I did find similar Pennzoil and Valvoline offerings, but as I recall, they didn't meet the BMW specifications and requirements.

    Since I could buy the preferred BMW Castrol lube directly from a nearby dealer at a comparable price, I ceased looking at alternatives. I took the path of least resistance.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 30,584
    edited February 2013
    Is this the list you found?

    http://www.bmwusa.com/Standard/Content/Owner/SyntheticEngineOils.aspx

    Is the Valvoline SynPower 5W30 listed the same one that you will find on the parts store shelf?


    That was the list, and I did buy the Valvoline... Is it the same one? You tell me? ;)

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  • busirisbusiris Posts: 3,490
    edited February 2013
    That was the list, and I did buy the Valvoline... Is it the same one? You tell me?

    Hard to say, but I would say it isn't. Check out the link below.

    http://www.valvoline.com/pdf/synpower.pdf

    Page one is the spec sheet for the ILSAC grades (aimed at the NA market), and page two is for non ILSAC grades (aimed at the European market). I'm guessing what you saw/bought was the oil spec'ed out on page one, and not the oil spec'ed out on page two. Only the oil spec'ed out on page two has the BMW LL-01 LL-04 designation.
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,563
    edited February 2013
    You are correct of course. The SynPower normally found in the parts stores is the North American version and it does not meet the European specifications. Wouldn't it be a good idea for media types to help the consumers understand that instead of trying to discredit shops who are trying to advise the consumers correctly?
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,708
    i think you're still barking up the wrong tree, Doc. It's not the media who is doing you any damage---it's all the people in your business who are either incompetent or unscrupulous.

    As has happened in so many industries, if they do not police themselves, the gov-mint will do it for you, and probably badly.

    The Better Business Bureau was formed for this very reason--- a self-policing organization fully funded by good businesses to get rid of bad businesses.

    The auto repair industry is never going to become fully respectable until we institute an apprentice program like they have in some parts of Europe.

    Cars are too complicated now for owners to fully understand them (and often too complicated for many "mechanics" to understand them), so I don't see why you are applying such high standards to media.

    The media is selling a product, and, as a product (often free) it "is what it is"--it will vary in quality as much as a string of auto repair shops might vary.

    I think it is somewhat disingenuous to expect the media to outperform The Brotherhood, so to speak.

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  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 30,584
    edited February 2013
    The list of oils is off the BMW USA website, and I have a car built for the North American market, so why would BMW USA recommend oil that isn't available in the USA?

    (Not that I'm worried about my one quart of full synthetic, out of seven)

    To take it further, the link to BMW's website doesn't say anything about a European formula for the Valvoline, but it does say that it should meet API SM requirements, which my bottle says it does, right on the back.

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  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,781
    To take it further, the link to BMW's website doesn't say anything about a European formula for the Valvoline, but it does say that it should meet API SM requirements, which my bottle says it does, right on the back.

    The owners manual for my son's 2004 X3 2.5 states that you can use a synthetic API SH 5W-30 or 5W-40 oil for top-up if a BMW approved oil is unavailable.

    2009 328i / 2004 X3 2.5/ 1995 318ti Club Sport/ 1975 2002A/ 2007 Mazdaspeed 3/ 1999 Wrangler/ 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica

  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,563
    i think you're still barking up the wrong tree, Doc. It's not the media who is doing you any damage---it's all the people in your business who are either incompetent or unscrupulous

    We are working on helping as many of them improve themselves as possible. Sadly many are happy just where they are at. The media does have a dirty hand in all of this, time and again we see an "article" that bashes the industry and praises a toy tool like CarMD. They aren't really articles if you understand them, they are simply advertisements. Rons oil essay, it's got big errors in it. Now is it that its just out of date and wan't researched well enough, or did some oil company pay to have it written that way?

    As has happened in so many industries, if they do not police themselves, the gov-mint will do it for you, and probably badly


    Agreed, nothing good would come from licensing from the government for quite some time. They would allow the worst of the trade to continue operating just as they are, so long as they paid a fee and nothing would really change.

    The Better Business Bureau was formed for this very reason--- a self-policing organization fully funded by good businesses to get rid of bad businesses.

    Today the BBB is a self serving organization and its actually mined by scam artists to find businesses to try and take advantage of. I had to leave a restaurant my wife and I were at a few months back. We could hear one of these people bragging about how much money he had saved by finding things to complain about and he was telling his friends how to do it.

    The auto repair industry is never going to become fully respectable until we institute an apprentice program like they have in some parts of Europe.

    Agreed, but who is going to pay for that?

    Cars are too complicated now for owners to fully understand them (and often too complicated for many "mechanics" to understand them), so I don't see why you are applying such high standards to media

    When they sit down to write a story, they simply assume they know enough about it whether they do or not. I posted a new link on the R2R forum. That author has responded to me with some specific questions already about some of the gross errors in how the trade and its problems are represented in his "story". He was fed a line and he ran with it, without researching it and now Maine is gathering support for flawed legislation similar to Massachusetts. I don't know if anyone has payed attention to what has changed in Mass, but it isn't much. The shops who weren't buying the tools before, still aren't buying them. The techs who weren't going to schools still are'nt. Some software prices did go up for Mass. shops. Honda has a search engine built into their system that is now available to those shops, and it costs double the regular subscription. Who has followed up to see how many shops are buying the subscriptions to help service their customers cars, and reported that back to the public?

    The media is selling a product, and, as a product (often free) it "is what it is"--it will vary in quality as much as a string of auto repair shops might vary.

    Yea, and when they think one of us is doing our job wrong, they salivate at the chance to make themselves a name. Why are they supposed to be immune from the way they treat others?

    I think it is somewhat disingenuous to expect the media to outperform The Brotherhood, so to speak.

    No it isn't, they set a perceived standard when they use their voice as did Mr. Reed and NBC last year, and countless responses to the forums here do as well. They simply should be held to that same standard. The result of ignoring that responsibility is you can see one of the regulars here now has realized that he very likely has chosen the wrong oil for his car and in this case that's a big deal because he is at risk of premature camshaft wear. the incompleteness of essays like Ron's not only allowed this to happen, attempts to alert consumers to the problem openly get met with attacks to try and discredit the techs and shops who are making the effort to point out the problem. You did it yourself when you tried to say that you could pick any bottle off the shelf and it wouldn't be a problem for a given trip "in your car". It is a problem, and you could in fact suffer camshaft failure just like the other poster here. The media has gotten its hands dirty in this and needs to fix it.
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,563
    The 2004 version of the API SH has much higher boundary layer protection additives. (ZDP, ZDDP) They will protect the flat tappet camshaft if the hydrodynamic lubrication fails better than today's North American oils will. The thing is, you don't want to ever have to rely on boundary layer protection, because it's the last gasp before wear and damage.
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,563
    The list of oils is off the BMW USA website, and I have a car built for the North American market, so why would BMW USA recommend oil that isn't available in the USA?

    Great question, you tell me! The only thing we can think of is it's been this way simply because nobody ever bothered to look close enough. The Valvoline sold in Europe meets the specs, in Europe. You can thank ACEA, or should I say, the Europeans can thank ACEA for that. Here in North America we don't have a rating system that differentiates high HTHS from low HTHS oils, they do. ACEA A1/B1 and A5/B5 are low HTHS oils, suitable for North American engines. ACEA A3/B3 A3/B4 are high HTHS oils suitable for the European style engines.

    Imagine what its like sitting in a class with a group of mechanics who are finding all of this out for the first time too. What I have shared here is only a fraction of this topic and it truly needs a classroom atmosphere to work through all of the information.

    To take it further, the link to BMW's website doesn't say anything about a European formula for the Valvoline, but it does say that it should meet API SM requirements, which my bottle says it does, right on the back.

    The API and ILSAC are minimum standards, many manufacturers require products that exceed those standards. Your BMW needs an ACEA A3/B3, A3/B4 oil. If it has any ACEA ratings on it at all I suspect you got an A1/B1 which is "too thin" for your engine. Now as a top off you are correct it will do fine.

    So I'm wondering, does GM's requirements for dexos1 seem so strange NOW? To meet GM's specs the product has to be thinner than what the API specs are at -35f. GM's bearing clearances have been reduced and they can show that at cold temperatures the molecules of the oil actually get sheared apart if the oil is too thick. Ford has the same concerns. We aren't even close to everything you need to know about oil today yet. Now just think, this one subject has changed this much, how out of touch with technology are the rest of the media types who think of themselves as experts?
  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 41,633
    don't know if anyone has payed attention to what has changed in Mass, but it isn't much.

    It's still not settled since there were two versions of the bill passed and they have conflicts. Either the Mass. legislature will reconcile them or it'll land in the courts.

    Are the ACEA A3/B3, A3/B4 oil specs that BMW uses a trade industry standard or specs that BMW figured out and licenses for a fee?

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  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,563
    edited February 2013
    Are the ACEA A3/B3, A3/B4 oil specs that BMW uses a trade industry standard or specs that BMW figured out and licenses for a fee

    So you keep wanting to misdirect the issue. In Europe, the ACEA ratings are significant guidelines for the consumers to choose the correct oil, and the average driver is well aware of how to interpret them.

    ACEA is controlled by the auto manufacturers and the oil companies have to make the products to their specs. Are there monies changing hands for the licensing? I wouldn't know, and frankly I don't care. I only need to be able to get the correct products for my customers and know how to advise them correctly.

    Being able to do that without being armchaired in the wrong direction would be nice too.

    But I suppose we can speculate a bit. Here in North America do the lubrication companies have to pay a licensing fee to the API and ILSAC to have their products carry the certifications?

    So who is MOM
  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 41,633
    You keep trying to misdirect the issue. ;)

    I want to save money. How many licenses does an oil need? And who pays (we already know the answer to that).

    Mom is the API. So, I can report Dexos abuse to them? :shades:

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  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,563
    edited February 2013
    MOM wants shops to pay to prove that the bulk oil they are purchasing meets the manufactuers specs for the cars that they are putting it into.

    Mom is the API. So, I can report Dexos abuse to them?

    If someone fails to put dexos1 into a car that requires it, Absolutely!

    I want to save money. How many licenses does an oil need?

    Since some companies are still making up the rules as they go by continuing to use specs like ACEA A1, GM 6094M, GM 4718M, all of which are obsolete, you tell me.

    Oh wait, unless you approve of them doing that, do you?

    And who pays (we already know the answer to that).

    Everyone.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,708
    edited February 2013
    Good points, Doc, but I NEVER said:

    "when you tried to say that you could pick any bottle off the shelf and it wouldn't be a problem for a given trip "in your car"."

    I said I could pick any high grade synthetic oil off the shelf. In fact, I do that for MY car because I'm confident that it's fine (and mr. camshaft is very happy, thank you very much).

    But I don't tell other people to do that--I tell them to follow manufacturer's recommendations.

    As for apprentice programs, well the 'student' pays for it, same as college tuition.

    You go to Doc University and you pay tuition. :P

    RE: Media -- I don't believe that *broadcast* American media enjoys any particularly good reputation for credibility these days. As for print and internet media, it depends. You can't equate someone's BLOG with a dedicated site like Edmunds.

    Sure, media "headhunts"--because there are so many easy targets. They aren't going to go to your shop.

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  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,563
    "when you tried to say that you could pick any bottle off the shelf and it wouldn't be a problem for a given trip "in your car"."

    I said I could pick any high grade synthetic oil off the shelf. In fact, I do that for MY car because I'm confident that it's fine (and mr. camshaft is very happy, thank you very much).


    I'm saying being armed with less than a solid understanding of the topic the consumers are easily mislead by such scenarios.

    But I don't tell other people to do that--I tell them to follow manufacturer's recommendations.

    And yet Steve is doing everything he can think of to raise some doubts as to whether that is truly necessary or not, exactly in line with some oil companies wishes. JMHO.....

    As for apprentice programs, well the 'student' pays for it, same as college tuition

    Just like everything else, that cost has to be passed onto someone else. "Steve" wants to save money so bad that he won't tolerate it.
  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 41,633
    edited February 2013
    MOM wants shops to pay to prove that the bulk oil they are purchasing meets the manufacturers specs for the cars that they are putting it into.

    Shop owners still talk about buying oil in bulk and hanging the 55 gallon drums from the ceiling.

    I don't recall if you ever said how many bays your garage has or what you do for storage. All these oils that need to be stocked are going to be pushing your tires or filters or whatever outside under a tarp. You don't have a runner send stuff over for every job do you? (although I often see my mechanic walking a block to hit the local auto parts store).

    (And yeah, I'm cheap frugal. That's how I found Edmunds back in '98 - making sure I didn't leave too much money on the hood when I got my '99 Quest. You know, the one that won't die at 182k, running cheap oil and filters every 7,500 miles.)

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  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,708
    Well, unless you test Steve's premise, he could be right. One could hardly call an automaker a 'disinterested' party. What you are probably reading half the time are not factory engineers' prose, but the legal department's prose.

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  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,563
    edited February 2013
    I don't recall if you ever said how many bays your garage has or what you do for storage. All these oils that need to be stocked are going to be pushing your tires or filters or whatever outside under a tarp.

    It's a problem, but one that we are doing everything we possibly can to keep in check. It's a bigger problem when consumers aren't being told why we have to do it this way today and respect and support us for it.

    Three bays, mom and pop shop. I turn every bolt.

    Do you approve of oil companies quoting obsolete specifications?
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,563
    Well, unless you test Steve's premise, he could be right.

    So now that it's been tested.....

    One could hardly call an automaker a 'disinterested' party

    Nor the consumers, or the oil companies, or a tiny shop in western Pa. We all have a stake in this and making sure that the consumers are being told the right information shouldn't have had to fall all that way to me.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,708
    Perhaps you should call it *A* right information and not *THE* right information?

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  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 41,633
    Three bays, mom and pop shop. I turn every bolt.

    My guy is also three bays. He has a helper though (no idea how good a tech he is). No idea who does the books either.

    I worry about guys like you. Accidentally drop a heavy alternator or something on your foot wrong and you could be out of commission for days (or limping around wrenching against doctor's orders and creating health issues down the road).

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  • busirisbusiris Posts: 3,490
    You are correct of course. The SynPower normally found in the parts stores is the North American version and it does not meet the European specifications. Wouldn't it be a good idea for media types to help the consumers understand that instead of trying to discredit shops who are trying to advise the consumers correctly?

    Like politics, there's more than enough blame to pass around to everyone.

    Sticking precisely to the subject at hand, in this case, the appropriate oil for one's vehicle, it seems to me the onus really should be on the manufacturer to clearly identify the correct (acceptable) lubricant for the respective engine, other than having "5W-30" stamped on top of the oil-filler cap, and have that info both in the manual and on a label located somewhere under the hood of the car, placed in a highly visible location.

    Personally, all I'm interested in is using the correct product, and if its done by having the oil weight and technical specifications identified on the label (LL-4 and so on) then I'm good to go, just as long as the oil bottle has the corresponding information printed on the label.

    Again, just my take on things, I look beyond the flashy front label on products when asking purchases, be it oil, food or medicine. I check the salt content and corn syrup content in food purchases, and I read the drug interaction details on the OTC medications before buying them.

    Would it be nice to have a simpler, faster way to make product-suitability determinations? Sure would, but I know the producer's main objective is to move product. Sometimes, folks really don't want to know. Example: CA voters recently voted down a bill that would force more complete food-source information on the food product labels they buy.

    Compared to the "truth in labeling" content I remember as a child, we have come light years, yet there are still "miles to go before we sleep".

    All I can safely say is that, for the most part, my method works for me, and not trying to sound too selfish or arrogant, but at the end of the day, that all I'm really concerned about. If someone doesn't want to take the time to get a clear understanding of what they should know to properly maintain their vehicle, it's not my problem.

    I read a lot, and do quite a bit of research on the internet to find out things about the products I use/might use, but I ALWAYS compare that knowledge to what the manufacturer specifies. You can learn a lot about auto maintenance from publications and the Internet, and a lot that you learn quite often is absolutely incorrect.

    My motto: Reader beware.
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