What to do with old (but never used) motor oil??

blarcblarc Member Posts: 1
This is a little weird, but I don't know who to ask, so please bear with
me. My father-in-law had the largest shop I have ever seen. He is no
longer with us and after looking thru his shop I found a ton (and by a
ton, I mean 50-70 CASES) of motor oil. All of it is new and never been
opened. The problem is that it is from the late 1980's. Some of the
quarts have a stamp from 1987. The boxes are dirty and some even have
"dirt dobbers" on them. He had all types, Pennzoil, Q-State, Valveline,
you name it, he has it. SAE 35, 40, 10W-30, it is crazy. Is it still
useable? Could it still be used? I thought that you guys who have some
nice classic and muscle machine would know. Could you use it those type
of engines? Is there anything to the rumor that with the harder engines
you guys need the older oil because the newer stuff does not protect
your engine as well? What the Hades do I do with it?

Any advice would be helpful.



  • texasestexases Member Posts: 9,704
    This is nothing more than opinion on my part, but here goes:
    -I wouldn't use that oil in an engine, old or new, the new oils have greatly improved detergent packages.
    -I would contact an oil wholesaler and an oil recycler, see if they have any ideas.
    Good luck!
  • alltorquealltorque Member Posts: 535
    Wouldn't use any of it in "modern" engines but stuff like the SAE 35 & 40 you just don't see any more and it almost certainly can be used in cars of a certain era, (they're not all rebuilt 500bhp monsters with modern tolerances/metallurgy).

    Put the whole shebang onto e-Bay and see what happens. You should sell some of it at least, and you can more than cover the shipping costs. Any left, take it to the dump and dispose of it via the waste-oil container.

    That's the view from the U.K.
  • longo2longo2 Member Posts: 347
    Hey there, blarc, you might have a gold mine there if the oil is in CANS. You didn't say if it was, but from the age of the items it might be in the old one quart cans.

    If it is, there are tons of "old tin collectors" that love oil cans, especially if they are in mint condition, like yours sound.

    Don't do anything dumb like dump it all in the recycle barrel til you check this out.

    That stash could be worth a bundle!
  • euphoniumeuphonium Great Northwest, West of the Cascades.Member Posts: 3,425
    If any of the oil is Synthetic, IMO it would be acceptable while remembering today's oil has more & better detergents. OTOH when you pour it into an engine of the same vintage, it is commensurate.
  • texasestexases Member Posts: 9,704
    I'm not sure I understand the 'it's OK for old engines' line of reasoning. If anything, old engines, with their greater blowby, etc, would benefit more from new, better oils. Sure, we used these oils in them, but it would seem to be better to use modern oils. I like better the 'cans = collectors' items' line of thought. I remember selling Duron, Nitrex, etc. at the Sohio station. Wonder what's involved in shipping oil??
  • b10609b10609 Member Posts: 37
    There are lots of service station memorabilla collectors around the USA and Canada who love original oil cans and want them full so keep looking around. Even the cases are valuable as is so don't even break them up. Last fall at Fall Hershey meet there were many vendors getting good prices for old stock items so keep looking around. Expired brands are even more valuable - good hunting - Waterloo Guy !
  • texasestexases Member Posts: 9,704
    Big question - cans or plastic bottles. Not much of a market for plastic, it would seem.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonMember Posts: 20,350
    Mark them 10.00 a case and they will be gone instantly!
This discussion has been closed.