Updates on Proposed API SN PLUS Standard - Engine Builder Magazine

Updates on Proposed API SN PLUS Standard

At the Pan-American Base Oils and Lubricants Conference in Jersey City, N.J., Kevin Ferrick, Sr. Manager of the API Engine Oil Program provided an update on the proposed API SN PLUS standard.

At the Pan-American Base Oils and Lubricants Conference in Jersey City, N.J., Kevin Ferrick, Sr. Manager of the API Engine Oil Program provided an update on the proposed API SN PLUS standard. Highlights of his presentation are below.

SN PLUS Overview and Development Process

  • The SN PLUS supplement to API SN is intended to identify oils that meet API SN and provide additional protection against low-speed pre-ignition in turbocharged direct injection gasoline powered engines.
  • Development delays with GF-6 resulted in 10 automakers requesting the change to API SN standard to address low-speed pre-ignition (LSPI) problem in turbocharged direct injection gasoline engines.
  • The addition of Sequence IX LSPI test to API SN and modified API Donuts, which have been previously announced, are the only direct changes required
  • The request requires work for the IX LSPI test which is currently awaiting ASTM approval and API adoption of read across guidelines. If reformulation is necessary, Sequence IIIG and IIIH are available but read across for IIIH is not yet available. Provisional licensing is in effect for VID
  • The API Lubricants Group is now balloting the change to API 1509 to accommodate SN PLUS.

Proposed SN Description for SN PLUS:

  • API Service Category SN engine oils that also carry the classification SN PLUS are formulated to provide API SN performance and additional protection against low-speed pre-ignition for turbocharged direct injection gasoline-powered vehicles.
  • Starting June 1, 2018, oils that meet the requirements for API SN with SN PLUS or API SN with SN PLUS and Resource Conserving at the limit shown in Annex G, Table G-5, and are properly licensed may display “SN PLUS” or “Resource Conserving SN PLUS” in the lower portion of the API Service Symbol in conjunction with API SN in the upper portion.
  • Oils that satisfy SN PLUS can also effectively lubricate engines calling for API SN.  API SN with Resource Conserving, or ILSAC GF-5. API SN with SN PLUS and API SN with SN PLUS and Resource Conserving are also backward compatible to API Service Categories before API SN.

Next Steps for SN PLUS

  • Waiting on SN PLUS ballot results which close at the end of December.
  • If approved, a first licensing date will be announced, and licensees will be notified of supplement approval.
  • GF-6/API SP will then be completed which will require finalizing tests as ASTM methods. A first licensing date will then be established, and licensees will be notified of approval

On the diesel oil side of things, API CK-4 and FA-4 diesel engine oils have become readily available for the trucking, construction and agriculture industries. API has licensed approximately 654 CK-4 and 83 FA-4 oils, which ensure that the newest categories of diesel oil for use in on- and off-highway vehicles and equipment are available in the marketplace.

API CK-4 oils succeeded CJ-4 engine oils and are backward compatible diesel oils. CK-4 provides improved shear stability, oxidation resistance, and aeration control over CJ-4 in the familiar SAE 15W-40 and 10W-30 viscosity grades. Lower viscosity FA-4 oils, which meet the same performance standards as CK-4 oils, have been developed to provide engine manufacturers with a tool that will help them meet more stringent fuel economy and greenhouse gas emissions requirements.


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