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DIY 15K Service on Q5 2.0T- Should Oil be Black?

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Old 04-11-2014, 07:39 AM   #1
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Default DIY 15K Service on Q5 2.0T- Should Oil be Black?

Recently did the 15k oil change DIY using the extraction method. The first oil change was performed (presumably) at the dealer at 5K. The oil I extracted was completely black (not brown). For those that have performed 15k oil changes on Q5s, is black oil at 15k normal? I'm a little suspicious that the oil was not changed at 15k because (a) the oil filter was so tight it took a breaker bar to remove it, and (b) the oil was black (not brown as I would have expected). Thanks!

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Old 04-11-2014, 09:41 AM   #2
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If the dealer did change the oil at 5k, it could indicate problems w/the engine itself if the oil turns black relatively quick. Did you save the black oil? You can have it tested here:
http://www.blackstone-labs.com/free-test-kits.php

If you are DIY I would suggest doing another change at 20k and have it tested again at Blackstone.
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Old 04-11-2014, 09:57 AM   #3
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Ganny, the oil goes dark on these (gasoline) direct injection engine very early.
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Old 04-11-2014, 10:12 AM   #4
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Yes, it should be black. That means "stuff" is being held in suspension and the oil is doing its job.
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Old 04-11-2014, 10:43 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Parsec View Post
If the dealer did change the oil at 5k, it could indicate problems w/the engine itself if the oil turns black relatively quick. Did you save the black oil? You can have it tested here:
http://www.blackstone-labs.com/free-test-kits.php

If you are DIY I would suggest doing another change at 20k and have it tested again at Blackstone.
After a 2.500-3.000km oil in TFSI engine becomes black, it is normal for Audi engines
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Old 04-11-2014, 02:29 PM   #6
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its normal for all cars if you driven 15k on a single oil change. at 5k engine oil will be black.
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Old 04-11-2014, 02:36 PM   #7
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Every turbo car we have had turns the oil black just about instantly after you start it. And that's with 100% synthetic oil as well.
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Old 04-11-2014, 02:39 PM   #8
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Old 04-17-2014, 12:13 PM   #9
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Thanks for feedback - its sounds like its normal to go black before 10,000 miles.
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Old 04-17-2014, 12:14 PM   #10
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Every turbo car we have had turns the oil black just about instantly after you start it. And that's with 100% synthetic oil as well.

Just out of curiosity, why does this happen to turbo cars quicker than non-turbo cars?
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Old 04-17-2014, 12:30 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Ganny View Post
Just out of curiosity, why does this happen to turbo cars quicker than non-turbo cars?
Interested to the answer to this too. This is the first turbo I've owned and my previous cars never turned the oil anywhere near black before I changed it.
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Old 04-18-2014, 03:45 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Parsec View Post
Interested to the answer to this too. This is the first turbo I've owned and my previous cars never turned the oil anywhere near black before I changed it.
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Just out of curiosity, why does this happen to turbo cars quicker than non-turbo cars?
engine oil feeds through the turbo bearings. and turbochargers do get pretty hot. so the harder you push the turbo. The more oil will be passing through both engine and turbocharger bearings. meaning your burning a oil a lot quicker.

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Old 04-18-2014, 12:09 PM   #13
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Black oil is normal - brown oil is scary, indicative of some contamination like coolant.

I've had other vehicles in which new motor oil turned black quickly, like a 2003 Chrysler minivan (3.8 L six). Turbocharging can push combustion products past the piston rings more readily than a non-turbo engine, and turning the oil black.

I'll also note that siphoning the oil out the top probably leaves some dirty oil behind to contaminate the new oil & make it go dark/black faster.

+1 on the Blackstone labs option. I'm doing that every oil change. I just changed mine at 10K miles with a lab analysis, and I'll pull a sample in advance of the 15K change.
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Old 04-18-2014, 02:09 PM   #14
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Default Yes, normal for some synthetic oils, answer...

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Originally Posted by Steppenaudi View Post
Black oil is normal - brown oil is scary, indicative of some contamination like coolant.

I've had other vehicles in which new motor oil turned black quickly, like a 2003 Chrysler minivan (3.8 L six). Turbocharging can push combustion products past the piston rings more readily than a non-turbo engine, and turning the oil black.

I'll also note that siphoning the oil out the top probably leaves some dirty oil behind to contaminate the new oil & make it go dark/black faster.

+1 on the Blackstone labs option. I'm doing that every oil change. I just changed mine at 10K miles with a lab analysis, and I'll pull a sample in advance of the 15K change.
Read this by an enthusiastic oil hobbyist...

"I see this question brought up all of the time and want to put it to rest. Stated more accurately, the reason that Mobil 1 darkens more so than many other motor oils in an engine is because it darkens more than many others just from being heated to operating temperatures. It is not because it's doing a better job of cleaning like most assume; it does clean well as do many other quality oils but that's not why it gets darker in use than some other oils in same engine use. Put in even simpler terms, it changes color a lot when heated.

And while we're on the topic, Redline oil gets even darker when heated than Mobil 1, given high enough temperatures. Not that it matters; it's just an FYI. Another FYI: Castrol 5W-40, 10W-40, and Gold GC stay very much the same color as they started when heated. I have same info on some other oils but that wasn't the point of this thread, so I'll end here.

Color change is a function of several things: additive package darkening, oxidation of basestocks (bad), and amount of carbon in the oil. For Mobil 1 and Redline, additive package darkening happens easily and well before the basestocks have darkened from oxidation.

How do I know? I heated the oils to many temperatures for many lengths of time. How else would I know?

Well it's tough to say because it is temperature AND time dependent. One extreme example is that I was able to turn most synthetics very black in 30-60 seconds if I had them at over 600F degrees.
Mobil 1 5W-30 and 10W-30 did darken noticeably when at 300F degrees for several hours, while the Castrol Syntecs I tested barely changed color. In an engine, the oil may never get over 220F degrees, but it's in use for MANY MANY hours, so it's enough to darken the oil just from heat.

To determine if an oil needs an oil cooler would be much better done by at best measuring the oil temp or at worst using a pyrometer on the oil pan. There are so many variables involved in the color change of used motor oil that going by that is shakey ground to stand on. Some conclusions can be made however. I know that for example GC's color is less affected by heat than Mobil 1 5W-30, so if one engine is making GC very dark compared to another engine using M1, the engine using GC is either running longer intervals, getting more blowby (carbon) into the oil, or it's running HOT AS HECK (>300F likely). GC takes such high temps to change color that no healthy engine will get the oil hot enough to change it just from heat.

The M1 might darken up, but the conventional will break down and tar up first, usually much sooner. The same can be said for some of the older Syntec formulae.

I don't care about any oil changing color once in service. It indicates absolutely nothing concerning the essential properties of the lubricant. It certainly isn't probative to thermal oxidation and breakdown. And other than when I put it in and drain it out, I don't stare at the color all that much. It just isn't that much of an automotive fashion accessory. Maybe if I had a leaker, I'd feel differently and try to find an oil that better complimented my block paint.

No I didn't test Pennzoil Platinum but did test the older Pennzoil 10W-30 Synthetic (API SL) about 2 years ago. I think it had the name "Penzane" or "Pentane" in it's ad literature. I don't want to discuss the results because the Platinum could be much better than the old Pennzoil synthetic.

Alright fellas, apparently my attempt at giving only a small portion of my OCD-inspired oil testing has opened pandora's box and spread from the color change topic to oxidative stability and the other things that really matter. It sounds like there is a desire for more data. I do not have enough spare time on my hands to present all of the results from several years of testing, but you may look at the list of oils tested below and ask any questions you have.

The purpose of the testing was to evaluate how the oils reacted to high temperatures. Whatever could be observed was and was recorded but the main focus was on (1) viscosity change resulting from the opposing effects of oxidation and break-up of viscosity index improvers, (2) flash point, (3) deposit formation, (4) volatility. The color and odor was noted but not used in any judging except when the odor indicated oxidation had occured. I did these on my own time out of scientific curiosity. I was not being paid by anyone."

As stated above different brands just react to heat differently, I use Castol and it stays the same color through the change cycle.

Also suction oil changes don't leave any oil in the sump. Do a "proper" suction oil purge, and then remove the drain plug and you won't get anymore oil out.
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Old 04-18-2014, 02:09 PM
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