From the Lab: Frantz Filter

Oil filtration in retrospect seems to be old “as the hills” technology in the automotive industry. Many don’t think twice when changing their oil and adding a new OEM filter. It’s just part of the process of maintaining your vehicle. That is the status quo in the industry. Many have overlooked what an oil bypass filter system can do. Numerous particles smaller than 15 microns regularly make it through OEM filters and slowly damage your engine. A bypass filter is the only way to filter out damaging particles smaller than 15 microns.

Why Having a Bypass Filter Matters
Your engine is designed to last 1 million miles. By not using a bypass filter you’re putting an early expiration date on your engine. The smaller particles making it through your OEM filter are similar to wind blowing sand over an object. Eventually the sand begins to damage the object it’s blowing against. The object with sand being blown against it will wear out much faster than the same object with no sand being blown against it. The Frantz Bypass Filter system is specifically designed to meet rigorous filtration specifications which maximizes the life of your engine.

Frantz Filters Transformation
The entire Frantz Bypass Filter system was redesigned by LSI Scientists when the brand was acquired in 2014. One of the major redesigns was the filter media. Older Frantz Bypass Filter Systems literally used a roll of toilet paper. While the roll of toilet paper filters quite well, the media needed to be upgraded. After months of tests, two different types of filter media were introduced. The first media is the cellulose media, a tightly wound paper-like media that filters out water and antifreeze that may have gotten into your oil. The other media is a synthetic media that has been created through a melt-blown process. This synthetic filter lasts 2-3 times longer than the standard cellulose filter. The Frantz filter synthetic media is the only filter media of its kind in the industry. Results Matter The chart shown, is a result of a 3rd party oil analysis conducted by Blackstone Laboratories. These numbers come from a 6.0 L Powerstroke F-350 with over 215,000 miles. The initial sample was drawn from the dirty motor oil, that had been run for 4,711 miles. Close to its next scheduled oil change. The test results revealed 41,182 contaminating particles at 2 microns just in this small sample. The next sample was drawn from the same dirty oil (without being changed) after adding a Frantz Filter for just 200 miles. This test revealed just 1,641 contaminating particles at 2 microns. That’s an astounding 96% decrease in contamination after just 200 miles! The final sample was taken from brand new Shell Rotella Motor Oil, which revealed 1,818 contaminating particles at 2 microns. So when comparing the analysis of running dirty oil through the Frantz Filter for 200 miles to the analysis of brand new oil, it is evident that the Frantz Filter keeps your oil analytically cleaner than brand new oil.

Originally published in LSI Innovation Magazine – Issue 104

How To Read Oil Viscosity

You’ve probably been in an auto parts store and have been overwhelmed with all the brands, blends and viscosities that engine oil comes in. 5w-40, 10w-30, SAE 30, what does it all mean? This article will focus on how to read oil viscosity.

First off, what is viscosity?
Viscosity is the state of being thick, sticky, and semi-fluid in consistency. It’s the extent to which a fluid resists a tendency to flow. For example, maple syrup (high viscosity) is more viscous than water (low viscosity). This can be seen by pouring both out of a cup; the syrup is more viscous and will pour out more slowly than the water.

When talking about engine oil, viscosity refers to the resistance to flow and shear. Oil viscosity also determines how easily oil is pumped to the engine internals, how easily it will pass through the oil filter, and how quickly oil will drain back to the engine oil pan.

Where did these numbers come from?
The Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) established this numerical system to measure engine oil by its viscosity characteristics.

How do you read viscosity?
The first half typically includes a number and the letter “W”. This “W” stands for “Winter”. The number in front of the “W” refers to the oil’s cold weather viscosity. The lower the number, the less viscous (runnier) that oil is at low temperatures. A 5W- engine oil will flow better at lower temperatures than a 15W- oil.
The second, higher number refers to hot weather viscosity; or how viscous the engine oil is at hot temperatures (operating temperature). The higher the number, the thicker the engine oil will be in high temperatures.

Why do some oils only have one weight listed?
On a multigrade oil you will see two numbers specifying viscosity, I.E.: 10w-30
Monograde or straight weight oil contains only one specification I.E.: SAE 30

Please note: If your owner’s manual calls for a multigrade oil, monograde oils are never recommended. Most monograde oils are used by small seasonal engines or older vehicles before multigrades were produced.

Other common questions:

What is TBN?
TBN stands for Total Base Number. TBN is a measure of how much active detergent and dispersive additive is left in your engine’s oil, this number is determined by an oil analysis.

What is API?
API stands for the American Petroleum Institute, which is the leading US trade association for the oil and natural gas industries. API helps to set standards for production, refinement, and distribution of petroleum products.

In Depth Look at Hyper Lubricant Video


What does this test show?
This test shows that in a period of 100 hours at 300°F, a popular retail oil additive begins to oxidize, causing sludge and stiction. Oil in a turbo charger or near the oil control piston ring can be introduced to temperatures over 400°F, which, over time breaks down engine oil causing stiction.

Why did the Hyper Lubricant turn dark and create sludge?
Some additive companies use a chlorine based additive that breaks down and oxidizes even faster than conventional oil. What you’re seeing is the separation of the chlorine from the additive’s formula and the depositing of carbon. This particular product has been analyzed by a third party lab using ASTM D808 and found to contain 27.2% (272,000 PPM) chlorine. Most engine oil and oil additive manufacturer’s have moved away from using chlorine and chlorinated paraffins 3-5 decades ago due to their corrosive and sludge forming issues, but unfortunately these dangerous products are still on the shelf today.

What happens to chlorine containing products in an actual engine?
This video shows one factor of an engine application: temperature. When used in an engine application other factors are introduced, including varying temperatures, combustion and blow-by gases, moisture, oxidation, wear debris, unburnt fuel, pressure and more. The chlorinated paraffins hydrolyze in this environment creating hydrochloric acid inside of your engine. The presence of hydrochloric acid causes severe TBN depletion increasing the chances of corrosive wear in steel and aluminum alloys. Chlorine in the oil can also attack seals made of neoprene, rubber and cork which are main components of engine seals. Between the corrosive effects on the engine, and the hazardous effects for the environment; the EPA is finally prohibiting the last permitted chains of chlorinated paraffins in mid-2017. Companies who use these paraffins will be permitted to sell their remaining inventory, but forced to stop production of products containing chlorine.

Why did the FR3 remain clear?
The Hot Shot’s Secret FR3 was subject to the same test conditions; remaining crystal clear, with no signs of oxidation on the steel bearings in the test tubes. The synthetic PAO/ester base of FR3 offers superior thermal stability and oxidation resistance. The patented carbon nano particles in FR3 are used to fill in microscopic irregularities and smoothen the irregularities on cylinder walls, turbo bearings and other high temperature areas; which is possible because of its resistance to breaking down at high temperatures.

Products containing chlorinated paraffins should NOT be used in engine applications.

Tips for Improving Your Diesel’s Cold Starts

truck in winter
It’s no secret that diesels can be hard to start when the temperatures drop. Here are a few tips to help make sure your truck starts when you need it to:

  • Block Heater – It’s hard to find a diesel truck without one of these installed, but almost everyone has forgotten to plug their truck in overnight at least once. To save time and electricity, consider putting the block heater on an electrical timer so it automatically turns on a couple of hours before you plan to start the engine.
  • Diesel Winter Anti-Gel – Diesel fuel contains wax paraffins, which start to solidify when the temperature drops. Depending on each individual fuel station and type of diesel fuel, typically at 32 degrees, the wax in the fuel will crystallize and leave the fuel tank clouded. At 10-18 degrees, the paraffins can start to gel and clog the tank and fuel filters. Hot Shot’s Secret Diesel Winter Anti-Gel reduces the pour point of fuel to -65 degrees and prevents diesel fuel gelling in #1, #2, and blends of Biodiesel up to B20.
  • Check the Owner’s Manual – Many manufacturers will have a specific set of instructions for your engine in the event of severe cold weather. Whether it tells you to cycle the manifold heater 2-3 times, or that the transmission shift range will be changed or maybe you’re not familiar with the low traction system, the owner’s manual is worth referring to.
  • Maintenance – If you’re having issues in cold weather, check FICM voltage, inspect glow plug relay and wiring, and have your battery/batteries tested. You can also prevent issues by replacing your fuel filter as recommended in the owner’s manual, making the switch to a quality synthetic engine oil and keeping your fuel and oil system clean and protected with Stiction Eliminator every third oil change and Diesel Extreme every 6 months.
  • Battery – If you can tell your truck is going to be difficult to start just by looking outside, or your batteries are getting close to their life expectancy, or you know you’re truck will sit outside in the elements for an extended period of time, pulling the battery and storing it in a temperature controlled setting to warm it up is a great idea. This sounds like a hassle, but if you need to jump start a battery that’s been sitting in sub zero temperatures you run the risk of cracking or even exploding the battery! Next time you shop for batteries check out the warranty periods and ask which ones offer free replacement.
  • After Start Up – Allowing the engine to warm up a few minutes before putting the engine under load is a great habit. Proper operating temperature provides optimal fuel combustion and may prevent damage to engine parts, especially if you’re hauling or towing. Not to mention the engine oil will flow more readily when it’s warmed up providing protection to the rest of the engine.

How other additive companies are destroying your engine… and getting away with it.

crusty nail

We’ve been in the industry since 1997 so we’ve seen competitors try all kinds of stunts over the years. Some of these feats are groundbreaking and influence the rest of the industry, while other attempts cut corners and make products that will actually damage engines. Some of these products come at the cost of their customer’s engine longevity, affecting their livelihood, their safety and leaving them with large repair or replacement bills. In this article we will discuss chlorine, its use in engines, the harmful effects it has and how to protect yourself.

You’ve probably never seen a product on the oil or additive shelf that has a warning that says “Contains Chlorine”. Chlorine, a member of the halogen group in the periodic table, in pure form, is a gas. Companies can get around putting a warning on their label by using chlorinated paraffins, hydrocarbons or solvents in their product. Chlorine itself is an effective lubricant, that is why competitors promote their products with bearing tests on their website and social sites such as YouTube. While these videos can seem attractive or promising, the truth of the matter is that those conditions are nothing like an engine.

Let’s talk about the harmful effects chlorine containing products can have on your engine. Chlorine is corrosive in nature; it reacts with metal surfaces due to its high electron negativity making it popular in metal cutting fluids in industrial settings. Metal cutting machines use an open system with constant flushing to prevent corrosion from the chlorine. Inside an engine, chlorine is exposed to metal surfaces and trace metals, such as, copper and other wear debris, high temperatures, blow-by gases, fuel, and moisture. Together these conditions allow the chlorine to hydrolyze, which is known as hydrochloric acid. Chlorine and the hydrochloric acid attack the rubber, neoprene, cork and other compositions in seals and gaskets in your engine. Iron and aluminum alloys become corroded quickly, and the TBN is depleted at a quicker rate. TBN stands for Total Base Number, a count of active detergents and dispersive additive in engine oil. When TBN is decreased, the oil loses its capacity to neutralize acid, breakdown dirt and disperse soot; all contributing to engine damage. Bearings, turbos, pistons and any other metal parts in an engine are subject to corrosion and damage from the chlorine and acid build up.

But why do they still use chlorine? Chlorine is cheap. While most oil and additive manufacturers moved away from the use of chlorine and chlorinated additives 3-4 decades ago due to their damaging behavior, some additive companies today still use chlorine in their products. On top of ruining customer’s engines over time, the hydrochloric acid is considered toxic waste by the EPA, which makes lube and service shops liable for fines if they unknowingly dispose of the acid the same way they dispose waste oil. In recent years the EPA has cracked down on the use of short, medium, and long chain chlorinated paraffins, banning their production and shipment by early 2017. Companies can still sell their remaining inventory of these dangerous products, but they can no longer produce or import more.

So how do you protect yourself? There are a few things you can look for while at the store. If the label has a warning that says “Contains no PTFE, graphite, molybdenum disulfide or solids”; then it might have chlorine or a chlorinated substance in it. One thing to keep in mind is that chlorine is heavier than water. Test your additive by placing a small amount of your additive or engine oil into a beaker of water. If it sinks, then it more than likely contains chlorine and will damage your engine.

Now let’s explain the nail you saw at the top of the page. We put a concentrated 50/50 mixture of Rotella 15w40 engine oil and a competitor’s lubricant additive in a beaker and set a nail made of iron to represent internal components inside an engine. We raised the temperature to 280° Fahrenheit and maintained the temperature for 21 days. The solution became dark, oxidized and the decomposition process of the chlorinated paraffins left heavy deposits on the nail. Hot Shot’s Secret has never, and will never use chlorinated additives. Just another way we are powered by science.

Hot Shot’s Secret not just for Powerstrokes?

Due to our flagship product being formulated for Navistar and Ford back in 2007, many diesel owners believe our products are only intended for and effective on Powerstroke engines. On top of that, people assume our products only benefit HEUI injector equipped 6.0L’s and 7.3L’s. That’s not the case. Below is a customer review submitted to us:

“I have a 2007.5 Chevy Silverado 3500 diesel dually, 75,000 Mi. I was towing a trailer about 10,000 LBS from Las Vegas to Ohio. About 60 west of Amarillo Tx. lost power and the computer warning said “engine power reduced to half”, at my last fill up I noticed that there was 68% fuel filter life remaining. When the warning came on and the power was cut my fuel filter life dropped to zero. Standing on the accelerator I was able to get 50 MPH and make it to Amarillo where I took the truck to the Chevy dealer. They ran some tests and said that I needed all new fuel injectors at $980.00 ea. Plus labor to the tune of over $10,000.00.
Without the trailer the truck ran ok, so I told Chevy no thanks I’ll take the truck home and deal with it. The truck was noisy and the turbo sounded like a vacuum cleaner but I made it home.
Watching your videos on line and reading about Hot Shot Secret I decided to give it a try. I put in the Stiction Eliminator and the Diesel Extreme and took the truck for a ride. I don’t know what you guys put in the stuff but within 20 minutes of rolling on the expressway things got better fast. More power, less valve noise, and no turbo noise. The diesel sounds and runs like it did when it was new. I will keep using your products as directed for all my vehicles. I will recommend Hot Shot Secret to everyone, Great Stuff. Thank you so much for creating your product.”
-Chick S.

So how did Stiction Eliminator and Diesel Extreme save this Duramax owner an estimated $10,000?

Diagnostic codes related to injector or turbo performance are often caused by debris clogging the injector’s spool valve or the turbo bearing. Reduced power messages can also arise from these issues, as well as physical or mechanical part failures (TPS, air or fuel filter, etc.). Stiction Eliminator in the oil system will clean the cam, lifters, oil pump and turbo bearing. Diesel Extreme removes deposits inside of injectors, lubricates the fuel pump and injectors, boosts ignition efficiency and improves combustion. Poor quality fuel and build up in the fuel or oil system can all contribute to loss of power or cause a vehicle’s computer to display a code. An injector may have burnt fuel or dirt partially clogging its nozzle and preventing proper spray resulting in a misfire or code. Burnt oil and deposits in the engine will create more friction resulting in increased wear and temperatures, factor in the extra stress from towing and your diesel won’t be happy.

Whether you have mechanical, HEUI, or common rail injectors, Hot Shot’s Secret can help. Stiction Eliminator will remove the stiction and burnt oil build up on the outside of the injector in HEUI equipped engines, but also cleans everywhere that oil touches in all gas and diesel engines. Diesel Extreme will clean the entire fuel system of all diesels. If Hot Shot’s Secret does not fix your problem, then you get your money back; even if you’re suffering from a mechanical issue.

Diesel Smoking

Reading Smoke, What Your Exhaust’s Smoke Means

We’ve all seen (or have caused); thick, black smoke come from the exhaust of a diesel. It’s some guy’s favorite part of owning a diesel in fact. Let’s talk about the different colors of exhaust smoke, their causes and solutions.

Blue or Gray. Newer, low mileage truck owners can skip this paragraph, but many of us like to have a worn out beater truck laying around, or maybe your teenager bought their first car from a not-so-honest guy. Blue usually means one thing: you are burning oil. You might notice a burnt oil smell while stepping on the accelerator, or maybe see blue/gray smoke leave your exhaust on startup or heavy acceleration, these are some of the tell tale signs that you are burning oil. Do not rely on the oil light to remind yourself to add oil as for most cars this light simply means “shut the engine off immediately”. Common issues include piston rings, valve seals, PCV valves, injector o-rings, turbo seals or the turbo itself; depending on the vehicle.

Besides jumping into an engine rebuild, many owners try to narrow the cause down by starting at the lowest cost and working upwards. Stiction Eliminator is a smart place to start. It helps remove the built up coked and varnished oil and soot, prevents future coking, helping the rings and seals do their job, which in turn restores compression. The cleaning of the turbo, camshaft and other internals that oil comes in contact with reduces friction in the engine, helping to lower engine operating temperatures and making the engine run more efficiently and smoother. Stiction Eliminator belongs first on the list due to its money back guarantee and ease of installation. Next, many auto parts stores offer compression test units for rent, and you receive your money back when you return the tool. It’s a straight forward test for the backyard mechanic, and can help show the condition of your engine. PCV valves are usually the next cheapest, these can go bad and suck oil into the intake, depending on the vehicle. Consult your mechanic if unsure on your next step, many manufacturers have an acceptable amount of oil that might be burnt during normal operation as the vehicle ages.

White. This is usually the last color of smoke you want to see, particularly on gas cars. If the smoke is thin, and goes away relatively quickly, than it is merely condensation. However, thicker, longer lasting smoke is a much larger headache. Your engine is more than likely burning coolant. This can be the result of a blown head gasket, damaged cylinder head, or cracked engine block – none of these are easy on the wallet. Diesels can also put out white smoke when fuel passes completely through the engine and reaches the exhaust without having been burned. This might be caused from the engine being too cool to burn the fuel, low compression in cylinder(s), fuel injection timing, defective fuel injector, burnt out glow plugs, clogged air filter or poor quality fuel. Diesel Extreme is the go to solution for this color smoke since it attacks many of these issues. By improving the fuel’s cetane, fuel can ignite properly at a more desirable temperature once it enters the combustion chamber. Diesel Extreme contains powerful detergents and dispersants to removes water, bacteria and break down sludge, completely cleaning your entire fuel system, from the tank to the injectors. Another fix might include adding an automatic pre-heater, or unfortunately the entire replacement of your engine depending on the issue.

Black. Or as many people call it, “rolling coal”. People throw tuners, modules, or some kind of smoke switch, onto their diesel to make the truck add more fuel than necessary to create black smoke, as well as install larger injectors. But for those who don’t intend to smoke out everyone behind them, there’s quite a few things to check. A little black smoke is normal on a properly functioning diesel, but keep an eye on the amount of smoke at different RPMs and loads so that you will be able to tell if something is amiss. Incorrect timing or air/fuel ratio, dirty injectors or common rail injectors staying open for too long (too much fuel), a worn turbocharger, dirty intake manifold or clogged air cleaner, low cylinder compression, poor quality fuel, or excessive carbon built up in combustion chamber can all be culprits.

Stiction Eliminator is a great place to start when trying to get rid of black smoke. It will make sure the turbo internals, camshaft, and HEUI injectors are cleaned and lubricated. Stiction Eliminator helps restore compression to ensure that the combustion chamber is in optimum performance. For other situations a dose of Diesel Extreme might be what you need to clean out those injectors coked with burnt fuel and get them firing like new. Replacing your air filter, checking the intake manifold out, or fiddling with your aftermarket tuner might be the answer. If you are not sure what you are doing when adjusting your air/fuel ratio, don’t be afraid to ask a professional. Running rich (too much fuel) is always better than running lean (not enough fuel). A lean air/fuel ratio can damage an engine in a short amount of time.

Why you should be carrying and selling a ton of Everyday Diesel Treatment.

It says it right in the name “Everyday” Diesel Treatment. This is a product that has potential to move off the shelves all year long and fast! Your advantage is diesel trucks disadvantage…. Ultra-Low Sulfur Fuel (ULSF). Ultra-Low Sulfur Fuel is extremely inconstant from fuel station to fuel station. ULSF is extremely dry, the lack of lubricant in the fuel over time damages the fuel system of the truck. EDT is a high quality fuel additive that lubricates the ULSF and has chemical agents that make the worst quality diesel fuel into a premium fuel. It even adds a cetane boost. These benefits combine to not only protect a truck from the dangers of ULSF, but also improve the efficiency of the truck, improving fuel mileage.

Once your customers use EDT and see the benefits they’ll be back time and time again. We recommend your customers clean out their entire fuel system with a treatment of Diesel Extreme before using Everyday Diesel Treatment. Another advantage to selling EDT is that no major retailer carries EDT. This allows you to carry something the other guys don’t have. As long as Ultra-Low Sulfur Fuel is around there will be a need for EDT. Most diesel owners are unaware of the damages caused by ULSF, once you make them aware and they experience the benefits of EDT first hand they’ll be back on a regular basis. They won’t want to fill up without it!

What sets Hot Shot’s Secret apart from the competition? Our stuff works. EDT, in every case we’ve observed, has raised an engine’s MPG enough to completely pay for itself. We had a customer use EDT in a CAT 3406b for 3 consecutive months, his MPG went from an average of 4.95 to 6.28 MPG. That’s a 26% increase! EDT costs 2 cents per treated gallon, with most users seeing bumps of 3-7% in their MPG, your customer’s won’t be just saving money, they’ll be making money! Look over at the additive shelf, if you don’t have a bottle of EDT or a running low, now’s the time to stock up on EDT. Fuel prices are on the rise, customer’s will be coming in asking for it, don’t let them leave empty handed.

Ultra-Low Sulfur Fuel: Public Enemy #1

Ever since the EPA mandated that all highway diesel fuel vehicles must use Ultra-Low Sulfur Fuel (ULSF) there have been problems. Diesel engines need to be lubricated on the fuel side, from the fuel tank to the injectors. ULSF is very dry, it does not provide the lubrication High Sulfur Fuel used to provide. Many Fleet Managers will tell you that an additive must be used with ULSF if you want your truck to be performing like it was designed to. Another common issue caused by ULSF is corrosion. All the metal parts touched by ULSF will eventually corrode, this is caused by the aggressive chemicals put into the ULSF.

To combat the problems caused by Ultra-Low Sulfur Fuel, diesel fuels need to be treated with an additive designed to lubricate and protect the entire fuel system. Only a few additives on the market are designed to do both. Hot Shot’s Secret has designed a fuel additive for everyday use. Everyday Diesel Treatment was designed to combat the inconsistencies in ULSF and prevent damage caused by ULSF and the lack of lubricating properties. Everyday Diesel Treatment provides a cetane boost, lubricating agents, and also protects the fuel system from corrosion caused by ULSF and as the name applies, it’s safe to use every day. EDT is another example of how Lubrication Specialties finds a problem in the diesel industry, then provides the solution for that problem.

Do your employees know what they’re talking about?

That’s probably a question you’ve asked yourself from time to time. Product knowledge is key to selling a product. It would be hard for even the best salesperson to sell something they knew absolutely nothing about. Our most successful dealers train their employees on the products. We asked one of our most successful dealers Jay Sharbono about product knowledge and he couldn’t agree with us more! “Learn the product! All of my employees know about the products and if they don’t have the exact answer the manager will. Knowledge is king” Jay says.

Lucky for you we’ve created lessons on each of our products that your employees can take right from their smartphone! That’s not all, once your employees complete the lessons they’ll be rewarded with a spiff program where they can earn up to $1 for every bottle sold. You can sign yourself and employees up for our product training program by calling your Account Executive and letting them know you are interested in signing up for the Hot Shot’s Secret Product Training Program.

Sign up for training today by calling 1-800-341-6516 or email us at sales@lubricationspecialties.com