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Auto-Rx Vs. Marvel Mystery Oil


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#1 rsmigel

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Posted 10 March 2010 - 06:38 PM

I welcome any comments related to these two products. I'm looking to use one or the other on my 850 turbo wagon engine and wonder what success folks have had with them. My 155K motor has never seen either product, nor anything else like them.
1994 Volvo 850 Turbo Wagon, 155K miles



#2 the commissar!

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Posted 10 March 2010 - 07:34 PM

I welcome any comments related to these two products. I'm looking to use one or the other on my 850 turbo wagon engine and wonder what success folks have had with them. My 155K motor has never seen either product, nor anything else like them.


I used autoRX in both my SAAB and Volvo as oil additive following the prescribed treatment. I currently use the maintenance dose in the saab but have swapped engines in the Volvo and no longer use it. SAABs within mines year range have a reputation for very bad sludging problems. I have not suffered the fate of many others. I do not know if ths is because of the ARX but that is the only thing I have done to combat the problem aside from installing the factory redesigned (several times) PCV system. Car had ~50k when I got it and is now ~99k. About 40k on ARX...
1998 V70 T-5 -Auto - ARD Blue & Turbo-Tuner,18T, HD TCVw/ Hallman Pro MBC, custom 3" DP w/ Volvo 2.75" sport catback - both wrapped and coated, RIP, IPD aluminum intercooler, intake w/ K&N cone, R ex. manifold, , gasket matched & polished intake manifold w/ thermoblock spacer, n/a TB w/ 960 plate, Optima bluetop, MSD 6aD and blaster coil, IPD plug wires, IPD poly bushing, Koni FSD w/ Eibach springs, IPD sways 25mm x 25 mm, blue silicone vac, silicone coolant lines, custom intake tubes grill to turbo, skid plate, front lower brace, cherry turbo strut brace, HD endlinks, 302mm brakes, Zeitronix wide-band/data-logger, Walbro w/variable fpr. In process: Home grown HD Endlinks, Meth/H2O injection, greens, catch can, fully built 2.3.

#3 erikv11

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Posted 11 March 2010 - 12:29 AM

I've used Auto-Rx but not MMO, and only as preventive cleaning agent every 50k or so. I've never used it for engine troubles so can't say much about that.

I have read lots and lots of forum posts and heard many many good things about ARx, e.g. saving a couple small RMS leaks on Volvo 850s (but the PVC needs to get done ASAP) or clearing sludge out of the notoriously bad Toyota engines. MMO I don't read so much about and I think it is a different product design, based on simply altering oil viscosity. Auto-Rx is the only "miracle in a can" I use.

'96 855 NA | 207k | Bilstein TC | R sway bars | QBM links | runs great parts car
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'95 R 854 - 180 k

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#4 Crito

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Posted 11 March 2010 - 03:26 AM

MMO is great in your gas as it soaks into carbon deposits which can then be burned off. It's a waste in your oil though, as it evaporates at a fairly low temp. People who add a quart during an oil change usually find they're exactly a quart low a few weeks later.

I've heard good things about Auto-Rx but personally I'm rather fond of using Gunk Motor Flush right before an oil change. I usually fill with dino afterward though because you can't really get it all out and I don't like contaminating expensive oil. The stuff is pretty harsh so follow directions and just idle the engine for a few minutes. Sometime I have to do a repeat treatment but once de-sludged you really don't have to use Gunk again. Oil in my S80 still looks new after 2500 miles. Next oil change will be with German Castrol. ;)

#5 troyhyde

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Posted 11 March 2010 - 05:11 AM

Price wise, the point of diminishing returns in an engine cleaner is probably plain diesel fuel. A few bucks for a gallon.

The other products are just mild solvents (same thing as diesel). Gunk engine cleaner is just diesel fuel as far as I can tell.

You are probably better off just running full synthetic oil for a few oil changes, it will clean the engine in a slower and arguably safer manner. Down side, you might start some leaks around the rear main, definitely a weak spot in these cars...
'95 Turbo Wagon, Dreaming of Stage 0

#6 erikv11

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Posted 11 March 2010 - 06:03 AM

I don't have time or interest to start (or follow through on) an argument but if you don't know much about Auto-Rx (http://www.auto-rx.com/), don't lump it in with the great majority of other "cleaners"

The other products are just mild solvents (same thing as diesel).

Maybe true about Gunk but no, not Auto-Rx

You are probably better off just running full synthetic oil for a few oil changes, it will clean the engine in a slower and arguably safer manner. Down side, you might start some leaks around the rear main, definitely a weak spot in these cars...

no, switching to full synthetic is definitely not safer or slower than Auto-Rx. And I agree about the rear main; Auto-Rx is a great first line of defense to possibly stop rear main (RMS) leaks started by switching to full synthetic.

I know, almost as good as a "which oil is better" thread ... ;)

'96 855 NA | 207k | Bilstein TC | R sway bars | QBM links | runs great parts car
'96 NA 855 - 123 k
'95 R 854 - 180 k

'98 V70 GLT 15g rev5b - 225 k


#7 Crito

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Posted 11 March 2010 - 07:01 AM

Gunk engine cleaner is just diesel fuel as far as I can tell.


http://www.gunk.com/msds/MFD1.pdf

2-Butoxyethanol 7.0% - 13.0%
Hydrocarbon Fluid 15.0% - 40.0%
Poly Butenyl Succinimide 3.0% - 7.0%
Synthetic Ester 40.0% - 70.0%

The ester makes seals swell (as does synthetic German Castol by the way.) The butoxyethanol is powerful but nasty shiat though. Note it's considered hazardous even absorbed through he skin, so don't get that crap on your hands if you can avoid it:
http://www.jtbaker.c...hhtml/b6100.htm

#8 rsmigel

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Posted 11 March 2010 - 11:58 AM

Hmmm, maybe a more fundemental question then for my particual case.

I bought my 1994 850 Turbo wagon used in 1995 with 17K miles. Since then it has only seen Mobile 1 oil changes performed by me at the factory recommended (light on dash) intervals. I've got 155K miles on this vehicle.

Do I even need to use one of these products?
1994 Volvo 850 Turbo Wagon, 155K miles

#9 ozzimark

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Posted 11 March 2010 - 04:08 PM

Auto-Rx is a great first line of defense to possibly stop rear main (RMS) leaks

The best way to prevent RMS leaks is by keeping on top of PCV system maintenance. B)

#10 erikv11

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Posted 11 March 2010 - 04:33 PM

Auto-Rx is a great first line of defense to possibly stop rear main (RMS) leaks started by switching to full synthetic.

brilliant idea, just make up your own context and type something, call it a "reply"!


Auto-Rx is a great first line of defense to possibly stop rear main (RMS) leaks

The best way to prevent RMS leaks is by keeping on top of PCV system maintenance. B)


That's like posting

RMS leaks

well then, you have to pull the engine and tranny, it's going to cost you $1100 at the indy or a lonnnnng weekend. Why didn't you maintain the PCV? :blink:

To the OP: if your engine has no symptoms, and you have been running synthetic with regular oil changes that long, I would leave it alone. But maintain the PCV! ;)

'96 855 NA | 207k | Bilstein TC | R sway bars | QBM links | runs great parts car
'96 NA 855 - 123 k
'95 R 854 - 180 k

'98 V70 GLT 15g rev5b - 225 k


#11 Crito

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Posted 11 March 2010 - 04:40 PM

Hmmm, maybe a more fundemental question then for my particual case.

I bought my 1994 850 Turbo wagon used in 1995 with 17K miles. Since then it has only seen Mobile 1 oil changes performed by me at the factory recommended (light on dash) intervals. I've got 155K miles on this vehicle.

Do I even need to use one of these products?


Mobile 1 has a load of detergent additives in it, so you probably don't have a sludge problem. Best way to tell is how long oil stays clean after an oil change. In a sludged-up motor your oil will turn black fairly quickly. If your motor's clean you'll wonder why it needs changing at 3000 since the oil still looks fresh. Of course, color of oil doesn't equate to good or bad -- only real way to tell is with a used oil analysis at a place like Blackstone -- I'm just saying how quickly it changes color is a good indicator of deposits (or lack thereof).

#12 Keep Calm Chive On

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Posted 11 March 2010 - 09:15 PM

G.C. 0w-30! yay but i still wish i found the green stuff :( cause then it would be slightly more tolerable if i were to drip haha "aww sweet green... sh*t thats my oil" but that .01 second would totally make it worthwile
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#13 troyhyde

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Posted 14 March 2010 - 01:01 AM

If your car has always had synthetic, it is probably in really good condition engine-cleanliness wise. A quiet top end on the engine is usually a good indicator. The tiny oil passages in and around the lifters seem to suffer the worst from dirty/cheap oil.

Good advice about keeping an eye on the PCV system, keep the PTC nipple clean and verify the hoses/pipes/elbows are in good working order. Should you ever replace the PCV lines, do yourself a favor and use OEM Volvo from Waltrip.

Have to disagree about the additives and what not. High detergent oil is going to be safer than dumping a solvent in the crankcase and expecting safe and reliable results. You never know what you might dislodge that has been sitting quietly for years... (dino oil car)
'95 Turbo Wagon, Dreaming of Stage 0

#14 mojojo

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Posted 14 March 2010 - 02:59 AM

Hmmm, maybe a more fundemental question then for my particual case.

I bought my 1994 850 Turbo wagon used in 1995 with 17K miles. Since then it has only seen Mobile 1 oil changes performed by me at the factory recommended (light on dash) intervals. I've got 155K miles on this vehicle.

Do I even need to use one of these products?



Personally, I wouldn't add anything to that engine. I've seen many things advertised to 'clean' engines and such, but I don't think any of them can stand up to regular oil changes with decent oil.... not even synthetic, but regular.
I use Mobil 1 oil in all my cars, and I've built engines and gone in to them after 50K miles to see they still look new inside.

Don't let those sales men fool you, just stick to your maintenance log and you'll be in top shape.

1996 Volvo 850 Turbo Platinum


#15 rsmigel

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Posted 14 March 2010 - 04:23 AM

I just pulled the PCV oil trap from this car and the lower port was caked with sludge and a yellowish gruel. It's probably due to my wife's 3 mile drive, one way, each day. The motor never gets warmed up enough to burn off the water and other condensation in the oil.
1994 Volvo 850 Turbo Wagon, 155K miles

#16 jdlc

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Posted 14 March 2010 - 11:56 AM

Have to disagree about the additives and what not. High detergent oil is going to be safer than dumping a solvent in the crankcase and expecting safe and reliable results. You never know what you might dislodge that has been sitting quietly for years... (dino oil car)


This is why the pitch of AutoRx is slow-cleaning, they know too well that strong detergent applied to 'sludged up' engine is no good.
I tried this product with good result - the oil takes longer to darken after the treatment. One could say that's not the indicator of good oil - but the again, if your oil is muddy only weeks after oil-change, then something is not right.

If your car has always had synthetic, it is probably WILL BE in really good condition engine-cleanliness wise...


Case in point, my V70 NA with 160k - Mobil1 since new (well, after I stopped taking it to dealer for oil change, lol). Picture was taken a while back, but not much have changed, still looks like that today.
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