CK-4/FA-4: Future of Fuel Economy

Beginning in December 2016, a new category for heavy-duty engine oils (HDEO) emerged that played a role for those who own, or plan on purchasing equipment with a diesel engine. The new categories of HDEO include CK-4 and FA-4, and supersede the CJ-4 category released in 2007.

Over the past few years, diesel engine and emission technology has evolved in leaps and bounds. It only makes sense that HDEO technology evolves with it. That is why the American Petroleum Institute has tasked oil manufactures to create a new oil that meets the needs of these new engines and vehicles. The main drivers for these changes are things we have been talking about for years: fuel-efficiency and lower emissions as well as higher operating temperatures in newer engines. These new HDEO oils are different from the CJ-4 oils in three key aspects: improved fuel economy, shear stability and oxidation stability.

Another noticeable change is that there are two HDEO categories instead of one. The reason for this is that we need an oil that will be able to be used in current generation engines and one that we will be able to use going forward in next generation engines. That means CK-4 is a direct replacement for the current CJ-4 spec. You will be able to use the same viscosity grades and types of oil you are currently using in any diesel engine. FA-4 is offered in lower viscosity grades to help increase fuel economy without sacrificing protection. The new HDEO FA-4 oils are not a replacement for the CJ-4 oil but are mainly used in newer, “next generation” engines.

These new HDEO products include a variety of synthetic multi-viscosity blends meant to withstand severe temperature service. HDEO products are mostly used for on-highway and off-highway heavy-duty service and in the transportation, construction and agriculture industries.

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