M11 Series Engines – 007-999   Lubricating Oil System – Overview

Table of Contents

General Information

General Information


The use of quality engine lubricating oils, combined with appropriate oil drain and filter change intervals, is a critical factor in maintaining engine performance and durability.

Cummins Inc. recommends the use of a high-quality 15W-40 multiviscosity heavy-duty engine oil that meets the requirements of Cummins Engineering Specification CES 20071 or CES 20076 (such as Valvoline® Premium Blue® or Premium Blue® 2000). American Petroleum Institute (API) specification CH-4 can be used as an alternative to CES 20071. Oils that meet API specification CG-4 can be used, but at a reduced drain interval according to the Oil Drain Intervals by Severity of Service mi [km] chart listed in Section 2. The oil grades CC, CD, and CE have been obsoleted by API and should not be used.

Shortened drain intervals can be required with monograde oils as determined by close monitoring of the oil condition with scheduled oil sampling. Use of single-grade oils can affect engine oil control.

Synthetic engine oils, API category III, are recommended for use in Cummins engines operating in ambient temperature conditions consistently below -25°C [-13°F]. Above this temperature, it is recommended the petroleum-based multigrade lubricants be used. Synthetic 0W-30 oils that meet API category III can be used in operations where the ambient temperature never exceeds 0°C [32°F]. Synthetic 0W-30 oils do not offer the same level of protection against fuel dilution as do higher multigrade oils. Higher cylinder wear can be experienced when using 0W-30 oils in high-load situations.

For further details and an explanation of engine lubricating oils for Cummins engines, refer to Cummins Engine Oil Recommendations, Bulletin 3810340.

Additional information regarding lubricating oil availability throughout the world is available in the Engine Manufacturing Association (EMA) Lubricating Oils Data Book for Heavy-Duty Automotive and Industrial Engines. The data book can be ordered from Engine Manufacturers Association, One Illinois Center, 111 East Wacker Drive, Chicago, IL, U.S.A. 60601; (312) 644-6610.

The API service symbols are shown in the accompanying illustration.

  1. The upper half of the symbols displays the appropriate oil categories.
  2. The lower half contains words to describe oil energy-conserving features.
  3. The center section identifies the SAE oil viscosity grade.


Oil viscosity should be chosen according to the typical climate conditions experienced by the user. Use of 15W-40 is recommended for the best engine durability at higher ambient temperature. For temperature or cold conditions, 10W-30 or 5W-30 viscosity can be used for easier starting, improved oil flow, and improved fuel economy.



The use of synthetic-base oil does not justify extended oil change intervals. Extended oil change intervals can decrease engine life due to factors such as corrosion, deposits, and wear.

As the engine oil becomes contaminated, essential oil additives are depleted. Lubricating oils protect the engine as long as these additives are functioning properly. Progressive contamination of the oil between oil and filter change intervals is normal. The amount of contamination will vary depending on the operation of the engine, kilometers or miles on the oil, fuel consumed, and new oil added.

Extending the oil and filter change interval beyond the recommendation will decrease engine life due to factors such as corrosion, deposits, and wear.

Maximum oil drain intervals are based upon the use of fuel with 0.05-percent sulfur. Refer to Cummins Engine Oil Recommendations, Bulletin 3810340, for further details. If there are any questions about fuel sulfur content, ask your fuel supplier to provide a written analysis of the fuel.

The lubricating oil filter is to be replaced at each oil drain with a high-quality filter that meets the Cummins Source Approval Method 10,765 specification, including the cold-flow specifications.

Last Modified:  16-Dec-2004