The independent resource for information and insights on the quality and integrity of lubricants in the marketplace.

PQIA on GMA – Good Morning America – Read the Labels!

Good Morning America “GMA” ran a story today about Dollar General (DG) Stores Facing Multiple Lawsuits Over Allegedly “Obsolete” Motor Oils. 

GMA went undercover to four of DG’s New Jersey outlets to take a look at the motor oils on the shelves. They were accompanied by Tom Glenn, president of the Petroleum Quality Institute of America, which tests motor oils for compliance with industry standards. In addition, GMA and PQIA visited other retail stores in the area to see what motor oils they had on the shelves. What we found was eye opening.

Click here for more on the story.


This is a must view news piece, especially considering that California, effective January 1, 2016, has banned obsolete motor oils for sale in the State. Considering the preponderance of obsolete motor oils PQIA observes on the shelves in other states across America, the GMA story shines a bright light an issue all consumers should be aware of.


Related Stories:

February 29, 2016
Motor Oil Lawsuits Offer Critical Lesson: Read the Fine Print

December 22, 2015
“Lawsuit: Dollar General motor oil not safe for cars newer than 1980s”

November 18, 2015
A Dark Day in The Sunshine State

November 9, 2015
Florida Deserves Better – Part II

October 30, 2015
Florida Deserves Better

October 2, 2015
Why are Obsolete Motor Oils Still on the Shelves?

August 24, 2015
Under the Nose of Our Law Makers – Part II

August 12, 2015
Under the Nose of Our Lawmakers

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Categorised in: Labeling, Motor Oil, PQIA in the News, PQIA Quality Reports, Retail Sales

2 Responses

  1. Well, we’re getting closer to the realization that more responsibility must be placed on the producer of the product, as the retailer can always make the claim that there are vehicles which could that obsolete lube, And when reporters say that it should be used in engines of that model year, that also is not full disclosure. A Mercedes or most European and some higher end mfgrs., in those years, may call out a synthetic specification in that year, So responsibility still belongs to the Lube industry and producer of the product.
    Next step—- Synthetic lube mis-nomers currently burgeoning the consumer with Mis/Dis-information. He thinks all synthetics are the same if the container says “Synthetic”. You know the difference in what constitutes an A P I synthetic, and what portion of the lube meets that spec., and that also should be on the Label, to insure that the consumer is protected technically AND financially. I recently commented on this very subject and, guess what??? No response comments. Thanks for your work in the ever continuing battle to inform the public for the benefit of the Lubricants Industry. It should police itself as well, to assist your work. Marketing promotions are no excuse for vague statements.

  2. There is no API Synthetic, or any other official definition of “Synthetic” for that matter. After the NAD decision of 1999 that Castrol’s Syntec could be labeled synthetic, the lubricants industry rushed to call all Group IIIs synthetic, even though the Castrol product was based on Group III+. The term “synthetic” has been relegated to a marketing term and no longer has any reliable technical meaning. The term implies that the oil is based on Group IIIs, Group IV, and/or (some) Group Vs, but there is no practical way to police it, so you either trust the marketer or you don’t. And you can’t legally force the manufacturers to disclose their ingredients unless health or safety is involved.

    The broader question is does it really matter. The additives play a more important role than the base oils. For example, you can formulate a conventional oil based on Group II and a very robust additive system that would out perform a PAO based oil with a marginal additive system. Superior base oils can improve low temperature flow, volatility, and oxidative stability, but the base oils are not the only factor influencing these parameters, and there are other ways of getting there. I would be more concerned with wear, rust, corrosion, and sludge, which are more controlled by the additives. The specifications met and certified approvals obtained are a better measure of the oil’s performance than just looking at the base oil mix.

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