Diesel Engine Oils Meeting New Standards Now Available

Posted on April 3, 2017
The American Petroleum Institute has licensed more than 400 oils that meet the CK-4 and FA-4 standards approved by the association last year.
The American Petroleum Institute has licensed more than 400 oils that meet the CK-4 and FA-4 standards approved by the association last year.

WASHINGTON, D.C. — About 400 CK-4 and 60 FA-4 oils have been licensed by the American Petroleum Institute (API), the trade association announced last week.

As previously reported, API approved two new diesel engine oil standards last year: API service categories CK-4 and FA-4.

The CK-4 and FA-4 oils that have been licensed so far were submitted by large, medium, and small oil marketers. API said it expects availability to grow substantially over the next few years as more oil marketers add oils meeting the new standards to their product lines to address the needs of a variety of engine technologies — new and old, and for use on- and off-highway.

“New API CK-4 and FA-4 oils should be readily available in bulk through diesel oil distributors for trucking fleets and other operators of diesel vehicles,” said Kevin Ferrick, senior manager of API’s Engine Oil Licensing and Certification System. “They are also available in packages through local retailers.”

API CK-4 oils are intended for diesel-powered engines previously using API CJ-4 oils, and API FA-4 oils are intended for newer engines, typically 2017 model year and beyond.

The upgraded API CK-4 and FA-4 oil specifications have been eligible for licensing since Dec. 1. The new oil products also help diesel engine manufacturers meet more stringent emissions requirements, according to API.

With the introduction of the new FA-4 oil category, technicians may have to learn how to manage CJ-4, CK-4, and FA-4 oils in their shops. Here are API’s tips for ensuring that the new oils are being installed as recommended:

• Engine requirements: FA-4 oils may not be recommended for all new engines, so be sure to check with engine manufacturers to find out which engines are supposed to use FA-4 oil.

• Bulk tanks: Replacing CJ-4 with CK-4 should be a simple transition because CK-4 is backward-compatible and an improvement over CJ-4. Oil change facilities and fleets should drain down their CJ-4 bulk tanks before adding the new CK-4 oil.

• Dispensing oil: All dispensing equipment should be properly labeled with the product name, viscosity grade, and API standard to prevent misapplication.

• Education: Technicians should be made aware of the changes to the oil categories and the requirements for each.

Go to for more information about the new API CK-4 and FA-4 service categories and their use in on- and off-highway diesel vehicles and equipment.

Related Topics: diesel, engines, oil, preventive maintenance

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