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Used engine oil

Anybody ever use used engine oil as chainsaw chain oil? Rocketman

My father does it all of the time. I don’t like it b/c its too thin - doesn’t lube as well and spits too much. Bar oils are usually very heavy.

I suppose if the oil isn’t too dirty it might work. I didn’t know that bar oil was that expensive. I have an electric chain saw that I use only a couple of times a year for trimming so I wouldn’t find it worthwhile. However, if one is in the tree trimming business, this might be a way to save a little money.

Not a good idea.

Used motor oil is hazardous waste. And using it where it can be dispersed into the environment or where it can deposited such as on a tree stump is irresponsible. Might as well dump your waste oil on the ground.


That thought crossed my mind, but isn’t bar oil - which you need to use - hazardous waste too?

It works FINE as bar oil EXCEPT it’s dirty and nasty. After a while it gets everywhere, including all over the operator of the chain saw…

I have and it sprays all over the place including operator.

It is very cheap to buy a jug of Supertech(Walmart) Bar & Chain oil that works wonderfully.

I don’t think it would work as well, particulates, thinning out all work against you as well as being a hazardous waste. I’m sure you “can” use it, but when I’ve tried for anything else, it tends to clog things up, leaves a dirty residue and create more problems then it’s worth. Chain oil is thicker than motor oil regardless.

Actually used oil has it extra chemical links broken which gives it a better lubricating advantage, like synthetic oil. Now it has got extra dust and particles in it, so better if it was filtered/processed, but still a good general lubricant, esp for most of us that change the oil in 3-3.5KM intervals.

In most locations it’s illegal to use it, since it is both contaminated and a mineral based oil.

Many localities specify a biodegradable lubricant to used in pristine areas.

This can lead to some amusing applictions. A firm I know developed a biodegrable “curve grease” for a railroad running through a national park. Curve grease is applied to the rails to cut down on friction and noise. This stuff kept disappearing, until they found the bears licked it up as soon as it was applied since the grease was lard and tallow based. They had to add some nasty tasting and smelling compound to it in order to make it stay!

Perhaps tongue in cheek, sounds like y’all need to contact those guys who believe never changing the oil makes the car run better, and donate your used stuff for them to top off with. Heh, heh.

My chainsaw uses 30 weight oil. The oil in my car is multi-viscosity oil.

Used oil is a carcinogen when it comes into contact with the skin.

That is why your chainsaw runs better than your car. At least, that would be the late Tom McCahill’s opinion. He thought that 10W-30 oil was a lousy numbe 10 and a lousy number 30 oil.

Just wondering actually. I ran out of bar and chain oil and was dressed in my “crappy clothes” I wear for dirty yard and car work. I didn’t feel like changing to go to the store for more bar and chain oil, which looks like 20W50, maybe a bit heavier. I had a tree come down on my property and had some used 20W50 I didn’t have the chance to recycle, so I used it. It didn’t fly all over, didn’t come off on the tree (I cut the tree up into firewood and didn’t notice any oil on the pieces) and seemed to work fine. I was just looking for another use for my old oil. Why would this use be any worse for the environment than bar and chain oil? Anyway, I’m a PIA so I’ll buy more chain oil next trip, and I’ll recycle the used motor oil on the way. Rocketman

In Mexico, they brush it on exposed, unpainted wood as a wood preservative and termite cure…It seems to work quite well for that…

Practices like that explain why you can’t drink the water.

Do Gringo’s drink their tap water? I was unaware of that…

Bar/chain oil has something in it that makes it cling better and not fly off as much. They used to use bees wax to accomplish this, but they must have found something cheaper to use by now.

I think the gringos only drink the lite beer from miller. They don’t drink the tap water b/c apparently someone’s been slathering used motor oil all over the landscape - either that or b/c they saw one too many of those terrible lite beer commercials.