Always Know The Condition Of Your Oil

November 15th, 2007

Obviously, using good-condition oil is important for any combustion engine-propelled car, but it’s a minimum requirement for a race car. Some racers are so worried about harming their highly-abused motors that they change out their oil at extremely short intervals. Aside from this practice getting expensive, it’s downright wasteful. Others go the other direction and let over-used oil shorten engine life. A company named IntelliStick, has come out with a product (of the same name), that can tell you exactly when your oil is due for a change.

In addition to helping you determine the optimum time to change the oil, IntelliStick continuously monitors certain aspects of your oil, so it can notify you of possible engine problems. For example, it scans for water/coolant and fuel contaminations in the oil. IntelliStick claims that a laboratory grade analysis is performed by its electrical probe, which permanently replaces the vehicle’s dipstick. The probe performs a patented conductivity test to measure the levels of oil additives remaining, contamination, as well as oxidation. A couple of wires extend from the outside end of the probe (at the dipstick tube) to a small black box, which is mounted to the vehicle. This box contains IntelliStick’s brain, which interprets the signals from the probe. It also has memory to store historical data, along with a Bluetooth receiver. A PDA, smart phone, or laptop can then be used to wirelessly download and analyze the data.

With IntelliStick in place, you can check the condition of your oil after every event. From this, you should know if the oil should be replaced, or if there is possibly more involved work to be done. It doesn’t sound like this will fully replace a complete lab analysis of your oil, which can tell you exact breakdowns of what microscopic particles exist. This type of lab analysis can give additional information on the health of an aging motor. But, the IntelliStick should provide some very useful info, without even requiring you to open the toolbox. IntelliStick kits should be available this December, for a price of $500.


Community Thoughts And Additional Info On This Topic

  1. Comment from racer:

    CNET has a video about the IntelliStick… View it here

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