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MDS Multi Displacement System Discussion


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  #1  
Old 12-21-2011, 01:33 PM
TNC TNC is offline
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Default MDS & Oil Viscosity

OK, I think most are aware of the recommendation about 5W-20 motor oil and the possible relation to MDS operation...or are they? We're seeing a lot of transmission and driveability complaints from people that seem to be related to the MDS and probably not really transmission related. I'm curious if some of those complaints might be connected to running the wrong oil viscosity. Those of us who change our own oil know what went into the motor. I don't think that many people change their own oil anymore, so I'm wondering...are they sure they're getting the 5W-20 recommended viscosity? Is the MDS system, especially at the lifters, really that sensitive to the 5W-20 oil vs. another viscosity? Could some of these alleged shifting and driveability issues that seem to be connected to the MDS actually be related to the wrong oil viscosity? Would the wrong oil cause an imbalance or some other performance related symptom at the lifters to result in a very noticeable MDS operation glitch? Just thinking out loud here, as I was preparing to change my new truck's oil for the first time...with 5W-20 of course...LOL!

Forgot to add, I really haven't had any issue with the MDS kicking in and out. Yes, I can feel it, but it's not particularly annoying or causing any grief...at least from my perspective. People are different, however, and some can't stand even the slightest perceived disruption in the power delivery. Some might call them anal and some might call it preference, but you have to admit that some may be a bit hypersensitive to some quirks in any vehicle's operation.

Last edited by TNC; 12-21-2011 at 01:37 PM.
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  #2  
Old 12-21-2011, 07:56 PM
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i think it's more hit or miss on the torque converter than oil viscocity, i dont run 5w20 that's for sure.
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Old 03-29-2012, 05:17 AM
5500 5500 is offline
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Not sure how MDS affects transmission operation.

Typically its cold oil viscosity thats critical to engine controls like variable valve timing and mutiple cylinder control, etc... These types of controls are managed with oil pressure and in order to have adequate pressure at colder operating temps the oil has to be thin enough to flow. Once the oil reaches operating temp, it usually thins out enough that flow isn't an issue. Thats why many manufacturers require a cold viscosity of 0 or 5. I think the hot viscosity of 20 is to hel achieve mileage figures.

I personally don't like the driveability when MDS is active, but I like the ability to defeat it. Still haven't decided if it actually saves me any fuel.
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Old 03-29-2012, 11:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 5500 View Post
Not sure how MDS affects transmission operation.

Typically its cold oil viscosity thats critical to engine controls like variable valve timing and mutiple cylinder control, etc... These types of controls are managed with oil pressure and in order to have adequate pressure at colder operating temps the oil has to be thin enough to flow. Once the oil reaches operating temp, it usually thins out enough that flow isn't an issue. Thats why many manufacturers require a cold viscosity of 0 or 5. I think the hot viscosity of 20 is to hel achieve mileage figures.

I personally don't like the driveability when MDS is active, but I like the ability to defeat it. Still haven't decided if it actually saves me any fuel.
No, I don't think MDS has any direct effect on the transmission or shifting. I just think many are attributing "some" driveability issues to the tranny when in fact it's probably the MDS...especially in town. I believe the often mentioned "shudder" or rough shifting is sometimes the MDS kicking in and out and especially more noticeable in slower city driving. MDS can feel a bit like the tranny shifting in and out of a couple of gears at slower speeds IMO. A quick check of your tach will usually show that's not the case. And I'm not talking about torque converter issues and such that are more common in the case of some/many of the 2011 models. While I have no complaints about the shifting and operation of the MDS on my '12 Express, I think some are hypersensitive to the operation of MDS and the shifting characteristics of a truck. I think many who expect luxury car smoothness out of a tranny made to tow thousands of pounds might be somewhat disappointed with most truck trannies. Shifting pressures and stronger components necessary to take towing abuse almost always have a lack of silky smoothness "compared" to a sedan tranny. In fact those of us who have owned numerous trucks over many years have seen the result of manufacturers trying to deliver car-like smoothness and efficiency in their truck trannies. Towing often suffered and failures increased.
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Old 07-05-2012, 09:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TNC View Post
No, I don't think MDS has any direct effect on the transmission or shifting. I just think many are attributing "some" driveability issues to the tranny when in fact it's probably the MDS...especially in town. I believe the often mentioned "shudder" or rough shifting is sometimes the MDS kicking in and out and especially more noticeable in slower city driving. MDS can feel a bit like the tranny shifting in and out of a couple of gears at slower speeds IMO. A quick check of your tach will usually show that's not the case. And I'm not talking about torque converter issues and such that are more common in the case of some/many of the 2011 models. While I have no complaints about the shifting and operation of the MDS on my '12 Express, I think some are hypersensitive to the operation of MDS and the shifting characteristics of a truck. I think many who expect luxury car smoothness out of a tranny made to tow thousands of pounds might be somewhat disappointed with most truck trannies. Shifting pressures and stronger components necessary to take towing abuse almost always have a lack of silky smoothness "compared" to a sedan tranny. In fact those of us who have owned numerous trucks over many years have seen the result of manufacturers trying to deliver car-like smoothness and efficiency in their truck trannies. Towing often

suffered and failures increased.
some excellent points made, thanks
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Old 07-05-2012, 10:27 PM
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one time my Remote Start would not work
so i used the remote to unlock the doors & used the key to start it
when i did the SEE DEALER light came on
I was surprised because i had just had it in a couple days before for servicing

The Service Writer was also surprised to see me
They did a code check & it came through as a Drive ability issue, due to incorrect oil viscosity, turns out that a tech had used 10W-30, instead of 5W-20
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Old 07-06-2012, 11:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GTyankee View Post
one time my Remote Start would not work
so i used the remote to unlock the doors & used the key to start it
when i did the SEE DEALER light came on
I was surprised because i had just had it in a couple days before for servicing

The Service Writer was also surprised to see me
They did a code check & it came through as a Drive ability issue, due to incorrect oil viscosity, turns out that a tech had used 10W-30, instead of 5W-20
Now that's interesting. I'd love to know exactly what sensor and how that diagnosis was made.
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Old 07-06-2012, 12:09 PM
CaptJon CaptJon is offline
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One time I was driving down the road and all of a sudden I see a light off to my right side. It said "You drive like a jacka$$, You're an idiot". I was shocked until I realized it was my wife with a flashlight behind a piece of paper. No dealer service was needed that day.
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Old 07-06-2012, 03:29 PM
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If my passengers were that witty I would make them travel with the dog right out the back!!
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Old 07-06-2012, 04:09 PM
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Great points made on this subject. The old saying goes, "When you want somethin done right, you gotta do it yourself". It's not being anal; it's called being thorough......Torquing engine oil drain plug to 23-25ftlbs; 3/4 to full turn on oil filter just after contact; filling with THE PROPER VISCOSITY OIL and not overfilling. Mistakes happen like in the instance of that dealerships service department mess up with using 10W30. Then the owners impression of the incompetence and loss of trust in their dealer, and more so, in the brand itself lingers indefinitely.
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