New Engine Break In Procedure

A carefully considered break in procedure is a must for preventing damage and ensuring peak performance of your engine.  After much work on the matter, we have arrived at the following highly recommended procedure.

  1. Fill engine with all fluids including a non synthetic break in oil. We use and sell Brad Penn racing break in oil.
  2. Check for leaks, in the form of oil, water, or especially fuel.
  3. With the fuel injectors un-plugged, crank the engine for approximately 4 bursts of 15 seconds, to prime the turbocharger and oil galleys.
  4. Start the engine, and immediately ensure you have oil pressure. Make sure the air fuel ratio is 13:1 or leaner (on gasoline) and continue to check for leaks as it warms up. Check operation of the cooling system.
  5. Allow it to cool and have a very good inspection for leaks, check all fluid levels, and generally make sure the vehicle is safe.
  6. On the street, or on a dyno (recommended), run the engine in the lower gears, and vary the load from low load up to high load. Do not allow boost to build to high levels and do not hold sustained high load as this will build excessive heat in the ring pack. Work the RPM's and load up gradually over the first hour or so of operation.
  7. After the first hour or so of operation, dump the oil into a clean pan and inspect it carefully for shavings and debris. Some small fine "dust" is ok, metal shavings typically indicate a problem which should be immediately investigated. Refill the oil with a thicker oil of your choice. For racing engines, we typically recommend a XXw-40 or XXw-50, depending on your load levels. Extreme output engines (150+ bhp per cylinder) should use thick oil for additional protection.
  8. After this, full load operation is OK. We recommend changing the oil more frequently for the first several thousand miles (or race weekends) and keeping an eye on it for signs of trouble. After that, you can extend your drain intervals.


  • David

    I used Motul 300v 20w60 on 1.8t AEB without any problem. Worked perfectly.

  • Stephan White

    We are racing a 1.8T AWP engine in a VW Vanagon at the 24 Hours of Lemons. It’s a lot of pressure for this little engine as far as the wind resistance.. Previously we used a 5w40 weight engine oil but was considering using something thicker. We could see scoring on the cam lobes.
    Is a 20w50 too thick for this AWP engine for race situations? If so what would you recommend?

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