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The Haynes manual says to use 10W30 oil for my CB500.

However, the mechanic that changed the oil used 10W40 and said it's fine to use on everything.

Can anyone tell me the difference, and if there's a downside to ignoring Haynes? And if/why it could matter?

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The Viscosity Rating is a measure of an oil's flow characteristics, or thickness, at certain temperatures.

The low-temperature viscosity (the first number, 5W in a 5W-30 oil) indicates how quickly engines crank in winter and how well the oil will flow to lubricate critical engine parts at low temperatures. The lower the number, the more easily the engine will start in cold weather.

The high-temperature viscosity (the second number, 30 in a 5W-30 oil) provides thickness, or body, for good lubrication at operating temperatures.

Always refer to your owner's manuals to select the proper viscosity oil for the ambient temperature and operating conditions at which the equipment will be used.

A multigrade oil provides good flow capability for cold weather but retains thickness for high-temperatures.

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