Which Oil should I use?

The answer depends on what Chain Oiler you are using, where you live and seasonal variations.


Ambient riding conditions – Up to 25/26°C in the summer

TUTORO Auto – use the standard TUTORO original Chain oil all year round.

TUTORO ManualPlus25 or Mineral Hydraulic oil (ISO68) in the summer and TUTORO Original oil in the winter.

Ambient riding conditions – over 25°C summer temps but not less than 16°C winter temps

TUTORO Auto – use Plus25 oil all year round

TUTORO Manual – use Plus25 or Mineral Hydraulic oil (ISO68) all year round

Ambient riding conditions – Up to 25°C summer temps  Winter temps less than 16°C

TUTORO AutoPlus25 summer use, TUTORO Original Oil winter use.

TUTORO ManualPlus25/Mineral Hydraulic oil (ISO68) summer use, TUTORO Original Oil winter use.

*Mineral Hydraulic Oil ISO 32 for temps up to 25° C and ISO 68 for higher ambient temps are the best alternative oil to TUTORO Oil – other mineral oils may be compatible but its use is at the users own risk. See our page on Plastics and Lubricant compatibility.

Why we only recommend using TUTORO Chain oil…

Our chain oil is made to order and has wear modifiers, anti-friction, anti-fling and steel coating additives (ferric attractant). We know what’s in it, that its safe to use in the TUTORO Auto and environmentally sound. We simply can’t say that for anyone else’s products.

We would like to be able to say you can use anything in your TUTORO but oil chemistry is an extremely complex field, in particular in relation to its compatibility with the injection moulded components and Brass in our products. By using something other than our oil you may also be inadvertently releasing toxic substances into the environment. We can only recommend our own oil as we know exactly what it contains.

Engine oils are designed to do a different job, generally they are too light and do not contain the correct additives to prolong the life of your chain- they may also contain additives which could damage your Auto and/or be environmentally toxic.

Chain Saw Oil, we dont recommend it as it is just too sticky and “glue-like” to flow properly. Some Chainsaw oils are vegetable oil based as well as being hydroscopic which leads to corrosion of the Auto’s brass and steel parts- some of these oils also attack the Auto’s internal nitrile seals not to mention the O or X rings in your chain!

Gearbox oil EP80/90*WARNING Don’t use EP Gearbox Oils! these can make the Auto oilers cap swell, this can cause the Acrylic* reservoir to crack when the cap is forced into the top of the reservoir! If you have been using this don’t try to force the cap to fit but order a new cap, drain the oiler and switch to using a TUTORO oil or use a ISO68 /ISO32 grade Hydraulic MINERAL oil. The additives in EP oil will also corrode brass.

*Acrylic – also sometimes called… PMMA, Plexiglas, Perspex, Acrylite, Acrylic Plastic, Altuglas, R-Cast, Polycast, Lucite Plazcryl

NEVER, EVER USE AUTOMATIC TRANSMISSION FLUID in your oiler!, some variants have all sorts of nasty toxins in and can destroy plastics, some even corrode brass!

Any damage caused to your Auto through failure to follow this advice will not be covered by your warranty.

Along with the question “What Oil should I use we are often asked “How much oil will I use?”

Generally speaking, in the summer warm dry months with little rain you will need less oil than in the winter where rain will wash off the oil in short order. For a TUTORO Auto expect summer use to be a fill approx every 800 – 1000 miles. I know some users have gone 1500 miles on a fill but a lot depends on the time spent covering those miles – ie you cover a lot more miles on a motorway in a day than you do on small back roads but the time in the saddle is the same.

During the Winter months when the temperatures remain below 25° C and rain is all too frequent, the amount of oil you should use will need to increase in order to offer any sort of protection to your chain and sprockets- so expect to almost halve the distance you can go between fill ups.

What this looks like in real terms is in the Uk during the Summer months using an Auto and our Original standard Oil, the flow control valve would be open between a quarter turn open and one turn open – depending on how hot it gets ( ie 1/4 turn open at 28°/29°C) but during the Winter I open up the flow control valve to two and two and a half turns open – this does two things, it uses more oil as I need to protect the chain against the rain and salt and it compensates for the lower flow rate of the oil when cold.