How Much Zinc Is In Valvoline VR1 [Fully Explained]

When you want to choose an engine oil for a high-performance or racing engine, you’d want one that has a high ZDDP content. One of the most popular choices for that purpose is the Valvoline VR1 racing oil. So, how much Zinc is in Valvoline VR1 oil?

It has nearly 1400 PPM of Zinc and 1300 PPM of Phosphorus. But that’s not what makes the modern Valvoline VR1 oil so great. Changing the additive package has done wonders for it. Keep on reading to find out more about it.

how much zinc is in valvoline vr1

Besides, I’ve also talked about the composition of all the additives in VR1 racing oil and the ZDDP content in other Valvoline oils. So, let’s dive in!

How Much Zinc Is In Valvoline VR1 [Fully Explained]

The Valvoline VR1 racing oil has the highest Zinc content compared to all the oil that Valvoline produces now. A high amount of ZDDP in oil is perfect for high-performance racing engines with oversized camshaft applications.

valvoline vr1

That’s exactly where the VR1 oils come in. While you’re looking for Zinc content, keep in mind that Zinc and Phosphorus go hand in hand when it comes to engine oils.

VR1 racing oil

The chemical used in engine oils is called ZDDP which is short for Zinc dithiophosphate. So, Zinc and Phosphorus are mixed together to make this compound. The amount of Zinc used in Valvoline VR1 oil is 1400 PPM and the amount of Phosphorus is 1300 PPM.

Both these elements play a key role in protecting the engine from being worn out. It’s the right choice for engines that have high-lift camshafts along with strong valve springs.

What Is The Composition Of The Valvonine VR1 Oil?

You’ve learned about the ZDDP content in the Valvoline VR1 oil. But that’s not the only thing that determines the performance of the oil. You need to look at all the chemicals used in an oil to know how good it is.

Luckily, I’ve collected the data sheet of the oil and I can give you a list of all the chemicals used in VR1 oil along with their quantities. So, take a look below at the Valvoline VR1 20W50 oil datasheet:

AdditivePPM ValueRole
Phosphorus1300 PPMAnti-wear agent
Zinc1400 PPMAnti-wear agent
Titanium24 PPMAnti-wear agent
Calcium1100 PPMDetergent
Magnesium530 PPMDetergent
Molybdenum50 PPMFriction Reducer
Boron170 PPMFriction Reducer
Silicon9 PPMAntifoaming agent

There you have it. Now you know about the composition of the additives in the oil. The viscosity of this oil is around 178 at 40 degrees Celcius and 20.4 at 100 degrees Celcius. The Viscosity Index (VI) of this oil is around 135. All things considered, it’s a good choice for a racing oil.

How Many Variants Are There Of The Valvoline VR1 Oil?

The Valvoline VR1 20W50 oil is by far the most popular variant used by people. But you can find this oil in many other viscosity levels. For starters, there’s a monograde VR1 racing oil. You can find them in viscosity SAE30, SAE40, SAE50, and SAE60.

There are also other multi-viscosity variants of the VR1 racing oil. Apart from the 20W50 variant, a 10W30 option is also available for you. On top of that, both 10W30 and 20W50 Valvonine VR1 oils have synthetic and nonsynthetic variants. You can choose the one that fits your needs.

VR1 racing oil variants

You don’t have to worry about any discrepancies in the Zinc content between the different variants in these oils. The amount of ZDDP is almost the same and there’s no real difference there. Your number one priority should be to choose the oil of the right viscosity for your car as the ZDDP is similar here.

Is The Valvoline VR1 Oil Any Good?

Valvoline was founded in 1866 when John Dr. John Ellis formulated the world’s first petroleum-based lubricant. More than 150 years later, it has continued its journey and is still one of the most popular brands today.

The Valvoline VR1 racing oil has been one of the most popular motor oils that Valvoline has introduced. If you go to the website of Valvoline, you’ll see the following specifications about the VR1 oil:

  • #1 Selling Racing Motor Oil.
  • Specifically formulated for race-level protection in all classic and modern high-performance vehicles, including flat-tappet and performance cam engines.
  • High zinc and phosphorus formula for extreme anti-wear protection.
  • Formulated to maximize horsepower.

Apart from the benefits mentioned by Valvoline. On top of those benefits, anti-foaming agents and friction modifiers make the engine performance even better. The VR1 oil stands true to all these claims and that’s why I’d say it’s a very good motor oil.

The main thing you have to keep in mind is if your engine needs such an oil. It’s not needed in modern engines. However, the older engines that require a higher amount of ZDDP will benefit from it.

You don’t have to take my word about the quality of the VR1 oil. Look at the customer feedback of both Valvoline VR1 10W30 and 20W50 oil on Amazon. You’ll see that most of them love this oil. So, if it fits your needs, you can count on it to perform well.

Why Valvoline VR1 Oil Has Improved Over The Years

The Valvoline VR1 is one of the highest-selling racing oils of all time. So, I have to put it to the test and check if it’s worth the hype. I’ve done engine testing with both the older variant of the VR1 oil and the newer one.

First, it has to be said that there’s no doubt that Valvoline is a reliable brand. It has been around for a long time. Even in the 1980s, NASCAR drivers were promoted by Valvoline. That’s how far back it goes.

valvoline in racing car

However, the additives in the VR1 oil have changed since that time. More and more oil companies have had to comply with API restrictions. The Valvoline VR1 oil is no different.

Back in the day, Valvone VR1 had a high level of Zinc as any good racing oil would. But it also had a high amount of detergents. The oil had two different types of detergents. They are Sodium and Calcium. The detergent level in that old VR1 oil was about 2000 PPM Calcium and 500 PPM Sodium.

The major change in today’s VR1 oil from back then is the change in detergents. The modern VR1 oil no longer has any Sodium in it. And the amount of Calcium in the oil has also been reduced. While the old oil had about 2000 PPM of Calcium, the new one has only around 1100 PPM of it.

While the ZDDP level has pretty much stayed the same, the change in detergents has improved the performance of the oil. It does a way better job of protecting engines with flat tappet cams and high-performance engines than the earlier VR1 oil.

After doing engine testing, I’ve found that eliminating the Sodium and limiting the Calcium lets the ZDDP do a better job. It gives better engine protection than the old VR1 oil.

With engine testing, I can get a good idea of the engine wear when using the oil. When the old VR1 oil was used, it produced about a three-tenth of a thousand per lobe engine wear. In the durability test of the newer VR1 oil, it produced about one-tenth of a thousand per lobe engine wear.

The result is in front of you. Clearly, the new VR1 oil performs much better. It’s a huge difference as the wear is reduced by a whopping 60% just by limiting the use of detergents. So, the reformulation of the additive package of VR1 oil has made it a lot better and has done wonders for it.

Should You Use Valvoline VR1 Oil In Modern Engines

The Valvoline VR1 has always been marketed as a racing engine oil. So, it’s understandable to use it for that purpose. It’s ideal for grassroots racing and classic cars with engines that have flat tappet cams.

The formulation of the oil also makes it a good choice for high-performance engines with loose bearings that need a higher viscosity oil. The 20W50 variant will be a good choice here. That’s because those engines require the oils to have a high ZDDP content to protect the engine.

The great thing about VR1 oil is that it’s widely available and comes at a good price. So, it’s a good choice for those use cases. However, it doesn’t belong in modern direct ignition engines. Though the API regulations have made the oil better over time, it’s still not ideal for use in modern engines.

Besides, there are many other oils that are more suitable for modern engines. So, you should only use this oil where it serves a purpose. Otherwise, stick to the oil that your car manufacturer recommends if your car has a modern engine. There’s no need to experiment with it.

How Much ZDDP Is In Other Valvoline Motor Oils?

Depending on your car engine, using the VR1 engine oil may not be ideal for you. In that case, you’d need another oil. But you may still want an oil with a high Zinc content.

The good news is that Valvoline is generous when it comes to adding ZDDP to the oil. You’ll find a good quantity of ZDDP in all their motor oils. However, the API restrictions limit the total amount of ZDDP in oil.

Before looking into the Zinc content of the other Valvoline oils individually, you should know about the API rating. If you know that, you’ll be able to tell the maximum amount of ZDDP in an oil regardless of which brand it is.

So, here’s a quick look at the maximum amount of ZDDP allowed as per the API rating:

  • SH = Less Than 1000 PPM.
  • SJ and SL = Maximum 700 – 850 PPM.
  • SM and SN = Maxim 600 – 700 PPM.

By looking at the API donut graphic and the rating on the label of an oil bottle, you’d be able to tell how much ZDDP it has from now on. With that said, let’s take a quick look at the ZDDP content of different Valvoline oils.

1. Fully Synthetic Oils

The ZDDP content in Valvoline fully synthetic oils is usually more than 700 PPM and the highest one is around 1100 PPM. It changes depending on the oil you choose.

There are eight oils you’ll find in the Valvoline fully synthetic oil category. Let’s take a look at the ZDDP content in them.

Name Of Fully Synthetic OilAmount Of ZincAmount Of Phosphorus
Advanced Full Synthetic Motor Oil (5W30)940 PPM 800 PPM
Extended Protection Full Synthetic Motor Oil (5W30)940 PPM 800 PPM
Extended Protection Full Synthetic High Mileage (5W30)890 PPM 770 PPM
Full Synthetic High Mileage With Maxlife Technology Motor Oil (5W30)820 PPM 710 PPM
Fully Synthetic VR1 Racing Oil (20W50)1400 PPM 1300 PPM
4-Stroke Motorcycle Full Synthetic Motor Oil1120 PPM 1000 PPM
Hybrid Vehicle Full Synthetic Motor Oil (0W20)830 PPM 760 PPM
European Vehicle Full Synthetic Motor Oil NANA

2. Conventional Or Synthetic Blend Oils

There are three oils in this category. Let’s take a quick look at the ZDDP content in each of these oils.

Name Of OilAmount Of ZincAmount Of Phosphorus
Daily Protection Synthetic Blend Motor Oil (5W30)760 PPM690 PPM
High Mileage With Maxlife Technology Synthetic Blend Motor Oil (5W30)790 PPM720 PPM
High Mileage 150K With Maxlife Plus Technology Motor Oil (5W30)850 PPM770 PPM

3. High Mileage Oils

The Valvoline high mileage oils have 700-800 PPM of Zinc and 800 – 900 PPM of Phosphorus on average. Let’s take a more detailed look at the composition of this oil now.

Name Of Valvoline High Mileage OilAmount Of ZincAmount Of Phosphorus
Extended Protection Full Synthetic High Mileage (5W30)890 PPM 770 PPM
High Mileage With Maxlife Technology Synthetic Blend Motor Oil (5W30)790 PPM720 PPM
Full Synthetic High Mileage With Maxlife Technology Motor Oil (5W30)820 PPM 710 PPM
High Mileage 150K With Maxlife Plus Technology Motor Oil (5W30)850 PPM770 PPM

4. Heavy Duty Oils

Valvoline also makes some heavy-duty oils. They also have a good amount of ZDDP. Let’s look at the quantity of Zinc and Phosphorus in each of them.

Name Of Valvoline Heavy Duty OilAmount Of ZincAmount Of Phosphorus
Premium Blue Full Synthetic Diesel Engine Oil (5W40)1270 PPM1150 PPM
Premium Blue One Solution Gen 2 Oil (10W30)890 PPM800 PPM
All Terrain Oil (10W30)1240 PPM1135 PPM

Apart from these oils, I have talked about, Valvoline also produces oil for small engines. These oils are generally used in motorcycles and marine engines.

As my goal is to educate only car enthusiasts in this guide, I won’t discuss their ZDDP levels. But if you own a boat or a two-wheeler, feel free to learn more about them.


What additive is used in Valvoline VR1 racing oil now instead of Sodium?

Valvoline removed Sodium from VR1 racing oil to comply with the API restrictions. It turned out to be a good thing as using Magnesium instead of Sodium reduced engine wear. There’s about 530 PPM of Magnesium used in this oil.

Is a higher amount of Calcium in engine oil good in modern direct ignition engines?

More Calcium can cause low speed in modern engines. So, the amount of Calcium is low in oils that are used for such engines.

What does Titanium do in Valvonine VR1 oil?

Along with Zinc and Phosphorus, Titanium is also an anti-wear agent. So, it keeps the engine from wearing out. On top of that, it also reduces friction and improves the fuel economy of a vehicle.

Why is Silicon used in engine oil?

A small amount of Silicon is used in oil as it’s an anti-foam agent. Even in the Valvoline VR1 racing oil, about 9PPM of Silicon is used.


How much Zinc is in Valvoline VR1 oil? Now, you should know the exact amount of Zinc and Phosphorus after going through this guide. You also know about the composition of the other additives in VR1 oil.

The Valvoline VR1 oil has vastly improved in the last few years by modifying the additives. It makes them a great choice for the engines that need such oil. I’ve also compiled a guide about the ZDDP content in Royal Purple motor oil. Check it out if you’re interested.

Note: You can also read our guide does Synthetic oil have zinc in it?

About John M

John contributed as a technical head at an automobile company just 2 years after his post-graduation in Automobile Engineering. He loves to lead a free life, so he left his job & started blogging. Now, he does research on every automotive problem, part & product and seeks a better solution & best products & shares his findings with his readers to help them as well as to minimize their struggle.

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