How to tell What Kind of Oil Your Car Needs
When it comes to automotive lubricants, you do have a choice.
You may use a conventional oil, derived from crude oil, or synthetic oil, manufactured from hydrocarbons and other organic compounds. Almost every lubricating fluid (engine oil, transmission fluid, differential fluid) in your car or truck is now available in a newer synthetic form.
Why Choose Synthetic Lubricants Over Conventional Lubricants and Vise-Versa?
First, check your Owner’s Manual and follow your manufacturer’s recommendations. Generally, synthetic oil will last longer, and requires less frequent oil changes, but it also costs significantly more than conventional oil. To help you make a decision, here are a few basic pros and cons relating to the physical properties of each.
Pros and Cons of Conventional vs Synthetic Lubricants
· Costs less than synthetics – many synthetic lubricants can run nearly double the price of their conventional counterparts.
· Many older vehicles are designed to use conventional lubricants and cannot be introduced to some synthetics without adverse consequences (leaking seals and excessive oil consumption).
· You can probably find your favorite conventional lubricant in nearly every auto store supply store or repair shop, not necessarily so for your favorite high-performance synthetic.
· Reduces friction and subsequent heat production allowing mechanical components to run cooler and last (wear) longer.
· Higher resistance to “burn-off” and oxidation, both of which generate unwanted contaminates, sludge and deposits.
· Resists shear…literally, molecules being cut in half resulting in “thinning” of the lubricant.
Also available are High Mileage Oils that have seal conditioners that help restore the flexibility of the crankshaft and camshaft seals, thus reducing leaks that often occur on older cars. You choice of a Synthetic Blend oil, a combination of conventional oil and synthetic oil (no, you can’t just use half and half and expect the same results) which may be suggested for use with heavier loads and higher operating temperatures.
Still not sure which you should use? Do yourself a favor, and ask your favorite Honest Accurate technician what they would recommend. Our experienced Colorado Springs technicians and Service Advisers work with many vehicles all day long, and can advise you as to your options, and the associated costs. They can help you weigh the positives and negatives of synthetic oil, and decide whether the extra cost is worth it.
From your Honest Accurate Auto Service Team