Conventional or Synthetic? (Switching to Synthetic Oil)
Posted in Oil Change on October 11, 2020
If you keep up on technology trends, then you may be intrigued about synthetic motor oil. It was introduced in the 1960s when Mobil came up with it. Mobil's oil was different from conventional motor oil because it was first broken down to its basic molecules. Then, Mobil removed additional impurities from crude oil and "tailored them to the demands of modern engines."
Synthetic oil is becoming more popular now because of its advantages over conventional oil. It's more resistant to sludge forming in an engine. It is more efficient and protects engines better under temperature extremes. Because it allows drivers to go longer between oil changes, many feel it's more convenient.
The downside is that synthetic oil is more expensive, but because it doesn't need changing as often, the cost can be pretty comparable in the long run.
Those who drive high performance vehicles (think Audi, BMW, Mercedes) are already using synthetic oil if they're following their manufacturer's guidelines. Other manufacturers recommend a synthetic blend. So for those who are using conventional oil, you may want to consult your service advisor for some recommendations if you want to switch to synthetic.
If you're the type who always waits until the last-minute or doesn't ever get in quite in time for the recommended oil change interval, the longer gap required between changes with synthetic oil may appeal to you. In some cases, you can go up to 15,000 miles/24,000 km between changes.
If you drive in a very cold climate, synthetic oil can flow more easily at startup and may offer quicker engine protection. On the other hand, in hot climates, synthetic oil can resist heat breakdown better.
Or you may be one of those drivers who have been getting along fine with conventional oil changes. Millions do. Just remember that changing your oil is considered the most important maintenance you can do on your vehicle, so make sure it's done at the right time and with the oil that best suits your driving needs.