Everybody (or most people, anyway) knows that automobiles need regular oil changes to ensure the smooth performance of the car. But something that’s less well understood are the differences in the types of oil our vehicles rely on.
Mostly, the manufacturers of the oil will suggest two or more oil viscosities for the engine to work seamlessly. The prime viscosities are 5W-20 or 5W-30 and the other factor influencing it is the temperature.
Basically, the engine requires different viscosities under different circumstances or operating conditions. If you understand the science of viscosity then it will become really helpful in determining the best engine oil for the car.
But before we go further, it is important to know the basic terms such as viscosity. Basically, viscosity is the resistance of a fluid. In scientific term, it is notated as “XW-XX”. The number proceeding the “W” rates the flow of oil at 0 degrees Fahrenheit. People often take “W” as weight but it actually means “Winter.” The lower the number preceding the “W,” the lower the tendency to stay thick in the cold. For example, the number 5W-30 will be less thick in the cold than number 10W-30. So, according to the climatic conditions in your region, the motor oil should be purchased.
For people in colder climates, then, a lower viscosity oil is probably the better choice. The thinner the oil, the more it can travel through and lubricate your engine.
People living in cold areas can benefit from 0W-30 to 5W-30 viscosity. At the same time, the car in Death Valley will likely require 10w oil that will perform well and prevent thinning too much in hot temperature conditions.
Now, let’s come to the second segment where we will discuss the number following “W” in the viscosity. The second number actually measure the oil’s viscosity at 212 degrees F. It represents the resistance of oil from thinning in the hot temperature. For example, the oil with a number 10W-30 will swiftly thin out in higher temperatures than 10W-40 oil.
So, these are some of the parameters to help the buyers make a smart buying decision, considering the weather conditions around. You will definitely want to keep the right viscosity in mind before shopping for the best motor oil. If you find it too complex to understand, then it will be better to let the car repair center handle it all for you.
Most of the users follow the rule of thumb for oil change which is 3-months or 3000 miles. Regularly changing oil is a staple of routine vehicle maintenance and essential to keeping your vehicle in good working order.
Many leading car companies suggest using synthetic car oils. We have created a list of oils below that are suitable under various temperature conditions. But you should make a purchase as directed in your car manual, research, and at the recommendation of your auto repair shop. Some basic rules of thumb:
Suitable for low-mile engines and perfect for those on a budget and your automobile is in good shape, conventional oil will work fine. It is commonly used in bulk at dealership outlets. Most of the professionals adhere to API and SAE standards in the oil. While there are also additive packages available in the same, you can select the package that suits your car. Because of a lower price and decent viscosity, it is the first choice of the people that will maintain frequent oil changes in their automobile. Plus, this is equally suitable for low-mile engines as well.
Next from the basic range comes the premium conventional oils that are suitable for new cars and fresh engines. Most of the new cars are taken to the service stations for oil change. And the professionals understand the usage of premium range in such automobiles. Most of these oils are available in common viscosities.
With the latest models in cars, the manufacturers specifically mention the viscosity of the motor oil that has to be used in it. Most of these are 5W-20 or 5W-30 oil or 10W-30. These three viscosities cover all kinds of light-duty vehicles on the road. These oils are surely a little pricey compared with the former choice. So they’re better for people who don’t get to change the oil as often.
The synthetic range is specifically made for high-tech engines. You first need to ensure that these oils pass the stringent tests as mentioned on the labels. This way you make sure that the oil is safe for your engine and has superior and long-lasting performance in all the critical areas. These oils can handle viscosity index to protection against engine deposits.
These oils are better to flow at low temperatures plus they also maintain peak lubrication at intense temperature. The performance of these oils is remarkable but at the same time these are pretty expensive. Plus, these oils are not suitable for all kind of engines. So, you may have to check if your car engine is compatible with the synthetic oils or not. The compatibility is mostly mentioned on the manual. If you find that the oil is not meant for your car engine then using it will only cost you a lot of money and performance will not be enhanced.
Most of the cars on the road have more than 75,000 miles in the odometer. For such automobiles, manufacturers have created the high mileage oils. These oils are not used straight-away. They are blended with seal conditioners to extend the flexibility of internal engine seals. These conditioners can benefit the engines manifolds.
So, these are the best motor oils that can be used for different car engines. Learn about them before buying a bottle for your car.