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What’s Better — Synthetic Oil or Regular?

In today’s day and age, as oil changes continue to go up in price and now are routinely being added into warranty packages on new vehicles, it’s becoming more and more important to know just what they’re putting into your engine and how much you’re paying for. The automotive industry has advanced much in recent years, not only in the precision of the machining of engine components, but also in the precision of fuel injection and combustion for maximum fuel efficiency. But has oil changed that much? Is there really a reason why an oil change might now cost over $100 at the dealership, when not too long ago, oil changes were less than $20. Is there really that much of a difference between synthetic oil vs regular oil? The answer somewhat depends on what is being required by the warranty package of many of the newer vehicles. Many of the new warranty packages require the owner to get all of their oil changes done at the dealership, using the dealership’s own custom full synthetic brand for “maximum protection.” I call it “maximum cost” because they definitely charge you an arm and a leg for most warranty packages.

But as for those of us who don’t need to bring our cars into the dealership for simple work, is it really all that recommended to pay the extra money for the synthetic over the regular? In a lot of cases, going the route of full synthetic is a bit excessive. As we discussed earlier, with machining of engine components and the fine tuning of modern vehicles, oils have to do less and less work to lubricate and protect our engines. Not only that, but because of better formulation technologies and viscosity enhancers, today’s oils meet a higher standard and protect an engine much better than the oils of a few decades ago. Not only that, but machining technology has advanced greatly in the past 2 decades as well, meaning that the surfaces where friction happens are much more precise and internally stable.So from that standpoint, getting a full synthetic is a bit unnecessary. That being said however, many of us don’t drive around a brand new car and are instead driving something from the 90s. In this particular situation, going the route of full synthetic might be a good option in order to give your engine as much protection as humanly possible. That is the reason why many mechanics and oil change locations are beginning to go for a middle of the road solution. These days, I mostly get half synthetic and half regular oil when I go for an oil change. This is definitely a nice middle of the road solution, because it combines what I think is the best of regular and synthetic.

A lot of myths have developed in recent years surrounding synthetic oils. I’ve heard before that synthetic oil isn’t compatible with regular petroleum based oil, which is false. I’ve actually gotten oil changes before that were partially synthetic and partially regular. I’ve also heard people say that they’re worried that switching to synthetic oil might cause their seals to get damaged or that the switch might cause buildup and deposits to be left behind. Both of these rumors are also false, which your mechanic can tell you the next time you go in for an oil change. In most respects, synthetic oil acts almost identically with regular oil. Synthetic oil is simply designed to last longer. That’s the biggest difference. If you’re worried about using a different oil than what you’ve been using, ask the oil change professional the next time you go in for an oil change. They’ll obviously try and sell you on the more expensive brands, but you’ll be able to decide in the end what kind of oil to use.

Synthetic oil vs regular oil has been a battle going on for some time now. I hope you enjoyed reading this author’s opinion on it. For more in the automotive world, check out my other article on engine oil stop leak.

You can also see some comparisons here; http://syntheticoilvsregularoil.com/

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