When it comes to your vehicle’s engine, knowing what type of oil you should use will prevent maintenance problems as well as extend the engine’s life. A seemingly endless variety of engine oils are produced today that can make the selection of the proper product more difficult. Understanding what your engine requires is key to selecting the proper one.
Trust Your Owner’s Manual
Automotive manufacturers use many different designs and materials when creating their motors. The engineers understand what types of oil will work best in the engine and their recommendations are listed in the owner’s manual that is included with a vehicle. Selecting a motor oil based on these recommendations will go much farther than decisions made based on advertising or name brands. If your vehicle is missing the manual, make sure to get a replacement for reference.
Types Of Motor Oils
One glance at the shelves of an auto parts chain store can confuse you more than assist in selecting a product. A variety of purpose based oils is available that address certain characteristics of a vehicle’s engine.
Traditionally, conventional oil products were suggested for new light-duty vehicles. This is the standard type of oil most people are familiar with and it comes in various viscosity ratings. This product line still holds the lion’s share of the market and offers the greatest variety for car owners to choose from.
Synthetic oils, or oil blends, have become more common in the past two decades. Full synthetics are produced for many of today’s high-tech vehicles, while synthetic blends tend to offer more protection for engine’s experiencing higher workloads or temperatures. These products offer longer lasting protection and can help to prevent oil build up also. High mileage oil is a consideration for vehicles over 75,000 miles that require sealing properties to older engine components.
Understanding Oil Viscosity
Oil viscosity refers to how easily it flows at certain temperatures. Thin oils have a lower rating as they pour easily at lower temperatures, while higher rated oil is thicker and requires higher temperatures to pour in a similar manner.
Thinner oils are used in cold weather, as they improve the speed of engine startup. They also reduce friction due to their viscosity. Thicker oils maintain coverage layers and perform well in at higher temperatures. The number before the W indicates an oil’s viscosity at zero-degrees Fahrenheit while the second number indicates viscosity at 100 degrees Celcius.
Keeping Your Vehicle Running
Selecting the proper oil keeps engine parts lubricated during use. It also helps with performance in various weather conditions. Using the right oil will keep your vehicle on the road for a long time.