One way to tell whether you should use synthetic is to check your vehicle manufacturer’s recommendations. You’ll find these recommendations in your owner’s manual. Aero Auto Repair explains that the primary difference between synthetic and conventional oil is that synthetic is man-made in a lab and designed to be more chemically stable. This offers consumers an oil that doesn’t acidify or oxidize easily, and that also takes more time to breakdown in your engine.
Synthetic oil becomes a better choice if your vehicle’s engine needs superior protection. Synthetic motor oil works well for people whose driving primarily consists of short trips. This oil remains viscous longer and does not need extensive engine warm-up in order to protect the engine. If you’re driving time is usually less than 15 minutes, synthetic will protect your engine better.
Synthetic is also better for high-mileage automobiles that have a greater risk of engine gunk buildup. Conventional oil leaves more sludge deposits on the engine parts as it flows throughout the engine than synthetic oil does. This means synthetic will keep your older engine cleaner, which will help you get even more mileage out of your high-mileage car, truck, or C/SUV.
One reason why synthetic motor oil works well in the above situations as well as in stop-and-go traffic is that it has better viscosity than conventional oil. Viscosity refers to the motor oil’s consistency, and synthetic oil retains its viscosity longer, which means it protects the engine better despite extreme outdoor temperatures which, admittedly, we don’t get here in San Diego.
Still, viscosity is important in that it is how the motor oil protects your engine. Thick, sludgy motor oil is unable to do much more than deposit sludge throughout the engine. Oil that is thin and clean, both of which synthetic is for longer periods, protects the engine by lubricating the moving parts to reduce friction and cleaning away sludge and debris as it circulates.
Heat inside the engine requires better viscosity retention, as well. High-performance engines – turbocharged beauties – need better protection from everyday wear and tear than a compact automobile engine does. If you drive a high-end sports car, synthetic oil will protect the turbocharger in the engine much better than conventional motor oil can.
If you’re still on the fence as to whether your automobile would do better with synthetic oil, call or stop by Aero Auto Repair in San Diego, CA. We’ll discuss your oil options with you and the best one for your vehicle and your driving habits.