All engine oils aren‚Äôt the same. But, you already know that. Ask yourself ‚Äď do you know how conventional mineral oils differ from synthetic oils?
First, let‚Äôs define ‚Äúsynthetic.‚ÄĚ The reason it sounds like a term out of Star Trek, is because it is high-tech and scientifically superior.
Both types of engine oil ‚Äď conventional mineral oil and synthetic motor oil are made from crude oil that is extracted from the ground. The difference is that synthetic motor oils are made using more advanced refining processes and are of a higher purity and quality than conventional mineral oils. This not only removes more impurities from the crude oil, it enables individual molecules in the oil to be tailored to the demands of modern engines. These customized molecules provide higher levels of protection and performance, even in extreme conditions.
Types of synthetic oil
There are different types of synthetic oils: Synthetic motor oils and semi-synthetic oils. Here‚Äôs the difference.¬†Synthetic motor oil uses a synthetic base stock mixed with a variety of additives that further boost the performance of the oil.¬†Semi-synthetic oil is a mix of conventional motor oils and synthetic motor oil. Because of the added synthetic properties, an engine gets more performance and protection when compared to conventional oil.
But remember, not all synthetics are formulated the same way. They can contain very different types and combinations of base oils and additives. Even minor differences in formulation can have a major effect on performance. For example, add a bit more of one additive and you get better cleanliness, but you might lose some wear protection. Cut back on this additive and you get better performance at high temperatures, but cold-weather startup may not be that great.
So what should you do to best protect your engine?
The best approach is to look for a synthetic motor oil that offers optimal performance in every aspect. That way, you are not getting short changed in one area just to get better performance in another.
To start enjoying the benefits of today‚Äôs synthetic lubricants, consult your owner‚Äôs manual, or talk to your mechanic to learn more about motor oils that are best for your vehicle and your unique driving conditions.
Or just start, if not already, using Mobil 1 synthetic motor oil.