When should I change my oil?
If you’ve visited the mechanic recently for an oil change, you probably got offered a high-cost synthetic or synthetic blend motor oil – and likely, you opted for the cheaper conventional option.
This is fine for most drivers. However, there are some scenarios in which synthetic motor oil is a much better option. In this article, we’ll explore the top 5 reasons you should think about using synthetic motor oil for your vehicle, rather than conventional oil.
1. You Regularly Drive In Very Cold – Or Hot – Temperatures
In extreme weather, synthetic oil holds up much better than conventional oil. Because it is synthetic and contains no organic compounds, it flows much more effectively throughout your engine components in extreme weather.
During the cold winter months, conventional oil tends to get “sludgy” as it settles, requiring you to warm your car up for a longer period of time. If you don’t warm your car up, you risk damaging its components. Synthetic oil flows much more smoothly, even in sub-zero temperatures.
The same goes for extremely high temperatures. Conventional motor oils may break down at extremely high temperatures, or evaporate – causing more engine wear. High-quality synthetic oils can stand up to prolonged driving, even in very hot and dry climates.
2. You Drive An Older Car
Synthetic oils can actually help restore and revitalize the engines of older cars. A high-quality, high-mileage synthetic oil can actually help revive the seals and gaskets in the engine, slowing down existing leaks and preventing future leaks.
It offers better protection for engine components, which is very important as a vehicle ages. Synthetic oil can even help clean out sludge from conventional oil, which helps clean pistons and other engine components and can even help improve gas mileage.
3. You Are A High-Mileage Driver
If you are a very high-mileage driver – more than 15,000 miles per year, which is the average for most Americans, you should be using synthetic oil.
This is because synthetic oil offers much better protection against engine wear. Not only that, it reduces your trips to the auto shop. Typically, it’s recommended that you replace conventional oil after 3,000 miles – so if you drive 30,000 miles per year, you’ll be visiting the shop 10 times, or changing your own oil 10 times.
Most synthetic oils can go up to 7,500 or 10,000 miles between changes – so that means fewer trips to the shop and a much lower overall cost. That leads us to another great reason to use synthetic oil…
4. You Want To Save Money On Labor Costs
If you don’t change your own oil, chances are that most of the money you spend on oil changes goes to labor. Therefore, even if you have to pay extra for synthetic oil, you can save money on labor costs – because you’ll only have to change it after a year or 7,500-10,000 miles.
Getting your oil changed four times in a year will cost you a lot in labor, while getting it changed just once will mean you spend much less, overall.
5. You Want Your Car To Last As Long As Possible
Synthetic oil is simply more effective at protecting engine parts. It has a better viscosity and flows more effectively at all temperatures, and offers higher overall performance – particularly for more expensive vehicles.
If you want your car to last as long as possible, it’s a good idea to invest in a synthetic motor oil. In the long run, the cost of the oil will be offset by the longer lifespan and better performance of your vehicle.