Last week, we discussed the importance of oil changes. I hope everyone put their's on their calendar. As promised, we will talk about the proper oil weight for your vehicle. Each vehicle has its own weight of oil. Today's vehicles use 5w20 or 5w30. There are rare occassions for vehicles to use 5w40. Synthetics and diesels are different type oils. We will discussed those oils in future blogs.
When a vehicle uses 5w20 or 5w30, these numbers mean something. The "5" is the thinner part of the oil. It helps the oil to move quickly. The "w" is the winter part of the oil. It helps the oil in cold weather, and cold places. The "30" part of the oil is the second part. There are chemicals to help each variable work together. Also, this oil is call two-part oil. One part oils aren't used in vehicles, today. The two-part oils give your vehicle added protection over the one-part oils. Plus, the correct weighted oil doesn't make your engine work harder. Check your owner's manual for the recommended oil weight.
When using heavier oils, the protection is and isn't there. It will help with the metal to metal part of protecting your vehicle. But, the oil won't do well in cold weather. People have asked me about using 20w50, in their vehicle. My answer is no. There is a misconception about older vehicles. Once the vehicle ages, you're suppose to use heavier oil. Why? Is there blue smoke coming out the tail pipe? If the answer is yes, heavier oils only band-aid the problem. Your vehicle is burning oil. A re-built or new engine, or the purchase of a new vehicle will remedy the problem.
What about high mileage oil? My answer: Why? Has the characteristics of your vehicle changed? What were you using before these oils came on the market? In my opinion, high mileage oils are a hype tactic. If your vehicle isn't burning oil, the same weighted oil will be fine. Does name brand matter? I get into this conversion all the time. The name brand doesn't matter. Everybody has a preference. I'm not against your taste. My concern is that your vehicle has oil, and the correct weight of oil.
Until next time, your the expert on your vehicle. Happy Motoring.