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The lowdown on synthetic motor oil

Filed Under: cars and transportation

Recently I was at the store while listening to my brother yack at me from the other end of the cell phone. What he was saying made absolutely no sense to me. He was asking me to buy the various items he needed to change the oil in his car. There was the wrench type thing, the oil filter and then the oil. The wrench was easy enough to locate. Then the filter took some detective work; there are different types for mileage, best performance and the like. But when it came to the oil I was flummoxed. There were different brands, different weights and then some appeared to be real while others were synthetic. I asked him over the phone which kind was best whereupon he faltered and finally told me it was something that just couldn't be explained over the phone. My suspicion was that he didn't really know the difference but that he wasn't going to admit such a thing to his little sister.

After I got home I looked up some facts about motor oil. I learned far more than I ever thought possible on the subject. For example, synthetic oils actually have more staying power than traditional oils. They are manufactured to withstand stresses that regular oils cannot take. Synthetic oils do not foam when they reach higher temperatures. Engines are able to run cooler with a synthetic oil in them. These oils are more expensive than their traditional counterparts, but if you figure in not having to change your oil as often and better gas mileage for your car, the cost is well worth it.

I suppose it all might have been a bit much for my brother to explain to me while I was standing in a daze in the automotive aisle. But it is some helpful information to have for the next time I take my car in for an oil change. What about you? Do you have any oil knowledge? If so, please share it with us.


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  • tom

    The best "all about motor oil" article I've found on the web: http://motorcycleinfo.calsci.com/Oils1.html

    Reply
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