Today’s oil is certainly better than the oil of the past. Synthetic oil is made to flow better and more efficiently than the Petroleum based oils of yesteryear. However, that doesn’t mean you should wait 10,000 miles in between oil changes. Let us take this opportunity to break down the facts for you.
Let’s start with what the numbers and letters mean when we discuss different weights of oils. For the sake of ease, let’s use the SAE 5W30 fully synthetic motor oil in this example.
SAE stands for Society of Automotive Engineering. The numbers denote the viscosity rating of the oil. The rating is determined by measuring how many seconds it takes for the oil to run through a standard tube at a controlled temperature. In the case of this oil (5W30) it takes 30 seconds. Then they collect the data for the same oil for winter temperatures, denoting the first letter “5″ followed by “W”, indicating winter.
Synthetic vs. Petroleum
Synthetic oils differ from Petroleum based oils in how they handle temperatures. Synthetic oils are much better suited to react to high and low temperatures and also flow more freely in subzero conditions.
Detergents in Synthetic oils are designed to hold dirt and sludge particles in suspension. This is why you will see luxury car oil change color based on the age of the oil. Even with these detergents, the oil can only hold so much dirt and sludge before it begins to leave deposits in your engine.
The Recommended Service Intervals
Automotive manufacturers give recommended oil service intervals. Most oil manufacturers state that it is best to follow the recommended intervals on packaging as a blanket statement. However, they also state that you should change your oil at a minimum of roughly every 7,500 miles under normal driving conditions. This is what we recommend, a luxury car oil change interval between 5,000 miles and 7,500 miles.
Consider this – The manufacturer of that NEW car has a maintenance program where the oil service is included, that manufacturer wants to keep the cost of these included services low, so they have to push these intervals as far apart as they can. Most new cars are on a 3 to 4 year turn in plan, so most vehicles are on their second to third owner by the time the vehicle has 50,000 miles on it.
If you are the owner of a vehicle with 50,000 miles or more on the odometer, it is time to change the habit of changing the oil based on the instrumentation cluster. Start paying attention to miles and save yourself a large repair in the future or having to buy a whole new engine. See below for what waiting every 10,000 miles can do to your vehicle!
If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us on our service site by clicking HERE!