Dangers of Using Synthetic Oil in Older Cars

Dangers of Using Synthetic Oil in Older Cars

Generally, the motor oil that is used for older cars is conventional motor oil. There are some risks that can be associated with making use of synthetic motor oil in older vehicles such as engine damage or engine leak.

The debate about whether or not synthetic oil is safe to be used in older vehicles is one that has been going on for a while now.

Some are of the view that it is okay for synthetic oil to be used in older cars while some maintain that it is quite risky to switch to using synthetic oil in older vehicles.

Synthetic motor oil when used in newer vehicles has a lot of benefits such as improving component life and lowering the cost of routine maintenance.

Someone can then be of the opinion that since synthetic motor oil provides all these great benefits for newer cars, it would do exactly the same for older vehicles but is that always the case?

As we have already pointed out, there are some risks that can be associated with the use of synthetic oil in older cars. It is left for you to weigh the pros and cons, before deciding whether or not you are going to be using synthetic oil in your older vehicle or not.

And if that is the case, then you are at the right place and by the time you are done reading, making that decision will be quite easier for you.

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Difference between Synthetic Oil and Conventional Oil

Maybe you don’t even know the difference between synthetic motor oil and conventional motor oil and you are wondering what the fuss is all about. We will discuss all that in this section.

Conventional oil can also be referred to as regular oil. An example of such is Mobil 1. Conventional motor oil is one that is sourced from crude oil. The crude oil is refined and goes through some processes so as to thin its viscosity to the desired state.

Some additives such as zinc or ZDDP can also be added to it. The zinc or ZDDP additives aids in lowering cylinder wash problems that are usually encountered when using conventional oils.

Synthetic motor oil on the other hand is one that is manufactured through an artificial process. An example is Mobil 1 Advanced Full Synthetic Motor Oil.

It is made using an extract or byproduct of crude oil that will then be taken through more refinement and merged with other chemicals, additives and materials to get the desired oil. The components and mode of combining them differ from one manufacturer to the other.

There are quite a number of benefits associated with using Synthetic oil. For instance it deals better with temperature changes. Also when it comes to properly lubricating different components of the engine, the synthetic oil has the upper hand.

In addition to that, synthetic oil offers more stability in cold temperatures. It is also better at removing dust and debris from the engine.

You will also be glad to know that synthetic oils can equally be tailor made to suit certain cases, for instance in cases of high performance or high mileage engines.

In fact according to some manufacturers, making use of synthetic oil increases the intervals between oil changes thus giving you good value for your money.

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Is it appropriate to use Synthetic Oil in Cars?

Before, people were weary of using synthetic oil in their cars because they thought it could damage the engine. This was because a lot of synthetic oils had esters in them.

Esters are organic compounds mixed with alcohol and this was usually not favourable to seals in the engine and would cause wears and consequently leakage.

However, manufacturers have improved the quality of synthetic motor oils over time and they have become safe for most cars.

Whether you choose to use synthetic motor oil or conventional motor oil for your car, it is okay but you have to ensure that you use the proper weight. Most new cars today make use of synthetic oil.

You have to take note however that if your car is an older one, particularly one with high mileage, then synthetic oil might not be the best choice.

This is because the seals in the engines of these older vehicles might not be able to function well as a result of the additives in the synthetic oil.

However this does not mean that it is completely impossible to use synthetic oil in older cars, and we are going to discuss the best way to go about this below.

Best ways to use Synthetic Oils in Older cars

Many times in this write up we have used the term “older vehicles or cars” and you may be wondering which cars can be categorized as older. This refers to vehicles that were made before 1990 or thereabout.

Using synthetic oils in such cars might be a risk because the seals, gaskets, and other components of the engine are not as tight as what is obtainable with newer cars.

Synthetic oils are really good at cleaning out sludge and this can clear out deposits that are acting as seals in the older cars.

This can in turn cause leaks and result in the engine burning oil causing you to always check your oil level and replenish it frequently. You will be forced to either constantly replace the oil or deal with damages to your engine.

But just as we have already said, there is a way around this. Some synthetic oils such as Mobil 1 High Mileage, is a synthetic oil that is manufactured specially high-mileage cars.

As long as the car is properly maintained and is in a good condition, using the appropriate synthetic oil for it can even protect the engine and make it last longer.

Always remember that each time you make a switch from regular motor oil to synthetic oil, you have to change the oil filter, each time you change oil.

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In Conclusion

If after all you have read, you have decided to start using synthetic motor oil for your older car, it is recommended that you speak to a professional.

This is so that the professional can help you to properly check your car and make any required adjustments so that your car can still function properly after the switch.


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