Synthetic motor oil is an alternative type of motor oil that, despite the name, is still derived from crude oil, just like conventional motor oil. However, the refinement process is very different, giving synthetic motor oil a number of distinctive qualities and differences when compared to conventional motor oil. Understanding the benefits that synthetic motor oil offers can help you decide whether or not synthetic motor oil is the right fit for your vehicle.
Synthetic motor oil is better able to withstand extremely high and low temperatures when compared to conventional motor oil. This means that it will not become thick and gooey in cold temperatures, allowing proper lubrication of the engine in winter driving conditions, and that it will not begin to break down at high temperatures, which makes it more unlikely for an engine to overheat when using synthetic oil (though the exact temperature range will vary depending on the brand and quality of oil used).
Synthetic motor oil leaves less residue and gunk buildup in your engine over time when compared to conventional motor oil. This means that your engine will not get dirty as quickly, resulting in better performance over time, and increasing the amount of time that you can go without having your oil changed (again, each brand of synthetic motor oil will have specific recommendations based on the quality of that specific oil in regards to how often the oil should be changed).
Reduced Engine Wear
Because it produces less grime and sludge, and contains fewer corrosive and polluting materials than conventional motor oil, synthetic motor oil does not wear down the engine as quickly as conventional motor oil does. While this won't give you a tangible benefit right away, over the long term use this means that there will be less wear and damage on your engine's components, reducing the likelihood of malfunctions occurring or costly repairs being necessary. This can save you a large amount of hassle and money in the long run.
Increased Fuel Economy
Because of its increased lubrication in certain driving conditions (in low temperature environments in particular), synthetic motor oil can help improve your overall fuel efficiency, saving you money at the pump. However, it is important to keep in mind that this largely depends on the model of your vehicle, and only in certain weather conditions, which means that it is not a year round benefit.
For more information on motor oil or how often you should change your oil, visit a local auto shop, like PDR Automotive Inc.