An Expert Guide To Engine Oil

The engine is the heart of every vehicle. It is one of the most important components of a car, and the performance of a vehicle depends on it. Consequently, engine oil is just as important. It is responsible for lubricating all engine parts which are in constant friction, reducing wear and tear.

That said, for your combustion engine to operate smoothly, you need to lubricate it with the right engine oil. But with so many varieties, which one should you pick? Is there a difference between the available varieties or could you go for the first bottle you spot? In this post, we’re going to tell you all about engine oil.

Engine Oil Levels

Let’s start with the obvious one—engine oil levels. No matter the age of your car, you need to check the oil level during servicing. As a general rule of thumb though, the older your car, the shorter the intervals between oil checks, which are done using a dipstick. That’s because as engines age, they tend to use more oil (or leak more), necessitating more frequent dipstick checks to maintain a sufficient level.

Why Should I Top Up My Engine Oil Regularly?

You always need to make sure that engine oil levels stay above the minimum oil levels, thus top up when necessary. Why? When oil levels get dangerously low, there’s a considerable possibility that important engine components will be starved of oil. As such, they could wear out prematurely or fail completely.

Keeping your oil in check, however, involves more than just keeping the oil tank topped out. You also need to change the engine oil at the manufacturer’s recommended service intervals. Let’s look into the types of engine oil.

Mineral Engine Oil Vs Synthetic Engine Oil

“Mineral” engine oil tends to be “cruder” than synthetic oil and costs a lot less to produce. Nonetheless, it offers full enough protection for engines with lower demands. When it comes to cars that are high-performance needs, “synthetic” engine oil is the ideal choice.

Despite its name, synthetic oil still comes from fossil fuels-the viscous, dark substance ejected by oil wells. The only difference from mineral oil is that its molecular properties and structure have been altered, improved, and “synthesised” through intricate laboratory procedures.

Engine Oil: Viscosity Ratings Explained

Engine oil needs to “flow” through and around the engine parts appropriately in order to provide the proper protection and performance. The scientific name for this ‘ease of flow’ is Viscosity, and it is often measured at 100 degrees Celsius.

As we already know, engines work at a variety of temperatures, starting with cold when inactive, and getting hotter with more activity. As such, we recommend “multigrade” oils—which use VII additives (Viscosity Index Improvers)—to make the oils flow easier at lower temperatures. That’s because most times, the majority of engines wear out when cold because regular oils tend to be too thick at lower temperatures, offering poor lubrication.

What Else Does Your Oil Contain?

Engine oils are not just made of crude substances. They are like a complicated chemical soup created not just for lubrication but also for protection, engine efficiency, and particular adaptations for contemporary advancements like diesel particulate filters. A Battery operated pump is fitted with variable speed control, allowing the user to vary the flow rate for different applications. A full-size drum can be emptied in 3 minutes (at maximum flow rate), or over fifteen drums can be emptied on one charge (at minimum flow rate).

With that in mind, engine oil also contains some or all of the following ingredients: corrosion inhibitors, anti-oxidants, foam inhibitors, pour-point depressants, friction modifiers, anti-wear agents, dispersants and even detergents,

Engine Oil Grades: What Grade Is Best for My Car?

It is always advisable to check your car manufacturer’s manual or the manufacturer’s website before deciding which engine oil grade to use. Most typically cite certain OEM (original equipment manufacturer) requirements, which the oil corporations then adopt.

That said, if you locate the OEM number for your car’s manufacturer and Google it, you’ll likely discover that many reputable oil firms quote that either directly on the oil carton or in the fine print on the rear. Moreover, most lubricants have similar petrol/diesel codes on the carton since they are made to be used in both petrol and diesel engines.

What Oil Is Best for an Old Engine?

Synthetic oils are usually higher priced, but that doesn’t mean that they are the best. Some older viscous mineral oils are great options, topped up by the fact that they tend to be cheaper. These can provide superior protection, especially for older cars. That’s because older engines may have been constructed when tolerances were much wider or wear and tear could have made the tolerances wider.

There, you have most if not all the basics covered. Have more queries? Talk to us!