HOW TO CHOOSE THE RIGHT ENGINE OIL?

Ever wondered how to choose the right engine oil for your vehicle? We have explained the know-how about engine oils and how you can find the right one!

We use our bikes, cars, trucks, and rickshaws every day but are we indeed informed about choosing the right engine oil for it? Engine oils or motor oils are used to lubricate your internal combustion engines and prevents friction in them. There are comprised of various base oils and are further influenced by additives such as detergents and dispersants. The reason engine oil is crucial to your vehicle engine is because of the following reasons;

  1. Helps in cooling your engine down
  2. Keeps your engine clean
  3. Protects the moving parts
  4. Makes the engine run smoothly
  5. Delivers the high performance of your vehicle

Various factors come into play when you need to think about purchasing an engine oil. You should select one depending upon which vehicle you use (model), the driving conditions, the purpose of your driving, etc.

Types of Engine oils to choose for your vehicle

  • Mineral Engine Oils

Mineral engine oils are made by using refined crude petroleum products. The process leaves out redundant natural contaminants and hydrocarbons. Though mineral engine oils are lower in cost, they are thicker in form and often require oil changes. Because of the thickness, mineral engine oil moves slowly through the engine circuit, which increases fuel consumption. It is also known to provide less protection as compared to synthetic oils.

  • Synthetic Engine Oils

Synthetic engine oils are created by blending chemical compounds and made artificially. They are not affected by the change in temperatures and provides better performance at high and low temperatures. There are many advantages of using synthetic oils, and they are listed as follows;

  • More reliable protection to the engine
  • Durable & last longer
  • Provides a better and smoother performance
  • Have a better viscosity
  • Increase lubricity
  • Prevents rust
  • Gives you better mileage
  • Neutralize oil-impurities

The only drawback to using synthetic is the cost. Synthetic engine oils are pricier than mineral oils, but make-up for everything a good engine oil should provide because there are many beneficial advantages of synthetic oils.

  • Semi Synthetic Engine Oils

Semi synthetic oils are the best of both worlds. Unlike other oils, Semi synthetic engine oils are made of both mineral and synthetic components, excluding the disadvantages of the two. It’s better when it comes to price range and quality as it contains the benefits of both fully synthetic engine oil and mineral oils.

Engine Oil Standards

There are specific things you need to keep in mind while purchasing engine oil. One of them is the standard of the products. Engine oil standards help you understand the kind of engine the oil is for, the performance levels, and how the oil matches the vehicle manufacturer’s suggestion. The standards you need to look out for are mentioned below;

  • American Petroleum Institute

    API is the most extensive U.S trade association in the oil and natural gas industry. They certify that the oil meets specific Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) quality and performance standards. It has classified the engine oil into two categories

  1. S for Service (Petrol engines)
    C for Commercial (Diesel engines)
  2. To determine the quality for this standard, API mentions an alphabet next to ‘S’ or ‘F,’ and the closer the number to Z, the better the quality. For example, the ‘SL’ has higher quality than ‘SF’.

API Classification Chart for Gasoline Engine Oil:

API Classification Chart for Gasoline Engine Oil

  • Society of Automotive Engineers

    Now known as SAE International, this U.S-based association develops standards concerned with engineering and industrial professions. SAE standard number or code mentions the engine oil viscosity. The number shows the engine oil’s resistance to the thinning-effect at high temperatures.
    The scale is represented as 00w00. The lower the number, the slower it will pass at high temperatures.

SAE Grade Chart:

SAE Grade Chart

  • European Automobile Manufacturers Association

    ACEA in the European Union is the central standard body when it comes to the automobile industry. One letter and a number are the indicator. For petrol engines, the letter is ‘A’. For diesel engines the letter is ‘B’. Light engines which are compatible with catalysts are ‘C’ and heavy-duty diesel engines are ‘E’. The number before the alphabets determines specific performances the oil gives.

Important Things your Vehicle Manual Tells You About Engine Oil

There is a common saying that says your owner or manufacturer’s manual should be your best friend. It contains important information regarding maintenance schedules, gizmo instructions, how to check fluids, technical datasheets, your warranty information, etc. Concerning engine oils, it has vital information such as;

  1. What kind of engine oil to use?
  2. How to check oil level?
  3. What kind of filter to use?
  4. How long to wait between oil intervals?
  5. Which oil viscosity is right for your vehicle?
Infographic on how to choose the right engine oil

How to Choose the Right Engine Oil for you

Now you know the different types of engine oils available. Similarly, how different the uses are. In addition, given specific standards depending on the quality of viscosity. You should be able to decide which engine is the most suited for your vehicle engine based on your:

  • The Vehicle Model

    Going through the manual would the best option to go through while picking out the proper engine oil. It would have all the information about the recommended engine oil properties the vehicle would need for best performance.

  • Temperature and Viscosity

    It is important to remember the bike’s operating high and low temperatures. Semi synthetic engine oils will affect the engine oil in the vehicle.
    In addition, checking the viscosity grade to ensure if the engine oil is providing a smooth and hassle-free performance is a vital step. It does not matter if the engine uses mineral, synthetic, or semi synthetic based engine oil.

  • Mineral/Synthetic/Semi-Synthetic Oils

    Based on the model, the vehicle’s requirements, and your driving needs, you would opt for either of these engine oils. Where mineral engine oil is cost-effective, synthetic oil provides better engine performance at a higher price. Semi-synthetic is also a good option within the price range to give you some benefits of both mineral and synthetic oils.

  • Checking the standards

    There are various standards worldwide. It is better to update yourself with API, ACEA, and SAE engines. These standards will help you to determine a fit for the purpose and acceptable use of the engine oil.

    In conclusion, it is vital to understand and be familiar with your engine oils. having basic knowledge about engine oils will help you choose the right engine oil for your vehicle.

    Understanding how to choose the right engine oil would allow efficient, smooth, and more satisfying vehicles’ performance.

Why Change Engine Oil Regularly?

Delaying engine oil change develops a lot of engine problems in the future.. For example, the oil starts to get dirty in due time. This leads to pollutants and contaminants mixing with the oil. If these impurities stay in the engine, they can corrode the internal parts.

This oil will reduce the lubrication and make the engine overwork. When your engine becomes very hot, it can also reduce oil flow and have a thermal breakdown. So, to ensure your engine runs smoothly and efficiently, it’s vital you change the oil at regular intervals.  

Depending upon the type of engine oil you use, changing the engine oil as well as the filter you use in timely intervals will increase your vehicle’s engine life. Regularly changing the oil keeps your engine clean. 

Good engine oil helps in protecting your engine parts. It gives you better mileage every time you change it. Moreover, also sustains and enhances your engine performance. You will certainly help the environment by not polluting it as dirty oil burns more hydrocarbons and releases them through the exhaust. 

Conclusion

It is vital to be familiar with the various engine oils for our vehicles because it will allow us to choose the right engine oil for ourselves. Understanding how to choose the right engine oil would allow efficient, smooth, and more satisfying vehicles’ performance.

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