What goes into choosing the right motor oil for your engine?

16 July 2019
 Categories: Automotive, Blog

A fresh supply of motor oil helps your engine remain cool, clean and lubricated. Without timely oil changes, your motor may become gradually damaged—and you may also experience engine knock. In fact, failing to change or top up your oil may ultimately result in a damaged engine. This is why it's important to select the right engine/motor oil.

Not all types of oil are the same, and motorists need to consider the specific needs of their vehicle before adding a fresh supply of oil. Consider the following factors before choosing and adding motor oil to your engine.  

Heat and pressure tolerance

Your engine consists of many different moving parts. From nuts and bolts to valves and the main engine block, you need a fluid that lubricates all components and prevents unnecessary friction.

For motor oil to be effective, it needs to have high heat and pressure tolerance. This means that it should have a high boiling point and remain in a liquid state—even when the pressure inside your engine increases.

When selecting motor oil, keep an eye out for heat and pressure specifications. The higher the limits, the better your oil will perform. Also, consult your mechanic about the best heat and pressure limits for your specific engine.

The make and model of your vehicle

The nature of your vehicle will also determine the type of motor oil you should use. If you have a high-performance engine, you may need a synthetic blend that's capable of cleaning dirt and lubricating a wide area of moving parts.

High-performance engines may also use up lots of oil, thus requiring a blend that remains functional for longer periods.

The best idea is to consult your manufacturer's manual to determine the best type of oil to use—and how frequently you should go for an oil change.

Regular vs. synthetic oil

Speaking of synthetic oil, you'll typically have 3 main choices when selecting motor oil. There is regular oil, synthetic blends and high mileage oil. Regular oil works well for small and mid-sized vehicles that don't consume lots of engine power. These vehicles have smaller engine blocks that regulate heat, pressure and lubrication quite well. Using dense oil may result in blockages and uneven lubrication.

However, if your engine is larger and has higher performance limits, synthetic oil will be necessary to withstand high heat and pressure.

There are also high mileage oils that are capable of cleaning your engine from debris that may have accumulated over the years.