Tips for Choosing the Best Motor Oil for Your Car

3 Tips for Choosing the Best Motor Oil for Your Car

Regular oil changes, brake checks, and tire maintenance are among the many variables contributing to a car’s lifespan. Choosing the right motor oil is important, too. It can be overwhelming for some people, though, given the many options available. Keep reading to get tips on choosing the right motor oil for your vehicle.

Check the Owner’s Manual

If you’re buying a new vehicle such as a new Chevrolet for sale, it may use different oil from what your current vehicle does. Each car has specific motor oil requirements, and you can find them in the owner’s manual. You’ll see details on the manufacturer’s recommended oil type, viscosity, and any other considerations.

That said, the manual may list different recommendations. They can vary based on climate, for example. The main factor is to use oil with the correct thickness, or viscosity, for your car’s engine health and performance.

Focus on the Right Viscosity

Motor oils are available in various viscosities, which you can usually see by a combination of numbers and letters. The higher the viscosity, the slower the oil flows. The most common grades are 5W-30 and 10W-30, according to the U.S. Department of Energy.

The first number, 5W for example, refers to cold-temperature flow (the “W” stands for winter). The second number, such as 30, has to do with the oil’s viscosity at high temperatures. You need to select the viscosity that matches your vehicle’s needs based on the climate and engine design.

If you see oil that doesn’t have “W,” then it may not be multigrade. For example, SAE 30 is different from 5W-30. However, multigrade oils are very common.

You could aim for 0W or 5W oils during cold winters, or get multi-viscosity (multigrade) oils if you live in an area with temperature fluctuations between the seasons. Check your owner’s manual for the most specific guidance.

Account for the Oil Base

Conventional (petroleum), synthetic, and synthetic blends are the three major types of motor oil bases. Conventional is basic and more affordable, while synthetic oils are more advanced for better performance and protection.

Meanwhile, synthetic blends offer more affordability than pure synthetic oil while retaining many of the advantages. Choose your base depending on your driving habits, climate, and your vehicle’s age.

You may be fine with conventional oil if your climate is moderate, your driving habits are average, and you follow regular car maintenance schedules.

Synthetic is good for new vehicles that have turbochargers or direct injection systems. This type may also be best if your vehicle is high-performance or you drive all the time in stop-and-go traffic. Similarly, if you use the vehicle for heavy towing or hauling, consider synthetic.

A synthetic blend could be perfect if you have mixed driving habits or want better performance (than you’d get with conventional) coupled with affordability.

Regular Oil Changes Are Important

Choosing the best motor oil for your car can be straightforward, especially with the assistance of your owner’s manual. Regardless of the motor oil you choose, get it changed regularly. Consistency keeps your engine clean and lubricated for an extended lifespan and better fuel efficiency.


Leave a Reply