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2 Things To Know When You Are Choosing Your Motor Oil

Your car needs to have lubrication so that it will run the way that it should. Metal gets hot easily, and friction is not its friend because it causes metal to get even hotter. If the cylinders in your engine tried to move without lubrication, they would quickly seize up and destroy your engine. Engine oil is nice and slippery, which makes it an excellent lubricant. Oil allows the cylinders to move nicely and smoothly, providing power to your car. However, there are all kinds of engine oil out there, and it can be hard to figure out which one is perfect for you and your car. So what are some things you need to know about engine oil so that you choose correctly?


Viscosity means how much a fluid resists flowing. For your engine oil, that means how much you can expect the oil to thin out at certain temperatures. When it comes to engine oil, the viscosity is measured at two temperatures, 0 F and 212 F. Those results are marked by two numbers, 10W-40, 5W-20, for example.

Most people think that the W in that means weight, but it actually means winter. The first number, the 5 or 10 or even 20, measures how much the oil thickens up when it's at 0 degrees. The lower the number, the less it thickens up. That means that if you live in an area that gets really cold in the winter, you will want a motor oil that has a lower first number so that it takes longer to thicken up in the cold. The second number measures how quickly it thins out in the heat. The higher that number is, the longer it takes to thin out. If you live in a hot climate, you will want to focus more on the last number than the first number. 

Conventional vs. Synthetic

Conventional oil is just regular motor oil; it hasn't gone through any special processes. Most cars will work just fine with conventional oils. Synthetic oils have undergone special chemical processes, which make them better. They work much better when it comes to things like high-performance engines or engines that get a lot of use. For example, if you put a lot of miles on your car each month, you will likely want to get a synthetic oil. 

Making sure that you have the right motor oil is important so that you can keep your car on the road. For more information about engine oils, contact professional auto and oil shops, such as Small & Sons Oil Dist Co.