SYNTHETIC VERSUS PETROLEUM OILS
Oil is the lifeblood of your vehicle’s engine. Our automobiles are major investments. So why do we settle for inferior oils? Conventional petroleum motor oils are not adequate because they are made from a refined substance. Petroleum oil base stocks contain paraffin (wax), oxygen, sulfur, nitrogen, water, salts to name a few. No refining process can remove all these impurities. The chemicals in petroleum oils break down under even normal operating temperatures and are harmful to your engines.(thermal breakdown) Since oxygen is also present; this causes a process called oxidation breakdown. Thermal and oxidation breakdown leave byproducts that coat the engines components with varnish, deposits and sludge. The oil that is left is thick and hard to pump.
Petroleum oils because of the paraffin begin to thicken at temperatures 10 to 40 degrees warmer than synthetic lubricants. This can leave engine parts unprotected for as long as five minutes after a cold engine start. Significant wear can occur during this time. Even when conditions are perfect for petroleum oils, they can’t perform well. Because they are refined, they contain molecules that are not uniform (they vary in size). Therefore, the smaller molecules tend to flow toward the center and the larger molecules flow outward and adhere to the engines components. This causes a blanket effect preventing heat movement from the engine to the oil stream. Engine temperatures then increase. Also, this non-uniformity does not allow the oil to flow smoothly. This leads to increased friction which is the very thing an oil is supposed to decrease. Uniform molecules slip over each other with ease while non-uniform molecules do not.
SYNTHETIC LUBRICANTS are simply better. There are five major areas where this can be noted:
- Oil drainage can be extended
- Vehicle life is extended
- Costly repairs can be reduced
- Fuel mileage can be improved
- Performance can be improved
How does this happen? Well, the molecular structure of synthetic oils are uniform because the base stocks are designed from ground up for the sole purpose for engine protection. Nothing is added unless it contributes to the protection of your engine. Synthetic base stock molecules are short-chained molecules which are more stable and resist breakdown. This significantly adds to the lubricating quality and stability of the lubricant. Petroleum oils are long-chained molecules which break down very easily. The molecules in the synthetic lubricants resist thermal and oxidation breakdown ( the main enemies of petroleum oils). Since the molecular structure of synthetic lubricants like AMSOIL are uniform they flow over each other easily and therefore have less friction. Less friction means better heat control. Heat and friction are the major contributors of component damage. Synthetic oils also provide better seal protection which means the combustion byproducts do not enter your oil system as much as petroleum oils.
Why, you may ask are oil companies not offering extended oil drain intervals like AMSOIL’s 25,000/1year. The answer is simply money. With people changing their oils every 3000 miles, they easily change oil 5 to 8 times a year. Many people who even own Quick Lube stores use synthetic lubricants in their personal vehicles. But, they don’t want to lose the business of those frequent oil changes. Look at the advances even modern medicine has made within even the last 5 to 10 years. Medications and treatments that are available and saving lives now could not have done earlier. But, many people still think that you need to use petroleum oil and change it every 3000 miles. Well, folks todays engines are made with tighter tolerances and for higher performance and only synthetic lubricants can fit the bill. Not only to mention that you save money due to less oil changes, fewer repair bills, better gas mileage and extended life of your vehicle. Yes a vehicle does require general maintenance. But, think seriously about the life blood of your vehicle that you paid a handsome sum.
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