FAQ: Oil Changes

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My owner’s manual says I should use 5W-30 oil in my engine. Can I use 10W-30 or 10W-40 instead?

Many vehicle manufacturers recommend a lighter weight oil be used in newer cars because newer engines are built to tighter tolerances than before. This requires a lighter weight oil for proper lubrication when the engine is cold. Lighter weight oil also helps to improve fuel economy.

Most manufacturers will list a range of oils that can be used for different conditions, such as temperatures below 30°C, temperatures above 40°C, or while towing. These weight ranges will be listed in your owner’s manual.

Should I be using synthetic or conventional oil?

Synthetic oil helps promote longer life and better performance in most vehicles. It bonds to engine parts providing a layer of protection that surpasses the protection afforded by conventional oil. Synthetic oil will also continue to pump through your engine when conventional oil would start to thicken in cold temperatures or break down from heat.

Synthetic oil is recommended particularly for vehicles that are driven in cold climates – it will help you start your engine even when the temperature drops to -40°C. It is also good for high stress situations, such as pulling and towing. Remember, you can always switch back to conventional oil after using synthetic oil.

Why is synthetic motor oil more expensive then regular motor oil?

Synthetic oils are man-made in a chemical plant and cost more to produce. They provide better protection at extreme temperatures than regular or conventional motor oils. Conventional oils are mineral-based and come from crude oil that is removed from the ground and run through a refinery.

While synthetics can improve engine performance, they don’t eliminate the need for regular oil changes. Synthetics can handle the heat longer than regular oil but additives only work for so long and the engine will still contaminate the oil.

What happens to the used oil from my car?

Keizer’s recycles all used oil. It is treated and reused as burner and bunker fuels for industrial applications such as in mills, asphalt paving, cement plants and cruise ships. A percentage of the used oil also goes into re-refined oil.