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2013 Honda Accord - is synthetic oil necessary?

Is synthetic oil necessary?

If your owners manual specifies synthetic then yes, if not then no.
In either case, be sure to use the oil viscosity specified.

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What about synthetic oil blends? Are these okay?

Mark , what is it you are trying to find out. As stated your owners manual will have that info .

If the manual states synthetic then no a blend is not advised. However, since your car is out of warranty do as you please, but may cause problems as the mileage and years add up.

I’m trying to find out if synthetic oil is a requirement or a suggestion given the significant cost difference. Is regular oil an okay substitute or is there something about this car that require that it be synthetic as opposed to using regular motor oil or a synthetic oil blend. What is different about the oil chassis of this car than that of another car that uses regular motor oil?

I have no idea what you mean by oil chassis . Is there some reason you have not looked in the manual ?
It does not matter what another vehicle uses , just yours . Besides how often do you change oil anyway. Your vehicle probably says 6000 miles or 6 months .
Maybe just going by a Honda dealer service department will give you the answer.

This is what I see;

“Genuine Honda motor oil SAE 0W20. API-Premium grade 0W20 detergent oil.”

I believe the Honda product is synthetic-blend but if you buy 0W20 in common brands of motor oil it is always synthetic.


Maybe if Mark priced a new engine the cost of an oil change might not seem that bad after all.


Why are you so obtuse to reading the owners manual? Everything you’ve asked is spelled out very clearly in the owners manual.

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What is necessary is stated in your owner’s manual. In the case of the 2013 Honda Accord the owner’s manual, (which can viewed here ) states on page 501 that 0W-20 oil is recommended. It does not specify that it has to be synthetic, but 0W-20 oil is usually synthetic or semi-synthetic anyway. I don’t know know of any brand that sells a conventional oil in that weight. So chances at that you will have to spend a little extra on at least semi-synthetic or synthetic oil for your car.


Engine life, 200,000 miles or 30 oil changes
Difference in price between regular oil and synthetic based on national average oil change costs is $24 for each oil change
The extra cost of oil changes over 200,000 miles is $720
An engine replacement costs $5000 - $7500

Is it worth quibbling over $24 every 6000 miles or so to prevent early engine failure or wear-out?


It is when money is tight. I’m glad everyone here doesn’t have that issue, but I do right now. Not everyone is privileged. Thanks for the help and snarky comments everybody.

our 2016 equinox uses 5-30 synthetic. bobs oil change has dino oil changes for $20. we could use 5-30 dino or 5-30 syn. the last syn oil change there was $85. company car. im not doing it.
receipt says syn oil. could there be dino oil in car? yep. but how would we know?

Agree with checking the manual.

For what it’s worth… some oil viscosities are only available in synthetic; you simply don’t have a choice. We have a Honda, and while I can’t recall the oil viscosity at the moment, I’m pretty sure it’s not available in regular/non-synthetic.

My Dodge uses 5W-20, which is available both regular and synthetic. But I pay a little extra for synthetic. Why? I’ve read that the MDS system runs better on synthetic, I typically go 6000 miles between changes… and it’s just personal preference. Your mileage may vary (literally :smile:).

And also for what it’s worth… I totally get money being tight from time to time. But saving $20 on an oil change now for the wrong oil only increases your chances of an expensive engine problem down the road. Probably at the worst possible time.

Good luck.


I appreciate everyone suggesting that I check the manual. However, that was my first stop before I came here. I found the manual very vague on the issue which is why I came here for some helpful suggestions. Thanks to all those who were helpful. I could have done without those who were not.

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i bet your oil fill cap says 0-20?
I’ll bet you want to know if 5-20 is ok

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adding on “oil cap says…”, I recall I’ve seen some car where is said “0W20, synthetic only” or such

+1 to the comments above that 0W20 is pretty much synonymous to synthetic or blend

still, I might suspect quick lube places would not care about before-W part and put 5W20 there in a heartbeat, which probably can be found in non-synthetic.

given the S-spec is the same and no explicit requirement on synthetic-only is listed by the manufacturer, I would not expect it to destroy the car

still, if funds are tight, you can use a trick a friend of mine was doing for quite some time:

  • go to WalMart, buy their SuperTech synthetic, it’s something like $15 for a 5-quart jug
  • go to the shop, ask for CONVENTIONAL oil change / no frills, they will tell you something like “$25”
  • tell “I want to supply my own oil… here it is”, get your jug out at this point
  • they will deduct something small like $3-4, since they get their oil real cheap in bulk
  • you get good synthetic oil in your engine for under $40

ah… if you were not afraid to make your hands dirty, you would end up paying $15 for full-synthetic + $2.50 for SuperTech filter (which are made surprisingly good for their price), return old oil to the auto section, next to the shelf you got it from

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It is the internet, it is a free open forum, you might get your feelings hurt, you get what you pay for.


… and the advice about reading and following the verbiage in the Owner’s Manual was valid. While it might not have been appreciated, it was valid.