Synthetic oil


#1

My 2000 Nissan Frontier 4 WD has 98K miles. Could or should I convert at this stage to synthetic? My mechanic says no need to. ???

BTW, I live in Phoenix where the temps are horrendous in summer. Steve in Phoenix


#2

Your mechanic has either been asleep for 20 years or he’s afraid that if something happens like oil consumption, you will blame it on him.

YES, you can change to synthetic oil and BACK anytime you want. It’s ideal for Phoenix, and I would use at least 5W30, preferably 10W30 in the summer. What you can’t do is extend the oil change interval just because you paid more for the oil. Also, don’t use 5W20; it’s too thin and will likely cause oil consumption. It’s for newer cars.


#3

I don’t see where the mechanic gave bad advise. Synthetic may be better…but is it really needed. Looks like the OP only puts on about 20k miles a year.


#4

Mike; I was thinking of the 100+ temperatures in the SouthWest. In a moderate climate with no heavy loads on the engine, agree, it would be a waste of money.


#5

It may/may not be a waste of money. Why don’t you try it for an oil change or two and see if you notice any difference in oil consumption, engine smoothness, gas mileage, etc. Be sure to use a full-synthetic, not a blend, to get the full benefit. No harm in trying.


#6

Have you ever seen a “synthetic” product that was better than the real McCoy??

Under certain EXTREME conditions, synthetic motor oil has properties that make it a better all-around lubricant. Extreme cold, primarily…YOU might think Phoenix is HOT but your engine is running at 190-200 degrees just like the Nissan pick-ups in Chicago. 10 or 20 degrees outside air temperature makes no difference…A hard working truck in Phoenix with 100K miles on it might like 15-40 in the summer…Just my opinion…


#7

“Have you ever seen a “synthetic” product that was better than the real McCoy??”

Yes, many times. Man-made magnets are certainly better than lodestone mined from the earth. Many synthetic materials are stronger, lighter, and longer-lasting than natural ones. but does this really apply to motor oil? It’s not like synthetic is “fake oil” And arguably synthetic oil IS much better than conventional oil. Is synthetic oil better for your engine. I think most people would agree that it is. Since you may not need your engine to last for 1,000,000 miles, it may not be advantageous for you to spend the extra money. I never had an engine failure with conventional oil, nor with synthetic. I would say that after switching to synthetic, my engine uses less oil between oil changes, and I can comfortably go at least 6,000 miles between oil changes instead of 3,000. My engine also seems to idle smoother and quieter (although this is mostly a subjective observation), and since I do live in an area where the temperature gets very cold sometimes, I have more peace of mind during cold starts. Of course this is my opinion. But there’s a reason that professional racers use synthetic oil, and a reason that it’s factory fill on high-end cars. I doubt you will find a pro that races with dino oil.


#8

Chemically synthetic oil is the same as regular dyno oil…with none of the impurities.


#9

Great posting, oblivion. Those guys who claim synthetic oil is no different than regular, just gullible people paying good money for nothing, remind me of those folks who claim we Toyota/Honda owners really do as many repairs as Chev/Ford/Dodge, we just lie about it, and spend all our money for nothing. Hohohohahahaheeheehee.

I have just made an important decision. On 2/24/2009, my 2002 Sienna had 150374 miles on it, and I changed the oil, putting in as usual EP Mobil-1. I went to Mexico and drove around for nearly 3 months. The car now has 154109 miles on it, 3735 in 3 months, less than in the past.

I am going to Mexico in a few weeks, without changing the oil, and may be there as much as 6 months, so we can guess I might have 8,000 to 10,000 miles on that oil when I come back.

I will attempt to have an oil analysis done, if I can find how to get it done. I will report here what the results are, and if the oil is no good, I will profusely apologize, you can be sure.

I challenge those who say both types of oil are the same to drive their regular oil to 8,000 or 10,000 miles and let us have the analysis report as well. I think that is a fair challenge, no?


#10

This Sienna uses a modest amount of oil, maybe 1/2 quart in 5,000 miles or a bit more, I am not sure, so I am going to take a quart with me, and keep track of how much I add.

It is a toss-up, but I don’t think I am going to change the filter in that time, though many of you do. I want to know what really happens with Mobil-1 over extended use.

So, where does one obtain oil analysis mailers? Maybe I need to get it before I leave so it will be here and I can change my oil when I get back.


#11

I am changing the air filter. This experiment will be a harsh one, because the next few months will be spent in a quarry town, with very high dust levels, travertine marble dust to be specific. It hasn’t been that long since the filter was changed, but I want it to be a test of oil, not travertine marble dust and its effect on the motor.

I will be stopping at Autozone and asking if they sell the analysis kits or if I have to order them online.


#12

Try this http://www.blackstone-labs.com/


#13

You can change any time you want. It will not hurt, nor is it really required. It is better oil, but likely you will not recover the added cost. You might get a few weeks of life out of the engine and maybe a 0.015% increase in mileage.