1st winter using systhetic oil.

chiphead

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Hi all
I'm about to go into my first winter using systhetic oil, anything I should look out for? I'm using Valvoline Hi-Mileage Systhetic since the start of the summer. Now I'm looking at Penzoil Synthetic, I understand that it binds better to the parts. When I start my engine I get this tapping noise for a second or two with my current systhetic oil.
chiphead
 

orbital

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^

No worries,,,, use as normal
Most info online or even at auto centers about synthetic is misinformation.

One important fact: you can combine synthetic with non synthetic if they are the same grade.
 
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Yoda4561

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The noise you hear is the lack of a pressurized hydraulic system, hydraulic tappets clatter, rods knock slightly, etc until the oil system gets pressure into the engine. In cold weather syns usually help since they don't thicken up as much when cold, oils starting with 0w (like 0w-40) should be best as they pump easily during startup.
 

chiphead

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The noise you hear is the lack of a pressurized hydraulic system, hydraulic tappets clatter, rods knock slightly, etc until the oil system gets pressure into the engine. In cold weather syns usually help since they don't thicken up as much when cold, oils starting with 0w (like 0w-40) should be best as they pump easily during startup.

Now this was educational, thanks for the feedback fellas!
chiphead
 

pobox1475

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I have been sold on synthetics for close to 20 years. Used to use Syntec 5w50 which was a hell'of a extreme spread. It seemed to circulate quickly at start-up even in minus degree Chicago winters. My 96 v6 Camry saw 10,000 mile change intervals from new until it was totaled at 206k. Still ran, idles, and performed like new. I would avoid mixing oils.
 

mvyrmnd

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I used to use 0W-40 synthetic in my Saab. Had to be 0W to circulate quickly to the Turbo. Never had any issues summer (max 45°C) or winter (min -10°C)
 

orbital

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^

regarding mixing; you don't have to stress if you add a quart of 5-30 synthetic to your 5-30 non,, it will not hurt it.

If I may go on a slight tangent here,, I'v known a family of engineers since the mid 80's, they are beyond smart mechanical engineers.
We talked about auto stuff and the conversation on oil was very brief,,,"yes you can combine synthetic & non if they are the same grade", that was the end of talking on that.

More importantly discussed was not using gas with ethanol ,, my ears nearly bled with all the reasons NOT to use ethanol blended gas.
Serious engineering stuff, not just silly hearsay

Anyway, if your a diesel guy, never mind :)
 
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Phil828

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The way I understand it, crude derived oils will drain into the oil pan when the engine is not running leaving bare metal parts. That is why 90% of engine wear occurs at start up. Synthetic oils on the other hand will leave a film of oil on the metal parts at all times. This reduces wear at start up as well as protects against corrosion although I don't have any data for comparison.
In our household we have two fairly new Toyotas, a Camry and a Tacoma. They both require 0W-20 oil year round. It is a bit hard to find and only available as a synthetic.
 

Lite_me

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Just like this is theee place on the net for flashlights and related lighting, Bobistheoilguy is theee place for oil info.
They are as fanatical about oil, as most of us here are about flashlights. Maybe even more. :drool:
 

HighlanderNorth

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I have been switching back and forth between synthetic and regular oil since I bought my truck new in 2005. I just did another oil change last week, and I used Pennzoil full synthetic. Next time I will bring it to Jiffy Lube and have them do it with regular, because I pay them to do the other stuff I dont want to do like flushing the transmission every 50,000 miles, and flushing the radiator, changing the differential lube and the transfer case lube, etc.

What I do when I change the oil myself, is I go to Pep Boys and look out for sales on oil, and fairly often they will literally drop the price 35-50% on oil and on the filter. The regular price for full synthetic is around $8.50 - $9.25 per quart, plus about $6 or $7 for the top oil filters, which works out to about $52, but I just bought their oil change special for around $34 including the filter.
 

chiphead

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Fellas
Just went from Valvoline Extended Mileage to Penzoil Full Synthetic in my 2000(w/185000) Dodge Dakota. So far, so good.
chiphead
 

HighlanderNorth

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Just went from Valvoline Extended Mileage to Penzoil Full Synthetic in my 2000(w/185000) Dodge Dakota. So far, so good.
chiphead


What engine and trans do you have in the Dakota? I have the Dodge 4.7L V-8 and heavy duty auto 4 speed O/D. My truck just went over 80,000 miles 2 weeks ago. I'm hoping to keep it for at least another 4 years before buying another new truck. Here's hoping it'll last that long!
 

dano

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Swapping or mixing conventional with synthetic will not pose a problem. Using the 0-weight oils was nothing more than an easy way for the auto manufacturers to make CAFE standards.
 

brandini

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add lucas engine oil treatment, it helps.
Oddly enough, a thinner (when cold) oil will have less of this problem since it will come to pressure, temperature, and circulate faster. It's a common problem with the Miata, the non-turbo 3000gt/Diamante engines and their hydraulic lash adjusters. They get loose or dirty and noisy over time, a thinner full synthetic helps by:
-Being thinner when cold, it pressurizes the system faster and the ticking goes away faster at startup
-Being thick enough*** you don't want too thick, it's bad!*** when warm (ie it's a 0W-30 vs 10W-30, when warm, they both are the same viscosity). Going too thin can sacrifice protection.
-Fully Syn (PAO based) oils transfer heat better so your engine warms up faster and dissipates excess heat via a cooler (if equipped) or the coolant more efficiently. Additives in oil perform better when at operating temperature, the faster your engine warms up, the better.

Mixing oils is NOT recommended because there are MANY way to refine oils, and different additives neutralize additives, resist breakdown, and alter viscosity using many different chemicals. If you are going extended drains and top-off with an oil that is built to only meet minimum specs, make sure to change your oil based on the lesser oil. IF you NEED to mix, keep to the same BRAND.

Other things that can be attempted and checked to address ticking at startup is:
-Oil filter, use a filter with an anti-drainbck valve. Oil that has passed the filter will be kept in the block/head and on engine start you won't be working to fill all those voids before lubricating the moving parts of your engine.
-Use a fully synthetic oil. Fully synthetic oils are more grabby (they're typically polar molecules) and will more effectively remove gunk from your engine.
-Clean your engine with a flush, make sure it's detergent and NOT solvent based, NOT pressurized, and NOT expensive. Two friends of mine have had success cleaning out grit and gime from their oiling system with a simple flush. Basically you get your car up to temperature, pour it in, idle for 15 minutes, and then change your oil. It's just like using a concentrated cleaner on something for a short period of time.

And, sorry to say, sometimes replacement is the answer. The Mitsubishi Diamante/3000gt engines above actually had new versions of the lash adjuster released with larger, better flowing oil ports:
lash-adjusters-newer-6-650l.jpg



And since the thread mentioned winter of course we all know:
-Start your car, watch the idle, when it starts dropping you can safely drive, and should. Engines under light load warm up much faster than those at idle. Rephrased: engines burning more gas generate more heat than those using the bare minimum.
-Go VERY easy until your temperature needle points to warm
-Don't have any fun until 3x longer than step 2 took, oil heats up slower than coolant and many cars temperature needles are glorified idiot lights (mine has a 50 degree dead spot).
 

SemiMan

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Interesting post Brandini. I had never thought about the additional benefits re: cooling with synthetics.

It's a bit off topic, but are there then better transmission oils that carry heat away better. I tow a trailer regularly in the summer and my vehicle is notorious for transmission failures. I do have a transmission cooler.

Semiman
 

brandini

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Interesting post Brandini. I had never thought about the additional benefits re: cooling with synthetics.

It's a bit off topic, but are there then better transmission oils that carry heat away better. I tow a trailer regularly in the summer and my vehicle is notorious for transmission failures. I do have a transmission cooler.

Semiman
Just copy and paste the same thing, syn is better, except for initial cost, but it lasts longer, so it's cheaper per mile. I'm an Amsoil fan, in my now-gone 2007 Mazda6, Amsoil fluid made cold-weather shifting MUCH better, as well as less slam-shifting when getting on the gas after coasting. The dealer told me it was normal and a quirk for the car, I said bologna and instead of sticking with OE fluids, never regretted changing to Amsoil.

This video was pretty impressive: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=87J7bpHGAzg Never knew those trucks had automatics.

Here's their application guide to see what they approve for your car: https://www.amsoil.com/mygarage/vehiclelookup.aspx?zo=1368758
 

Yoda4561

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Most transmission fluids are so refined right now as to be practically synthetics from a heat transfer and viscosity standpoint. Where they do differ is in their ability to maintain their viscosity/not oxidize at high temps, and while amsoils engine oils are fairly expensive and I'm not a big believer in year long oil changes, the transmission fluid isn't that much more expensive than anyone elses and stays in the vehicle for so long it makes sense to get the best you can. Just make sure it's in their compatibility list. The transmission and severe gear differential oil are well worth it if you have a change coming up.
 
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HighlanderNorth

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Just copy and paste the same thing, syn is better, except for initial cost, but it lasts longer, so it's cheaper per mile. I'm an Amsoil fan, in my now-gone 2007 Mazda6, Amsoil fluid made cold-weather shifting MUCH better, as well as less slam-shifting when getting on the gas after coasting. The dealer told me it was normal and a quirk for the car, I said bologna and instead of sticking with OE fluids, never regretted changing to Amsoil.

This video was pretty impressive: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=87J7bpHGAzg Never knew those trucks had automatics.

Here's their application guide to see what they approve for your car: https://www.amsoil.com/mygarage/vehiclelookup.aspx?zo=1368758



I have no idea where to buy Amsoil automotive oil around my area, but I did use Amsoil synthetic 2 cycle oil for many years. As far as the thicker vs thinner oil, I remember back in the 80's and 90's when I owned cars and trucks from the 60's and early 70's, with carburetors and my first boss who was an old drag racer from the 60's told me to run Valvoline 20w-50 in these engines from that era, then later someone told me to ignore the 5w-30 recommendation for my 2005 Dodge Ram 4x4 truck(4.7L v-8), and instead to use 10w-40 with a quart of the super-thick Lucas oil stabilizer, which probably thickened the other 5 qts of 10w-40 up to over the thickness of 50 weight oil!

Well, ^ that is terrible advice for newer engines, as you mentioned in your second to last post, and its better to run 5w-20 in these newer engines. So I use full synthetic 5w-20 in winter, and sometimes I go to 5w-30 in summer when its in the 90's most of the time, but this year I didnt do that, I stayed with 5w-20. Half the time I do the oil and filter myself and the other half I bring it to the shop to get the oil done, not because I dont want to do it, but because they will also do the other things that I dont want to do like changing the transfer case lube and the differential lube every 50k or so. Also, I let them do their very thorough transmission flush and coolant system flush every so often.

But even though they say you can get at least 5,000 miles out of full synthetic, I have only let it go 5,000 miles in between oil changes about 2 times, and the rest have been done between 3,000-4,000 miles even when using full synthetic, because I've noticed from the very beginning that full synthetic seems to darken and discolor much more than petroleum oil, and that really dark color doesnt sit well with me, so I change it.

But I have asked and been told and read that synthetic oil just darkens and discolors much more quickly, but I dont know why....

Lastly I dont think that people need to add any oil treatments if they are already using good quality full synthetic motor oil.

Wait til Pep Boys does one of their regular oil change specials where they drop the prices of both petroleum based oil and full synthetic oil of one particular brand down by 35-50%, including a top grade oil filter with the synthetic oil deal. So you can often do a full synthetic oil change for the price of regular oil then.
 
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