3 Main Types of Motor Oil and How they Are Made

How Death Becomes Part of Our Everyday Life

Over time, countless decomposing organisms work themselves into the earth. They mix and mingle with one another, making their way deeper and deeper, until eventually the build-up of heat and pressure turn the beautiful mess into an extremely valuable liquid, crude oil. A liquid that, once extracted from the ground, is shipped off to refineries to remove waste and impurities. In its next phases, the oil goes through heating, vaporizing, and cooling. Then, additives such as antioxidants, conditioners, and detergents are added to create a product capable of peak performance. But before it can be sold as certifiable motor oil, essential attributes such as color, viscosity, and flashpoint must pass a quality control test.  Once proven worthy, what had been decaying plants and animals, becomes a highly valuable lubricant. Conventional motor oil, synthetic oil, and synthetic blend are the three most common variants used today. 

  1. Conventional oil is best for your no-frills, earlier model cars, trucks, and SUVs. It is a basic, refined crude oil, with enough additives to keep your vehicle running well. If you are not driving a newer make and model, and your driving is nothing out of the ordinary, conventional motor oil is a good, inexpensive option.
  2. Synthetic oil is a chemically crafted mixture of a base oil with higher quality additives and fewer impurities. It is more expensive than conventional oil, but if you have a late model vehicle and are looking for an oil that performs better at extreme temperatures, synthetic motor oil is a better option.
  3. Synthetic Blend is a good middle-ground motor oil. It’s a mix of conventional and synthetic base oils. They are less refined and cheaper than full synthetic, but they are higher performing than conventional motor oils.

Ask the Experts

In addition to the three main types of motor oil, there’s a high-mileage option for those who run their engines more rigorously and for longer distances. Lucky for us all, there are a variety of options. Refer to your owner’s manual to find out which motor oil is best for your vehicle. The experts at Carlisle Air Automotive in North San Antonio, Texas, can steer you in the right direction as well.

Written by Carlisle Air Automotive