A Brief Talk on the Matters Needing Attention in the Selection of Automobile Engine Oil

With the popularization of automobiles, more and more car owners have begun to purchase motor oil on their own. How to choose engine oil? Experts pointed out that we must first have a more comprehensive understanding of the oil viscosity and quality level before choosing a more suitable oil.

When choosing engine oil, we are mainly concerned about two parameters-“SAE viscosity grade” and “API quality grade”, these two parameters will be clearly marked on the oil tank. In addition to these two parameters, consumers can choose brands with good reputations according to their preferences.

Determine the SAE viscosity grade

The common motor oils on the market have adopted SAE (Society of Motor Vehicle Engineers) standards to grade their viscosity. We will see the corresponding oil viscosity value printed on the oil tank, such as “0W30”. The “0” before the “W” means that the low temperature viscosity grade of the oil is 0, and the “30” after the “W”. It indicates that the high temperature viscosity grade of the oil is 30.

It may be more complicated to interpret this number. For car owners who use vehicles in Foshan or the same environment, the general choice of oil does not require high SAE. The commonly used 10W30 and 15W40 can meet the requirements of use. Generally speaking, in cold areas, it is required to select the oil whose previous value is 0W or 5W.

In addition to the common viscosity grades such as 10W30, there are also some engine oils for a single grade, that is, there is no follow-up number. From the perspective of actual car needs, it is recommended that car owners choose multiple grades of oil similar to those mentioned above. These oils can better meet a wide range from low temperature to high temperature, and adapt to temperature changes to give the engine more comprehensive protection.

In addition, if the car owner does not know what viscosity to choose, please consult the owner's manual for recommendations. The general owner’s manual will have clear regulations, including the choice of oil viscosity in cold areas.

The API quality grade of the selected engine oil

According to international practice, the grade of engine oil is indicated by the API standard mark. When we see “SJ”, “SL”, “SM” or “SN” on the oil tank, it is the grade of engine oil. The later the alphabetical order of “S”, the better the durability and quality of the oil.

Generally, the grade of fully synthetic engine oil we often mention is “SM” or “SN”; the grade of semi-synthetic engine oil is generally “SL” or “SM”; the grade of mineral oil is generally “SJ”. The performance indicators of fully synthetic engine oil of the same viscosity grade and ordinary mineral oil are not much different. The difference between the two is mainly reflected in the stability, durability and cleanliness of the engine. In a conventional vehicle environment, the fully synthetic engine oil is more stable, and the general replacement cycle can be as long as 10,000 kilometers. The mineral oil is recommended to be replaced at 5000 km.

The reporter’s investigation found that the current price of fully synthetic motor oil is generally more than 400 yuan, semi-synthetic motor oil is around 250 yuan, and mineral oil is about 150 yuan.

From the perspective of car use, since most private cars do not travel a long kilometer, if the oil is replaced with reference to 5000 kilometers, the general car cycle is four months or even longer. Since the oil will be used for too long during use, the performance will be reduced. If it is not a special requirement of the vehicle engine, the owner generally chooses semi-synthetic oil. Of course, if the money is not bad, the higher the oil level, the better if the viscosity is met.

It is worth mentioning that the operating state of the engine also affects the choice of oil level. Generally speaking, for vehicles with high compression ratios and vehicles that like to keep the engine at a high speed, it is recommended to choose fully synthetic engine oil.

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