Edmunds Answers



  • coldcranker 09/16/08 12:16 am PST

    Currently, Valvoline Synpower (full synthetic) has released something about the results of their Sequence IVA valvetrain cam wear result. They have much better wear protection than Mobil 1. Its rare to non-existent for companies to actually reveal to consumers about how their certification testing went. So enjoy it while you can. The lawyers at Mobil 1 have been unable to refute the Valvoline test results. The tests were done first in Valvoline labs, then repeated elsewhere at independent labs to be sure they were consistent.
    Summary at http://www.fleetmag.com/web/online/Indu

    Therefore, although Mobil1 synthetic is good, I'd say go for the lower wear of the Valvoline Synpower. Lower wear is most of the point.

    And you can alternate between synthetic and non-synthetic. Its an old wives tale that you can't. No worries there.

    I understand that Valvoline even uses the same zinc anti-wear additive package in their regular and synthetic-blend oils, so I'd go Valvoline all the way, synthetic or not. This may force Mobil to improve their anti-wear zinc chemistry package in a few years. Its good for engines for this sudden "openness" about wear on cams, as it puts the pressure for oil companies to advertise their quality/certification test results and get better.

  • csandste 09/16/08 12:45 am PST

    Your OLM is calibrated to dino and quite conservative. I assume you have a OHC engine, and that the 3.8 has been dropped, right? I have a Malibu Maxx with the 3.5 ohv and I average about 7-8,000 miles on dino before the OLM gets down to 10%. Not sure how the other engines compare but GM is usually an easy engine on oil.

    Conoco/Phillips/Ford/76/Kendall (did I hit all of 'em?) has a lot of group III because of Conoco/Phillips refining capacity. Used to be able to pick up Phillips for about $1.70 at Wal-Mart but they dropped it. I haven't looked at their oils closely lately, but I think they all may be labeled as semi-syn.

    I generally go with Pennzoil 5w30. It's a very, very good dino oil with lots of group II+ basestocks and a very good ad. pack.

    If you used a group IV synthetic or even a top end group III, I would think you could easily extend your OLM change cycle. I'd get nervous, however, driving with the indicator at zero. Dropping a group IV at the full change cycle might be a waste of money but would certainly give you extra protection. Again, that OLM is very very conservative so not to worry running it out, even with dino.

    Although Valvoline has a reputation for being a rather weak dino, I've also heard very good things about SynPower. Pennzoil Platinum too if you just gotta have synthetic.

  • Stever@Edmunds 09/16/08 1:39 am PST

    These past Edmunds Answers may help.

    synthetic vs standard motor oil

    How many of you are using synthetic oil in your cars? If so, what brand?

    Congrats on the new ride!


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