Can I Switch Oil Brands in My Car?

Can I Switch Oil Brands in My Car?

Last Updated on April 19, 2024

Key Takeaways

  • Changing oil brands won’t harm your car’s engine as long as the oil meets the manufacturer’s recommended type and viscosity.
  • The brand of oil matters less than its type and viscosity, which should be selected based on the vehicle’s requirements outlined in the owner’s manual.
  • Synthetic oil offers advantages over conventional oil, including better resistance to breakdown, improved fuel economy, and easier cold weather starts.

The general belief is that switching oil brands can detrimentally affect your car, but is there any truth to that rumor? So if you find yourself asking – can I switch oil brands in my car without damaging my engine? Let’s see if there is any truth to this rumor.

There are no negative effects from changing the brand of oil you use in your car. What does matter is the oil type and viscosity. As long as it meets your manufacturer’s recommended oil type, switching oil brands will not damage your engine.

The thought of changing oil brands can be unnerving for many people, especially when popular belief suggests that doing so harms your engine.

But the reality is, when selecting an oil, it’s not the brand that matters, but rather the oil type and viscosity.

So when you’re choosing an oil, be sure to check the vehicle’s owners manual carefully to make sure you’re getting the right type and viscosity for your car.

So, can you switch oil brands in your car? The answer is yes. Now, let’s break down the difference between popular oil brands and help you decide what’s best for your car.

What Are the Four Types of Motor Oil?

In the past, conventional motor oil was the only option available, but today there are a variety of different types of motor oils to choose from. There are four basic types of motor oil available: conventional, high-mileage, synthetic, and synthetic blend.

The type of oil you need really depends on the make and model of your car. However, most modern cars require synthetic oil, and for good reason.

First, synthetic oil is designed to withstand higher temperatures and resist breakdown for longer periods of time. This means that it can help to improve fuel economy and extend the life of your engine.

Additionally, synthetic oil is often less viscous than conventional oil, which makes it easier for your engine to start in cold weather.

In terms of fuel economy, synthetic oil has been shown to improve gas mileage by up to 4.5 percent.

Add it all up, and the advantages of synthetic oil are obvious and why so many auto manufacturers recommend synthetic oil.

Is There Any Harm in Changing Oil Brands?

There is almost no variation in the core ingredients among oil brands. Using one brand of oil over another has marginal effects and won’t have any long-term effects on your car.

The main difference between oil brands are that they can contain different types and combinations of base oils and additives.

Without getting too scientific, additives are added to the base oil to improve lubricant life and metal surface protection.

While there may be some minor changes in engine performance, there is no detriment to changing oil brands.

What Oil Specs Matter?

It’s important to recognize that, while changing brands isn’t harmful, changing viscosity can be. The viscosity of oil affects the performance of an engine by determining the thickness of the film, creating a barrier that prevents different metals from touching each other.

Some engines are designed to run on oil with high viscosity, while others are not. As such, you should always stick to the oil viscosity as recommended by your manufacturer in the owner’s manual.

API Rating

The American Petroleum Institute classes oils based on a number of factors. The better the rating, the better the oil service classification. The rating of the oil can give you a clue as to its quality and is something to consider when switching brands.

Final Thoughts: Can I Switch Oil Brands in My Car?

There are a number of factors that influence oil quality, but thankfully, changing brands won’t damage your engine. If you’re swapping brands, just make sure that the new brand matches your oil grade and specs necessary to keep your car functioning optimally.

The next time you’re in the market for a new oil change, don’t be afraid to switch brands as long as it meets your car’s requirements. You may find that you save money without sacrificing performance by switching to a lower-priced oil.

Just make sure to do your research so that you know which type and viscosity of oil is recommended for your vehicle.

Have you ever changed your car’s oil brand? What was your experience like?

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