Synthetic in 1992 Ford Taurus L hi miles?

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May 4, 2004
I would like to use synthetic in my Taurus, but have been warned that if there are any oil leaks, it'll just make them worse. The car has high miles, but has a very good engine. I usually use MaxLife 5w-30. I go through a quart between oil changes. The car is mainly driven on the highway.
I'm so new here (one month) that I'm not sure I'm entitled to do so, but let me extend a [Welcome!] My wife's car from 1990-2001 was a '90 model Mercury Sable wagon, with 3.0L V-6, a near-twin of your car. Once past break-in, it lived its whole life with us on a diet of Mobil-1, 10w-30 usually, and ran beautifully on it. Even at the end, it consumed no oil and ran like new (was in the 110k range when it went. Thus, at least generically this engine (likely what you have, though some Tauri of that era got the optional 3.8L) does fine on synthetic. On the other hand, with your car now twelve years old, there is now a strong stability argument. Your engine is "used to" what it has been fed, and you might possibly cause a problem is you change to synthetic. One known mechanism is for newly introduced syn to wash away the possibly-present, thin coating of sludge or varnish which may have been keeping oil away from gaskets and seals. These need the oil to keep them from drying out and shrinking. Abruptly exposed to oil for the first time in a long time, such seals may, and I empahsize may, leak. But I also know people who've made such a switch with no problems. Let's hear what the others have to say.
The Taurus does have a 3.0 with 198,000 miles on it. And thanks! I'm glad to have joined the forum. [ May 06, 2004, 05:34 PM: Message edited by: NewsLynne ]
There should be no problem with running a synth if there are no major problems with the engine now. Since you have either a consumption or leakage issue, try a 40wt oil or thicker 30wt. I work on two Tauri. One has a diet of synthetic Rotella T 5w40 which costs about $14 a gallon at wallyworld. Another runs Castrol synthetic(the overly famed green fluid) 0w30 which is about $5 a quart at the local autoparts store. Both have reduced oil consumption over regular 30wt motor oil.
If extending the life of the engine is your goal I don't think starting now is going to help that significantly. However for easier cold starts and extending the change interval it seems to be a decent choice.
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