Which is less harmful to the environment, Syn or Dino?

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I always wondered- (1) For the oil that makes it to recycling, is it better or worse to try to recycle synthetic compared to conventional? (2) For oil that makes it to the environment, is Synthetic it more harmful because it is relatively inert? What have you heard?
 
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Group III (severe hydro-cracked) and Group IV (PAO) base stocks are essentially non-toxic and biodegradable. I don't know much about the toxicity of ester-based Group IV oils. They shouldn't be particularly toxic based on their structures. It is the phenolic compounds present in Group I and to a lesser extent in Group II base oils that are both toxic and carcinogenic.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by 00 scrub: I am also worried about the oil that gets dropped when you do an oil change and it spills out etc. Anyone know which kind of oil requires the most energy use to manufacture?
Much of the extra price you pay for the synthetic goes to pay for the extra energy using processing to produce it. Dino is just that, it is already there in the crude, just needing to be separated out. Other fractions are then cracked, oxidized, esterified, etc. to produce synthetic oil, gasoline, antifreeze, brake fluid, and a host of non automotive products including the polyethylene bottles the oil comes in. It is easier on the environment to produce the dino. On the other hand, those that use extended change intervals with the synthetics, may be helping the environment, consuming less crude, producing less used oil, spilling less, etc. After each of my oil changes, there always seems to be entirely too much oil soaked newspaper to go to the land fill.
 
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The oil biodegrades pretty good but the metals are what is the bad part . Unless you dump it in the sewer I don't think it is worth worrying about. Recycle the oil and filter ,clean up the mess on the ground and worry about tax increases or losing our freedoms that is much more important in the whole picture of things.
 

MolaKule

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From the Dec 18th, 2002 thread:
quote:
Average Biodegradability of various Base Oils CEC L33 T82 Biodegradability for 2-4 cSt Fluids PAO - 64% Synthetic Esters - 95% LVI - Mineral Oils - 32% MVI - Mineral Oil - 22% HVI - Mineral Oils - 20% Edit: The higher the pecentage, the Faster the base oil decomposes under UV and bacteria.
The natural esters, such as contained in ARX, are even more biodegradeable. So base oil is not so much a problem as is the used oil. Recycling is best in any case. Energy usage is greatest for synthetic oils, if you consider the complete refinement, catalytic, and polymerization chains involved. Natural esters and fuels promise the least amount of energy required for manufacturing. [ August 26, 2003, 04:52 PM: Message edited by: MolaKule ]
 
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interesting, i thougth that synthetics would take more energy because of the more complex process needed, but the biodegradability of esters is nice to know as well. What about blends like Schaffers or those group 3 "synthetics"? I am curiouis if it better for the enviroment to run a 1 year schedule of Amsoil or soemthing like that or just run the dino all year and save the overall energy consumtion. [ August 26, 2003, 08:57 PM: Message edited by: 00 scrub ]
 

S2000driver

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This gets to the heart of why I posted the question. Thanks for the replies. I felt it was beneficial to change the oil less frequently by using synthetic, but I wanted to complete the story by understanding whether or not synthetic is more harmful than the environment (i.e. 5 quarts of synthetic put through the system compared to 15 quarts of conventional, for instance.)
quote:
Originally posted by labman: those that use extended change intervals with the synthetics, may be helping the environment, consuming less crude, producing less used oil, spilling less, etc. After each of my oil changes, there always seems to be entirely too much oil soaked newspaper to go to the land fill.
 

MolaKule

Staff member
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In theory yes; the less oil leaked into the ground the better, and synthetics degrade the quickest of all the oils, as shown by the table above. Recycling or burning waste oil in heaters is best. I never pour waste oil onto the ground. When the base oil evaporates or degrades, the combustion byproducts etc could get into the water supply or be blown by the wind attached to dust particles.
 
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