Why More Expensive Oil? For My Entertainment.

Patman

Staff member
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21,990
Location
Oakville, Ontario
Originally Posted by IndyFan
I had a 99 Silverado that I purchased new. It had the standard silver bottle Mobil 1 5w30 in it from 1500 miles until I sold it at 130k or so, every 3k to 5k miles. (When I first bought it I was still on a 3k mindset with 5k being an extended run. I'd say around about 60k or so I started regularly going 5k). Anyway, I sold it to my secretary's husband. He still has it and continued the M1 5w30 routine. The truck has over 300k on it now and the engine runs strong. The rocker panels are rusted out, though, Lol! He paid my initial asking price because he knew my maintenance routine and that I am a bit of a nerd about that stuff. He didn't even try to negotiate. It was a fair price, though, but I still set it with the expectation of some negotiation. I'd say we both got a great deal out of it, looking back on it.
That's one area that a lot of members here fail to mention when they try to talk people into going with conventional oil or going with synthetic at 10-15k intervals, but that's resale price (and ease of sale too). You won't get a lot of people knocking down your door if you put in the ad that you've been doing 10-15k intervals (with any type of oil) but if you mention that the engine has had a steady diet of synthetic every 3-5k you'll certainly get a lot more responses to your ad, and will most likely get a better price too (as proven here) So you just made up that extra money you spent right there (plus made the resale process much easier too) cheers
 
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2,417
Location
WY
I think the oils that clean the best contain esters. That pretty much rules out anything at walmart except maybe a flavor or two of M1
Originally Posted by supton
Originally Posted by john_pifer
Originally Posted by supton
I'm undecided on it. My fleet is getting old but I'm not in a rush to flip 'em. But I've yet to see where "good" oil is needed in my particular fleet, not with the easy lives they live. But the two "good" ones have always gotten synthetic. Maybe they'll just go cheap ST on 5k OCI's now that one is past 150k and the other not far from 200k. Just seems simplest and best bet without going overboard. Toying with going synthetic in the other one, but "conventional cleans better" and I know it's got some varnish on the inside. It's also 20 years old and I kinda don't care either.
What do you mean, "conventional cleans better"?
Supposedly synthetic isn't as good--it's better at resisting breaking down but then isn't as good as mopping up the mess. So goes the lore. It comes up from time to time. This link goes into a bit about varnish. The detergent package is probably more important (I think that might have been stated in that link, I only glanced at it). I run conventional more because it's a cheap old car that doesn't care.
I think that esters do the most cleaning. Look at that Valvoline/Cummins oil and what it does.
 
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1,471
Location
Richmond, VA area
I too get some "entertainment" using a higher priced "boutique" oil for my VWs...Liquimoly. Here on BITOG this isn't the popular option as the Wallyworld M1/Castrol with rebates seems to be the chosen blood of [censored] but I enjoy ordering my oil change kit online and having it show up, oil, filter, and drain plug from my favorite Euro online retailer. Whatever floats your boat. They cost ~$60 + shipping and I do it a few times a year...life isn't always about the lowest cost solution. I do UOAs as it's interesting and yes, somewhat entertaining.
 
I ran Castrol Edge 0w40 in my 1st gen Ecoboost 3.5 on 4-5k OCIs which is a total waste according to some. But 8 yrs /140k miles later it still ran strong and had its original timing chains and phasers. If an engine has a reputation for trouble sometimes you go the extra $$$ to stack the deck in your favor. Worked for me. My new second gen 3.5 has a different timing chain setup and I'm currently weighing in on the question 5w30 or 0w40....
 
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1,708
Location
South Carolina
There's pros and cons to both sides. Group I and II conventional oils have higher aromaticity, solubility, and pressure-viscosity coefficient at the expensive of reduced oxidative stability and thermal stability. Group III and IV oils have excellent thermal stability, oxidative stability, and shear stability at the expense of lower solubility and pressure-viscosity coefficient. Group V oils are all over the board depending on which one you choose. The "boutique" oils tend to come with unique additive packages, usually with much more friction modifier, anti-wear, and sometimes more detergent additives. This sometimes means a higher temperature requirement for miscibility and additive activation depending on how it's formulated. A daily driver that never sees over 230*F pan temperature will most likely never see a benefit. I've learned a lot about this recently in testing with high horsepower, high rpm racing engines. The oil that, on paper, appears dominant doesn't always work out that way in the field. A drag racing engine running for less than 2 minutes at a time with <180*F will want a very different oil chemistry than a NASCAR cup engine running at 8000+ rpm for hours straight with upwards of 360*F oil temps exiting the bearings. I say this to get to the point that every oil has its ideal purpose, and sometimes the boutique oil may provide no additional benefit if your particular application doesn't fall in line with what the oil was designed for. For cleaning, you need solvency. Esters and naphthenics dominate this category, but it can come at a price of reduced thermal stability and oxidative stability. Esters also have high surface affinity and like to react to base metals, which can increase wear. The next best thing to group V oils, for cleaning, would be group I. It would be nice to see a budget-minded, cleaning specific oil that's entirely group I in like a straight 20 or 30 grade for 1500-2000 mile intervals. Detergent additives don't do anything to varnish and sludge. Detergents work by neutralizing potentially damaging acids to prevent them from becoming catalysts for oxidation. They exist to keep the oil clean, not the engine.
 
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1,708
Location
South Carolina
Originally Posted by PimTac
In the grand scheme of things the higher price of certain oils equals out to one or two lattes from your favorite coffee shop spread out over the time you run that oil.
That depends on what we're talking about, of course. SuperTech Synthetic 5w-20 vs Mobil 1 EP 0w-20, the benefit is far leaning toward M1 EP. For something like our racing engines, where the oil is dumped about every 30 passes with 8 quart sumps at $18/qt, that gets expensive. When you find a formulation that gives similar or better wear results for just $6/qt, it's extremely tempting as that saves around $100 every oil change.
 
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17,301
Location
OH
There is no harm in indulging one's preferences and as has been written many times no engine ever died for having too good an oil used or too frequent changes. The cost per mile of whatever oil you decide to use on whatever drain interval you decide on is as nothing compared to the cost of fuel, which will also be less than the allocable depreciation expense per miles of use. Owning and driving anything costs money and being a bit spendy with oil doesn't significantly impact that cost.
 

4WD

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15,950
Location
Texas
You know what there's always going be? People who have bought an engine and product line for 40 years … And you …
 
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35,477
Location
NY
I like your logic and tend to think along the same lines. I equate it to "Insurance" most smart people carry it, and thank God they had it if/when they need it.
 

4WD

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15,950
Location
Texas
I have run "half life" on that oil several times … not going past OLM … DI with 0w20 remains a concern for many …
 
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908
Location
montreal ,canada
If people want the best for their engines why would they change out oil prematurely? Boutique oils at that. If the theory of laying down a tribofilm protective barrier is correct (I for one think it is) and it takes maybe several thousand miles for it to develop then what gives with the unnecessary oil changes? Apparently the new oil wipes away what took all those miles to develop, so where's the benefit if you truly do want the best? I use Amsoil SS for usually about 10k miles, n/a non gdi engine. Some will say that's too often for my application but I have to draw the line somewhere with a small sump capacity. Cheers!...
 
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13,194
Location
Maricopa Arizona
Originally Posted by Triple_Se7en
Another reason folks go cheaper is because they aren't going to be 1st & last owners. They keep them 2-3-5-7 years, then either sell them or trade them-in, less than 125k on them. Many times only 36K. I usually have mine (purchased new) for 18 years (250K). MY M.O. is similar to yours..... buy good stuff and change a little more often.
Yet the ones with "cheap" store brand oils are clean and upon tear down at 200K miles are within new tolerances. Must be easy to fall to marketing.
 
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13,194
Location
Maricopa Arizona
Originally Posted by PimTac
In the grand scheme of things the higher price of certain oils equals out to one or two lattes from your favorite coffee shop spread out over the time you run that oil.
But there is no added benefit performance wise.
 
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4,030
Location
WA
Originally Posted by IndyFan
I keep hearing some around here constantly questioning why someone would go for a higher performance oil over an adequately performing cheaper oil for, say, a 5k OCI. I can only explain my reasons, so I speak for nobody else, but I thought I'd try to help you understand.
While I regularly tout the virtues of "value" oils I'm not going to chastise you for spending your hard earned money on a "premium" oil if that's what floats your boat. If it's not taking food off the family's table, I say go for it.
 
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