Different Types of Oil: What Are They and What Does My Car Need?

oil change being performed on car

As a car owner in Vancouver, WA, you understand the importance of regular oil change service. No vehicle can function properly without clean motor oil since this fluid is responsible for cooling and lubricating the engine (along with other performance necessities). Although oil changes alone aren’t enough to protect your vehicle, this service is an indispensable part of any auto maintenance regimen.

Oil changes aren’t the most complicated maintenance task, but you’ll still need to put some thought into planning your next oil change service. When it’s time to schedule an oil change in  Vancouver, you’ll have to pick one of several oil types — a decision that might be more complicated than you’d assume. Here, the experts at Gaynor’s Automotive will walk you through the different types of oil and help you find the best one for your needs.

Know the Primary Motor Oil Varieties

Common knowledge suggests there are two basic engine oil types — conventional and synthetic oil. However, that’s not all inclusive. In reality, there are four major oil types you should know about:

Conventional Oil

Also known as “standard oil,” conventional oil consists of naturally occurring crude mineral oil. While this form of oil is natural, it is still enhanced to improve its performance. Today, most conventional oil brands on the market are partially refined to provide greater protective properties and viscosity.

Conventional oil remains the most popular motor oil variety available for purchase. That’s primarily because it’s more affordable than its competitors (in some ways, at least). But while conventional oil costs less than synthetic options upfront, you’ll need to get oil changes more often if you choose this type of oil.

Full Synthetic Oil

While conventional oil receives some enhancements before hitting the market, synthetic oil takes things to the next level entirely. This highly refined motor oil is created in factories and labs, and the closely controlled methods used to manufacture it allow it to reach incredibly high performance standards.

Thanks to these factors, full synthetic oil can protect your engine longer and more effectively than conventional oil can. The biggest drawback associated with this oil variety is its price — synthetic oil changes tend to be more expensive than conventional oil changes. Of course, this oil’s extended service life means you can go longer between oil changes.

Synthetic Blend Oil

Are you having a tough time choosing between conventional and full synthetic oil? If so, you’re not alone — and we have good news. Synthetic blend oil offers a balance between the benefits associated with each of these oil types.

Synthetic blend oil can deliver more effective engine protection than conventional oil without costing as much as full synthetic oil. As you might expect, synthetic blend oil’s service life also falls somewhere between the lifespans of conventional and synthetic oil.

High-Mileage Oil

Assuming you drive a relatively new vehicle, one of the three previously-mentioned engine oil types should be the right fit for you. The catch is that none of these oil varieties is designed to meet the unique needs of older cars. If you drive one of these vehicles, you’ll want to pick high-mileage oil; this oil type is formulated specifically for engines that have been in use for over 75,000 miles.

High-mileage oil is produced using similar methods to those used to create full synthetic oil. However, this oil type differs from normal synthetic oil due to the anti-corrosion agents, seal conditioners, viscosity modifiers, and cleansers it includes. Thanks to these additives, high-mileage oil can handle the oil burn-off and corrosion typically seen in older engines.

Schedule Oil Change

When Do You Need an Oil Change?

If you already know you’re overdue for an oil change, it’s a perfect time to start thinking about what oil variety is best for you. On the other hand, you might not have a service schedule in place for oil changes. If that’s the case, you should take some time to create an oil change schedule that fits your situation.

The best way to start this process is by referring to your car’s user manual. The manual will contain information on scheduling oil changes for your vehicle. Assuming you’re driving under normal conditions, your recommended service interval for oil changes could be anywhere from every 3,000 miles to every 10,000 miles.

One of the most crucial things to consider while building your oil change schedule is the type of oil you pick. Typically, you’ll need oil changes less often with synthetic oil than with conventional oil. Of course, this isn’t the only factor affecting your oil change needs. These driving habits can also shorten the lifespan of your motor oil:

  • Driving in hot weather
  • Regularly taking short trips 
  • Hauling or towing heavy loads
  • Traveling in stop-and-go traffic
  • High-mileage driving

Get The Best Oil Change Service in Vancouver, WA

If you know when you need oil changes and what type of car oil you’re in the market for, you’re almost ready to schedule your next oil change. There’s just one more factor to consider — where you’ll get oil change service in Vancouver.

Gaynor’s Automotive is the local area’s best choice for oil changes. We boast ASE-certified mechanics, valuable online coupons, multiple locations in Vancouver, and many other perks. 

No matter what oil variety you need, set up your next oil change appointment today!

View Tire Inventory
Professionals You Trust. Service Beyond Expectations.

At Gaynors Automotive, our highest priority is serving our customers. We are 100% committed to you, our valued customer. We strive to make every part of your experience with us hassle-free and pleasant.

Request A Quote