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Synthetic in a new engine, bad idea?
Posted 08 November 2003 - 07:15 PM
I searched the archives and got mixed opinions about running full synthetic Mobil 1 in a newer engine. I have a 03 Outback and it has 5556 miles on it.
I changed over today and put 5W30 Mobil 1 the newer engine formula. Was I not supposed to switch this early?
And also someone mentioned that once you go synthetic you can't switch back, is that true?
Thanks for any information.
Posted 08 November 2003 - 08:45 PM
I did the same as you at 5000 miles and switched to Mobil 1. I now have 24000 miles on it and have no weird oil consumption issues. I didn't reinvent the wheel either before deciding to go to Mobil 1 at the 5000 mile mark. The owners manual said nothing to the contrary...I called my dealer and they said it was okay (they run synthetics in customer cars on request all the time at the first 3000 mile oil change mark). I called a reputable Subaru mechanic in the area and he said it was fine. Of course, I am sure there are other opinions on this. Also, there are many new cars that come with Mobil 1 as a factory fill.
Posted 08 November 2003 - 10:48 PM
Posted 09 November 2003 - 09:02 PM
Posted 09 November 2003 - 09:15 PM
Posted 10 November 2003 - 03:56 AM
Posted 10 November 2003 - 11:19 AM
I guess I'm just a paranoid new Subaru owner and I want to treat it right. I'm sure you all understand
Posted 10 November 2003 - 11:40 AM
Posted 10 November 2003 - 12:28 PM
Posted 10 November 2003 - 12:41 PM
The other one is better resilience to high temp (does'nt break down as easily under high load and high temp). That also seems to be a fact. I'm not sure the way I drive my car makes this so important for me though.
I've also heard that synth gives better lubrication. The fact tha people are weary of using it during engine breaking in period is a sign this is widely beleived (is it true?)
Finaly I've also heard (true?) that it sticks more to moving parts and thus lessen the initial wear an engine goes thru when first starting in the morning.
Posted 10 November 2003 - 01:56 PM
What has happened is that new synth oils are formulated differently than 5 years ago.
5 years ago, switching back to dino oil would cause seal leakage, I can personally attest.
Newer oils, 'tis ok to go back and forth, but personally, after shrinking the 3 front seals on an otherwise flawless 1.8, I'll stick with just one.
Posted 11 November 2003 - 01:40 PM
Incidently, I'm not anti-synthetic lubricants. I'm the fleet manager for a county in Oregon that operates more than 1000 equipment units (turf mowers - D8 Cats). We conduct ongoing tests (espcially in construction equipment) to evaluate the cost-effictiveness of (among other things) synthetic lubicants. With very few exceptions (Ford automatic transmissions being one), the OEM factory recommended lubricants have proven to be the most cost effective. That said, I do use synthetic oils in winch cases, large planetary gear-sets, and other select very-expensive, or critical to public safety equipment units.
Posted 11 November 2003 - 01:46 PM
Posted 11 November 2003 - 02:06 PM
I think there's an unrationnal feeling of security in knowing your engine is bathing in the best oil you can afford.
For the time being that feeling is stronger for me, and others probably, than cold reason.
Would very cold climate qualify as a reasonnable reason to use synth?
P.S. the money argument might probably bring me back to reason sooner than later;)
Posted 11 November 2003 - 02:36 PM
syn oils are better, if an oil barely passes the SL classification its an SL oil, if it greatly surpasses the classification its an SL oil.
the starburst oil classification requires the oil to pass a high shear test at 302 degrees, the engine oil never gets that high.
the reason that syn oils got a bad rap is because of the same reasons that multi vis got a bad rap in the 60's, they are much better now and on a new car worth every penny.
The reason that older engines seem to leak though with the syn oil is that the particles in syn are all the same size, like a marble through a funnel, but the dino oil is all different sizes,marble, ping pong and tennis ball, by comparison, the rubber interaction with seals is not an issue anymore.
Posted 11 November 2003 - 02:40 PM
Posted 11 November 2003 - 04:01 PM
Amongst other things, they reported two key findings:
1. Provided the oil had the correct API designation, then was no significant difference between 'Brand X' and the more expensive brand names.
2. That all multigrade oils lost their mutigrade properties in time; and that the wider apart the two numbers, then the faster the multigrade properties were lost; i.e. a 5W40 oil will lose it properties faster than will a 10W30 oil.
Since reading that report (I think that it was probably 20 years ago), I have always bought the cheapest oil that I could find, and changed the oil and filter frequently (every 3000 km). I have never had any oil-related engine problems.
Posted 11 November 2003 - 09:55 PM
Posted 12 November 2003 - 01:53 AM
I like to run my EJ22 up to the redline, regularly. At the same time I like to leave oil changes til I pass 6k miles. Although I do perform all the proper maintenance at reduced intervals, I would like for my oil to be able to withstand an engine overheat situation without cooking and seizing my pistons. Danish winter mornings offer temperatures of about -15 degrees Centigrade.
Mobil 1 0w-40 does the business.
(5W-50 in summer)
Posted 12 November 2003 - 03:41 AM
Farther north, EVERYBODY runs synthetic oil because it gets down to -40. If they ran dino oil, they would either have to leave their cars running all the time, or have a serious starter to crank it over. Not to mention the added wear caused by running dino oil in that situation.
It all really boils down to this in my opinion: For normal use, dino oil is just fine. But for extreme situations like racing or cold climates, synthetic really is much better.
Posted 14 November 2003 - 02:12 PM
My ace mechanic in Idaho has a standard answer: Subies just don't like additives. But, hey - he's been a Subie guy since the dawn of time. I'm the second owner of my '96 Legacy - and He cautioned me against the synthetic oil in older engine. Something to do with seals. Anyhoo, not much help, I know, but just another opinion.
Posted 16 February 2004 - 08:49 AM
Posted 16 February 2004 - 12:43 PM
My Forester gets the garage treatment now, probably will rust from inside out now , but when I had my civic with no garage I can tell you that synthetic helped dramatically with cold starts. Minus 35 Celsius without windchill, a norm in Toronto, 'cept for last year. That civic has 400k km on it and engine still has no oil burn! This is with 12k interval changes as well.
My other car was running dyno juice at same time and boy did it smell funny after cranking for what seemed like eternity on the same -35Celsius day.
My dilema?? Did synthetics cause my seal problem? Or was it because I changed brands (detergents different) as posted earlier? I would really like to keep running synthetics.
Hopefully we could get an answer directly from Subaru Canada?
Anyone know if/how we could do that?
Posted 16 February 2004 - 02:47 PM
Posted 16 February 2004 - 05:45 PM
Originally posted by Zaphod
I changed over today and put 5W30 Mobil 1 the newer engine formula.
You're doing everything good. The only thing is that many have commented on the M1 5W-30 & 10W-30 being kinda noisey in Sube motors.
My 2.5 made a slight rod noise in the summer using M1 10W-30, even with only 10K miles on it. Substituting in 1 qt. of 15W-50 quelled it.
Visit bobistheoilguy forum for some of the best oil disscussion you'll find anywhere.
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