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Full Synthetic v.s. Synthetic Oil

Discussion in 'Gen III 2010+ Prius Care, Maintenance and Troubles' started by taxachusetts, Jul 20, 2011.

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  1. taxachusetts

    taxachusetts Junior Member

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    Hey all,

    I noticed a difference between the new and the old Toyota-labeled 0W20 motor oil besides the color of the bottles they come in. The old bottle (red) said "Full Synthetic," the new (black bottle) says "Synthetic."

    Anyone know the difference? I asked the parts guys at my local dealership and I got several versions of "I dunno."

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  2. Paradox

    Paradox Prius Enthusiast / Moderator Staff Member

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    Maybe at one time they had full and partial synthetics so they differentiated between the two. And now they only sell a full synthetic so they figured why label as such? Like your parts guy said, "I dunno".
  3. ETC(SS)

    ETC(SS) Aspiring Hypocommuter.

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    For the G3, I'd say it's a six-versus-half dozen thing.

    IMHO, you're not going to alter the trajectory of your ICE's life in any measureable way by using one versus the other.

    Which one is cheaper?
  4. macman408

    macman408 Devil's Advocate General

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    I don't think there is any 0W-20 that isn't fully synthetic, so I doubt there's a difference.
  5. RRxing

    RRxing Active Member

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    Agreed.

    I remember a thread on here from a while back that said that the oil in the red bottle was made by Eneos (Nippon Oil) while the oil in the newer green bottle is made by ExxonMobil, and is quite possibly a variant of Mobil 1 made to Toyota's specs.
  6. vnhk

    vnhk New Member

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    The red bottle is discontinued. The black one is current. They should be similar and meet Toyota's specs.
  7. xs650

    xs650 Senior Member

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    I don't think "Full Synthetic" means anything more than "Synthetic"

    The common name for a partial synthetic oil in the US is "Semi Synthetic". It's a mix of conventional oil and synthetic oil.

    Terminology and definition of Synthetic Oil also varies by country.
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  8. RRxing

    RRxing Active Member

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    Oops, I meant green label. The new bottle is black.
  9. alfon

    alfon Active Member

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    Do avoid any issues I use Mobil One full synthetic motor oil.

    I began using Mobil One back in 1993 when I bought my 1994 Honda
    Civic VX model, this is the one that got a honest 50 plus MPG.

    After about 130,000 miles I decided to take off the valve cover and
    adjust the valves.

    Was I surpised, the valve train assembly looked like brand new, I could not believe it.

    I changed the oil and filter back than at 7,500 mile intervals. Also the VX Civic was geared very high, at 60 MPH was about 1900 RPM
    when a regular Civic was turning 2200 to 2500 depending on the model.

    So I keep using Mobil One 0W20 in our Prius, and in the 2003 Jetta TDI Wagon Mobil One Delvac 5-40.

    I believe that Mobil had synthetic motor oil back in the 70's and they have had plenty of time by now to perfect it.

    alfon
  10. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Senior Member

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    That area tends to stay pretty clean in my experience, regardless of mileage.

    I picked up Toyota 0W20 liters at my Canadian dealership: not sure (I've recycled the bottles) but I don't think they looked like either of the bottles posted above.
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  11. Tande

    Tande Member

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    Yup!....IMHO, I find it a stretch to think anyone knows more about lubrication than "Mobil" ....
  12. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Senior Member

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    Here's what Toyota 0W20 liters look like, from my local dealership.

    [​IMG]
  13. mee081224

    mee081224 New Member

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    how often should the oil be changed if you use this?

    Also I do everything in my car except change fluids. is changing oil that hard? I do it for my lawnmower and weedwhacker.
  14. The Electric Me

    The Electric Me Go Speed Go!

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    I believe there is no difference.
    I can't remember where I read it now, but I think I've read there is no 0 weight oil that isn't synthetic.

    I also think if it's a blend? They have to say it's a blend....so I don't think there is a difference between labeling "Synthetic" or "Full Synthetic".
  15. tumbleweed

    tumbleweed Senior Member

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    If you use 0W20 you can change oil and filter at 10K mile intervals. Oil change for this car is pretty easy, post #1 of this thread has a procedure. http://priuschat.com/forums/gen-iii.../67747-oil-change-2010-prius-do-yourself.html
  16. markrivers

    markrivers Senior Member Emeritus

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    has anyone tried the advance full synthetic ( which is guaranteed up to 15,000 miles in between oil changes)[​IMG]
    under the "extended performance", there's a "15,000 miles of guaranteed protection" written.

    i do all my oil changes as well. Prius and the Lexus RX 350..
    i use the Toyota 0W-20 ( which is manufactured by Mobil 1)
  17. JACoH

    JACoH Enjoying the mileage

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    I just discovered that Honda has a "Synthetic Blend 0W-20" that they used in my wife's CRV!
  18. The Critic

    The Critic Resident Critic

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    That is not correct; ConocoPhillips manufactures a 0w-20 synthetic blend that is sold under the Genuine Honda label. Most Honda dealers use this as their bulk 0w-20 oil for servicing, as Honda does not require a full-synthetic oil.



    They also make a full-synthetic version that is sold in a silver bottle, but the black bottle 0w-20 synthetic blend is what's used by most dealers as service fill.
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