synthetic oils

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Care, Maintenance and Troubleshooting' started by Wyidelode, Jun 4, 2006.

  1. Wyidelode

    Wyidelode New Member

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    I have a grand total of 51 miles on my new Prius. I got >201K miles out of my wonderful old Escort wagon, and I attribue some of that to the use of synthetic oil for the first 115K. Does anyone else here use a synthetic, and if so, which one?
     
  2. furkidsnprius

    furkidsnprius New Member

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(Wyidelode @ Jun 4 2006, 08:32 AM) [snapback]265533[/snapback]</div>
    pretty much everyone. There is a lot of information already posted about this Search for Oil, or Synthetic Oil.
    :)
     
  3. Wyidelode

    Wyidelode New Member

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    Hey Marie! Thanks for the prompt reply.
    Where do I go on this site to personalize my posts with car picture, and details like that?
     
  4. aaf709

    aaf709 Ravenpaw of ThunderClan

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(Wyidelode @ Jun 4 2006, 05:55 AM) [snapback]265539[/snapback]</div>
    Welcome!

    You would go My Controls and click on Personal Profile in the lower left. That give you access to your avatar. You can add one of your own, or chose from a collection. When you get to 500 posts you'll get the option of changing "Senior Prius Poster" to just about whatever you want. :)

    In answer to your question, I use Mobil 1 synthetic. I waited until the first oil change (5,000 miles) before I did.
     
  5. hdrygas

    hdrygas New Member

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    The best reason I can think of is that it is not made from Dino Oil.
     
  6. jrct9454

    jrct9454 Junior Member

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    I'be been using synthetic in all our cars for the past 10 years or so, but have serious doubts about doing so in the Prius. The reason is the ridiculously short REQUIRED 5k / 6 month oil changes, which of course are fallout from Toyota's oil-gelling scandals with the Camry [and some other engines]. If you're going to dump the oil every 6 months or 5 k miles, it makes very little sense to pay for synthetic.

    Since we retired in the mid '90s, our annual mileage has been right around 8000 miles - some years more, some less, depending on whether or not there were some long roadtrips in there. This year, we have a couple of really long trips planned, so we might go as much as 13000 miles in 2006. When I was changing the oil once a year, or in the case of our Mercedeses [multiple], every 18-24 months depending on what the computer called for, synthetic oil is the only way to go. The oil change requirements on the Prius, combined with the squeaky-clean emissions, make synthetic an unnecessary expense....and I'm a big fan of synthetics in general.

    Anyone who uses synthetic in this or any other car doesn't get an argument from me, but I'm not at all convinced it is something I intend to do with our '06 Prius.
     
  7. brandon

    brandon Member

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(jrct9454 @ Jun 5 2006, 09:05 AM) [snapback]265934[/snapback]</div>
    Required as a precaution for the warranty. This is no different than any other car, except most cars have a recommended change interval of 3k / 3 month oil changes, much shorter than that of the Prius.

    I use Mobil 1 5w30 synthetic because it performs better than dino, has fewer impurities, etc. I'm sure some of the more technical folks here will tell you why they use synthetics; my philosophy is pretty simple. Sure, dino will get the job done, but if you can afford to use a superior product, why wouldn't you?
     
  8. cdavid

    cdavid Member

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    So I was in Walmart to buy oil, and Mobile 1 is about $4.40/quart, and their branded full synthetic is about $13 for a 5 quart container. It states it meets all the same standards that Mobile 1 meets. Why wouldn't I buy this brand instead?

    I had a summer job once and I was testing some equipment in a peach cannery. They can peaches over a 2 month period or so and the rest of the year they just roll labels on the cans and ship them out. They were printing labels for a "discount grade" store labeled product. He told me next week they were changing the labels to a premium and more expensive label, Del.....

    Do you think there is a difference?
     
  9. ceric

    ceric New Member

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    Another synthetic oil thread...

    To make my points as short as possible, there are two major reasons to use synthetic oil
    - longer oil change period (if convenience is important to you) - required on BMW vehicles on which the oil change period could be as long as 12K miles.
    - high engine operating temperature - like BMW (US models are hotter than European to cut down emission).

    I failed to see either one fits my Prius. Therefore, no synthetic oil on my Prius. On my BMW, it has been synthetic oil since new. :)
     
  10. IsrAmeriPrius

    IsrAmeriPrius Progressive Member

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(brandon @ Jun 5 2006, 07:42 AM) [snapback]265952[/snapback]</div>
    That has not been the case in years. Most manufacturers recommend 7,500 miles or 12 months intervals. Car dealers on the other hand...
     
  11. brandon

    brandon Member

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    That would be news to me. Care to indicate where manufacturers make these suggestions? Do they give suggestions on their website or somewhere a potential buyer could see this recommendation? I'm not intentionally asking, "where's the proof?" but this seems like quite a claim...

    *EDIT* I found an article from Yahoo! Autos that has some relevant info.
     
  12. jrct9454

    jrct9454 Junior Member

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(brandon @ Jun 5 2006, 01:43 PM) [snapback]266194[/snapback]</div>

    Oh, please.....

    NONE of our cars EXCEPT the Toyotas require oil change intervals this short. Hondas are all 7500 miles or once a year; MB and BMW vary [depending on whether or not they use an onboard computer to make the calculation], but the minimum is 10k miles and once a year - our MB was averaging 15k or once every 24 months, depending on the computer. Audi and VW vary - the older turbos with the oil-gelling problems are 5k / 6 mos, but the newer ones are longer.

    NOBODY except those profiting from this myth requres 3k or 3 months any more. In the EU, 10000 miles is common, but their standard oils are better, as well.

    My point was and is that synthetics are great, and I've been using them extensively for the past decade, but see little reason to do so in any car where the oil is going to get changed as frequently as Toyota requires. CU's testing has shown that changing the oil this often negates the advantage that synthetic brings to the table.

    Do what you want - as I said, no argument if you want to spend the money. But oil contamination is all about emissions [after the initial breakin], and modern engines are so squeaky clean that the oil just doesn't deteriorate like it used to.
     
  13. nickb

    nickb Junior Member

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(ceric @ Jun 5 2006, 11:18 AM) [snapback]265963[/snapback]</div>
    I use synthetic for everything I own, but I am starting to question this approach with the Prius. At 20k I had the dealer change the oil with Mobil 1 5w30. I did the 5k, 10k, 15k also with Mobil 1 (half of the time doing it myself). Now at 25k I just looked at the oil and it wasn't really that black and there was no viscosity loss -- from my take on it. I drive 100 miles a day commuting and with the 5k oil intervals it seems like overkill (full sythetic). Especially since the Prius doesn't rev that much. Anyway, I had 4 extra quarts of Mobil 5w30 synthetic blend around so that is what I used. On my other car that may go 6 months + before it hits 7.5k I use sythetic and always will. On my motorcycles that rev higher and take so little oil I always use synthetic (after break-in).

    When it gets colder I may go back to full sythetic due to the full synthetics better pumpability at low temps -- we'll see?
     
  14. Jerry P

    Jerry P Member

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    I've used Mobil 1 in every vehicle I've owned since 1980s and been very pleased. I do wonder why Toyota requires 5000 mi. OCI on the Prius but 7500 mi. on the same engine in the Echo/Yaris. The engine in the Prius seldom gets hot - every time I changed the oil it is after a 20 mile trip from work and the oil is only warm to the touch. After 52,000 miles, I'm not going to change anything I'm doing, but they might be a little too cautious with this OCI requirement.
     
  15. B Rad

    B Rad New Member

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(Jerry P @ Jun 11 2006, 07:08 AM) [snapback]269458[/snapback]</div>
    The start up of ICE. is when most of the harm can be done and since the Prius engine starts and stops many more times that any other car, it seems prudent to change the engine oil more often.
     
  16. cdavid

    cdavid Member

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    Yea, but full oil pressure is already established before the ICE spins. That's not true in any other ICE I'm of which I'm aware.
     
  17. B Rad

    B Rad New Member

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(cdavid @ Jun 11 2006, 05:38 PM) [snapback]269670[/snapback]</div>
    As Johnny Carson used to say "I did not know that" :D
     
  18. jayman

    jayman Senior Member

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    I first started using synthetics when my folks had a construction company. This was in the early 1980's, and we ran Mobil Delvac 1 5W-40 in the diesel equipment. They sold the company in 1984 and moved to Canada to retire.

    My Dad bought a new 1984 Ford F-150 pickup, and he ran Mobil Delvac 1 in that motor until I took it down to Utah in 1993. Down there I ran Mobil 1 15W-50 or Delvac 1, which was quite hard to find. I haven't driven it much since 2000, and keep it at my hobby farm as a work truck and snowplow truck. It currently has around 527,000km on it and runs fine. Currently I run Esso XD-3 15W-40 summer and Esso XD-3 0W-40 winter.

    I purchased new a 1990 Toyota 4Runner and ran either Delvac 1 or 15W-50 in Utah. Up here I ran Delvac 1 or Esso XD-3 15W-40 in summer, Esso XD-3 0W-30 in winter. In 1992 I purchased new a Honda Prelude, and did the same for viscosity choices. The 4Runner had 320,000km on it when I sold it, it ran fine. The Honda had around 68,000km and ran fine too.

    My 2000 GMC Sierra I ran Mobil 1 10W-30 in summer and Mobil 1 0W-30 in winter. That POS made the knock-knock noise and burned oil starting at 5,000km. I doubt synthetic helped with that POS. Glad I got rid of it in 2004.

    After 16,000km, I switched my Prius to Mobil 1. I also started used oil analysis at the next oil change, 24,000km. There was high Na levels, which you can verify by searching the Care forum and my user name for Oil Analysis, etc.

    The high Na turned out to be the absolute crap dealer mystery 5W-30 oil. Truly nasty stuff, perhaps that is why some Toyota motors had a sludging problem!

    Currently, I'm running Mobil 1 0W-30. I had an oil change before I left for a business trip and will report back the used oil analysis. I used Mobil 1 0W-20 last winter with great results: the used oil analysis proved VERY low wear.

    I may start running Mobil 1 0W-20 year round: fractional fuel economy improvement and good engine protection is hard to beat.
     
  19. kDB

    kDB New Member

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(hdrygas @ Jun 4 2006, 08:30 PM) [snapback]265765[/snapback]</div>
    not sure if they still do this but...

    "Late in 1997, Castrol changed the formula of its Syntec "full synthetic motor oil", eliminating the polyalphaolefin (PAO) base stock (that's the "synthetic" part, which makes up about 70% by volume of what's in the bottle) and replacing it with a "hydroisomerized" petroleum base stock."

    i'm also not sure if any other companies are doing the same, most likely the cheaper store brands are. the reason, "These new hydroisomerized base oils, in the view of some industry participants provided properties similar to PAO's but only cost half as much,"

    source: Nov., 2000 issue of Car and Driver by Patrick Bedard
     
  20. AnOldHouse

    AnOldHouse Member

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(hdrygas @ Jun 4 2006, 09:30 PM) [snapback]265765[/snapback]</div>
    If it's not made from Dino oil, what exactly is it made from?
     
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