The Auto Industry’s Best Kept Secret REVEALED!
Real Synthetic Lubes: The Auto Industry’s Best-Kept Secret
Base article is from Muscle Mustangs and Fast Fords Magazine, with additional commentary by Performance Oil Technology, L.L.C., and Ultimate Synthetic Oil engineers.
Have you ever heard the story about the light bulb that doesn’t burn out or the razor that never dulls? Sure, these stories get exaggerated, but sometimes there’s an element of truth to the rumors leaking out of a manufacturers skunkworks. One particular rumor that sounds too good to be true is “an experimental motor oil that increases horsepower, practically stops internal engine wear in its tracks and improves fuel efficiency.”
Well, synthetic motor oil is not a rumor. It’s been in use ever since World War II (the Germans used it on the cold eastern front because conventional oil wouldn’t flow in the arctic-like weather). Even though it sounds too good to be true, synthetics do reduce engine wear, improve gas mileage and increase horsepower. This is because synthetic oil molecules are inherently superior in a number of ways to mineral-based oils. And the best synthetic oils contain very advanced additive technologies that deliver remarkable protection.
Synthetic Oil is Superior to Mineral-Based Oil in Every Way:
Without getting too technical, suffice it to say that synthetics have a much higher resistance to heat than mineral-based oils. Because synthetic oil is composed of designed molecules that are uniform in weight and shape, its heat of vaporization is much higher (more than 600 deg. F.) compared to conventional oil, which begins evaporating at temps as low as 350 deg. F. This added stability at high temperature means that your hard-working engine won’t burn up as much oil – and that means less sludge and fewer varnish deposits in the engine.
Added lubricity is another attribute of synthetics. The uniform diameter of synthetic oil polymers allows them to more easily slide over one another. The resultant reduction in friction shows up as a cooler engine, more horsepower and torque, higher fuel economy, and reduced internal engine wear.
Higher film strength is a major benefits of synthetics. Film strength is what keeps oil molecules from being pushed away from each other under pressure. In an area where two metal surfaces meet, the film of oil between them prevents them from rubbing and wearing away at each other. Synthetics do a far better job of this than conventional mineral oils. Mineral based oil has a film strength of about 400 psi, while synthetics usually exceed 3000 psi. This means that it takes more than seven times as much pressure to squeeze synthetic oil from between two surfaces than mineral-based oil. Consequently, synthetics work far better to keep your engine like new.
Film strength is also important in two other ways – cold start protection, and engine-shutdown turbo protection. Shorter turbo life is a clear penalty of using petroleum oils rather than synthetics. Regular mineral-based oil will not remain as a boundary layer (a uniform thin coating) on metal surfaces when an engine is turned off. Mineral-based oil drains off parts and out of passageways into the oil pan. And in turbocharger bearings when the engine shuts off, the “heat-soak” from the exhaust bakes the petroleum oil into hard deposits that directly reduce turbo life. Additionally, mineral-based oils contain waxes and paraffins that come out of the earth and solidify when it gets colder outside, making it even harder to pump the oil when cold. When you crank your engine, the metal surfaces that require lubrication are not fully lubricated during the time it takes for the oil pump to pressurize the lubrication system and supply oil to the engine: this creates wear in the crankshaft, camshaft, lifters, connecting rod bearings, piston pin bushings & bearings, piston, rings and cylinder walls and turbo bearings.
Real synthetic lubricants are one of the three greatest vehicle maintenance secrets in automotive. For a deeper understanding of oil performance comparisons, see our free motor oil testing comparison reports, with charts and explanations of the standard API/SAE/ASTM tests. For an understanding of the real-world results of high performance synthetics, review the seven lessons of the Million Mile Van, and how to pick the best engine oil.
Not All Synthetics Are Created Equal:
Beware! Not all synthetics are created equal. There are wide differences in quality and protection provided by the various synthetics. Additionally, MOST synthetics on the shelves are NOT 100% synthetic. Many are partial synthetics marketed under the perception of full synthetics to the unsuspecting consumer. Or they are hydrocracked oils (Group III) such as Castrol Syntec, for example, which is a hydroisomerized petroleum oil marketed in disguise as a synthetic. There are no PAO (polyalphaolefin, or Group IV) synthetic molecules in Castrol Syntec, yet because of legal finagling with the definition of synthesized motor oils they can legally be called synthetic in the United States since 1999 (but other countries still consider this deception to be labeling fraud). Basically, they changed the definition of a synthetic to fit their process of highly refining a petroleum base oil, called hydrocracking, and fought with Mobil and the National Advertising Council to loosen the definition of a synthetic.
With Mineral-Based Oil Your Engine is Not As Well Protected During One of The Most Critical Times: Engine Start-Up:
Engine start-up lubrication is one of the most critical times for lubrication. Small amounts of wear occurs every time you start your engine with mineral-based oils. Over time, these small amounts of wear add up to larger amounts and result in increase clearances, reduced oil pressure, increase oil consumption and reduced life of your engine. Synthetic motor oil, on the other hand, will stay on engine parts and coat them uniformly because of its high film strength and greater heat affinity (it adheres better to hot metal parts). So synthetics prevent most start-up engine wear by reducing friction prior to oil flow, and by getting pumped to critical passageways, surfaces and bearings much faster than mineral-based oils in cold starts.
With mineral-based oils your engine is basically running with no oil between wear surfaces after starting the motor, for 2-10 seconds in mild or hot weather, and 5-30 seconds in cold weather, depending on the oil and the temperature. This is a major source of engine wear. So with synthetics after several hundred thousand miles you still will have a strong running engine, instead of a used-up engine that may require a re-build. This has been proven by millions of miles of customer and fleet usage and countless laboratory and field tests.
Bringing an extra benefit, a few synthetics are designed for long drain intervals: this offsets the added cost of synthetic oil. AMSOIL’s premiums motor oils are designed for 25,000 mile/1-year drain intervals (or longer with by-pass filtration). Which is the best synthetic motor oil? When you ignore marketing claims and look at certified performance test data, and fleet oil analysis results, there is simply no other oil company in the world that can match AMSOIL’s extended drain interval capability or tested performance – the benefits of AMSOIL synthetics are huge… by design.
Why Automakers Don’t Use Synthetics in Production Vehicles:
Okay. Synthetics are great. The real question is: Why doesn’t everybody use them? Manufacturers don’t use synthetics in production vehicles (except as where needed to prevent component failure during the warranty period) for at least two reasons. It is our opinion that they want to sell you a new vehicle or non-warranty repairs more often, and synthetic motor oil would significantly reduce their chances of doing that. Additionally, the oil companies want to sell oil to keep their oil wells and refineries running and they do that more profitably by recommending the fraudulent 3000 mile oil change. Sure, they all offer a synthetic or semi-synthetic now, but it is only a very small percentage of total oil sales volume. A few auto companies install a synthetic oil as a factory fill in very high performance vehicles such as the Chevrolet Corvette, Dodge Viper, Porsche and Mercedes AMG for examples.
[Basically, what you are seeing is a long history of the oil and auto companies working together so they both benefit from the scams of the “3000 mile oil change” and of paper filters. However, California and GM are working together to educate consumers because of GM’s vehicle oil-change findings and because of the environmental impact of doing oil changes two to 10 times more often than needed.
Many of the same oil companies that recommend 3000 mile oil changes in the U.S. also offer and recommend 12,000-18,000 mile oil changes in Europe, and have been for many years, and have considered proposals for increasing that to nearly 30,000 mile oil changes in the future. The technology is available, yet AMSOIL is the only one to offer a superior extended drain synthetic oil that far exceeds the performance specifications of any other type and brand of oil, and back it with their own warranty.]
AMSOIL Offers Extended Drain Intervals and Superior Filtration:
AMSOIL Synthetic Lubricants are so far advanced in their superior engine protection that they provide 25,000 mile/1-year oil changes (or 700 hours) with Ea nanofiber filtration. This filtration technology reduces wear by 70%, tripling remaining engine life compared to OEM filters. This is actually one more of the Three Greatest Secrets of vehicle maintenence.
Taking it one step further, choosing to add AMSOIL By-Pass Filtration allows for virtually no oil changes and filters down to 1/10 micron particle size. The average consumer spending excessive amounts of time and money changing their oil every 3000 miles does not get the same level of performance and protection as the AMSOIL customer that is saving both time and money and getting maximum performance, protection and extending the life of their engine, transmission and differential (AMSOIL also offers synthetic differential gear oil, and extended drain interval transmission fluids that will virtually eliminate differential and transmission wear and reduce operating temperatures approximately 20-50 deg. F., depending on operating conditions).
There Is A Good Use For Mineral Oil?
Please note that a new gasoline powered engine should be run on the factory fill mineral-based oil for about the first 500 miles and large diesel engines should be run about 5000-6000 miles in general before changing to synthetic oil. Mineral oil’s lower shear strength can help promote easier engine wear-in, although you can convert to synthetic oil sooner if you like. Many production vehicles today come factory filled with synthetic oil. Engine break-in is not as critical today as it was in the old days. Material, engineering advances and manufacturing technology has improved drastically from the days when long break-in periods were required.
It is good practice to perform the first oil and filter change at 500 miles on a new engine, because the the initial oil-change contains the highest wear metal content in the used oil and filter. The added friction and surface abrasion that mineral-based oils provide actually helps to seat the valves and create even mating surfaces between parts during the first several hundred miles (such as piston rings and cylinder walls). This is a time in the engine’s life that generates a high level of metal, aluminum, copper and some lead particles in the oil (that cannot all be caught by the filter). Again, you are perfectly ok to use synthetic oils sooner if you choose to (with the exception of 2-cycle engines). Your engine will still wear-in properly although it may take just a short time longer as compared to petroleum oil.
Major racing teams may appear to not use synthetics, but things aren’t always what they seem. The racing team’s sponsor might want you to believe there’s a certain kind of motor oil in the car’s crankcase, but every successful race team in the world uses synthetic lubricants throughout the car, and roughly 85% of them in North America use AMSOIL. (Few winning circles are occupied without AMSOIL in the gear box and differential.) Because two things matter: winning, and minimizing rebuild costs. You may wonder how we know these facts. It’s simple: we work in the automotive industry with many professionals involved in the racing industry.
Interestingly enough, the biggest reason that synthetic lubricants are not in widespread use is because the would-be consumer does not understand the benefits of synthetics. Also, they are not sure where to go to ask, or who to ask. Asking your local parts counterman at the auto parts or the high school graduate at the quick-lube shop is not the answer, or even asking your local auto dealer that sold you the car: remember, they are usually tied in with the manufacturers brand or oil and the 3000 mile oil change myth.
You should seek out and acquire information from a Certified Lubrication Specialist, lubrication engineer or unbiased automotive engineer or competent mechanic that fully understands and can explain the benefits of synthetics and the drawbacks of mineral-based oil to the consumer. But beware, there are many mechanics out there that are so engrained in the old way of thinking that they refuse to change their habits or even open up their minds to the fact that there are automotive engineers, lubrication engineers and chemists that know a heck of a lot more about motor oils, filtration, vehicles and synthetics than them. Because this is so complex, we clearly explain here how to pick the best motor oil for your engine. We also address the myth that synthetic oils cause engine gasket leaks or oil-seal leaks.
Some People Will Never Change:
Also, even though people have known about synthetics for years, consumers continue to be brand and price driven. The rationale continues to be, “My grandpappy used brand V in his model T, so I won’t use nothing else.” Or, “I been using brand Q in my IROC for years. If I change brands now I’ll blow the motor.” Or, “ I ain’t payin’ no 8 dollars a quart, no siree, Bob, I ain’t that stupid.” Or, “I ain’t using none of that synthetic oil…that’s stuff’s made out of beans…I want some real crude oil.” (This last statement was an actual statement from a customer in a snowmobile store. He was having 2-cycle spark plug fouling problems due to the mineral- based oil mixture he was using. The store suggested he use a synthetic oil and 2 new spark plugs to eliminate the fouling issue. He declined and purchased 2 boxes of spark plugs and his usual crude oil mix; guess some people will never change).
When switching to a synthetic motor oil, it is important to keep several things in mind regarding oil consumption. Keep extra quarts of synthetic handy. Although many synthetic oil manufacturers tout the compatibility of their oils with mineral-based oils, that’s more for emergencies when oil is below the “Add” mark on the dipstick and you don’t have a spare quart of your synthetic. Adding mineral oil to synthetic oil will drastically reduce the level of engine protection that was initially designed into the synthetic oil as well as the mileage to your next oil change. Also, as the mineral oil breaks down it will contaminate the rest of the oil, leaving sludge and varnish deposits in the engine (this is because mineral oil is made up of many chemically dissimilar hydrocarbons, including waxes, all of which react differently under different operating conditions). By adding a mineral oil to synthetic oil you will also see a reduction in engine efficiency, depending on how much, and when, the mineral-based oil was introduced.
There are many different companies that offer synthetics. Because this overview is intended to give readers a general idea of the benefits of synthetic lubricants, we have not discussed the specific differences between all the individual brands and their formulations. Keep in mind that there are significant differences between brands of synthetics, which will affect the performance and longevity of your engine, transmission, axles, bearings and chassis components.
“Superior technology is never produced by marketing slogans, and it’s not accidental – it’s carefully engineered.”
Brian Dobben – former Chrysler headquarters Sr Engineer
Our fully comprehensive total maintenance solution gives you:
- The best performance, highest fuel economy, and longest vehicle life of any approach on the market, combining the best synthetic lubrication technology with the best filtration technology. See how it produced the Million Mile Van, and consider the seven lessons from the Million Mile Van.
- Much less time in the shop (or under your vehicle): most vehicles running 25k miles/yr, or less, need only ONE motor oil & filter change & chassis lube in an entire year ! (You don’t have to shorten your oil change intervals any more than you want to, but if you dislike the risks of having someone else change your oil and would rather do it yourself while benefiting your vehicle and still saving time and money, AMSOIL’s approach is ideal.)
- At least triple the remaining life of your engine. Per extensive OEM testing that was reported in SAE Technical Paper #881825, the documented 70% reduction in engine wear rates that was proven in the 1980’s was finally enabled by AMSOIL in 2006 with special filters using nanofiber technology from the military and medical industries.
Do you have any questions that are not explained in this brief overview? Please . See the Lubrication Industry and GM’s stance on oil change intervals, as well as the State of California’s new efforts to educate vehicle owners on the facts. You can also easily review our other articles and test data, from articles in the right sidebar (or seen below on small mobile devices). LEARN MORE.
Recommendations and Related Articles:
- Carefully consider the lessons from the Million Mile Van.
- Related article: how to pick the best engine oil.
- Know a skeptic who thinks AMSOIL may be just marketing hype? Send them to our AMSOIL Skeptics page.
- NO, AMSOIL synthetic oils don’t cause gasket leaks or oil-seal leaks: oil-seal leaks are caused by petroleum oils.
- Fleet management resources include the diesel and fleet page, and the Christian ministry and business fleet vehicle maintenance page.
For more specific info on oil selections and tips for turbodiesel pickups, we invite you to expand and turbocharge your knowledge when you…
Since 1972, AMSOIL Synthetic drivetrain LUBRICANTS have proven to be the highest performance engine oils, greases, transmission fluids, and hydraulic and differential gear oils on the market.
But the other key issue is nanofiber filtration.
We cover oil filters, air filters and other fluid filters like NO-ONE else can. AMSOIL offers the highest performance, most cost-effective, most comprehensive filter line on earth. Consider air and oil…
Until now, Nanofiber filtration technology has been used exclusively in medical, aerospace, electronics manufacturing, and heavy duty applications, including the US ARMY Abrams M1 tank. AMSOIL Ea Filters are the first and only filter line to bring this technology to the auto/light truck market.
EaO nanofiber oil filters provide unmatched full-flow filtering efficiency to 98.7 percent at 15 microns, and 50 percent at 7 microns. This translates to a 70% reduction in engine wear rates, tripling remaining engine life while giving longer filter life and lower pressure drop for better cold-start performance: the only filtration that gives you the best performance in every category! Compare that to the filters lining the auto-parts shelves, which don’t tell you their common 7,500 mile design life and either won’t tell you what micron level their efficiency rating is for, or they claim a micron particle size without stating an efficiency: deceptive, meaningless numbers.
Additionally, consider bypass filtration systems for commercial and fleet applications in cars and light, medium and heavy trucks which can filter particles down to less than one micron and are 89% efficient at 1 micron, making oil changes virtually unnecessary and virtually eliminating engine wear. (A standard full-flow oil filter can only filter to 20 microns with any reasonable efficiency, but 5-25 microns is widely accepted as the wear-particle size range.) Easy to install, these oil filter systems have been proven by millions of miles of over-the road trucks, construction equipment and fleet service. And we use these on our personal diesel pickup trucks: my Duramax 2500HD has over 70,000 miles since the last oil drain, the oil analysis looks perfect, and the appearance of this diesel oil looks like a gas engine with 3,000 miles on the oil.
It’s far better, and easier, to keep wear particles out of the engine than it is to attempt filtering them out of the engine oil. Yet filter companies and vehicle manufacturer’s are strangely silent about actual air filter performance and engine needs. Now AMSOIL offers world-leading breakthrough Ea air filters with exclusive nanofiber technology. Based on battlefield-proven air-induction systems used in military ground and air vehicles, this high-technology filtration is now available for consumer use! Ea filters are guaranteed for 4 years, 100,000 miles. The engineering rule of thumb for damaging wear particle size is 5 to 25 microns. Incredibly, these filters are 100% efficient at removing particles of 3 microns, and are 80% effective at removing particles of a 1 micron size. This means that NO WEAR PARTICLES CAN GET PAST OUR Ea AIR FILTERS! AND, they’re less expensive to use than ANY other air filter.
For Power Sports applications, AMSOIL offers a line of oiled-foam filters. These filters provide better performance than oiled-gauze air filters, and are used almost exclusively in most off-road applications including baja, dirt-track racing, and motocross.
For light to heavy trucks, both gas and diesel engines, AMSOIL’s partnership with Donaldson provides you with the best performance and most cost-effective air filtration systems in the world. These include both Powercore and Nanofiber technology filters. We have the full line of Donaldson Filters Now Available , including nanofiber air, fuel, water, oil and hydraulic filters, with exclusive performance warranties (no one else in the industry offers filtration performance warranties). Contact us for specific recommendations, or see our Diesel Page.
Well-engineered aftermarket air induction systems can provide airflow improvements with gains in horsepower, fuel economy, and towing torque. Unfortunately in many cases they may also let far more wear particles into your engine than the OEM filter. And oiled media can contaminate mass flow air sensors, causing problems with emissions, fuel economy and performance that can even damage transmissions in some cases. AMSOIL lets you leave those problems behind. Their full line of nanofiber universal air induction filters (EaAU) are designed to replace stock oil wetted gauze or foam conical filters that were supplied with custom induction systems produced by K&N, Injen, S&B, Green, AIRAID, AFE, TrueFlow and more. Whether your air induction system is in a gasoline street-rod, or a diesel truck, you have great airflow but you need better filtration and more capacity than oiled gauze or foam. AMSOIL Ea Air Induction Filters are dry no-oil filters with nanofiber filtration media to bring your aftermarket far better efficiency, 50 times the capacity, and excellent airflow while being easily cleanable – every 25,000 miles.
WHY SWITCH TO AMSOIL LUBRICATION AND FILTRATION TECHNOLOGIES?
- AMSOIL products saves you time and money. With recommended extended drain intervals, AMSOIL performance typically costs LESS per year than conventional oil changes.
- The only 25,000 mile/one-year motor oils in the world.
- The only 25,000 mile/one-year engine oil filters in the world.
- A vehicle lubrication solution with far less environmental impact, using an estimated 87% less oil and 5-10% less fuel !
- The only oils and filters with a warranty for GUARANTEED performance!
- Exceeds the most stringent performance specifications of all major U.S. and foreign automotive and truck manufacturers.
- Provides up to four-times the wear protection of other motor oils.
- Increases the mileage life of your vehicle.
- Improves fuel economy.
- Increases at-wheel horsepower.
- Lowers transmission and differential operating temperatures and delivers better shifting, even in heavy towing.
- Lowers fleet maintenance costs by lowering the costs of both scheduled maintenance, and mechanical repairs.
- Lowers fleet capital costs by dramatically extending vehicle service-life. (Vehicle mileage typically extended 20 to 100%.)
- Diesel oil and filtration products designed to deliver more than 1,000,000 miles for over-the-road trucks before engine overhaul.
- Used by many national racing teams, fleets, police departments, fire departments, ambulance fleets, construction firms and trucking companies.
WHY WORK WITH DMT TECHNICAL?
DMT Technical operates Ultimate-Synthetic-Oil.com as part of a group of highly skilled team of OEM Engineers and Lubrication and Filtration Specialists. In fact, we are the ONLY such group on the internet, as well as the largest AND fastest-growing AMSOIL Dealer organization in the nation. You too, can join our group when you become an AMSOIL Dealer and take advantage of all that we offer as you use products in your own vehicles or begin your own AMSOIL business. You cannot find a more knowledgeable and skilled group of Dealers anywhere.
In addition, as a Dealer in our group you will receive exclusive unlimited product, technical and business support from the only group of Truck and Automotive Engineers and Lubrication Specialists on the net. That’s priceless – yet free – vital support that can make a huge difference to a growing business.
We do not run our business purely on the internet. We also have numerous commercial, industrial, trucking, excavating, construction, logging, police, racing and many more accounts that we support and service on a regular basis. We have several fully stocked warehouses and fully equipped shop facilities. This provides us with excellent knowledge of the products, equipment and the business and the ability to respond immediately to any of your needs. We will use this knowledge and experience to help you get started so you too can achieve your goals.
We possess the skills, desire and knowledge to answer questions, solve problems, improve efficiency, reduce downtime, maintenance costs and increase the durability and life of all of your vehicles.
Read what our satisfied customers have to say about us. Read through our website. Contact us with any questions. If you decide to become an AMSOIL Dealer you will be joining, in our opinion, the most skilled AMSOIL group there is. We will help you get started and provide you with the tools and information in order to be successful in this business or with technical and product assistance to use AMSOIL products in your own vehicles.
To get additional information:
We offer several options to receive information on AMSOIL. We welcome the opportunity to work with you personally as your servicing AMSOIL Dealer. Our AMSOIL Dealer Group is led by former OEM Truck/Automotive Engineers and Lubrication Specialists with over 20 years experience each, who can provide you with unparalleled and valuable advice. This exceptional benefit is unavailable elsewhere.
Please, email us at and we will send you exclusive comprehensive info on products, technical and business factors. If you are serious about AMSOIL products and the business opportunity this is the best option. You will receive extensive technical and business support from both myself and my other OEM Detroit, Michigan Truck/Automotive Engineers and Lubrication Specialists with over 20 years experience each. We look forward to helping you learn about AMSOIL.
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Ultimate Synthetic Oil – AMSOIL Products
Garner, North Carolina 27529
Phone: (419) 551-4792