Is outdated information preventing your vehicle from being at its best?

By Product Expert | Posted in FAQs, Technology, Tips and Tricks on Thursday, October 15th, 2020 at 2:32 pm
A stock photo of a person checking the oil in their vehicle.

Does synthetic oil still cause engine leaks? 

The car, truck or SUV that is sitting in someone’s driveway is likely one of the biggest assets a person can own. It only makes sense that people will want to make sure they can wring every mile they can out of that investment, and the best way to do that is to make sure that the vehicle is well-maintained. Regular maintenance is the best way to keep any vehicle of almost any age running in peak condition. One of the biggest challenges to this goal is outdated thinking. If you’re wondering, ‘Does synthetic oil still cause engine leaks,’ this is the kind of outdated information we’re talking about. While Third Coast Auto Group doesn’t have a service department, it is still a question that comes up a few times a month while we’re helping customers. Let’s take a look at a few things. 

READ MORE: Do you need a three-row SUV? 

Synthetic Oil Myths 

Some of the younger sales associates working at Third Coast Auto Group were surprised to learn that synthetic oil has been around since the 1970s. In that time, petrochemical engineering has come a long way and synthetic oil is better now than it has ever been. The reason people still think that synthetic oil causes engine leaks is because it was kind of true. According to the best information available, this was because synthetic oil was derived using esters, a chemical compound created from acids. Old school engine seals were also made from esters and the combination of the two things lead to failed seals and leaks. 

The other reason people thought that synthetic oil caused engine leaks in the old days was because of its cleansing properties. Synthetic oil can actually break down and help remove engine gunk and that would reveal bad seals, which would again, lead to leaks. No reputable technician would ever recommend using engine contaminants as a way to bolster the health of a failing engine seal. 

How often do I need to change synthetic oil? 

One of the reasons that most automakers have made the switch to synthetic oil from conventional oil is because it is so much better at protecting engines. This means that the old interval of changing the oil every 3,000 miles is outdated. Some newer models can go 5,000 miles or more before requiring an oil change. Be sure to follow the recommendations in your vehicle’s owner’s manual 

If you are in the market for a reliable and affordable pre-owned car, truck or SUV, make an appointment with a Third Coast Auto Group product expert today.