Old dogs (cars, trucks, SUVs) can learn new tricks

By Product Expert | Posted in FAQs on Monday, December 7th, 2020 at 3:17 pm
A stock photo of a person draining the oil from a vehicle.

Should I use synthetic oil in an old car? 

As a people, Americans are notorious around the world for falling in love with their vehicles and holding on to them for a long time. If you fall into this category, you might need to learn how to best take care of a high-mileage car, truck or SUV, and you might be wondering, ‘Should I use synthetic oil in an old car?’ For the most part, you should always follow the maintenance guidelines laid out in the vehicle’s owner’s manual, however, there are circumstances where making a change could be worthwhile. You should speak with a qualified technician before making a change like this. Third Coast Auto Group product experts get a wide array of questions from customers and this one comes up a fair bit. Let’s take a look at some info you might need. 

READ MORE: Have you picked up some bad habits? 

What does old mean? 

For our purposes today, when we say a car is old, we mean that it was built before 1990 and/or has 200,000 miles or more on the odometer. A vehicle built before 1990 probably has a fair amount of engine sludge or other contaminants built-up around the seals and gaskets. Synthetic oils are designed to clean out this sludge and the damaged seals could begin to leak. A clean engine is always better to have than a dirty one, however, if you make this change, you will want to regularly check the oil level in your vehicle and replace it as needed.  

A high-mileage vehicle will benefit from using synthetic oil as well – and for very similar reasons. In addition to cleaning out sludge, synthetic oil also does a better job than conventional oils in protecting engine components. Synthetic oil will protect a vehicle better if regular maintenance procedures have been followed. Although, it’s never too late to make good choices to take care of your vehicle. 

If your vehicle beyond help and it’s time to move on, make an appointment with a Third Coast Auto Group product expert today to find something more reliable.