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The Difference Between Regular And Synthetic Oil

The question, why switch to synthetic oil, can best be answered by understanding the history of synthetic oil development and how it differs from conventional oil.

Synthetic Oil History:  Synthetic oil was introduced in Germany in 1937 and in the U.S. in the 1940’s by the United States Naval Research Laboratory.  It did not come into wide usage by the military until the jet engine was put into production.  The high speed, high heat, and cold temperature performance required from jet aircraft required a more robust lubricant than what was available at the time.

Because of the cold weather benefits of the synthetic oil used in jet engines, some pilots in Alaska and other cold weather regions began to mix used jet engine synthetic oil with their regular motor oil to assist with cold winter starts.

In the mid-1960’s, Lt. Col. Albert J. Amatuzio, jet fighter squadron commander at a northern Minnesota airbase, had become familiar with the benefits of the synthetic lubricants that protected the engines of the jets he flew. He began a research project that eventually became his life work and second career.  At first, he was only interested in improving the performance of petroleum oil.  He later realized the need to begin with a synthetic base stock and build his ideal lubricant from the ground up.

By 1972 Mr. Amatuzio had developed and began marketing the first 100% synthetic diester based motor oil to pass the API sequence tests and receive API qualification. The following year Mobil Oil began marketing the first PAO based engine oil overseas and in 1975 they began test marketing a synthetic PAO based synthetic in the U.S. called Mobil 1.

Due to the growing demand for the benefits offered by synthetic oil  additional products were developed.  These included synthetic diesel and two-cycle engines oils, synthetic transmission fluids and gear lubes.  As demand continued to increase more companies began developing synthetic lubricants.   By the mid-nineties nearly every oil company offered a synthetic motor oil in its line of products.

Synthetic lubricants are currently the fastest growing segment of the oil industry and are definitely here for the long haul.

Watch the short video below for an interesting look at the development of the first synthetic oil engineered by AMSOIL, Inc.

How Synthetic Oil Is Different Than Conventional Oil

Conventional Oil  base stocks are manufactured by refining mined crude oil.  During the refining process not all of the impurities in the oil are able to be eliminated.  Even with the addition of additives this results in a base lubricant with a non-uniform molecular structure prone to breakdown from the heat and pressure generated during the operation of modern lubricated components.

Synthetic Oil  base stocks are composed of pure chemicals that have been synthesized from petroleum.  This results in a lubricant with a uniform molecular structure having many advantages over the non-uniform structure of conventional base stocks.

Benefits of Synthetic Oil In Your Vehicles and Equipment

1.  Synthetic oil won’t thicken during cold temperatures making engine starting easier and oil pressure build-up quicker.  This greatly reduces the engine wear on startup that occurs when using conventional lubricants.

2.  Synthetic motor oil does not evaporate as quickly. This reduces the risk of oil sludge and reduces oil usage .

3.  Less component wear, improved fuel economy, and lower maintenance cost due to consistent viscosity during operation and less friction between moving engine parts due to uniform molecular structure of the oil.

4.  A cleaner and more efficient operating engine, transmission, etc. due to improved tolerance to breakdown from heat and oxidation.

5.  Less frequent oil changes because synthetic lubricants last longer than conventional ones further reducing operating costs.

6.  Overall a better value for the money spent on lubricants.

Click the photo below for a comprehensive motor oil filtration guideMotor Oil and Filtration Guide

Not All Synthetic Lubricants Are Created Equal

When choosing which brand of synthetic lubricant to choose from, learning the answers to the following questions is an important part of making your decision:

1.  How long has the company been manufacturing synthetic lubricants?

2.  Are synthetics a primary product or side products?

3.  Is the lubricant a full synthetic or a blend of conventional and synthetic ?

4,  Does the manufacturer base their lubricant formulas on a budget or on performance requirements using the best available base stocks and additives regardless of price?

5.  Does the manufacturer  offer a written warranty for their lubrication products?

6.  Does the manufacturer make Independent ASTM lab and field testing results for its products readily available to its costumers?

7.  Does the manufacturer offer factory direct drop shipping service to individual and business customers.

8.  Are free wholesale accounts available for business that use the manufacturer’s products in their vehicle and equipment fleets or sell them in their retail store?

9.  Is a low-cost wholesale program available for individuals to join and are retail purchases of $100 or more shipped free?

AMSOIL, Inc Offers All Of These Benefits

As an Independent AMSOIL Dealer I can offer you all of the above benefits plus a network of hundreds of lubrication experts in our AMSOIL Dealer network to answer any lubrication or filtration question you could ever come up with.

Contact me with your questions or comment on the content of this page in the comment section below.  If you prefer to talk with me in person you can call me at  682-730-0735.  I would appreciate your feedback.

Thom Wofford, Independent AMSOIL Dealer






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