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Car Oil Change? Synthetic or Conventional?

Posted by tom zoebelein on Thu, Jul 16, 2015 @ 05:07 PM


Bel Air Oil Changes,
or Conventional Oil?


When you take your car in for an oil change in Bel air Maryland, your first question you will need to answer will be do you want to use synthetic or conventional. The real complication comes when you see the price. Depending on the number of gallons needed to refill your car, it could be over $100 per oil change versus almost half for conventional.


At Ward automotive, we recomend to our customers that they do not freak out at the price, but instead consider synthetic oil's performance and superiority to conventional oil.

Synthetic oil vs. conventional oil

Synthetic oil is an engine oil lubricant that was created artificially in a lab or chemical plant from chemical compounds. Some classes of synthetic oil start with conventional oil as a base that's then chemically altered to produce synthetic oil, while others may be artificially created from other raw materials.

Conventional motor oil or standard oil or even mineral-based oil is refined from naturally occurring crude oil, just as it has been since the dawn of the motoring age.

The primary purposes of synthetic oils are to reduce engine wear during cold start-up and drive-away, and to avoid or reduce oil degradation. The reason is synthetic oil is thinner, resists temperature extremes better and generally lasts longer. Synthetic oil can retain its properties for more miles before it starts to break down when compared to conventional oil.

You will not notice any difference in how your car performs, but the longevity of the oil life translates to less frequent oil changes compared to conventional motor oil

Although recommended oil change intervals vary by vehicle manufacturer, in general, a good rule of thumb to follow is to change conventional motor oil every 3,000 to 5,000 miles. If you’re using full synthetic oil, you can go about 7,500 between oil changes

Some auto manufacturers allow for oil change intervals as much as 15,000 miles or one year in some cases

Most mechanics, however, recommend that you should change your oil every 5,000 miles even with synthetic oil.

How much does a synthetic oil change cost in Bel Air MD?

The national average cost of a basic, conventional oil change is $46. Some shops in Bel Air offer $19.95 oil changes, however that is usually just for the oil and not the filter. Which should be changed each time as well.

The synthetic oil change price is more expensive, generally costing about twice as much as conventional oil. However, when you consider how much longer you can go between oil changes, the price difference is significantly reduced when looking at a years maintenance costs.

It can actually be cheaper overall because you’re not paying for the labor on the oil change or the oil filter as often.

Is synthetic oil worth the extra price?

First check with your manufacturer or check your owners manual. Some cars, and more and more cars are requiring synthetic oils. Especially with the rise of more and more turbo charged and fuel efficient engines.

If you are punctual about getting oil changes, and your vehicle doesn’t already require synthetic oil you could stick with conventional

If you are religious about changing your oil when you are supposed to, you can get by with using conventional oil. Your car will not explode or be damaged when using conventional as long as you change your oil regularly. However if you find yourself always going over on the recommended change interval, maybe synthetic oil is for you.

Do some vehicles require synthetic oil?

New and late-model vehicles from European makes such as BMW, Volkswagen, Mercedes-Benz and Audi typically require the use of full synthetic oil. Several new cars from Subaru, some Hondas and Toyotas and some high performance cars also require synthetic oil.


Always check your owner's manual. If it calls out for synthetic oil as a requirement, you might risk losing any warranty coverage for an engine problem if you fail to comply. This is true even if there is no direct connection between the problem and the oil you chose.

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Topics: oil change