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Old 07-11-2009, 09:34 PM   #1
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Synth Blend Oils and their filters

So I'm coming up to my 23k oil change (I always do them early) and I'm thinking synthetic, but simply cannot justify the costs of full synthetic-- I'm so cheap, haha; so I'm really thinking about synth blends. I like the idea of offsetting some regular oil with synthetic[mineral] oil (though it may take that same amount or more in regular oil to manufacture this, funny enough) but also I think it may provide slightly better protection with the way I drive (occasionally WOTing it up to redline territory). I also wanted to ask about full synthetic oil change cycles, many brands specify near 10k miles, but I find that hard to believe since more than just the oil is eventually getting filtered through that engine.

Here was a good read, especially at Synthetics topic near the bottom:

The last 3 paragraphs caught my eye:
To offset the higher cost of synthetic oil, some of the oil companies claim you can run the oil longer between changes. They say you do not have to change the oil every 3,000 miles. Valvoline does not make that claim. McClanahan says, "The additives in synthetics are superior but they still break down at the same rate and you need to replenish them often. We are unaware of any additive package that lasts longer than what the manufacturer recommends. Those 10,000-mile claims are ludicrous."

The base oil is good forever. The additives and VI improvers break down over time. The thing that destroys the ability of the oil to lubricate is the accumulation of gasoline, dirt, and engine contaminates in the oil. Oil is supposed to get dirty. Its job is to remove contaminants out of the engine. Even with the superior additive package of the synthetic, contaminates still accumulate and need to be flushed out of the engine. Therefore, you need to change your oil often.

Every time you change the oil, you must change the oil filter. The oil filter traps the dirt. By adding new clean oil and not changing the filter, all you are doing is adding dirt to the clean oil. An oil filter has a relief valve that allows oil to pass through the filter when it is full. A that point, you are circulating dirty oil.
So my question regarding full synth oil change cycles is about the oil filter, maybe the synthetic compounds don't break down as quickly as regular oil, but the oil is probably still accumulating contaminates elsewise, and how long until that filter is full?

The other question is, who's using synth blend oils and finds them likable? I'm not interested in full-synthetic unless the price is comparable I suppose. I still would change my oil at the recommended 5k intervals (or for me, probably closer to 4).

Last edited by scape; 07-12-2009 at 09:52 AM.
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Old 07-12-2009, 03:26 AM   #2
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If you can not justify synthetic, then use regular oil.
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Old 07-12-2009, 05:51 AM   #3
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How long do you plan on keeping the car?if you are thinking 400 to 500K then i'd go full synthetic every 7000 miles, if you are going to trade the car after 4 to 5 years and a couple of hundred K or so miles then just use plain oil and change at manufacturers recommended intervals.

Last edited by jambo101; 07-12-2009 at 06:41 PM.
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Old 07-12-2009, 09:39 AM   #4
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Most syn blends are not worth the extra cost IMO. I actually use a syn blend that is exceptional and will run with the OTC syns but it is not readily available to most people unless you have a Schaeffer's dealer near you or are willing to buy in case quanities.

Conventional oils are so good now only easier cold starts and extended drains really make syns worth the money. That quote about oils only being good for 3k is complete hogwash marketing. I run (and have for some time) Schaeffer's syn blend for 7500 miles in a Nissan with excellent UOA results.
If you are still under warranty any conventional API SM rated oil will get you the 5k/6 month intervals that Toyota recommends with excellent longevity. If you want to go syn for piece of mind you can get Pennzoil Platinum at Wally World for a song more than conventional. (20-23 for 5 qt. jug)
Platinum is such a great deal for full syn it's hard to recommend anything else!

"The howl was the sound of Godís casting pot, the morphing of my cells into shape, the forming of oceans out of molten premordial plasma. And I could feel it. I could cry for it. I could cry with it."
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Last edited by R2D2; 07-12-2009 at 09:45 AM. Reason: Add.
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Old 07-12-2009, 09:48 AM   #5
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I think the quote really was referring to the filters being used-- which makes sense to me, even if the oil itself lasts longer, the engine may still be contaminating it at the same rate as conventional oil-- do you use special filters like fram tough duty (what I used to use on my old cars, so I might go that route, rated for 7k miles) or toyota oem (which may be still rated at 5k miles).

I may just drive this car right into the ground, who knows haha-- it's a sweet little car, if I can get over the constant need for more power, everything else is wonderful on this little bugger. I am starting to lean to full synthetic too, they are not too expensive really when compared to the blends.

thanks for the input!
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Old 07-12-2009, 10:35 AM   #6
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normally 8k but now im doing 10k with amsoil..i was gonna do 8k but when i checked the oil its still clear and see thru..
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Old 07-12-2009, 11:23 AM   #7
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Amsoil has an XL oil that is full synthetic that is designed for up to 7500 miles or 6 months if memory serves. Amsoil has other oils that will allow oil changes as little as once per year.

The Valvoline deal has a few caveats that will surprise (and cost) you, check out the fine print.

Amsoil has Ea oil filters that are designed for use up to 25,000 miles in most applications. The design actually captures more contaminates while increasing oil flow. However, due to a high level contaminates Toyota engines are creating, Amsoil has recommended that in Toyota applications even the Ea filter should be changed at OEM recommended intervals.

Amsoil is one of the highest quality synthetic oils available, the longer drain intervals can save you some money.

As you can see people have some strongly held opinions about oil, I hope you will check out to get complete information on the features and benefits of Amsoil before making your choice.

No matter you choice, good luck with your car and keep use all posted on any modifications you might make!
One Year One Oil-AMSOIL at TRD Exhaust, Springs and Struts. TRD SSK. NST Underdrive Crank Pulley. Amsoil Dominator 10w-30 Racing Oil, Amsoil DOT4 brake fluid, Amsoil Severe Gear 75w-90 transmission oil, Ultra Racing 23mm Sway Bar, Camber Bolts, R1 Drilled Slotted front Brakes and SS Brake cables from Micro-Image. Orange Konig Daylight 17s, Kumo MXs.
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Old 07-12-2009, 01:55 PM   #8
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Synthetic blends are a waste of money: By law they can be as little as 20% synthetic. Do you really think they would put more in that that? But the price is half way between regular oil and full synthetic. Since youre admittedly cheap just use regular oil and a junk fram filter and save that money for something more important to you than your car.
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