Engine oil is a crucial part of the engine. It is the engine oil that helps the engine stay alive and last longer. In the early days of cars, manufacturers were using crude oil which was slippery to reduce the friction between the parts of the engine. But oil technology has moved on a lot since then. Today you can get mineral engine oil, semi-synthetic engine oil and fully synthetic engine oil. The engine oils have to go through several tests before they are used in the vehicles and a lot of development goes under developing an engine oil. Today, we list down some of the things that you should know about the modern-age engine oil.
Manufacturers are using various additives to increase the effectiveness of the engine oil. There are anti-foaming agents, detergents, zinc, phosphorus and some sulphur molecules mixed in the engine oil. All these additives help to reduce the friction between the parts of the engine, reduce wear and tear and reduces the impact of oxidation.
The modern engine oil is now more refined than ever before. But still, the synthetic engine oils have an advantage over them. There is a limit to which the mineral oil can be broken down but the synthetic engine oil is broken down to their base molecules due to which they can provide more lubrication to the engine. More lubrication means they can reduce friction much effectively and the engine can run more efficiently.
Current engine oils last longer than they used to some years back. This is because of the advancement in the refining process. Earlier the service intervals were short and people needed to change the engine oils much sooner than now. A lot of research and development has gone under making engine oils more effective and longer-lasting. Also, some of the advanced engine oils that some manufacturers use require longer service intervals than the regular mineral oil.
Semi-synthetic engine oil
We know that synthetic engine oils cost significantly more when compared to the normal mineral engine oil. Manufacturers realized this and developed a special balance between the mineral oil and synthetic engine oil. The semi-synthetic engine oil uses a special mix of upto 30% synthetic engine oil. This helps in keeping the costs down while offering some of the benefits that synthetic engine oil offers. They provide better lubrication and defence mechanisms than the normal mineral engine oils while keeping the costs down.
Today’s synthetic engine oil is more advanced than we think. Manufacturers have been able to add metals and magnetic particles to the engine oil to protect the engine. Yes, that might look counter-intuitive because the engine oil is supposed to reduce the friction between the metallic parts and adding metal to the engine oil will increase the friction. However, engine oil manufacturer, Castrol has been able to add titanium to their engine oil. The titanium in the engine bonds to the metallic parts of the engine and form a thin layer. This thin layer protects the engine from wear and tear that happens at the start-up when the engine oil is not warmed up. One other way, that Castrol has found is to add magnetic particles to the engine oil. When the driver switches off the engine, these particles stick to the engine. And then they significantly reduce the start-up wear when the engine is started on again.
These are some of the things that you should know about the modern-age engine oil. Engine oil serves a lot of important purposes for the engine oil. We have already covered an in-depth article which talks about the advantages of using good engine oil. You can read about it by clicking here. (Why you should use a good quality engine oil)