5w20 or 5w30? Which do I run and why. Is 5w20 a hoax for fuel milage?
1. External Temperature
Before you think about can I use 10w30 instead of 5w20, it is vital to know which oil type is suitable according to the environment. The W is the standard that specifies winters. The lower the number before W, thinner is the oil viscosity. Moreover, many of us know that thinner oil is easy to ignite even at the temperature below negatives. Therefore, if the temperature is below zeros, use 5w20 oil. In the same case, 10w30 oil can take hours to ignite in winters. So, it’s better to choose oil type wisely depending on the weather.
5W-20 & 5W-30 vs 10W-30: The 5W Oils Flow Faster In Cold Weather
It helps to think of the “W” as standing for “winter.” Lower numbers mean the oil will remain more fluid and easier to circulate throughout your engine for improved start-up protection.
That being the case, when comparing 5W-20 or 5W-30 vs 10W-30, the 5W oils will flow faster in cold weather, as indicated by their lower 5W rating.
This means the oil will flow more readily to lubricate the cam lobes, piston rings, cylinders, bearings and other vital components at startup. The sooner the oil reaches these components, the sooner it can protect against wear.
Oil that’s too thick can cause precious seconds to pass when little-to-no oil is available to lubricate parts, resulting in wear.
It’s especially important in sub-zero weather when oil naturally thickens. Synthetic oils remain more fluid in cold weather for better protection than their conventional counterparts. Check out this post for more about the differences between synthetic and conventional oil.
2. Effect on Components
Parts like rod and main bearing help to put up with a load on rotating shaft. These parts normally do well with thicker oil as it leads to the stronger film. The thinner oil (5w20) will unable journal bears to support moving components to bear weight and will wear out eventually. Some other parts like cooling nozzles run efficiently with thinner oil. In any case, you put thicker oil; the nozzles will experience a reduced flow. It is preferable to use effective maintenance tips in such cases or simply contact the nearby mechanic.
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Can You Mix 5w20 And 10w30?
Generally, when you mix two oils of different weight or viscosity, the mix won’t actually cause any damage to your engine because both oils will keep lubricating the engine components. However, mixing oils will not improve your car engine’s performance at all.
This is because the additives in the oils are there for different reasons. The incompatibility of these additives would cause your engine not to get the full benefits it should have gotten from the oils if they were not mixed.
Regarding 5W20 and 10W30, the effect of mixing these oil depends on your car. Which of them was your car designed to run with? 5W20 or 10W30? Your car manufacturer’s recommendation notwithstanding, mixing 5W20 and 10W30 won’t cause any harm to your engine.
However, some drivers allege that it is safer to mix two straight weight oils or multigrade, instead of mixing straight weights with multigrade.
5W20 will flow easier in cold/low temperatures to keep your engine parts lubricated at all times. On the other hand, 10W30 will flow in cold/low temperatures, but the flow speed will be slower than that of 5W20.