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Engine oil choice

Question : I RECENTLY bought a 2003 Camry 2.0 with 90,000km on the odometer.

The previous owner had meticulously changed engine oil at UMW Toyota every 10,000km using semisynthetic since day one and the engine is in very good condition.

I am keen to change to synthetic as I heard it offers better cold start protection, etc.

However, I am in a bit of a quandary as to whether using synthetic at this point is a good idea.

I heard that if the engine had been using semi-synthetic all the while, it will already have greater mechanical tolerances, hence needing a "heavier oil".

Answer : My contention has always been that if an engine from new has been using semi-synthetic or synthetic oils, the engine wear will be very low and one should continue using such oils.

However, if the engine has been on mineral oils and there is already wear, switching to a synthetic oil when there is already high mileage would not have the same benefits and in fact there may be higher oil consumption due to the lower viscosity of the oil and the increased tolerances in the engine.

I think (and this is only my opinion) that there is no harm in switching to the fully synthetic oil but if you find that oil consumption is increasing, then go back to the semi-synthetic.

As a worst case scenario, you may have to move to a heavier mineral oil such as 20W-50.

 
   
 

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