Synthetic Oil vs. Conventional Oil

Adding oil to engine

You’ve got an oil change coming up. It’s either close to the 3,000 or three-month mark, or your oil change monitoring system says your oil change should happen in the next couple of weeks. When you bring your vehicle in for service from Eagan and Saint Paul, you’ll have a choice between synthetic oil vs. regular oil (also called regular oil) at our service center.



We take pride in giving vehicle owners from all around our area the best possible car repairs and maintenance. If you’ve been wondering about the differences between synthetic vs. conventional oil, then you’ll love this guide on the right oil for an oil change. 

Read on to find more information on these two main types of oil. Then contact us, schedule service, or call (651) 760-7618 at Mauer Buick GMC. We’ll gladly answer any questions you have!

What Is Conventional Oil?

Conventional oil comes from crude oil that’s been refined to make it work in your internal combustion engine. Conventional oil lubricates the pistons as they move up and down. It reduces wear on those engine parts, preventing overheating, friction, and breakdowns while making your vehicle’s engine last longer. Without oil, your car wouldn’t function properly.

What Is Synthetic Oil?

Synthetic oil, like conventional oil, comes from petroleum. However, refineries can custom-make fully synthetic oils with enhanced lubrication properties and stabilizers that make them last longer than conventional oil. Synthetic motor oils are developed from petrochemicals using an intense process to infuse them with specific properties that make them superior to conventional oils. 

These products oxidize less easily than conventional oils, allowing them to retain their protective properties for a lot longer. Refineries produce synthetic motor oil to the exact specifications of the manufacturer to minimize wear and tear on the engine. The goal is to help you get the most out of your car ownership.

Synthetic vs. Conventional Oil: Costs

The lone downside of synthetic vs. conventional oil is that synthetic motor oils are more expensive. However, you have a longer interval between oil changes. Having better wear protection gives you a better return on your investment, too. 

For example, you might change your oil once every 3,000 miles at $50 for a conventional oil change but then once every 7,500 miles at $80 for a synthetic oil change. In that same time frame, you would have spent $100 for two conventional oil changes. Do, when you decide between synthetic vs. conventional oil, it’s important to weigh the initial costs with the long-term savings.

Synthetic oils also:

  • Handle lower temperatures more easily, giving you better protection in chilly MN winters.
  • Offer enhanced engine cleaning properties with added cleansers to keep the oil cleaner for longer periods of time.
  • Better protect critical turbocharger parts (when equipped) to keep your smaller engine running in top shape.

Full Synthetic Oil vs. Synthetic Blend

You have a third choice when it comes to your car’s engine oil. You might find synthetic blends of motor oils on the market. These offer a mixture of synthetic oil and conventional oil to reduce the costs of your oil change. You’ll also get some, but not the full extent of, full synthetic oil’s cleansing and antioxidant properties. With a full synthetic oil vs. synthetic blend, you can lower your overall costs at the time you get the service. However, it’s not necessarily the best choice for your oil change.

Many modern vehicles require full synthetic oil to maintain their engines. Check your owner’s manual or vehicle’s information center, or contact our service experts, to find out what type of oil your vehicle needs. 

Schedule an Oil Change Near Saint Paul

When choosing between synthetic vs. conventional oil, we highly recommend synthetic for your vehicle. Stop by our service center for an oil change when your vehicle is ready. Consider checking out our service specials to see if you can save money on your next maintenance, repair, or oil change. Make sure to read our service tips and service information hub to get the most out of your vehicle ownership. We’re happy to help in any way we can!


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