Are you a victim? It depends.
Some oils need to be changed this often, while others do not. IIRC oils
refined from from South America and the Mid East crudes are olefin
based, whereas oils refined from Pennsylvania crudes are paraffin based.
Paraffin based oils hold viscosity much longer that olefin based oils.
This means that the motor oils from Pennsylvania and Pennsylvania
equivalent crudes will deliver substantially longer service than
Saudi/South American based motor oils (adequate filtration presumed). I
have run Pennsylvania/Pennsylvania equivalent grade oils in my cars for
over 40 years and never have had a lubrication problem. I change the oil
about every 7000 miles <whether needed or not :^), although on occasion
I have gone 10000 mi. YMMV.
Most major oil companies supply motor oils that are not from Pa based
crudes and therefore you should change the oil more frequently.
Another piece of information...When I was younger we ran wear test on
synthetic motor oils compared to petroleum based products. The synthetic
oils caused a great deal more wear than the petroleum products. Because
of these tests I have not and will not run synthetic oils. My
information is based on tests done about thirty years ago, and may be
out of date, however, I have yet to see any scientific test (by an
independent lab) that conclusively showed that synthetics provide wear
characteristics as good as petroleum based products. I decided to stick
with the "natural" product, and have not yet seen a reason to switch.
I do not know how often you should change a synthetic oil.
About gasoline..I run the lowest octane that will not knock in my
engines. I have an E320 (6 cyl inline), and a C280 (V6). They both run
very well on Plus. Regular does not have enough octane (and knocks), but
in my case, premium is not necessary. YMMV. In general, if it does not
knock, it will not damage your engine. Also running higher octane will
not increase your mileage. All gasoline has the same energy content.
EJ in NJ
Your driving pattern dictates when you should change oil. A lot of short run
driving will introduce more contaminants than long runs where the oil gets
hot enough to boil off accumulated water vapor. A visual inspection by
wiping the dip stick with a clean towel should give you an idea how dirty
the oil is. Examination of oil that was drained can also give you an idea
regarding contamination levels. If it is black and thin
you should have changed the oil sooner. You can rub the oil between your
fingers and compare it to fresh oil and get a pretty good idea about what is
going on inside your engine.
I normally run around 4000 miles between changes and the oil still looks and
feels pretty good. (probably could do 6k with no problem)
On the question whether synthetics vs regular oil I also lean toward
I remember when I worked at Dougls aircraft in Santa Monica (around 1960)
they were running test programs on available oils. Testing consisted of
running engines at full power untill failure with various lubrication
schemes/oils. Shell Rotella scored very well in these tests.Based on this I
have been usinng this oil in all my cars boats ever since with great
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