All oils are not created equally. The following is an overview of synthetic oils and their application in air-cooled engines.
- Better Viscosity Temperature Response (Higher Viscosity Index) – This means that a synthetic offers protection over a wider temperature range than conventional oil. One can run multi viscosity synthetic oil year round without compromising oil consumption.
- Better Low Temperature Fluidity (Lower Pour Point) – This means that a synthetic will flow at lower temperatures than similarly formulated conventional oil. This results in easier pull starting or cranking and better lubrication protection at colder temperatures.
- Better Thermal Stability – This is the oil’s resistance to breakdown at higher temperatures. Synthetics resist high temperature breakdown much better than conventional oils which results in increased hydrodynamic bearing film thickness (longer bearing life) and reduced oil consumption. Since a small air-cooled engine runs extremely hot, compared to a liquid cooled engine, this is important.
- Better Oxidation Stability – At high temperatures oils oxidize, synthetic inherently hinder this oxidation process much better than conventional oils allowing better protection for longer periods.
- Lower Volatility – Volatility is the oils tendency to “burn off” at higher temperatures. High volatility means it burns off easily, low volatility means it doesn’t. Synthetics have a much lower volatility than conventional oils meaning it will be around longer to protect your engine.
- Better Deposit Control – In conventional oil, deposits readily develop and the additive chemistry has to deal with them. A synthetic actually hinders the development of deposits.
- Better Wear Control – All of the things mentioned above lend themselves to better protection and better wear control of you engine, even under severe operating conditions. Since synthetics have better “inherent strength” they have the ability to keep functioning at the highest level for the longest possible time.