Best Motor Oils

Review & Comparison, Last Update March 16, 2017
Choosing the right motor oil for your car might be a challenging task. And if you are not sure of which one to opt for, in our review you will find the key features of the top rated motor oils. So, look through our shortlist and make your pick. ...Read more ...Read less
BEST 2017
PROS
CONS
OUR VERDICT
TYPE
SAE VISCOSITY GRADE
API CLASSIFICATION
TEMPERATURE RANGE
ENGINE TYPE
VOLUME
WARRANTY
 
PROS
RotellaT6 engine oil uses low sulphated ash, phosphorus, and sulphur content in order to reduce pollutant emission and deposits formation.
CONS
You may need to purchase at least a couple of cans for a full oil refill.
OUR VERDICT
Shell Rotella T6 is formulated to protect your car's motor efficiently, providing constant outstanding adaptation to temperature changes and your driving habits.
detailed parameters
TYPE
Synthetic
SAE VISCOSITY GRADE
5W-40
API CLASSIFICATION
CJ-4 / SM
TEMPERATURE RANGE
-30 up to 95°F
ENGINE TYPE
Diesel / gasoline
VOLUME
4 quarts
WARRANTY
Amazon's 30-days return policy
PROS
Exclusive Liquid Titanium technology is meant for extra protection against engine wear and scuffs build-up.
CONS
The minimal operating temperature is relatively modest.
OUR VERDICT
The motor oil shows great results when used with turbocharged engines. It fares well at high-speed motor operation and ensures smooth running without engine's detonation.
detailed parameters
TYPE
Synthetic
SAE VISCOSITY GRADE
20W-50
API CLASSIFICATION
SN
TEMPERATURE RANGE
5 up to 122°F
ENGINE TYPE
Gasoline
VOLUME
1 quart (pack of 12)
WARRANTY
Amazon's 30-days return policy
PROS
The motor oil is formulated to advance engine efficiency and decrease fuel consumption.
CONS
Might not deliver the best performance at high temperatures.
OUR VERDICT
Outstanding low-temperature capabilities of the motor oil ensure easy start up when it is cold outside. Special additives help slow down oil deterioration and guarantee longer drain intervals.
detailed parameters
TYPE
Synthetic
SAE VISCOSITY GRADE
0W-20
API CLASSIFICATION
SN
TEMPERATURE RANGE
-22 up to 59°F
ENGINE TYPE
Gasoline
VOLUME
5 quarts
WARRANTY
Amazon's 30-days return policy
PROS
The proprietary formula of the lubricant reduces volatility of the oil and guarantees outstanding protection of internal components.
CONS
This motor oil isn't suitable for some models of quads.
OUR VERDICT
With this engine lubricant you will forget about carbon deposition and motor oxidation. It fights scuffing build-up that leads to engine power loss for 42% better and ensures smooth running.
detailed parameters
TYPE
Synthetic
SAE VISCOSITY GRADE
0W-40
API CLASSIFICATION
CF / SN
TEMPERATURE RANGE
-31 up to 86°F
ENGINE TYPE
Gasoline
VOLUME
5 quarts
WARRANTY
Amazon's 30-days return policy
PROS
Additional wear-preventive additives preserve the cleanliness of internal part of a motor, removing already built-up sludge and prevent it formation.
CONS
Used for vehicles with over 75,000 mileage.
OUR VERDICT
Valvoline MaxLife features multi-additive system that is meant to meet the needs of high mileage cars. With this lubricant your motor will run like a new one.
detailed parameters
TYPE
Synthetic
SAE VISCOSITY GRADE
5W-30
API CLASSIFICATION
SN
TEMPERATURE RANGE
-22 up to 77°F
ENGINE TYPE
Gasoline
VOLUME
5 quarts
WARRANTY
Amazon's 30-days return policy

What is Motor Oil

Motor oil is a liquid mix of oil enhanced with different additives meant for lubricating internal combustion engines. It can be used for both reciprocating and pistonless rotary engines in order to reduce wear of adjacent moving parts and decrease heat caused by constant friction. Moreover, motor oils inhibit corrosion, prevent carbon buildup inside a motor and thus, prolong its service life. Engine lubricants vary in viscosity indexes depending on the temperature a vehicle normally operates in. To specify, viscosity or "thickness" of motor oil is a measure of its resistance to flow. All in all, engine oil is a vitally important element in maintaining proper operation of a motor. These lubricants should meet the environmental requirements since they determine the level of pollutants emission on combustion.

High-quality motor oil ensures the internal cleanliness of a vehicle's motor and that's best achieved when a car vacuum cleaner is used. A compact, portable and quite efficient device as it is, it will help you save a lot of money that you'd have to spend going to a car wash specialist.

What Features to Compare

Classification

You should know that motor oils are divided into 3 types: conventional, synthetic, and synthetic blend oils. Newer cars are designed to use synthetic oil, while older models work with both conventional and synthetic types. So, if you cannot yet decide on the type to choose, go for a fully synthetic oil that's recognized for its longer service life. As opposed to synthetic oil, conventional and synthetic blends are comparatively cheaper, yet, you'd need to change them more frequently since they aren't as durable either.  The vehicle's manufacturers always specify SAE viscosity grade that is required for a particular motor, so we highly recommend you to read a manual carefully. When you learn vehicle's viscosity, compare it with the stated SAE grade on a bottle of motor oil. Consider the following example: you see 10W-40 numbers on a bottle. This is a multi-grade viscosity oil suitable for all seasons since it's got a double number with the letter "W" (stands for "winter"). Here, "10W" determines the viscosity of oil during a cold start and the second number (40) stands for viscosity at high operating temperatures of an engine. It means that this oil flows well at low temperatures and protects the engine at high temperatures too. You should buy motor oils in strict correspondence to a velocity index given by a manufacturer. Otherwise, an engine will wear out quite fast.

Motor Type

The next important criterion motor oil should meet to fully comply with your particular motor is API classification. The API (American Petroleum Institute) sets standards for engine lubricants and offers 2 general classifications: "S" and "C". Here, "S" stands for cars with gasoline engines and "C" - for vehicles with a diesel motor. To specify motor oil class, API adds one more letter to its classification. The latest API standard for gasoline cars is SN and CF for diesel vehicles. You can also find oils suitable for both motor types with Energy Conserving formula. You only need to decide what you personally need and how much you're ready to spend on it.

Volume

Finally, pay attention to the can capacity, for the amount of oil required for a light vehicle may drastically differ from the one needed for a bigger SUV. What would be enough for Ford will not be enough for a truck, obviously. Besides, it's always better to store some oil in a garage.

...Read more ...Read less
Review of Shell Rotella T6 5W-40 Full Synthetic CJ-4/SM

Shell Rotella T6 5W-40 Full Synthetic CJ-4/SM

Shell Rotella T6 5W-40 Full Synthetic CJ-4/SM

Flawless Driving

Modern cars are fitted with motors that require special and sophisticated maintenance. Nowadays, carrying out this requirement is as easy as a pie owing to a wide variety of high-quality motor oils available on the market. Using the right one for your car you will save and protect its motor. Rotella T6 motor oil by Shell belongs to the best lubricants in its class. Fully synthetic and temperature-resistant, it also can be used for both diesel and gasoline motors and in any weather conditions and areas. Shell RotellaT6 engine oil uses low sulphated ash, phosphorus, and sulphur content in order to decrease ash formation and reduce pollutant emission. All in all, this motor oil can guarantee you a high level of motor protection, its much longer service life and smooth, flawless operation. 

Review of Shell Rotella T6 5W-40 Full Synthetic CJ-4/SM

Why Shell?

Royal Dutch / Shell is a compilation of two giant companies in oil extraction and processing industry that’s been in the market for already a century. During all this time, they managed to produce high-quality products and successfully sell them throughout the world. The shell logotype found on their products is recognized as the oldest trademark used for motor oils with its own history. Earlier on, the company except for motor oils also produced trinket boxes embellished with the shells and that’s what actually given the name for the company itself and all its product line.

Shell Rotella T6 5W-40 Full Synthetic CJ-4/SM in the use

More Products to Consider

To protect yourself from getting stuck on a road with the dead battery, carry a jump starter in a trunk of your vehicle. 

Additional Info

    Manufacturer


VIDEO
2014-2016 Ram EcoDiesel: New Rotella T6 Engine Oil Spec and Oil Filter Updates
Shell Rotella T6 5W-40 Full Synthetic CJ-4/SM
Shell Rotella T6 5W-40 Full Synthetic CJ-4/SM
 
Review of Kendall GT-1 High Performance 20W-50 with Liquid Titanium

Kendall GT-1 High Performance 20W-50 with Liquid Titanium

Kendall GT-1 High Performance 20W-50 with Liquid Titanium

Titanium Defender

Preventing metal-to-metal contact of the engine's moving components is the top priority task of any motor oil. All moving parts, rubbing against each other, eventually create a friction which often leads to scuffing and motor overheat. If you want your vehicle's motor to deliver smooth operation without failures, you have to drain and refill oil regularly. Engine lubricants while coating all adjacent parts ensure their efficient functionality and longer service life. Therefore, you need to think of your motor protection all the time and buy motor oil from trustworthy companies. That's what can be said about Kendall and its product line. GT-1 motor oil has been created to minimize sludge and prevent varnish formation. Suitable for gasoline-driven vehicles, it's also well compatible with cars fitted with turbo engines. From what we could see, it works great within quite a wide temperature range - 5-122°F.

 

Review of Kendall GT-1 High Performance 20W-50 with Liquid Titanium

Treat Engine With Care

If you’ve just recently bought a new car, make sure to go through a break-in procedure to ensure your motor a longer service life. To do so right, follow this quite a simple rule. During the first 5-7 thousand miles, avoid rapid acceleration as well as too extended idling. When you see the said mileage on the odometer, change the oil. Don’t save on motor oil since low-grade lubricants can result in a motor's breakdown. 

Kendall GT-1 High Performance 20W-50 with Liquid Titanium in the use

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A car backup camera is a must-have accessory for hitching a trailer or parking your car.

Additional Info

    Manufacturer


Kendall GT-1 High Performance 20W-50 with Liquid Titanium
Kendall GT-1 High Performance 20W-50 with Liquid Titanium
 
Review of Mobil 1 120758 Advanced Full Synthetic 0W-20

Mobil 1 120758 Advanced Full Synthetic 0W-20

Mobil 1 120758 Advanced Full Synthetic 0W-20

Cold Weather Tested

Mobil 1 brand is highly appreciated by car enthusiasts all over the world. They produce truly high-grade motor oils and this is the reason why their goods are so popular in automobile racing. We shouldn't forget that the vehicles' motors run on high engine rpm limits during a race and oils are also pushed to the limits. Racers rely on Mobil 1 motor oils and that is the best proof of the quality. We'd like to present you Mobil 1 120758 Advanced engine oil suitable for gasoline vehicles. With quite a low viscosity grade Mobil 1 Advanced features outstanding low-temperature capabilities so you will be able to start up your car from the first try when it is really cold outside. However, is not suitable for use in the hot climate. The peak temperatures where the motor oil shows the optimal viscosity ranges between -22 up to 59 °F. Since the motor oil is fully synthetic, it contains the minimal quantity of additives. Therefore, it is noted for a slower oil deterioration process and thus, features longer drain intervals. Some people may think that a car which isn't used will serve longer. Yet, that's not the true. The car left idle for a long period of time is much more prone to the formation of condensate in a vehicle's motor. Therefore, it's recommended to drive from time to time to prolong the service life of the motor. 

Review of Mobil 1 120758 Advanced Full Synthetic 0W-20

NASCAR Sponsor

NASCAR is a business venture that governs and sanctions different auto-racing events and NASCAR teams do rely on Mobile 1 motor oils.  You should be aware that NASCAR racings are held on very complicated race tracks that differ from the ordinary motor circuits dramatically. Here a racer accelerates to the speed of 333 km/h and this is the average car speed but not the highest one. It is obvious that NASCAR racing is a really dangerous sport. It is interesting to know that racers used to drive on stock cars which were abandoned eventually in favor of more sophisticated geared cars. Stock cars are not designed to withstand high loads and that is why all the racing cars for NASCAR are hand-picked. In this type of racing efficiency is a key and here Mobile 1 motor oils come in handy. They cut down the friction in motors and reduce wasted power, resulting in fewer pit stops and less engine wear.

 

Mobil 1 120758 Advanced Full Synthetic 0W-20 in the use

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Alongside a jump starter, you should also get equipped with a car jack to be able to do minor repairs when being away from service stations. 

Additional Info

    Manufacturer


Mobil 1 120758 Advanced Full Synthetic 0W-20
Mobil 1 120758 Advanced Full Synthetic 0W-20
 
Review of Castrol 03101 EDGE 0W-40 Synthetic

Castrol 03101 EDGE 0W-40 Synthetic

Castrol 03101 EDGE 0W-40 Synthetic

In Tune with the Times

Modern ecological requirements for vehicles' operation, emission, noise, and fuel consumption force car manufacturers to produce motors of a smaller capacity, yet with the same technical characteristics. They still have to perform the same tasks and correspond to environmental standards. The new motor oil from Castrol is processed in compliance with ecological standards and superior protection against carbon deposition, engine's wear, and oxidation while in service. What's more, Castrol Edge prevents scuffing build-up that leads to engine power loss, thus, your car's engine will run smoothly and flawlessly for a longer period of time. It is important to note that a number of cars roll off the production line with Castrol motor oil in the motor.  

So, if you look for a good quality motor oil compatible with a variety of vehicles regardless of the motor type, you'll find Castrol lubrication oil a great product to regularly buy and use.

Review of Castrol 03101 EDGE 0W-40 Synthetic

Several Tips Before Changing Oil

One of the things you can do to maintain your car properly is to change oil and oil filters on time. If you don't feel like you're up to doing it yourself, don't wait anyway and go visit a car service station. If you've decided to save the ride and change oil in your own garage, here are some crucial steps you need to take. First of all, before draining oil, make sure to drive 5-10 km to warm up the motor and the rest of the oil in it, for if you start to drain cold oil, you'd run a risk of a sludge deposit. A short drive will also shake up the remnants of oil and facilitate draining with no residue left. Warmed oil is naturally easier to drain because it also becomes much more watery.

Castrol 03101 EDGE 0W-40 Synthetic in the use

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OBD II scanner will provide information on your engine condition coming up with the error codes.

Additional Info

    Manufacturer


Castrol 03101 EDGE 0W-40 Synthetic
Castrol 03101 EDGE 0W-40 Synthetic
 
Review of Valvoline 782256 MaxLife 5W-30 High Mileage

Valvoline 782256 MaxLife 5W-30 High Mileage

Valvoline 782256 MaxLife 5W-30 High Mileage

Motor Booster

Engine cycle life directly depends on your driving habits and quality of the motor oil you use. Valvoline MaxLife has been formulated to meet the needs of car owners who've already driven over 75 thousand miles and fight motor's breakdown. This fully synthetic oil features a multi-additive system to protect the engine from sludge and deposits formation. Special seal conditioners in the motor oil's composition restore seals within the engine and prevent leakage. Upon using this oil, you'll also be able to not only get rid of deposits formation but also remove the sludge built up over the years. The other strong point about this peculiar oil is that it just like all other fully synthetic oils shows great endurance and can be used during a prolongated period of time. This makes it the best option for customers who either drive a used car or have already reached quite a high mileage. 

Review of Valvoline 782256 MaxLife 5W-30 High Mileage

Efficiency At All Temperatures

Before you buy motor oil, please, refer to the owner’s manual first to find out which oil type has been specified there as the best suited for your car. Maintaining car properly requires certain care and the oil should be chosen accordingly. Each motor oil has got its own working temperature range within which it works most efficiently and so, if you live in cold or hot areas, you need to keep that in mind. The good news is, there are plenty of brands today that offer a wide temperature range and can be used regardless of weather conditions. Valvoline 782256 is one of them.

Valvoline 782256 MaxLife 5W-30 High Mileage in the use

More Products to Consider

Temperature rises and drops can cause reduction of tire pressure which is very dangerous for driving. In order to secure yourself from possible accidents on the road, it's much better to have a tire pressure gauge at hand and regularly check the tire pressure.

Detailed review of Valvoline 782256 MaxLife 5W-30 High Mileage

Additional Info

    Manufacturer


Valvoline 782256 MaxLife 5W-30 High Mileage
Valvoline 782256 MaxLife 5W-30 High Mileage
 

Sources:

1. Paul Weissler and Timothy Dahl, How To Pick The Right Motor Oil For Your Car, Popular Mechanics. June 13, 2016.

2. Eric BaxterHow to Choose the Right Oil for Your Car or Truck, HowStuffWorks.

3. Deanna SclarHow to choose the right motor oil, Dummies.

4. Brendan How to Choose the Best Motor Oil for Your Vehicle,  The Allstate Blog. April 2, 2015.

5. How to Choose the Right Engine Oil, Machinery Lubrication.

6. Jonathan Maxwell Best Motor Oils, Thoroughly Reviewed.

7. Ed Grabianowski The Best Motor Oil for the Average CarThe Wirecutter. May 6, 2013.

8. Motor oil, Wikipedia. October 28, 2016.

9. How to Change the Oil in Your Car, wikiHow