Synthetic vs. Reg Oil ?? - 2004 to 2014 Mazda 3 Forum and Mazdaspeed 3 Forums
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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 12-21-2011, 10:37 PM Thread Starter
misterg
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Synthetic vs. Reg Oil ??

Hi All, I'm new at this. I have a new 2011 Mazda3 Touring 4dr5sp manual. Got my first oil change at 3268 miles. I noticed that the dealer used Synthetic Oil. Should I continue to use synthetic oil or can I use reg. oil as long as it is to same grade (0w20)??
Thanks in advance for any help. Misterg
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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 12-21-2011, 11:14 PM
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You should read your manual and check to see if your car requires full syn. If it doesn't, it is pretty much a waste of money to go full syn. It also depends on how often you change your oil. The manual says every 7500 miles but I change it every 4 to 5k. I use reg oil and every time I get it changed, the service guys always say the oil still looks good. I think if I went with full syn, I would go the entire 7500 miles which would probably mitigate the cost savings by using reg oil every 5k.
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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 12-21-2011, 11:43 PM
Adam3s
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Sorry Homer, but I disagree. Synthetic really isn't more expensive to run because you can go 2 or 3X longer than with conventional oil before changing. It could actually end up saving money to run syn oil. Factory fill is Kendall synthetic blend, at least in mine it was. Recommended oil change interval for the syn-blend is 7,500 under "normal" driving conditions. I switched to full syn a long time ago and change the oil every 10,000. I have 123,000 miles on the car now, still runs like new and I hit 30-40 autocross events with it a year. If I were running conventional oil I'd change it every 3-5,000 miles. Conventional oil is more temp sensitive than syn oil and thickens up more when it's cold and thins out more when it gets hot. It's not able to maintain it's viscosity as well as syn oil. That means when it's 10 degrees out it takes longer for the oil to reach critical parts of the engine when you start it and when it's 95 degrees out it doesn't protect as well and breaks down. Just makes more sense to use full syn especially if you drive in more extreme conditions. If I was the OP, I'd go to Wally World, buy a 5 qt jug of Mobil 1 full syn for $25, and change the oil himself every 10,000 miles.

Last edited by Adam3s; 12-22-2011 at 12:03 AM.
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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 12-22-2011, 01:16 AM
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Adam, I think you should re-read my post that stated that the cost savings could be mitigated by the frequency of oil changes between reg and full syn. So we actually "agree" on this.

I applaud your car hitting 123k miles, but it is not really "proof" that full syn is "better". I had a 81 Datsun, 230k miles. Never gave me one problem. Conventional oil used. Actually treated that car like crap and it still ran strong. Which is probably why when it came time to by a new car, I went with Nissan.

In any case, the OP cannot go wrong with either option as long as he uses oil that meets the guidelines set within the manual.
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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 12-22-2011, 01:27 AM
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2010+ Mazda 3's (except MazdaSpeed3) use synthetic oil, and it is Mazda's recommended oil type. Why question what a company puts hundreds of millions (if not billions) of dollars of research behind?
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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 12-22-2011, 01:39 AM
Adam3s
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Homer,ok, I gotcha. I reread your post. I guess I got caught up on the part where you said syn oil is a waste if the manufacture doesn't recommend it. I know engines can go long and far on conventional oil, but the benefits of syn oil are well documented and proven especially if you subject the car to harsh climates and/or driving conditions.
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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 12-22-2011, 02:50 AM
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0W20 can only be synthetic or a synthetic blend. It's impossible to make 0W20 with straight conventional oil.
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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 12-22-2011, 12:21 PM
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NEVER MIX OIL!!! never mix full syn with reg oil...vise vera...

i just changed my MZ3 at 3600 miles with Full Syn Castrol 5w30. I notice that it runs smoother and the chattering in the engine decrease.

this my my opinion but if u want to keep ur car for a while i recommend you run full syn. The whole thing about 7500k...me personally, I would never keep the same oil in a car for 7500k miles full syn or not. Me and my dad always ran full syn in our cars and changed it from 3 to 4 k miles. MOST ever is 5k miles. And our cars last 10 + years. 1998 Accord and 2002 Trailblazer. Full Syn oil change if u do it urself can range from $22 to $30 with an oil filter. there is always sales a auto zone or advance auto parts. about $25 every 3 months for your car ever 3 months a waste of money?? NOT at ALL! AND dont be cheap on the oil filter as well ; ) This is only my personally opnion so please dont bash me on how im wasting my $ and all lol

And about grades or number of the oil. If you live somewhere like FL like i do, or somewhere other than NY or any place that gets REAL cold, u can use any grade of oil from 0w-20 to 10w-40. But if u do live some where that does get COLD, especailly during that time of season, its best to use 0w-20 or even 0w-30 but more than 5w. I live in FL so i went with the middle and chose 5w-30 but in the future imma use different ones to see first hand the difference.
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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 12-22-2011, 12:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kevtran25 View Post
NEVER MIX OIL!!! never mix full syn with reg oil...vise vera...
Actually there is nothing wrong with mixing oil. Mixing full syn with reg oil poses no problems as long as they are the same grade. If this was something that is truly bad to do, every bottle Synthetic Blend oil on the market is hurting people's cars.
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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 12-22-2011, 12:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Adam3s View Post
Homer,ok, I gotcha. I reread your post. I guess I got caught up on the part where you said syn oil is a waste if the manufacture doesn't recommend it. I know engines can go long and far on conventional oil, but the benefits of syn oil are well documented and proven especially if you subject the car to harsh climates and/or driving conditions.
I agree that there are many benefits to full syn versus reg oil. Since I live in California where the temp never drops below the mid 30's, I don't receive that specific benefit from full syn. Sludge would be my main concern using reg oil. But since I change the oil long before the recommended interval, sludge doesn't really have time to build up. And my driving style (as I got older) has really tamed down. I haven't done the autoxing thing is a very long time. Actually thought about taking the Mazda3 out there because it handles so well. Being smaller, lighter, and front wheel drive...I believe the Mazda3 can outperform my Corvette in autoxing.

FYI, Corvette uses nothing but full syn.
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