Oil - Can I change from regular to synthetic

The friendliest place on the web for anyone with an RV or an interest in RVing!
If you have answers, please help by responding to the unanswered posts.

discus277

Well-known member
Joined
May 6, 2013
Posts
69
I am looking at a 2003 Allegro with 32,000 miles. My first long trip would be to Alaska this summer.

Can I switch to synthetic oil and thus go longer between changes? If so, what do I have to do.....someone said something about flushing out the crankcase some way before you put in the synthetic??

Would appreciate your thoughts?

Thanks,

Jim
 
Changing from regular to synthetic does not change the oil change interval according to engine manufacturers. The advantage of synthetic is less friction, better lubricity characteristics under high temperature conditions and under cold start conditions. You really shouldn't have to do anything to make the switch but I would check your owners manual before extending oil change intervals.
 
I have a late model Toyota SUV. It came synthetic anda  suggested change interval of 10,000 miles....my assumption was that you could go much longer with synthetic because of some of the reasons you mentioned and the the oil does not break down as fast ....so I thought if I used synthetic I might be able to extend the period between changes....seems logical to me but maybe it isn't?

Jim
 
I use synthetic in everything I own.  My Toyota Prius has 135,000 on it and it gets changed every 10,000 miles using Mobil 1 15,000. Does not use any oil between changes.  Toyota recommends synthetic.  My 2500 Chevy was previously owned by a Chevy service manager and he always uses and recommends synthetic.  It is not supposed to break down like normal oil so you can extend oil services.  I guess I have no scientific data that shows synthetic better than oil, but  will keep using it
 
I use mobile 1 in almost everything I own, once You switch it over to synthetic dont switch back. There isn't  anthing special to doing it just change oil and filter.
 
Extending oil change intervals beyond engine manufacturer recommendations is a much-debated subject and I doubt if anything said here will change another's opinion on it!

The problem with extending oil change intervals is that the engine manufacturer has no way of knowing when and if your oil gets contaminated. Modern oils, whether dino or synthetic, generally don't wear out during the recommended interval, but the recommended time period is fairly conservative because it has to cover a broad range of operating environments.

Newer engines generally have a longer change interval, reflecting better engine design and manufacturing as well as improved oils. This is not tied to the use of synthetic. My 2007 GMC tells me when it is time to change, based on how I have actually been driving it. Typically I'll get an "change oil soon" warning message somewhere around 12,000-14,000 miles.

Personally, I would choose synthetic based on its other merits but not extending the oil change interval. Besides, if you pay 2x-3x more for the oil to get that extension, what have you gained?

Is the Allegro a diesel or gas? The diesel change interval in motorhome usage is probably 15k miles any. However, it probably also specifies a one year change interval, again because of the contamination possibility. Diesel engine manufacturers accept regular oil analysis as justification for extending the interval, but not the use of a particular type or brand of oil.
 
Jim,
Toyota may allow a longer interval but again check your owners manual for oil change intervals. Also remember that your motorhome operates in most cases under severe conditions especially if you are operating in mountainous areas. I use synthetic in my daily drivers  but I still change at the interval recommended by the manufacturer even though my vehicle is now out of warranty. My Jeep times out rather than going the mileage interval. A lot of the newer vehicles are coming with synthetic from the factory. Oil wheter regular or synthetic does not wear out but the pollutants entering the oil from regular combustion and cooling down form acids that cause damage to bearings and other friction surfaces thereby shortening engine life.

You are the owner and can better determine what you want to do, just read the owners manual to help assist you in doing the right thing.... :)
 
You asked about any issues with making the change from regular to synthetic and there should be none.  I did this a few years ago and my mechanic assured me that I did not have to flush, etc.  They are compatible enough to get along together.  I have since changed everything I can to synthetic and am happy.  No way to know what the performance would have been if I hadn't changed but it is certainly fine now.
 
I have found the better I take care of my motorhome and car's the better they take care of me. I am not one who wants to extend anything, I change all oil's filters just about every chance I get and just prior to or after a nice long trip. I am always thinking of the service most people over look. IE fuel filter, transmission oil and filter, air filter......
 
I switch all my vehicles to sytnetic oil.  Never had a porblem.  Even if you switch grades there is no issue.  You just need to make sure you drain all of it.  My Diesle went from 15W40 Dino to 5W40 Synthetic, the Jeep, Durango and MH went from 5W20 Dino to 5W20 Synthetic.  As posted on another thread when I went to the Synthetic in the MH my MPG went up slightly from 7 to 10.  Now I also put a new air filter in and bumped the tire pressure to 105 psi per tire from 95.
 
Can I switch to synthetic oil and thus go longer between changes? If so, what do I have to do.....someone said something about flushing out the crankcase some way before you put in the synthetic??

To get the full benefit of synthetic oil, which is why you're changing in the first place, get a complete oil change.  Drain out the old oil and replace it with synthetic.

ArdraF
 
discus277 said:
I am looking at a 2003 Allegro with 32,000 miles. My first long trip would be to Alaska this summer.

Can I switch to synthetic oil and thus go longer between changes? If so, what do I have to do.....someone said something about flushing out the crankcase some way before you put in the synthetic??

Would appreciate your thoughts?

Thanks,

Jim

So you're out of warranty, no worries about what they think. You want to change oil to synthetic in order to avoid an oil change while on the trip? I would not make that an issue. Folks in Alaska change oil just like everywhere else so other than a little more money due to shipping costs, there should be no problem finding someone to do it. I'd take my favorite brand of filter(s) with me as a backup.

You've seen a variety of reasons for changing to synthetic, increased mileage, longevity of the engine, etc. The question is do these benefits outweigh the extra cost? Only you can decide as there is no cut and dried answer that fits everyone. If you believe that driving 3-8 hours a day is more severe service than starting the engine to drive 4 miles to the market and back twice a week, then you'll have one answer. If you believe that you will drive the engine more than 200,000 miles or so which is an easily reached mileage with dino oil, you'll have an answer. If you believe that your engine will rotate better, start more easily or whatever else with synthetic rather than the dino oil that the manufacturers engineers say to use, then you'll have an answer. If you believe that carbon and other contaminants build up cumulatively and that changing and having fresh factory filtered oil more often is good then you'll have an answer. Only you can decide which is the right answer for you, as there is no cut and dried answer that fits everyone.

I don't classify my MH use as severe. I don't drive dusty roads often. A hundred yard gravel driveway to a trailer park is as off road as it gets. I don't drive short distances or do stop and go driving. At 30 minutes minimum from one park to another, and most of the time at least an hour or more per "start" I don't believe I'm getting much water buildup in my crankcase. I don't overwork my engine. At 40,000 pounds or less I'm at half the weight that the same engine is used for in OTR trucks. In my estimation my engine has a very normal working life.

For me dino oil is just fine. I've been using it all my life, I'm comfortable with it. I also use synthetic oil in those engines I own that the manufacturer recommends it. I'm comfortable with that. If synthetic were the same price, I'd probably use it in everything. But, since there is a significant price difference, I'll opt for dino in those engines designed for it.

Ken
 
Like someone mentioned above its not that the oil breaks down, its all the crap the oil collect.  Burnt gas and other pollutants collect in the oil just as quickly in a $1.99 bottle of kmarts special or a $20 qt of royal purple. 

My opinion on the 10-15k mile changes is many auto companies offer FREE maintenance for the first few years including oil changes.  So stretching the intervals to 15k miles and often times longer saves them a bunch of money.  However also look at how many cars have sludge issues which is 100% attributed to infrequent oil changes.  My brothers 9-3 aero had its first oil change at almost 18k miles...... If it was me I would of been on my 3rd or 4th oil change.....

I use synthetic in my cars for 20 years now and due to being turbocharged its a necessity in my book.  With my older car 88 SPG I used mobil 1 due to it being cheap $24 for a jug and would change the oil every 2,000-3,000 miles or after every track weekend.  Ran 30+ psi of boost :).

My daily driver I change at 5k miles also with mobil 1 due to a cheap synthetic.    132k miles and 10+ track days


  In the rv I also will not go over 5k miles on a change.  Being a gas engine I obviously do not have to deal with turbo heat but its still working under almost constant load and oil changes are cheap insurance.  Every spring I put new oil in it

A friend who is a mechanic had to rebuild a 07 wrangler unlimited v6 two weeks ago due poor maintenance.  Owner did 10k mile oil changes........ He tells tells me dyno or synthetic doesnt matter.... 3k miles but I stretch to 5

Another excellent option for those that do want to go longer is amsoil's remote oil filter thingy.  I forget the particulars but it adds a external oil filter or two and you can go 20k miles plus on a oil change.  However every 5k miles or so you swap the oil filter which pulls out the contaminants.  I know a few people who have done this on their cars, some with 30k miles w/o doing a oil change.  They send their oil in for a analysis and its still checking out ok so they keep driving.




 
"In the rv I also will not go over 5k miles on a change.  Being a gas engine I obviously do not have to deal with turbo heat but its still working under almost constant load and oil changes are cheap insurance.  Every spring I put new oil in it "

Can you clarify this statement? Are you a snowbirder using the rig all winter and then put new oil in it to sit all summer? Which is what I do. Or do you let the dirty acid filled oil sit in the engine all winter and then give it new oil in the spring when you start using it again? It looks backwards to what most people do.

Ken


 
kenb1023 said:
As posted on another thread when I went to the Synthetic in the MH my MPG went up slightly from 7 to 10.

I sure would not call that a slight increase, it is almost a 43% increase. That is amazing! Since car manufacturers are trying everything possible to increase average mileage, I wonder why they do not use synthetic in all of their vehicles??

R
 
Gary RV Roamer said:
Personally, I would choose synthetic based on its other merits but not extending the oil change interval. Besides, if you pay 2x-3x more for the oil to get that extension, what have you gained?

I love this debate. I have synthetic in everything. Both our daily drivers have over 170,000 on them. BUT, the main reason for me to switch was....laziness. Yes, that's right. Since I change it myself I have to do it less often with synthetic, so I'm all in, that is the gain, the upside. I split the difference and go 8,000 between changes.
I usually wait until there's a 5 gallon and filter deal on Castrol or Mobile 1. Usually about $35. That's not a whole lot more than dino.
 
There are 3 answers to can  you change:

1: Yes, no problem
2: Not really, Many synthetic are not synthetic at all.  They are just very highly refined,, There are still a couple of genuine "Grew it in a lab" Synthetics however
3: At one time.. ONE brand, the answer was no.. I do not know how old you are but many of our members were not yet born when that brand was ... modified.  So today you won't find any of that type around.  Moist of the "Dire warnings" you hear, date back to that brand.. The brand is still around, but the formula has changed.
 
RLSharp said:
I sure would not call that a slight increase, it is almost a 43% increase. That is amazing! Since car manufacturers are trying everything possible to increase average mileage, I wonder why they do not use synthetic in all of their vehicles??

R
That may be why more and more manufacturers are shipping with synthetic oil.
Bill
 
discus277 said:
I am looking at a 2003 Allegro with 32,000 miles. My first long trip would be to Alaska this summer.

Can I switch to synthetic oil and thus go longer between changes? If so, what do I have to do.....someone said something about flushing out the crankcase some way before you put in the synthetic??

Would appreciate your thoughts?

Thanks,

Jim

Jim,
?I am looking at a 2003 Allegro with 32,000 miles. My first long trip would be to Alaska this summer.?
Diesel or gas? Actually it doesn?t matter that much. You don?t have any information as to where you are or details on your coach. It would be a good thing to enter them in your sig or profile as it makes answering correctly easier. I checked the mileage from my place in Fort Worth Texas to Anchorage AK and it would be 8144 miles round trip. That?s with out any side trips but just for a reference number. I don?t think going that far or even 10,000 miles would be that big of a deal. Me if I had a gas engine might do an oil change at 5000 miles even using Mobil 1. I have a diesel and change at 15,000 per the Cummins guideline. You could take the oil and filters with you and do your own oil change if you felt it was necessary.
?Someone said something about flushing out the crankcase some way before you put in the synthetic???
No you don? t have to flush anything just do a regular oil change. I recommend doing the first oil change a little sooner on the first change because oils like Mobil 1 have special additive packages that clean the existing sludge and deposits from inside your engine. After that I can go on a gas engine to about 5000-7000 miles. Despite what some people say I don?t extend my oil changes past factory recommended intervals.
Some one said you can go to synthetic oil?s but you can?t go back. Well yes you can and if you have to you can add regular oil to synthetic or vise versa. You obviously degrade the synthetic oils but you can do it.
Bill



 

Latest posts

Members online

Forum statistics

Threads
131,928
Posts
1,387,654
Members
137,677
Latest member
automedicmobile
Back
Top Bottom