The Benefits of Synthetic Motor Oil for Your Fleet

Synthetic motor oils can provide a variety of benefits that help keep your fleet’s engines running at optimal performance for years to come.

To understand synthetic motor oils, let’s first look at the origins of all motor oils.

Conventional Oils

Conventional oils come from crude oil that is pumped from the ground. Crude oil is made up of a complex mixture of molecules that form chains and rings of different sizes and shapes. Long chains of carbon atoms produce a thick, viscous fluid that flows slowly. Shorter chains produce fluid that flows more readily.

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In an oil refinery, crude oil is separated into various fractions. These become the basis for lubricating oils and fuels. Thick tangled masses of carbon chains become asphaltic materials used in roofing tar and road work. Very short chains and ring compounds of carbon are volatile and can be refined to produce gasoline and other products.

While petroleum refining is an advanced science, small amounts of contaminants, such as sulfur and reactive hydrocarbons, cannot be completely removed from petroleum, and may end up in motor oil base stocks.

Synthetic Oils

All motor oils are made up of base oils and additives. In general, fully synthetic motor oils contain non-conventional, high-performance fluids. Synthetic blends usually use some non-conventional, high-performance fluids in combination with conventional oil.

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In 1974, Mobil 1® was introduced as one of the first fully synthetic motor oils. SuperSyn Technology made the news in 2002 with its ability to provide protection under the most extreme uses. In 2005, Mobil 1 was joined by Mobil 1 Extended Performance, which is designed for today’s longer service intervals.

Both Mobil and Mobil 1 Extended Performance are fully synthetic motor oils for automotive engines. They are made from a combination of advanced, high-performance fluids, including polyalphaolefins (PAOs), plus a unique proprietary package of additives. Mobil 1, employing SuperSyn technology, and Mobil 1 Extended Performance, with its Advanced SuperSyn System, offer significant advantages over conventional motor oils, such as:


  • Provides outstanding protection
  • Minimizes oil degradation


  • Faster lubrication at start-up in low temperatures
  • Excellent protection at high temperatures
  • Exceptional resistance to thermal breakdown

Engine Cleanliness

  • Provides outstanding protection against harmful deposits
  • Cleaner running engines

Engine Efficiency

  • Greater resistance to oil oxidation (thickening), which can reduce engine drag
  • Lower oil consumption under high-speed conditions
  • More efficient engine operation over a wider temperature range

Mobil 1 formulation is available in seven viscosity grades. Additionally, there's Mobil 1 High Mileage 10W-30 and 10W-40 designed for higher mileage vehicles where conventional oil has typically been used.

Here are some of the more common myths regarding the benefits of synthetic motor oils:

Myth: You should break in your engine with conventional oil, then switch to a synthetic oil.

Reality: You can start using synthetic oil in new vehicles at any time, even in brand new vehicles. Mobil 1, for example, is original equipment installed at the factory in a wide selection of vehicles. Current engine manufacturing technology does not require this break-in period. As indicated by the decisions of the engineers who design many high-performance cars, synthetic oil can be used the day you drive the car off the showroom floor.

Myth: Using synthetic oil will void the warranty on a vehicle.

Reality: Synthetic oil will not void new car warranties, with the exception of the Mazda rotary engine (Mazda does not recommend any synthetic motor oil). If in doubt, always check your vehicle owner's manual or contact your vehicle's manufacturer.

Myth: I need to flush my engine before switching to synthetic oil.

Reality: No special preparation is necessary when switching from conventional motor oil to synthetic oil.

Myth: Synthetic motor oils require a special oil filter.

Reality: While it is generally recommended that you use a high-quality filter, you can use the same type of oil filter that you would use with conventional oil.

Myth: Synthetic oil will leak out of the seals of older cars.

Reality: Synthetic oil does not cause leaks. It is fully compatible with the elastomeric materials from which all automotive seals and gaskets are made. If an older engine is in good condition and does not have oil leaks, synthetic oil provides the same advantages as when used in a new engine. You should always take measures to repair leaks, and follow the automobile manufacturer's manual for the proper oil to use.

Calculate your fuel savings potential by switching to Mobil 10W-30 Advanced Fuel Economy. See how you can save while reaping the engine protection benefits of Mobil 1. See the calculator here under the "Save with Mobil 1 Advanced Fuel Economy" section.