Do All Engine Oils Have Additives?

We still get a few comments that engine oils don't need additives. I wanted to try and explain in greater detail what's in engine oil. The truth is all engine oils use a complex mixture of additives depending on what they are trying to accomplish and at what price target. 

All engine oils start with a base oil. Typically, the ratio is somewhere around 90% base oil with at least 10% - 30% of the volume with additives. The less expensive the oil usually means they use fewer additives or lower quality additives. 

These include the following general types of additives:
  • Anti-oxidants. Oxidation is the general attack of the weakest components of the base oil by oxygen in the air.
  • Rust and Corrosion Inhibitors.
  • Viscosity Index Improvers.
  • Anti-wear Agents such as what we have in the BestLine Racing engine treatment that includes the Diamond Nano-lubricants.
  • Extreme Pressure (EP) Additives. 
  • Detergents.
  • Dispersants.
  • Anti-foaming Agents.

There are three types of base oils: mineral, vegetable, and synthetic. Mineral oil comes from crude oil and the quality depends on the refining process. Synthetic oils are man-made fluids and can be beneficial for use in extreme conditions.

When does the engine oil need to be replaced? 

If you're a trucker or race car owner you know about engine oil analysis and why we use them. Engine oil analysis will give you a full report of what metals or other solids are in your oil along with the TBN, Total Base Number of the oil. How acidic your oil becomes tells you when to change the oil. 

Additives age or oxidize and lose their effectiveness when the oil gets acidic. How does oil get acidic? The heat, pressure, blowby, and moisture will cause the oil to become acidic and therefore reduces the effectiveness of the additives that are in all engine oils.  Along with the anti-wear agents and the diamond nano-lubricant, we add antacids to the mixture to extend the oil life and the performance of the oil in general.  

I hope this answers some of your questions about additives in all engine oil. 

Please feel free to comment or ask questions. I will do my best to answer them as quickly as possible. 

Thank you for your continued support. 

Perry Anderson, CEO

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