JULY 17, 2015
Learn the Difference Between Synthetic and Conventional Motor Oils, and How Pennzoil® Synthetics Provide Complete Protection in Five Vital Areas.

There are two types of people in this world: those that use conventional motor oil and those that use synthetic motor oil. If you’re using conventional motor oil, then you have a lot to learn from this article about the benefits that come from using Pennzoil® Synthetic motor oils.

Our engineer Shanna breaks it down for you in easy to understand terminology throughout some short videos. Or if reading is more of your thing, we’ve got all the details below.


Pistons are one of the most important parts of your engine. Their movement powers the crankshaft, which powers the transmission and drivetrain. Pistons can also be one of the most difficult engine parts to keep clean. Since they come into contact with extreme high temperatures and bi-products of combustion, it’s imperative for the piston to remain clean in order to provide the best performance possible for your engine, which is essentially the heart of your vehicle.


To obtain maximum fuel economy, engine parts need to operate efficiently, especially in today’s modern turbocharged engines. Many engine components, such as variable valve timing and turbocharger shafts, are sensitive to the build-up of carbon deposits. Pennzoil® Synthetics help provide better fuel economy by helping to keep your engine clean. Lower viscosity motor oils are also associated with better fuel economy, so you will start to see more new vehicles that require low viscosity synthetic motor oils.


Horsepower is the measured power output of the engine, which is based on the mechanical aspects of the engine. Because of this, we technically can’t claim that our motor oil improves horsepower; however, we can claim to help keep your engine parts operating at peak performance by reducing friction and keeping them cool and protected. That’s why many of today’s top automotive manufacturers and motorsport teams like Team PenskeFerrari North America and Hennessey Performance Engineering depend on Pennzoil® Synthetic motor oils to protect the massive amounts of horsepower produced by their vehicles.


The right motor oil can help protect your engine from wear. High pressure points, like between the camshaft lobe and its follower, can reach over 200,000 pounds per square inch of pressure! The advanced anti-wear additives in Pennzoil® Synthetics, like ZDDP or “zinc,” form a protective layer that is thinner than a strand of human hair, yet able to absorb impact at high pressure points inside your engine.


Extreme temperatures, whether hot or cold, can directly impact the performance of your motor oil. Pennzoil® Synthetics rely on Technology, a process that creates base oil from natural gas instead of crude oil. Base oil won’t “gel” in extreme low temperatures, and it won’t evaporate or break down when facing extreme high temperatures, either. The oxidation stability of Pennzoil® Synthetics also make them ideal for today’s direct injection and turbocharged engines that burn hotter.


Many people wonder about the benefits that come from using synthetic motor oil, especially since they notice the price tag is slightly higher than conventional motor oil. It all comes down to science and innovation. Base oil makes up nearly 80% of a motor oil formulation, and additives make up the remaining nearly 20%. The chemically engineered molecules in synthetic base oil have more uniform properties, while the molecules found in conventional base oil differ in shape and levels of impurity. Did you know that 70% of new cars today use synthetic motor oil to help maintain performance? Pennzoil® Synthetics take synthetic motor oil to the next level of performance because they use base oil made with natural gas, which is purer than base oil made from crude oil. With the help of this revolutionary gas-to-liquid technology, an engine can experience the five levels of complete protection. 

Hopefully this article and video series have helped you learn the benefits of using synthetic motor oil over conventional oil and answered questions you may have had about why synthetic motor oils are the best choice for your vehicle. Contrary to some motor oil myths, you can actually switch back and forth between conventional oil and synthetic oil, so don’t let that stop you from trying Pennzoil® Synthetics! We’re confident that once you’ve made the switch to Pennzoil® Synthetics, you won’t go back to your old ways.

Of course, if you ever have other questions, we’re always here to answer! Send us your questions on FacebookTwitter, or Instagram.

1HIS Auto/ Polk NVPP, Jan ‘15.