How Are Synthetic And Mineral Oils Different?

Engine oils are one of the essential fluids for a motor vehicle. They are formulated with base oils & chemical additives. They lubricate the mechanical components and reduce friction between them. It also acts as a coolant and keeps the engine from overheating.

If you love your car and bike and enjoy taking them on the streets regularly, you must read this article. As a passionate owner, you need to know what it takes to keep your motorbike, car, or vehicle in particular, healthy.

An individual who owns a vehicle may use either engine oil type: Mineral Oil & Synthetic Oil. Continue reading to find out how they are different.

Mineral Oils

What is Mineral Oil?

The Making of Mineral Oils

Mineral oil begins its life as crude oil, which is then refined to produce what is known as mineral oil. They are moderately refined and still contain some impurities from the refining process. This makes mineral oils thicker than synthetic ones. However, they still manage to protect the engine from wear, friction, scratches, and more.

Mineral oils are generally used in vehicles with older engines that utilize older technologies. Using synthetic engine oil in such types of vehicles may result in leaks as they are more viscous (less thick) than mineral oils.

Molecular Composition

Molecular Composition

Mineral oils consist of irregular molecular structures, making them less performant than synthetic oils. They are chemically unstable and offer low viscosity at high temperatures. Hence, they are more easily carbonized introducing sludge. As a result, mineral oils need to be changed around every 3000km.

Good performance


  • Low prices - Due to their availability, the prices of mineral oils are low
  • Availability - Mineral oils are easily available everywhere because they require less engineering effort
  • Good performance - Offers reliable performance for the basic needs of a vehicle.
  • Preferred usability - Mineral oils are preferably best at driving in urban areas, at about a fixed speed.
Reduced viscosity at high temperatures


  • Needs to be changed frequently
  • Not effective at very hot temperatures as well as very cold temperatures
  • Reduced viscosity at high temperatures
  • Prone to carbonization, causing sludge to produce
  • No beneficial additives are added to improve performance
  • May sometimes cause corrosion of engine parts
Synthetic Oil

What is Synthetic Oil?

Engineered for High Performance

Synthetic engine oils are engineered on a molecular level with chemical additives that provide the highest protection for vehicle engines. They are highly refined and thus, contain fewer impurities. Synthetic oils are best used for modern vehicles with the latest technologies. Additionally, they are also known as the Ultimate Engine Oil.

They have the properties to offer great protection from wear, corrosion, scratches as well as oxidation. They also manage to perform well under extreme temperatures, keeping your engine and your ride healthy throughout the journey.

Molecular Composition

Synthetic oils are formed of equal layers of molecules that give a consistent molecular structure. They are less thick, meaning more viscosity for proper lubrication of engine components. Due to their design, they reduce sludge deposits, significantly reducing the need for periodic change.

Performs well in both cold & warm temperatures


  • Reliable performance - Performs well in both cold & warm temperatures.
  • Highly refined - The refining process of synthetic oil removes maximum impurities.
  • Reduced sludge deposit - Reduced carbonization in the molecules means less sludge formation.
  • Lasts longer - Offers higher durability compared to mineral oils.
  • Extended engine oil life - Does not need to be replaced frequently like mineral oils.
  • Preferred usability - Better suited for driving at high speeds for long distances.
More expensive than mineral oils


  • Generally produce more heat than mineral oils
  • More expensive than mineral oils
  • Lower availability at hand
  • Many people are still not aware of synthetic oils

Which Engine Oil to Choose?

The information mentioned above is only for educational purposes and to pass valuable knowledge to those who are interested. However, when choosing the right engine oil for your vehicle it is best to follow the manufacturer's recommendations. It might also be useful to keep an eye out for SAE values like 5w20, 5w40, 10w50, 0w20, etc. Sigma Oil hopes you can make a wiser decision when choosing engine oils in the near future.