What Happens If You Put Wrong Oil In Car?

Your car needs motor oil to function properly. Your engine needs the proper kind of oil to keep it running smoothly, just as your heart needs adequate blood flow to function properly. What happens if you put the wrong oil in your car? is then raised as a result.

From the entry-level conventional types of motor oil to the premium synthetic varieties, The performance of your car may be impacted and the warranty may be voided if you use the incorrect oil or switch from a higher grade to a lower grade of oil. If you switch from regular oil to synthetic oil, on the other hand, you will notice the opposite: a smoother ride and a better-running engine.

CarMats will explain some ideas to you as well as what will happen to your car if you use the incorrect oil in the article below.

What Is Motor Oil? 

According to Pennzoil, “Motor oil was historically just a mixture of base oil and additives used to clean, cool, and protect the engine, reduce friction, and lubricate engine parts.” Petroleum, also known as base oil, is a naturally occurring fossil fuel that is taken out of rock pockets beneath the earth’s surface.

This substance is necessary to make sure that your car runs properly, though. In addition to the basic functions, it is “responsible for engine wear protection, engine performance enhancement, and complete protection of all moving parts.”

There are four primary categories of oil, though. The one you require is greatly influenced by a number of variables. These include the kind of car you drive, the environment you live in, how often you drive, and your overall mileage. You run the risk of your car performing poorly or even not functioning at all if you don’t pick the right one.

Types Of Motor Oil

Conventional Motor Oil

The most popular kind of motor oil is this one. It is easy and reasonably priced. However, it works best for recent models of cars that don’t travel far each year. Additionally, it is best to use this choice if your engine design is simple.

Synthetic Motor Oil

On the other hand, synthetic oil is a premium choice that works best in high-performance vehicles. While a Ferrari or Lamborghini may come to mind right away, this also applies to anyone who is pulling or hauling heavy loads of cargo.

Additionally, this product functions better in both hot and cold temperatures. This is a result of the higher viscosity’s thinner consistency. In fact, thin oils reduce friction in cold weather and speed up engine starting, according to the Universal Technical Institute.

Thick oils support heavier loads and maintain oil pressure and film strength at higher temperatures. This makes it the perfect product for people who live in hot climates like Nevada, Texas, or California, or in cold climates like Wisconsin or Michigan.

Also, synthetic motor oil is made chemically to keep a higher viscosity, keep the engine from dragging, and keep oil sludge from building up.

What does this all mean?

You can first wait longer between oil changes. You will then increase your fuel efficiency. The engine will also be better lubricated, which will improve performance.

Synthetic Blend Motor Oil

The ideal blend between conventional and synthetic motor oils is the synthetic blend. In the end, this makes for a cheaper product that still protects the engine better than the standard model.

Also, both fully synthetic and synthetic blends reduce oxidation, which can hurt the quality of oil, and they work well in harsh climates.

Additionally, this is the ideal tool to aid in the changeover from conventional to synthetic oil in your car. This is so because the base oils in this motor oil are a mix of synthetic and conventional oil base oils.

High-Mileage Motor Oil

The high-mileage motor oil is the last option and, as its name suggests, is designed for vehicles with high mileage. This is the best oil for your engine if your car has more than 75,000 miles on it, regardless of how old or new it is.

It is specifically designed to aid in reducing oil burn-off and consumption. Furthermore, this type of oil reduces the risk of smoke and exhaust while driving the vehicle.

What Happens If You Put The Wrong Oil In Your Car?

It is simpler to understand what will happen if you accidentally put the wrong kind of oil in your car now that you are aware of the distinctions between these oil types.

It won’t do any harm to those who initially used conventional oil to add oil of a higher quality. Your car’s performance will actually be enhanced by it.

However, you will notice changes if you switch from a full or blended synthetic oil to conventional oil. The same is true for high-mileage oils. These might include decreased engine performance and decreased gas mileage.

It will also hasten the wear and tear on your engine. The engine of your car will age more quickly as a result of this, but it won’t have any immediate effects that prevent the car from operating. This is important to keep in mind.

Additionally, if you change your oil below what your manufacturer recommends, the warranty on your car might be voided. Before quickly switching to save a few dollars, this is a crucial factor to take into account.

And finally, despite what many people think, using the incorrect oil in your car won’t result in oil leaks. However, if you apply thinner oil, you are more likely to spot the problem if you do have a leak in your car.

Considerations When Using Motor Oil

Your car’s performance is influenced by a wide range of variables. Before choosing your motor oil, you should take into account the following factors:


In Florida or South Carolina, your car might run just fine. These are areas where the seasonal temperature variation is minimal. But if you relocate to Montana, things are different.

Therefore, switching to a higher-quality oil may be in your best interest. Your car will be better prepared to start during the chilly winter months thanks to this.

You should also be more aware of the grade of your motor oil if you live in these climates.

Why does this matter?

You will see a series of numbers on a motor oil bottle with the letter “W” in between them (which stands for Winter). These signify the oil’s ability to withstand both hot and cold temperatures.

5W-40, 5W-30, 10W-30, 10W-40, 15W-40, and 20W-50 of motor oil are the most widely used. The viscosity at cold temperatures is indicated by the first number after the ‘W’. In cold climates, as was already mentioned, you want the oil to be thin.

So, in order to achieve the best results, you seek the smallest number. The second number, on the other hand, describes how the oil behaves at warm temperatures. The weight increases with the size of the number. The oil will be thicker as a result, making it better suited to the warmer weather.

Car Age And Mileage

It’s possible that conventional oil has been reliable for the past few years. However, it is best to switch to high-mileage motor oil once your car reaches a certain mileage. This will fit your outdated engine. This is a wise purchase that will increase the lifespan of your car.

Manufacturer Recommendations

Last but not least, you should never use an oil grade lower than the one the manufacturer suggests. They offer this advice because the vehicle is made to run on a particular kind of fuel.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need a specific oil filter when using synthetic versus regular oil?

No! Any filter can be used with any kind of motor oil. The phrase “synthetic oil filter” on the box does not at all refer to the oil itself. Actually, it indicates that synthetic fibers were used to create the filter. These will improve the performance of your car by more capably capturing contaminants.

Synthetic oil, however, contains fewer impurities. As a result, your vehicle won’t gain much from this filter. On the other hand, if you’re using regular oil, this might be a wise and less expensive investment to help your car perform better.

Can you mix different motor oils?

You can combine various motor oils. However, if a higher-quality product is needed, the car’s performance could suffer. Your engine will deteriorate as a result over time.


The experts at CarCare claim that a typical passenger car should last 200,000 miles or more.

Only if you take good care of your car will this happen. This means taking care of your car on a regular basis, getting oil changes, and following the manufacturer’s instructions for your car’s make and model.

Your car’s performance and fuel economy may suffer if you accidentally use the wrong oil. Thankfully, if you don’t switch between oil types frequently, it won’t have any long-term effects. Check your hood lever’s functionality before you decide to change the oil yourself.

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