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Been doing oil changes via indie mechanics since most just charge $50 and they also inspect everything. That includes regular oil up to 5L.

But sometimes synthetic (like Penzoil) can be had for under $30, even 20. And I'm thinking I want to be more involved, so would like to start doing my own oil changes too (just did my coolant drain and replacement for the original 10 year requirement, yay!)

My car is a Civic DX, 07 with just over 100k kms. So 12 years old. Should I switch to synthetic, which sometimes can be had for the same price as regular, or just stick with regular?

Reason why I ask is that I read that with older cars and higher mileage (and years passing by?) if the car used conventional oil, switching to a synthetic can cause some leak problems.

Any insight and suggestions?

Thanks!
 

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Here's my general understanding of all cars.

After years of using conventional oil a certain amount of sludge/build-up occurs. This build-up occurs in areas where oil flow is lowest. As seals and gaskets being to fail they start leaking oil. This area will start to get wet and this collects sludge from the inside and dirt from the outside. Over time this creates an artificial seal.

Synthetic oil is amazing and I'll never use conventional again. I bought a 2002 Ford Ranger 4.0L with 144k on it. I started using synthetic Mobile 1 to be specific. This stuff goes to work on an engine and starts cleaning it out. Changing my oil at every 10k the oil started coming out cleaner each time. However I did start to see oil leaking from the back of the engine at the PVC valve and valve covers. This is because Mobil 1 cleaned all the sludge out. I did retorque the valve covers and switched to Mobil 1 full synthetic High Mileage oil because it claims to have additives that help recondition seals. My truck does use about 1qt of oil every 10k miles now through evaporation and leaks but it does seem to be less and less over time.

So the choice is up to you. Do you want a cleaner engine and take the chance you may clean a joint that has sludge blocking a leak? One thing is for sure though synthetic oils are no gimmick and work amazing and are actually cheaper because the extended oil life.
 
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