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Written by:
Shivani Gite
Contributing Writer
Shivani Gite is a personal finance and insurance writer with a degree in journalism and mass communication. She is passionate about making insurance topics easy to understand for people and helping them make better financial decisions. When not writing, you can find her reading a book or watching anime.
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Reviewed by:
Laura Longero
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Executive Editor
Laura is an award-winning editor with experience in content and communications covering auto insurance and personal finance. She has written for several media outlets, including the USA Today Network. She most recently worked in the public sector for the Nevada Department of Transportation.

Why synthetic oil works well in the winter

Synthetic oil is different from conventional oil. Synthetic oils work well in both low and high temperatures. When temperatures drop and conventional oil might not flow as easily through the engine’s lubrication system, synthetic continues to keep its viscosity. This article will discuss why synthetic oil works well in the winter.

All engine oil is made up of base oils and additives. Synthetic oil is a mixture of synthetic fluids and selected additives combined to modify the viscosity grade. This allows synthetic oil to operate efficiently in high and low temperatures.

In low temperatures, synthetic engine oil can flow better through the engine lubrication system, thus allowing the car owner to crank the car in the lowest temperatures. For anyone who lives in a cold climate, they know getting a car started in cold temperatures can be half the battle. The quicker the oil pumps through the engine the faster the car can be started and the heater can be turned on.

Synthetic oil has friction modifiers as an additive, allowing for more horsepower but with better fuel economy. Though you may not be driving as much during the cold winter months, the car will likely spend a lot of time warming up and thus guzzling gasoline during that period.

Synthetic motor oil’s main reason for working so well in the winter is its ability to withstand extreme temperature lows. The chemical makeup of the synthetic keeps the lubrication fluid less likely to congeal or freeze up. The better flow allows the engine to work better in lower temperatures.

Changing from conventional to synthetic oil can be a wise choice for the winter. If you live in an area with prolonged cold snaps, synthetic motor oil can flow well in low temperatures allowing your car to start on the coldest days.

The car cranks and starts quicker, reducing the power needed by the starter and battery. This allows the extra strain to not place on either of these parts. With a more leisurely start, your engine will be more reliable, getting you through winter and spring.

— Michelle Megna contributed to this story.

Laura Longero

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Laura Longero

Executive Editor

Laura is an award-winning editor with experience in content and communications covering auto insurance and personal finance. She has written for several media outlets, including the USA Today Network. She most recently worked in the public sector for the Nevada Department of Transportation.

John McCormick

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John McCormick

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John is the editorial director for CarInsurance.com, Insurance.com and Insure.com. Before joining QuinStreet, John was a deputy editor at The Wall Street Journal and had been an editor and reporter at a number of other media outlets where he covered insurance, personal finance, and technology.

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Leslie Kasperowicz is an insurance educator and content creation professional with nearly two decades of experience first directly in the insurance industry at Farmers Insurance and then as a writer, researcher, and educator for insurance shoppers writing for sites like ExpertInsuranceReviews.com and InsuranceHotline.com and managing content, now at CarInsurance.com.

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Nupur Gambhir is a content editor and licensed life, health, and disability insurance expert. She has extensive experience bringing brands to life and has built award-nominated campaigns for travel and tech. Her insurance expertise has been featured in Bloomberg News, Forbes Advisor, CNET, Fortune, Slate, Real Simple, Lifehacker, The Financial Gym, and the end-of-life planning service.

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Contributing Writer

Shivani Gite is a personal finance and insurance writer with a degree in journalism and mass communication. She is passionate about making insurance topics easy to understand for people and helping them make better financial decisions. When not writing, you can find her reading a book or watching anime.