All 2011 and newer Subaru Foresters, 2012 and newer Subaru Imprezas, 2013 Outbacks and Legacys, 2013 Crosstreks, 2013 BRZs and all turbos are
REQUIRED to use synthetic oil.
Why Subaru Synthetic Oil is right for your car:
oil, which consists of 80 percent synthetic base oil and 20 percent additives,
is better formulated for low-friction, high-technology engine designs and for
engines that face harsh driver demands. Naturally aspirated engines in the
newest Forester, Impreza, Legacy, Outback, and BRZ models as well as
turbocharged models require Subaru Synthetic Motor Oil (or its equivalent).
What is the difference?
There are three major differences between conventional and synthetic oils. Synthetic oil is more stable against breakdown, has a higher viscosity index, and demonstrates lower volatility. What that means is that it lasts longer; it flows easier in a wider range of temperatures, and is actually slicker to reduce friction. Oil's ability to deal with heat and friction is the key, and synthetic oil does a better job.
What do the numbers and the "W" mean?
W does not stand for weight, it stands for Winter.
The SAE classifications characterized the viscosity at low and high temperature of the lubricant. The grade is given by two numbers separated by the letter W (meaning winter). The lower the numbers, the easier the flow rate.
The first number, followed by W represents the low temperature viscosity, 5W, 10W, 15W... the lower this number, the more fluid at low temperature the oil, the easier the engine starts.
The second number gives the high temperature viscosity: 30, 40, 50. The higher this number, the more viscous the oil when hot.
Subaru Synthetic Motor Oil comes in
two SAE weights: OW-20 and 5W-30.
OW-20 is used in the non-turbo engine, designed for improved fuel economy and increased power.
5W-30 is formulated for the turbo engine, which runs at a higher temperature. It has increased protection against breakdown, and superior lubrication for optimal fuel economy. 5W-30 can be used for non-turbo vehicles, with the exception of the 2011 Forester.
The Don K Subaru Service Department can answer any questions you may have!
So, summarize the advantages of Synthetic Oil.
The game is about reducing friction and heat, and synthetic oil does this. The result is reduced engine wear, so your engine will last longer. The most stress on an engine comes in the winter time, with cold weather starts. Again, synthetic wins out because it flows easier in low temps, getting throughout your engine faster, which of course reduces wear. And lastly, synthetics don't breakdown as fast, which creates sludge and "cake" in your engine.
It may cost a little more, but the use of Synthetic Oil in your vehicle will mean significant savings over the years.
You can use a Synthetic Motor Oil in older Subaru's as well. To do so, consult with the Don K Subaru Service Department to see if making a change is the advisable for your vehicle.
Any other benefits?
Definitely. First, Synthetic Motor Oil is recyclable. Second, because it lasts longer than conventional oil, it needs to be changed less often, hence less waste. On non-turbo models, after the first oil change, the following changes are every 7,500 miles, instead of the typical 3,500.
Turbos require more frequent changes because of higher engine temps. Consult the owner's manual for proper oil recommendation and the Subaru warranty maintenance guide for specific oil change intervals.
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