5w30 oil and 5w20 oil are common engine oils used in an engine. Although they have the same winter rating, they have some different aspects that make them different from each other.
You may ask if you can put 5w30 oil in a 5w20 engine. Let us answer the question for you and provide you with some necessary information regarding them.
Can I Put 5w30 Oil In A 5w20 Engine?
You can put 5w30 oil in a 5w20 engine. But it is not recommended to do this on a regular basis. The reason behind this is that 5w30 has a higher viscosity compared to 5w20 oil. If the engine is rated for 5w20 oil and you use 5w30 oil, this may put pressure on the engine, which may cause issues.
5w30 oil and 5w20 oil both are the same synthetic oil. These are used in various engines to run them properly. Both of these oils help reduce the friction in the engine cylinders and ensure that the engine is providing the necessary power to the vehicle.
5w30 oil and 5w20 oil both have the same winter rating of 5. Therefore, both of these oils can work great in cold weather compared to 10w oil. But there is a significant difference between 5w30 oil and 5w20 oil, which separates them from each other.
The main difference is their viscosity. 5w30 oil is said to be a bit more viscous compared to 5w20 oil. The name of the oil indicates that. In the 5w30 oil and 5w20 oil name, the 30 and 20 define the viscosity of the oils.
Comparing both oils, 5w20 oil is thinner than 5w30 oil. Therefore, the 5w20 oil will be thinner during the operating temperatures and the 5w30 oil will be thicker. This affects the performance of the engine a lot.
As 5w30 oil is thicker than 5w20 oil, using it in a 5w20 engine will be a bad decision. The 5w20 engine is designed to run using the help of the 5w20 oil, which has a lower viscosity than 5w30 oil. You may face performance issues from on your 5w20 engine while using 5w30 oil.
The engine may overheat and not work as intended by the manufacturer. You may also see a bad economy from your engine and your engine may shut down frequently. It may also damage your engine if you keep using 5w30 oil in a 5w20 engine.
Is it bad to use 5w30 instead of 5w20?
Yes, it is bad to use 5w30 instead of 5w20. Engine oil is an important material in any engine. This helps to keep the engine healthy and work as intended. But if you use the wrong engine oil in a different rated engine, it may cause severe damage to the engine itself.
5w30 is thicker compared to 5w20 oil. Although both oils are similar in terms of winter rating, they are not the same in terms of viscosity. This is an important specification of engine oil and this rating helps distinguish which oil will be perfect for your engine.
3 reasons why you cannot put 5w30 instead of 5w20
There are multiple reasons behind why you cannot put 5w30 instead of 5w20. Here are the important 3 reasons that you should know:
5w30 is thicker:
According to the name and composition of the oil, 5w30 is thicker compared to 5w20. 5w20 is the thinnest engine oil that is available in the market.
But if you put 5w30 oil instead, this may cause the engine not to work correctly and may cause damage. So, do not use 5w30 instead of 5w20.
5w30 overheats the engine:
5w30 can overheat your car engine if it is rated for 5w20 oil. 5w20 has a lower viscosity compared to 5w30 oil. But if you use 5w30 oil in a 5w20 rated engine, the engine will have to work harder to provide the required output.
Therefore, do not put 5w30 instead of 5w20.
5w30 damaged the engine:
5w30 might damage your engine if it is rated for 5w20. The engine will overheat and put extra pressure on the cylinders. Hence, it may damage your engine and that’s why you should not use 5w30 instead of 5w20.
What happens if I put 5w30 instead of 5w20?
There are many things that may happen if you put 5w30 oil instead of 5w20 oil. All the things that happened, as a result, affected the performance and the health of the engine. It may also damage the engine as well.
The first thing that may happen is that the engine will overheat. The reason behind this is the viscosity of the 5w30 oil. The 5w30 oil is much thicker compared to the 5w20 oil. The engine will need to work hard in order to provide the necessary amount of power as output.
It may also cause the engine to provide a bad economy as the cylinder has to work hard by using more fuel. It may also damage the cylinder and the shafts in the engine compartment. Therefore, the engine may face permanent damage.
What happens if you mix 5w20 and 5w30 oil?
There are a lot of things that may happen if you mix 5w20 and 5w30 oil. If you want to know what happens, here are some noteworthy incidents that may occur if you mix 5w20 and 5w30 oil:
The engine will overheat often:
If you mix 5w20 and 5w30 oil together, it will mix properly as they are of the same type of oil. But as these oils are of different viscosity. Due to that, they will both combine to a different thickness.
The engine that you are using the mixed oil may not be rated for the viscosity that was created. Therefore, your engine will have a bad time keeping it running. As a result, it will overheat.
Bad economy from your engine:
You may see a bad economy if you mix 5w20 and 5w30 oil together. An engine is rated to a particular type of oil and the economy of the engine depends on that type of oil. If the oil type is changed or a mixed variety of oil is used, then the economy may change.
If you mix 5w30 and 5w20 oil, it will cause the engine to work harder as the oil becomes thicker. Therefore, the engine will consume more fuel to provide you with the rated power. This will result in a bad economy and will cost you a lot.
The engine will make sounds:
Mixing 5w20 and 5w30 oil may cause your engine to sound different. As the engine tries to work harder, it will sound different from usual.
The engine may get damaged:
All the engines are made for a certain rated oil type. If any other oil is used, this may cause the engine not to work as intended. But the engine will still try to provide the rated output.
Therefore, the engine will keep harming itself, which may eventually damage it.
What can I use instead of 5w20?
Multiple alternatives can be used for 5w20. But you have to keep in mind that these are alternatives and may not work as good as 5w20. If you want to know the other options, here are some of them that we think are suitable enough for you:
0w20 is a good alternative for 5w20 oil. It has the same viscosity as 5w20 oil. Therefore, the engine may work as intended. Your engine can provide the rated output as usual while using 0w20 oil instead of 5w20 oil.
But it would be best if you kept in mind that 0w20 oil is not rated for winter use. This oil is designed for optimal temperature environments. During cold seasons, you will have to change the oil to something with some winter rating.
10w20 is another excellent alternative for 5w20 oil. This oil is highly rated for warm environments and provides a good oil flow in the engine. This keeps the engine operation smooth in high temperatures compared to 5w20 oil.
But this oil is not ideal for cold temperatures. Therefore, you may have to change the oil during the winter times.
10w30 is another alternative for 5w20 oil. This oil is thicker than 5w20 oil, which means you may get poor mileage from your engine. As a result, you may face a bad economy.
But this oil is considered to be another excellent alternative to 5w20 oil. Especially during the summer times, this oil is considered to be a great alternative for 5w20 engines.
You can put 5w30 oil in a 5w20 engine. As they are both synthetic and have the same winter rating, they almost have the exact specification. But their viscosity is different. Due to this, it may cause problems in the engine, which may damage the engine permanently and make your engine irreparable.
I am an automotive enthusiast and have been interested in cars since I was a little kid. I have worked in the automotive industry for many years and have extensive knowledge of vehicles and their engines. I am a father of two and I love spending time with my family.
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