If you are familiar with automotive devices and vehicles, you might have heard of motor oil and engine oil. You might have used these oils too. Some people even change the oils in their car’s engine and motor.
But when it comes to choosing oil for the vehicle, you should use the appropriate one for the specific device.
So, you might be interested in knowing the difference between motor oil and engine oil. Well, you should know the basic difference so that interchanging them might not harm your vehicle. Moreover, knowing the functions of these oils is important.
What’s The Difference Between Motor Oil And Engine Oil?
The main difference between motor oil and engine oil is their lubricating ability. Motor oil is used only for lubricating the bearings that support the rotating armature. But the engine oil is supposed to lubricate the cylinder walls, pistons, valves, and other mechanical parts.
However, some other differences are also present. Although there is no huge difference between motor oil and engine oil. Many people use them interchangeably.
But to use these oils effectively, you have to know the differences in detail. So let’s see the differences between motor oil and engine oil.
Generally, a motor and an engine are different devices. Many people think that these two devices are the same and can be used interchangeably. But that isn’t true. Generally, a motor is run by electric power, whereas an engine is run by combustion.
So, when we choose motor oil and engine oil, we should use the oil for the appropriate device. In vehicles, sometimes people use the same oil on different devices. But the oil should be used for the device the oil was made for.
Since motor oil is made for motors and engine oil is made for engines. So, their efficiency, functions, power, etc., are also different according to the devices.
Distinctive serving components:
Generally, the motor oil’s purpose is to provide lubrication, viscosity, antiwear, dispersants, etc., to the motor parts. On the other hand, the engine oil’s purpose is to provide lubrication, viscosity, antiwear, detergents, etc., to the engine parts.
So, the purposes of motor oil and engine oil are pretty much the same. But the devices and parts that use the oils are different from those that use them.
Different lubricating powers:
Motor oil and engine oil have different lubricating powers. Though both can lubricate mechanical parts, engine oil has a little bit more lubricating power than motor oil.
Because the engine oil has to perform on different parts. For example, engine oil has to lubricate the cylinder walls, pistons, valves, and other engine parts. You might know that an engine is run by combustion.
So, if the engine oil doesn’t perform well, the combustion of the engine might not be effective. This can lead to misfires and other problems. So, the engine oil should have enough power to lubricate different parts.
Can I use motor oil instead of engine oil?
Yes, you can use motor oil instead of engine oil. Because there is not a huge difference between motor oil and engine oil. People also use them interchangeably. You might find some little differences between these two. But their purposes are pretty similar.
For example, motor oil lubricates motor parts, and engine oil lubricates engine parts. Moreover, they are laced with similar properties and elements. Motor oil is laced with additives that provide viscosity, detergents, corrosion resistance, etc.
On the other hand, engine oil is also laced with additives that provide corrosion resistance, viscosity, and other similar properties. So, if you use motor oil instead of engine oil, it will not cause any major problems in the engine.
But you should use the specific oil for the device it has been labeled for. Otherwise, small differences can cause problems in the long run.
Why is it called motor oil instead of engine oil?
You might think that motor oil and engine oil can be used interchangeably. Then what could be the reason for calling it motor oil instead of engine oil. Well, they might have similar purposes. But they also have some differences.
For example, the motor oil is separated because of its lubricating function. Motor oil is used to lubricate the bearings that support the rotating armature. On the other hand, engine oil is used to lubricate different parts of the engine.
For example, engine oil can lubricate pistons, valves, chains, and other mechanical parts. So, you should use the oils for separate reasons.
You can use motor oil instead of engine oil. But that doesn’t mean that you always have to use them interchangeably. That’s why it’s called motor oil instead of engine oil.
What happens if you put motor oil in the engine?
If you use motor oil in the engine, it might not create any problems instantly. But using motor oil in the engine regularly can create some serious problems. So, let’s see what happens if you put motor oil in the engine.
If you put motor oil in the engine, the engine might get too much oil. Generally, an engine doesn’t need oil to run. An engine can be run by combustion. But engine oil keeps different parts lubricated.
So, if you put motor oil in the engine, the engine might get too much oil and the oil can leak. Leaked oil can create pressure on the other components.
Generally, engine oil is supposed to go in the engine. But if you put motor oil in the engine, the oil might get contaminated. Moreover, contaminated oil can damage the clutch when it comes close to the flywheel.
If you put motor oil in the engine, it can cause misfiring. Because a specific oil is supposed to be used on a specific device. If you use motor oil instead of engine oil, it might not affect the engine immediately.
But if you use motor oil regularly in the engine, the engine might not get enough lubrication. So, it can cause a misfire in the engine.
Damage to the engine:
When you put motor oil in the engine, the engine might also get excess lubrication. Excess lubrication might cause pressure on the crankshaft. Gradually, the pressure on the crankshaft might cause damage to the engine.
Why is motor oil used?
Now that you’ve heard a lot of things about motor oil, you might want to know the basic purposes of motor oil. So, let’s see why we use motor oil.
Lubricates the motor parts:
One of the main functions of motor oil is to lubricate different parts of the motor. If you don’t use motor oil in the motor, friction can arise and cause wear of the parts.
Reduces high temperatures:
While combustion is going on in the engine or motor, the temperature rises. So, the motor oil helps to reduce and transfer heat from the inside parts to the outside. Too many high temperatures can damage different mechanical parts. So, motor oil plays an important role.
Cleans various parts:
Another interesting feature of motor oil is that it cleans dust and residue. Motor oil can clean different parts of the motor, and this helps to reduce contamination. Moreover, residue buildup can be prevented.
You might know that contamination, high temperatures, moisture, etc., can increase corrosion. So, motor oil helps to reduce corrosion. Moreover, motor oil also works as a sealant to prevent moisture.
Why is engine oil used?
Engine oil is another essential oil for your vehicle. Engine oil performs many different tasks. If you don’t use engine oil in the engine, the engine might lose its efficiency gradually. So, let’s see why engine oil is used.
Engine lubrication is the main task of engine oil. Generally, engine oil helps to reduce friction between different mechanical parts. That’s why engine parts don’t go through wear and tear. Engine oil thus lubricates engine parts and keeps them safe and wear-resistant.
Engine oil also helps to reduce corrosion. When engine oil keeps engine parts lubricated, less moisture can affect the metal parts.
Moreover, engine oil works to seal the oil from being contaminated with moisture, dust, residue, etc. Thus, engine oil makes engine parts corrosion-resistant.
Motor oil and engine oil have many similarities. They both work as lubricating oils. But engine oil and motor oil also have some differences. For example, they lubricate different parts of the vehicle. Moreover, the ability to lubricate is different for these oils.
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.
Read more about the author here.