The first step in understanding your car’s motor oil rating is to check the vehicle owner’s manual. You always want to start here as manufacturers always recommend what’s best for your vehicle’s engine. However, you may want to opt for a lower viscosity rating if you’re constantly unable to start your engine in freezing temperatures. This is because a lower viscosity rating such as a 5W-30 is better for lower temperatures.

Your motor oil rating typically looks like #W-##. This number for the W stands for how well the engine oil performs at freezing temperatures. Lower numbers before the W mean that it’s less viscous and more suitable for cold weather. However, higher numbers indicate that it’s thicker and better for hotter climates. The number after the W stands for how well the engine oil performs at 100 degrees Celsius.

A 15W-40 motor oil rating is suitable for hotter climates because it’s more viscous and won’t thin out as easily in hotter temperatures. If you have more questions about your engine oil rating, you can always call the service team at Harbin Chevrolet in Scottsboro, AL. We’re happy to answer any vehicle service questions.

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