Oil additives: yes or no?

Print anything with Printful

Oil additives are marketed as a “mechanic in a bottle” but offer limited benefits. Additives that claim to stop leaks only condition seals and cannot reverse damage. Additives that clean sludge cannot restore lost power or fuel economy. Regular use as a preventative measure is recommended.

Motor oil additives are sometimes sarcastically referred to as “mechanic in a bottle.” This term refers to the marketing message, not to mention the belief shared by many people, that additives can improve fuel economy, increase horsepower, and fix other engine problems. In truth, they offer limited benefits, but there are certainly no miracle cures.

For example, many companies make a petroleum additive that is supposed to stop leaks. This is an exaggeration of the truth. Engine seals often dry out, shrink, and crack over time, leading to oil leaks. The oil additives that are meant to stop these leaks are actually formulated to condition or rehydrate these seals. The idea is that conditioning will cause the seal to return to its original shape, thus reversing the cause of the leak.

There are two problems with this theory. One, rubber stamps that have already dried out and lost their shape will never be the same again, no matter the amount of reconditioning additives. Also, no matter how well the seals are rehydrated, the cracks that have formed will always be there, requiring replacement rather than a miracle cure.

The only way to cure leaks is through preventative maintenance. The oil additives used to prevent engine seals from drying out actually work, because they prevent the seals from cracking or losing their shape in the first place.

Another type of additive often found on the market is to clean sludge and buildup from inside an engine. These products often make a number of claims, for example that they will increase engine efficiency, increase fuel economy, and even increase horsepower. However, no matter how good these oil additives are, they can’t give a car the power or fuel economy it didn’t have in the first place. Although these additives can actually break down engine buildup, all of this helps restore fuel economy and power that has been lost as sludge has hampered the engine.

It’s also important to note that while the detergents in these oil additives can break down the sludge inside the engine, they can’t make it as clean as it was when it was new, nor as clean as a mechanic could make it. disassembling the engine and cleaning it. Since these oil additives have limited cleaning abilities, it is again best to use them regularly as preventative measures, to prevent large amounts of buildup from occurring in the first place.

Protect your devices with Threat Protection by NordVPN

Skip to content