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It it worth using a motor oil conditioner? Do they actually help keep an engine running better, or are they just marketing ploys?

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up vote 3 down vote accepted

Just use the manufacturers reccomended oil, oil additives for the most part are gimmicks. If you really want to protect your engine use a quality synthetic like Mobil 1 or the like. Modern engines have more consistent tolerances and can even run oil for longer periods of time. Stick to manufacturer recommendations, whats in your manual. No amount of additive is going to improve how your engine runs, unless its hiding a larger underlying problem.

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That's what I thought. I bought my first vehicle last year (with only 22k miles), and I've been using Moblie 1 since I got it. – Sponge Bob Jan 23 '13 at 8:21
Just as a side note: If you want to add something to your oil system that does in fact help your vehicle by keeping the oil much cleaner and reducing the need for oil changes drastically, you can look into passive oil by-pass systems like the big rigs use. I believe Amsoil makes some pretty good models that aren't unreasonably expensive. – maplemale Jun 3 '15 at 21:52

I don't know about automotive oils specifically, but there are aviation oil additives that have proven benefits. So, it's certainly possible that an additive could have benefit. I'm always very suspicious of them though.

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You can "add" a few bucks to the price and buy a fully synthetic oil. That's the only "additive" I bring anywhere near my car. The same goes for "octane boosters".

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