Difference between Mineral and Synthetic Oil?

The fundamental difference between both lubricants is that mineral oil is acquired naturally, from petroleum distillation. On the other hand, synthetic oil is obtained artificially thanks to chemical processes. But, there are other details that differentiate these two types of fats that you may not know.

What is mineral oil?

Mineral oil is the subset of the distillation of crude oil. Mineral oil is an odorless and transparent liquid, widely used as an ingredient in the manufacture of cosmetics, personal care products, and in the world of motors.

This highly refined and purified petroleum-derived oil is used to make baby lotions, creams, and other ointments intended to treat the skin. Thanks to mineral oils, it is possible to reduce the loss of water in these creams and thus be able to keep it moisturized.

But, it should be mentioned that mineral oil is a product made in large quantities due to its low price. For that reason, it is not only used in the beauty and personal care industries. The use that is given to it is very different, and also extends to engines, being used as a lubricant for vehicles such as cars and motorcycles.

Main characteristics of mineral oil

As mentioned before, the main characteristic of this type of oil is its odorless and transparent state. On the other hand, it can also be said that it is similar to Vaseline.

When talking about mineral oil as a lubricant, it contains several characteristics. Such as having a high viscosity index, withstanding different working conditions, being able to retain moisture, being able to mix properly with the coolant, and lubricate without problems at high temperatures.

It is important to mention that there are three types of mineral oil: paraffinic, naphthenic and aromatic oils.

What is synthetic oil?

It is an oil obtained only by synthesis in the laboratory instead of being a product extracted from petroleum, as is the case with mineral oil.

Characteristics of synthetic oils

The compounds of synthetic oils contain a high production cost. This type of lubricants are mainly intended for the lubrication of engines and machines. This type of grease also performs well due to its viscosity, which makes it ideal for working at high and low temperatures.

On the other hand, synthetic oils are highly durable, also showing very good chemical stability over time. Of the same, it should be mentioned that they efficiently resist oxidation and thermal damage. They also protect engine parts during work.

It is necessary to mention that synthetic oils also reduce liquid loss during the evaporation stage, since even under these conditions, they maintain consistency.

Difference between mineral oil and synthetic oil

  • The obtaining process is the main difference. Mineral oil is acquired from the distillation of crude oil, on the other hand, synthetic oil is the product of chemical processes developed in laboratories.
  • The price of mineral oil is lower than that of synthetic oil.
  • It is important to mention that the durability of synthetic oil is much greater than that of mineral oil.
  • Mineral oil is mostly used for classic engines, while synthetic oil is universally used.
  • Mineral oil is not recommended for high temperatures, while synthetic oil is suitable for high and low temperatures.

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