What is the best oil brand for old engines?

Looking for suggestions for a very thirsty car.

16w ago

Is your car thirsty like an alcoholic on Saint Patrick’s day? If the answer is “No”, you are a lucky person. I recently had some issues with the second hand car I purchased a few months ago, one of them is a high level of engine oil consumption. Since the issue showed up, the car has been checked more than once. There are no oil leaks or blue smoke coming out from the exhaust. The car is a relatively old (2000) VW Golf MK4, with a relatively small engine (1.4). Of course there are some minor issues here and there, you can read the recap of my last misadventures here.

Anyway, I’ve been told to check and eventually refill the oil every thousand kilometres. I am not an expert, but I wonder if the fact I’ve driven the car mostly on long distance trips and in the hot weather of an Italian summer, affects the consumption of oil. Since I “don’t know nothing” like Jon Snow, I did a bit of research to figure out which could be a good brand of engine oil and if it would make the difference.


Apparently Catrol's oils are on top of the list. Either the Castrol Edge Professional Longlife III 5W30 and the Castrol Edge Titanium FST 5W30 perform well when the engine is under stress, thanks to their level of viscosity. The Titanium is particularly indicate for engine that are required to reach high levels of speed or are due to run for many miles all at once.


The Tamoil 9581 10W40 looks the most indicate for a car with the same issues ad mine. A four liters can costs around 23 Euro and the high level of viscosity helps to lower consumption, especially on cars that are used often for long trips. It's half the price of the Castrol oils I mentioned above, and probably a good solution.


Higher in price (around 50 Euro) there's the Petronas Syntium 3000 AV 5W-40. This oil, thanks to the CoolTechTM technolgy, helps to better cool down the parts that are subject to overheating.


Suitable for every car brand other than for its own, the Opel Dexos2 5W30, it's a fully syntetich oil that helps to increase the performance, making the engine running smoother and reducing the noise.

Any suggestion?

As I said above, I'm not an expert, so I'd like to hear some personal experiences from actual people rather than reading reviews on the internet. Which kind of engine oil do you use? Have you even experienced high consumption levels alike mines? If so, did you find a good oil to reduce, even if in part the issue?

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Comments (19)

  • Many oil makers have high mileage oils. Not sure about which brands are in your area but since you will be dumping down the drain, because your car eats it drinks it like a frat boy drinks beer, you don't want to spend money on Castrol synthetic or better. That's just throwing money away. But there are high mileage oils for your specific situation. Buy the least expensive but best you can afford.

    Hope this helps.

      3 months ago
  • *** Using thicker oil also raises pressures inside the block and oil passageways. Be a bit careful here. I was known to use Castrol 10-50 in my old cars. I never had issue. BUT it's an expensive route. So I moved to the cheapest possible oil, in my college days. I mean junk. I had junk results. I'm sure it did damage to the piston bores, rings, bearings and any rotating assemblies. Those cars were never analyzed because they were sold or junked. But I would hesitate to do it again. As I say below I would go the least expensive but best you can afford to throw away. I would use the Tamoil. If those are your options then that's the least expensive but best for the situation.

    I hope this helps. Keep us posted.

    Ask . He works on them for a living. What do you say Sam?

      3 months ago
  • I used to put Castrol GTX long life in my Beetle, which had an engine from the same family as your Golf. It was t the recommended grade. Never missed a beat...

      3 months ago
  • Liqui Moly has an oil finder on their website. Other than that, it's an old Golf, don't think it needs Castrol. But anyways, expensive oil doesn't guarantee it to run better.

      3 months ago
  • Often people think that a modern synthetic/semi-synthetic multigrade is best for their precious collector's car, but they were designed to use the technology of the day. Just find out the correct spec of oil the manufacturer recommended for it in the conditions you'll be using it, then fill it with that. It may be a single viscosity, simple oil. It may need you to warm up the engine before driving away. It will certainly need changing very frequently because it won't contain modern additives that combat the problems of straight oils, but it will also work correctly for your vehicle. Some engines were designed to burn some oil just to function properly, while others were expected to be given a 'shot' of Reddex upper-cylinder lubricant with every gallon of fuel. Best practice is always to go with OE spec everything, and then over service to combat the infrequent use you make of your pride and joy. Brand is utterly irrelevant. It's just the name of the people who bottle the stuff for retailing. It's the specification you must prioritise over every other consideration.

      3 months ago