Should You Use Racing Oil In Your Road Car?
What’s the difference between road car and race car (like NASCAR) oil?
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What are the differences between race car oil, like the oil used in NASCAR, and the oil used in our everyday road cars? NASCAR oil regulations are fairly unrestricted, allowing for unique formulations, whereas road car oils need to meet very specific industry requirements for certifications. In this video, we’ll dive into the differences between engine design, drain intervals, oil viscosities, oil additives including zinc (ZDDP) and bespoke versus mass market formulas. I spent time discussing these topics with Mobil 1 engineering, Roush Yates Engines, and Stewart Haas Racing to find out more. Watch for all the details!

Related Videos:
Will Thin Oils Damage Your Engine?
Is Synthetic Oil Bad For Old Cars?
Synthetic vs Conventional Oil -

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  • 3rKo

    TL;DW straight pipe your car so you can use some high context Zinc (zddp) racing oil

  • Rob Shaw
    Rob Shaw

    Is there any concern with running an engine oil with high sulfur content in the additive package? Anyone have any thoughts?

    • Rob Shaw
      Rob Shaw

      In another of your videos you talk about the size and shape of oil molecules. Are FULL synthetic molecules a different size and shape than 100% synthetic molecules? I watched a different ideo posted by a different Utube channel that said the molecules are different. I am not sure so I am asking here.

  • Sssaga Benches
    Sssaga Benches

    My 90s Civic is 90% on full thottle just to avoid from laging behind daily traffic.

  • Riley Keck
    Riley Keck

    So if you do have a older flat tapping engine, high zddp is a benefit

  • highrzr

    Nice video. There is soo much misinformation and myths\assumptions when it comes to engine oils. You eluded to it, but the definition of lubrication in an ICE (Internal Combustion Engine) is the flow of oil over surfaces. This hydraulic barrier is what keeps metal parts from touching and wearing. It is not present on startup no what the ambient air temperature is. For ICE "road" engines, the target operating temperature of the engine oil is 212 degrees F. Higher viscosity oil is only needed if you will routinely see higher oil temperatures or to maintain the hydraulic barrier in worn out\high clearance engines.

  • Bob Bowie
    Bob Bowie

    Pushrod engines rule. 1:33

  • Gene Foster
    Gene Foster

    Do you think NASCAR would even give this guy a clue as to what they are doing with their oils. I know Jeff Gordon's head mechanic and they mix their own oil and it's still petroleum based. They sometimes joke about the synthetic oil advertisements on the side of the cars.

    • Gene Foster
      Gene Foster

      Is there a kickback from Mobile 1?

  • gunitplaya9

    Are the catts the main concern for higher zddp oil? Would it be beneficial for engine longevity on a high km cattless engine to run extra zddp?

    • highrzr

      Yes, but the O2 sensors as well. It's more of a concern with forced induction engines and engines with low friction piston rings which are a good chunk of modern engines produced. It's why an effective oil catch can is so important in these engines.

  • Parker Johnson
    Parker Johnson

    If you want the best oil on the market get AMSOIL Signature Series

    • highrzr

      As well as Redline's "High-Performance" series. Given Amsoil's MLM scheme, I just say no, and run the Redline oil.

  • 峠 フランチェスコ (Paco)
    峠 フランチェスコ (Paco)

    I drive often full throttle. With high outdoor temperatures...

  • Ben

    Could you do an EE on the lifecycle of used motor oil, post crankcase extraction?

  • Peter Darr
    Peter Darr

    I live in Florida so it's never really cold. I run Mobil1 15-50 with an additional QT of Diesel Synthetic just to boost the ZDDP. It's in EVERYTHING - truck, boat, bike, mower. I want the extra protection of a thicker oil and the 1 YEAR drain intervals. Oil breaks down over TIME, so it might come out as a 10-40 ...I would NEVER want to start with a 5-30

  • Jeremiah Sam
    Jeremiah Sam

    even as a long time lubrication engineer, still nice to learn stuff from the automotive side.

  • P Smith
    P Smith

    He doesn't know what he's talking about. 😎 I basically have a P.hD in FIbill automotives with honors thanks to this guy.

  • Smooth_Ops

    So to summarize the portion of the video on the use of ZZDP : Use large quantities of ZZDP if possible; Remove all emissions equipment including catalytic converters for better performance and cost procurement over time. Sounds like a plan.

  • Lui SR20
    Lui SR20

    I use VR1 racing oil in my daily that's sr20ve powerd. It doesn't have a cat or any emissions equipment due to it's a jdm swap so I'll continue to use it for the benefits the higher zinc provides especially considering I rev to 8,200rpm daily.

  • Derrick Garcia
    Derrick Garcia

    Synthetic VR1 Valvoline vs Conventional VR1 on highly modded Subaru STI. Which would you use?

  • Amaroq Starwind
    Amaroq Starwind

    We need to experiment with MR fluid, ferrofluid and self-siphoning fluid lubricants. MR fluids are pretty neat because they increase in viscosity in response to electromagnetic fields, meaning that you can choose exactly where they are high in viscosity versus low in viscosity, but unlike ferrofluids they aren't necessarily attracted to magnets, and thus they can still flow freely. Meanwhile, ferrofluids can basically be forced to adhere to any parts that are slightly magnetized, thus preventing metal to metal contact and effectively creating a frictionless surface. Then there's self-siphoning fluids... These are exactly what they sound like.

  • Robert Linder
    Robert Linder

    I had a 97 Saturn SL2, 17 years and 417000 miles. Used racing plugs and cables, ram scoop and racing oils. I got 42 miles per gallon.

  • Taran Ramjit
    Taran Ramjit

    What about engines from 1998-2002 more Specifically Nissan RB25DET Neo?

  • Derek Barnhart
    Derek Barnhart

    All bmw owners wondering if they should use race oil since we get about 1500 miles in between breaking down 🤧

  • The XO of the RO
    The XO of the RO

    500 miles an oil change is right for many cars.

  • ~mind over matter~
    ~mind over matter~

    I put about an additional ounce to 2 ounces of zddp on top of 16 ounces of high-mileage Platinum Pennzoil for my stroker mini bike. Because of the flat tappet cams used in small engines. I will say I put probably 1400 miles on that engine beating it up, as like a sleeper road bike. So far no problems I will say I do feel a slight reduction in power but it's still reaches its top speed and has plenty torque

  • Jon B
    Jon B

    Terrific presentation. Road oils for me. 👍

  • votekyle3000

    00:31 RIP Kevin’s championship season

  • IrelandVonVicious

    You get a thumbs up purely for showing the Busch car! Buschhhhhhhh!

  • Radio Puntina
    Radio Puntina

    Hi, At what temperature does the oil lose its characteristics and must it be changed? A road oil must be changed every time i go to the track?

  • Ron Kotula
    Ron Kotula

    More power is important in racing--------dah

  • Martin Schulz
    Martin Schulz

    Use the automotive oil that meets the API classification that the manufacture requires. Racing oil, small engine oil, motorcycle oil, outboard oil etc. have unique additive packages. Don't believe cock and bull stories from people who do different things than what the manufactures recommend.

  • Anmol Behl
    Anmol Behl

    Very informative Jason! I'm a weirdo who cares about the environment yet enjoy driving my cars on a the track. I've a miata which I drive on the road as well as the autocross track. After watching this video, I'll start using racing oil in the engine when going for events along with replacing my stock cat con with a test pipe just so I dont poison it for when I'm using it on the road (and inadvertantly polluting a lot more)


    CDDP is now a new tic for 😅 Or was it ZDDP?

  • mushieslushie

    A question nobody asked.

  • elettrofans

    Aren't rental cars supposed to be driven at full throttle and shift at red line ?

  • The Flat Rock
    The Flat Rock

    Only 250k miles? Glad I use Castrol and the engine is in great shape at almost 250k

  • Danil MaIahoff
    Danil MaIahoff

    Mobil Racing oil is NOT used in SkyActiv engine

  • Spicey French Toast
    Spicey French Toast

    Racing oils work wonders in small engines and equipment hydro systems, as the extra ZPPD and phosphorus really allow the engines and pumps to last a long time. Road oils have much less of those because they ruin cats.

  • Kyle Langley
    Kyle Langley

    Simple answer NO! Follow the owners manual. Racing oil with high ZDDP can actually damage your catalytic converters and cost you money out of pocket IF that engine oil is out of spec. With all that drag on the pistons it takes forever to heat up the engine oil. Once it does heat up, racing oil holds heat longer, which is great when tracking but terrible for short commutes on road cars with stock plastic intercooler and radiators. If you tuned your car, contact a lubrication specialist. They’ll help you decide based on YOUR VEHICLE APPLICATION. Not bro science. Not the forums.

  • Brian Schwab
    Brian Schwab

    Nice One Jason!!! I use for my BMW M2 BMW oils. My Lexus also using Lexus oils. Never had one issue. I used to be the dude who was also at the local store trying to buy the next best oils and filters. Because I did not trust the dealer oils. I know now that oils are built to run with that engine setup - Great video!

  • baja kitesurfer
    baja kitesurfer

    Jason ! Can you please consider making a video as to why ICE Automobile manufacturers have never offered any type of engine oil system ‘pre-lube’ or engine oil system pre-pressurization prior to engine start ? It seems in your discussions that that there is a fair amount of opportunity for metal to metal direct contact prior to the lubrication system fully pressurizing , perhaps even more so i’m very very cold climates with cold engine starts. Perhaps you could explore the cost/benefit analysis of pre-lubricating the (ICE) engine (s) prior to engine start. It seems as though the Cams and Lifters on ICE engines are or can be especially vulnerable to higher rates of wear due to those periods where the engine is turning yet prior to a fully pressurized lubrication system. I’d love to hear your thoughts on the matter and perhaps some consults with a few engineers at at the major ICE manufacturers. Thanks Jason -!

  • spectrum870

    I use driven racing oil DT40 5w40 in my daily. But my daily is a fully built bottom end and head, big turbo setup 2.0 I4. But for a regular daily csr you definitely don't need it.

  • Greg Kimura
    Greg Kimura

    Very nice video! Great explanation and information is awesome! Thanks for sharing.

  • tootired4thiscrap

    Mobil oil sucks. You paying for the name. Amsoil is the best

  • Gacheru Mburu
    Gacheru Mburu


  • 1 nasty STi
    1 nasty STi

    "More ZDDP can cause emissions equipment to fail" Me: thats good I don't have any emissions equipment 😌

  • Roni92pl

    I mean if youve got 20yo civic youre pretty much race driver....

  • Angus

    Drag racing typically use 0 weight, run, then drain and replace.

  • Rachid AMRI
    Rachid AMRI

    Just picked 5 quarts of race oil for my camry. Oil change every month, engine rebuild every 500miles.

  • Langston Walton
    Langston Walton

    What if your going to the track and change your oil every two track days? can I just leave the track oil in the car since ill be changing the oil way more often>

  • LoveJuice

    if money is a critical problem then dont. if its only 2 months of eating garbage, go spend all your money on your car c:

  • Daniel S
    Daniel S

    Oil change intervals aren't just a mileage interval but also by a calendar interval, e.g. or 12 months. So if you car does 1500 miles in a year you need to change the oil because it is a year old. The other thing about road cars V NASCAR is that a road may have to do a dead stop from 70 mph upwards (approaching a roundabout at speed and then seeing at the last moment it isn't going to be clear as you thought and rather then proceed onto it you have to make a dead stop). The road car won't be dry-sumped and may experience surge under braking (negating the use of lower viscosity oils).

  • mark warnberg
    mark warnberg

    This still does not expalin the Viscosity Index where higher Viscosity withstands heat better. Logical thinking say´s that high performance engins run HOT, very hot when the oil is going through a Turbo Charger and thus need more protection! The 16-20 weight oil lubrication falls off at a certain heated point so in order too maintain the engins performance the oil weight must be increased to 30 or 40. So WHAT IS GOING ON WHEN AUTO MANUFACTURERS RECOMMEND SUCH LOW WEIGHT OIL???

  • Gavin Lam
    Gavin Lam

    Isnt the oil change interval in our cheap track cars for this significantly smaller?

  • Joe Ca
    Joe Ca

    ich fahr nur kickdown!

  • Chris R Carraher
    Chris R Carraher

    IMO if you track your car, fill with a race formula for your event because the added zddp will protect your bearings at high rpm/high heat. Then just drain and refill with oem after the track day for daily driving. Changing oil is cheaper than changing engines.

  • MrEqtube

    I have only one gripe about this video: please, stop talking about "tolerances". Engine has clearances. The clearances have tolerances. Points to that oil viscosity is not referred as "weight". There is no such a thing as w30 oil; it is an oil, that has viscosity grade that can be classified as SAE 30.

  • Mikki Hintikka
    Mikki Hintikka

    when are you going to stop using imperial units? i sub you again after you have done that transformation. only then you will honor the legacy of engineers

    • Mikki Hintikka
      Mikki Hintikka

      @Daniel S so what those people at nasa are? Nasa uses metric.

    • Daniel S
      Daniel S

      Metric Mikki - real engineers love imperial.

  • Dave Norman
    Dave Norman

    Mmm I'm an engine builder..all engines have metal to metal contact in some way, plain bearings are still used in crankshafts,overhead cam engines use shims for valve adjustment and then there's timing and distributor gears you cannot rely on oil pressure/film...Always use oil with a high zinc people and replace your cat converter every 50thou if you are worried.

  • MidgetTiger


  • Ry

    “Road cars are rarely at full throttle” My Fiesta ST : 😐

  • MrDanMan

    Has anyone counted how many times he said "ZDDP"

  • MrDanMan

    3:24 Some diesel engines in Peugeot cars need oil changes only every 30.000KMs

  • Frag EightyFive
    Frag EightyFive

    I never understood why talking about oil (brand, viscosity, change interval ect..) is like a religion to many people. You aren't going to outsmart the engineers that put literally millions of hours of R&D into the development and testing of the motors.

  • gothic pagan
    gothic pagan

    The 0w50 has possibilities in older European engines

  • Daniel LA
    Daniel LA

    How about for BMW 535 Diesel? which oil would you recommend?

  • ampedex

    Well that's good for me since I don't have any catalytic converter 😅

  • Charles Darwin
    Charles Darwin

    Best oil for FA20 WRX?

  • TheSleepyWeasel

    142 thumbs down from kids in hatchbacks who think racing oils will make their street car faster.

  • D H
    D H

    no one here watch this video with a road car that is rarely at full throttle

  • Michał K
    Michał K

    If your oil producer says than has oil with 30000km replacement interval - change oil producer you use

  • GBass

    ZDDP - how much Zinc & Phos is in Mobil 1 street car oil today?

  • Cruz Monrreal
    Cruz Monrreal

    Heheh... "engine"-uity

  • YZ Rippin
    YZ Rippin

    Still putting penzoil ultra platinum in my base model corolla. Shes red. That means shes a racecar.

  • Vignesh N.Y
    Vignesh N.Y

    Thanks for the video. Learnt more about ZDDP. The more common additive in race spec Oils is Moly. Does that cause any harm or benefit? Also race Oils are generally Type 5 Ester based, so do not need so much pour point suppressants as they cling on to the cylinder walls. Thoughts please @engineeringexplained

  • everydaycommuter

    I gain horsepower by just draining to oil. I have to switch my engine out often, but it is worth it.

  • Car Guy66
    Car Guy66

    What I hear here is that boxer engines really need high zddp bc of engine wear mainly on the lower sides of the cylinders

  • Ryan

    Motul 300V is good stuff. I run amsoil signurature and Pennzoil ultra platinum on the street. Motul is too rich for my blood 😆😭

  • That Riki Thing
    That Riki Thing

    "Road cars are rarely at full throttle" Me: Hold my beer...

  • Taha Ali Uthman
    Taha Ali Uthman

    I want a competition between this guy and Bill Nye the science guy!!! Up vote for a video!!!!!!

  • Taha Ali Uthman
    Taha Ali Uthman

    I only shift at 9000 RPM....... Simple

  • Bentley Harden
    Bentley Harden

    Other than sounding like a snake oil salesman... Switching from flat tappet to roller tappet removed the need for zinc. BS. Ever seen the number of roller cams that wear flat? It’s just as necessary. I get the need for thin oil with cam phasers, but sacrifice the rest of the motor for it? I’ve only lost 2 motors in my 45 year career in automotive. Both were running pisswater oils. 0-20, etc. synthetic. Never lost a motor on 20W-50 Castrol. Some of the sludge I’ve seen where synthetic oil was used should be an embarrassment. Very common. And destructive. Synthetic has run its course. Snake oil for the masses!

  • Louie

    Amsoil is better

  • Daves Garage
    Daves Garage

    "imagine owning a road car that needs an oil change every 500 miles or engine change every 1500" yeah imagine owning a ferrari/lambo/mclaren and following their suggested service intervals. I believe one of the lambo's is "gearbox rebuild every 2 years or 1500 miles"

  • Tahsin Faiyaz
    Tahsin Faiyaz

    basically no extra info apart from common sense.

  • Jared Hoats
    Jared Hoats

    @Engineering Explained, speaking of NASCAR, you could definitely dive into the realm of the "dog box transmissions" used in their stock cars to make shifting a manual transmission instantaneous (who doesn't love slamming gears? ;) )

  • louco

    "Should You Use JET A-1 Aviation Kerosene In Your Road Car?" Pathetic.

  • The Kombinator
    The Kombinator

    Sweet, I can use ZDDP at will in my project car - pre-emissions :D

  • Jesse Budelman
    Jesse Budelman

    I’m that guy that would spend $600 on an oil change, and eat ramen for 6 months. Worth it. 😎👌🏻

    • XeroFailGames

      Doctor: mr. Budelman you have too much blood in your salt stream

  • Ljůk Popers
    Ljůk Popers

    Only 10w60...

  • Jesse Estrada
    Jesse Estrada

    What about racing the road oil

  • Vehicles n' Guitfiddles
    Vehicles n' Guitfiddles

    Looks like you are about to blow off a head on your 3D printed V8!

  • Joney Durpp
    Joney Durpp

    "Imagine owning a car that needed oil changes every 500 miles" *sweats in rotary oil guzzler*

    • Joney Durpp
      Joney Durpp

      @Joseph Patricio I had service records for an old volvo that showed the owner would change oil, all filters and transmission fluids every week. Had a peak into the the engine with an endoscope and it was clean as a whistle. Bit over excessive but can't complain really.

    • Joseph Patricio
      Joseph Patricio

      I once bought a used car that the previous owner changed the oil religiously every month. I couldn’t believe it until the dealer showed me the printout of all the service records for the car.

    • Armouredfalcon

      *laughs in weekly oil refills in my old honda*

  • Rick

    What if our car is a race car hmm 🤔🤔🤔

  • Wesley Haws
    Wesley Haws

    Says no one wants to pay $100 for an oil change while I’m over here spending that on asmoil signature series for my focus😬😬😬

    • reginald Small
      reginald Small

      You are the smart one. Amsoil is #1

  • The Knof
    The Knof

    3:53 what do you mean? my Fiesta 100hk 1.0 ecoboost is always at full throttle

  • Jason Brady
    Jason Brady

    Is that a QR code at 2:00 ?

  • TheNewNoise7

    Worth using “racing oil” if tracking the car?

  • Tim Alma
    Tim Alma

    Is the answer NO?

  • Little B
    Little B

    either way dun drink them dun follow those who eat tide pods

  • Jim H
    Jim H

    Yes, bcuz race car. Nuff said.

  • Brian Swille
    Brian Swille

    02:37 what car is that engine bay from? Those, what I presume are, strut towers...look beefy AF