Is 10W 30 Thicker Than 5W 30? Answering in Detail

“Is 10W 30 Thicker Than 5W 30?” is a common question among both beginner and knowledgeable car owners. When it comes to engine oil changes, people like to stick to the option recommended by the car manufacturer.

Is 10w 30 Thicker than 5w 30

On the other hand, people who take their car to professionals don’t know that there are different types of motor oils. Among the different types of oils available are the 5W30 and 10W30, and we’ll compare them in this guide to help you select one according to your vehicle needs.

Features 5W30 10W30
Temperature Maintains viscosity over a wider temperature range of -31 to 95 degrees Fahrenheit Maintains viscosity over a smaller temperature range of 3.2 to 86 degrees Fahrenheit
Type of Vehicle Perfect for use on diesel and light-duty petrol vehicles Ideal for heavy-duty vehicles like buses, older cars, or trucks
Efficiency Their efficiency at reaching different engine parts is higher because of their lower viscosity They cannot effectively reach all engine parts because of their higher viscosity
Ideal Use The engine oil is designed to work better during winters or in lower temperature conditions The engine oil is designed to work better in summer seasons or at higher temperature conditions
Meaning A viscosity fuel that lubricates over a wider temperature range A viscosity oil that lubricates over a smaller temperature range

What Are the Main Differences Between 5W30 and 10W30?

The main difference between 5W30 and 10W30 is that the tolerance of 5W30 to cold temperatures is higher than that of 10W30, which makes it a better option for regions that experience harsh and long winters. 10W30, on the other hand, is thicker during winter seasons.

Both oils maintain the same thickness under warm weather conditions, and despite being multi-grade oils, they differ in many areas.

– Viscosity Rating

The ratings of motor oil are mostly determined by the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE). 5W30 and 10W30 have different viscosity ratings, and it’s worth noting that W represents the winter rating of the oil. This implies that the viscosity rating of 5W30 is lower than that of 10W30, and it’s a thinner oil when subjected to lower temperature conditions.

However, a key and major thing to note is that when subjected to warmer temperature conditions, the viscosity rating of the two engine oils is similar. This implies that there aren’t many differences between the two oils under higher temperature conditions, and they can be used interchangeably.

– Lubrication

The ideal choice of engine oil for most passenger vehicles is the 5W30 oil, and this is because of its lubricating ability. For these types of vehicles, there’s no need to use thicker motor oils. On the other hand, 10W30 becomes thicker even before the oil reaches normal temperature, which makes it an ideal option for heavy-duty engines and commercial vehicles.

– Performance

The viscosity rating of the two oils is a factor that influences the performance of both oils. However, the SAE rating of the two oils is similar, which implies that they will perform to the same extent at the normal operating temperatures of most engines.

The main distinguishing feature in their performance lies in the fact that 10W30 becomes thicker at a faster rate when used in colder temperatures. This makes 5W30 oil the better option to use in colder regions.

– Ideal Environment

The area you live in is a key factor that can influence the type of oil you use in your vehicle. 5W30 and 10W30 are both multigrade oils, but the ideal option for people living in regions with sub-zero temperatures is the 5W30 oil.

The performance is generally better in winter, but there aren’t many differences when the engine gets warmed up. On the other hand, 10W30 offers a better flow in hotter regions.

– Suitable Vehicle Types

For emphasis, it’s important to recognize that the two oil types are designed for different types of vehicles. Before you buy any of the two oils, it’s important to know the vehicles they are suited for. 5W30 is better suited for diesel engines, light-duty petrol engines, and private cars since it offers a better cold start than 10W30.

On the other hand, you’ll enjoy better lubricating ability with the 10W30 oil if you use it for heavy-duty engines and commercial cars. Even though it’s a multigrade oil that works fine in cold temperatures, it’s designed particularly for warmer weather.

– Oil for Winter

5W30, being the thinner oil, is the ideal option to use in cold climates because of its lower viscosity at cold temperatures. Always check for the manufacturer’s recommendations before you switch oils during winter and summer.

– Oil for Summer

At higher temperatures, both oils have similar viscosities. However, 10W30 is the preferred option to use during summer. For emphasis, always switch oils based on the manufacturer’s recommendations.

– Overall

With the differences mentioned above, the 5W30 oil is more efficient and less viscous than the 10W30 motor oil. 5W30 is a thinner oil with an impressive ability to reach different engine parts. They are both SAE named and approved oil, with ‘5’ and ‘10’ representing their viscosity. This indicates that 10W30 is a thicker oil than 5W30.

However, it’s important to note that being a thicker oil doesn’t make it a better oil. It’s only a factor that influences the temperature at which the oil will perform with a higher level of efficiency. In this case, 10W30 being the thicker oil, will perform better in hot weather conditions, while 5W30 takes the lead in cold weather conditions.

What Are 5W30’s Characteristics and Specifications?

The 5W30’s characteristics and specifications include a higher tolerance when operating in colder weather conditions. It is a multigrade oil and the ideal option for light-duty and passenger vehicles. Also, the tolerance of the oil is spread across a wider range of temperatures, which increases its applications.

Specialties and Qualities of 5W30 Engine Oil

5W30 is a lubricant oil that is widely used for different vehicles, and it’s also known as SAE 5W30. The Society of Automotive Engineering assigned the name and numbering of the oil, and it describes the primary features of the oil. This includes suitable weather, thickness, and viscosity of the oil.

In the case of 5W30, 5 represents the viscosity of the oil, and it’s important to note that 1 is the lowest viscosity. Therefore, the oil is viscous enough to be applied to commercial engines. Because of the ability of the oil to operate in extremely cold temperatures, it is assigned W, which indicates the weather. 5W30 oils are most suited for winter weather conditions.

What Are 10W30’s Characteristics and Specifications?

The 10W30’s characteristics and specifications include a higher thickness in cold weather conditions but a more improved flow in hotter temperatures. 10W30 oil is also a great oil for high-mileage engines, and this is because of the thickness of the oil.

Specifications and Features of 10W30 Engine Oil

10W30 oil is also a type of lubricant that is widely used in different vehicles, and this is because it was named and approved by SAE. Like other SAE oils, every character in the name has a meaning. For 10W30, 10 represents the viscosity of the oil, implying that it’s thicker and more viscous than 5W30. Therefore, it’s better suited for use on commercial vehicles.

The oil is also an ideal option for trucks and vehicles that perform heavy-duty tasks. However, it’s important to note that the viscosity of this oil reduces with increasing temperature, which allows it to perform better in hotter climates. 10W30 is the ideal oil to use during summer or if you live in areas with hot temperatures because of its ability to become thin and effectively lubricate all parts of your engine.


There aren’t many differences between 5W30 and 10W30 oil, which makes it easier for vehicle owners to switch between the two oils. However, it’s always good to know what your vehicle manufacturer recommends before switching between the two oils. Choosing an ideal oil for your vehicle should be based on oil consumption needs, climate, and location.

Consider choosing the 5W30 oil if you live in cold climates because its viscosity is better in cold conditions. On the other hand, 10W30 is the better option for people living in regions with constantly high temperatures, as the oil flows better under these conditions.

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