Difference Between 5w20 and 10w30

Oil plays a vital role in engine performance. There are many types of oil are available in the market.


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5w-20 and 10w-30 are two different kinds of oil used for heavy climates and handle maximum pressure caused by the environment. Both the oil provide many advantages to the engines.

5w-20 vs 10w-30

The difference between 5w-20 and 10w-30 is that 5w-20 is a thinner grade oil. It can heavily work in cold weather. The viscosity of 5w-20 is 5 in cold temperature and 20 in high temperature. On the other hand, 10w-30 is a thicker multi-grade oil. The viscosity of 10w-30 is 10 in cold temperature and 30 in high temperature.

5w 20 vs 10w 30

5w-20 is nothing but a grade oil for winter. The w represents the viscosity of the oil at 0 degrees Fahrenheit. The 5w-20 will perform great at low temperatures.

During winter, the 5w-20 provides better lubrication, and the performance of its low viscosity is an advantage of the engines. The 20 represents the viscosity at high temperatures.

The 5w-20 is thin oil in high temperatures but provides decent lubrication to the engines. It provides better lubrication in normal temperatures. 

The 10w-30 is nothing but multi-graded engine oil. The 10-30 has two different viscosity grades. The w represents the winter viscosity. It works better in colder climates.

The 10w-30 is recommended for colder environments. Engine oil is an important one in vehicles. If you choose the wrong engine oil, then it destroys all the parts of the vehicle.

The number before the w represents the winter viscosity, and the number after the w represents the viscosity at higher temperatures. 

Comparison Table

Parameters of comparison5w-2010w-30
ViscosityLow in 5w-20High in 10w-30
Viscosity index160140
Flashpoint230 degrees Celsius210 degrees Celsius
Suited seasonWinter seasonSummer season
Used forLight duty vehicleHeavy-duty vehicle

What is 5w-20?

5w-20 is nothing but an engine oil with a low viscosity rate. 5w-20 oil is good for vehicles run in low temperatures. The 5w-2o is oil for colder climates.

Gasoline engines with high duty are recommended for 5w-20 oil. The 5w-20 can solve the wear and tear problems. It provides a great flow of oil from the engine to various parts.

It prevents the settlement of dust in the engines. It acts as a protector of gasoline engines. It solves the engine deposits and makes the better performance.

5w-20 is known for great startup. When the vehicle standing cold all night and you cannot start the vehicle, then 5w-20 is the best choice.

It adapts the colder climates and works better during the startup of the vehicle. The oil can freely flow between the oil pan and engine is a great advantage that controls the parts of the vehicles to give better performance.

5w-20 has thin viscosity, which causes less friction and makes a smooth experience for the engine. Due to less friction, the 5w-20 saves energy and gives fuel efficiency.

The 5w-20 produce emissions in fewer amounts which results in greater fuel economy. While driving in the Himalayas, you cannot refill the oil periodically.

Fuel economy is an important feature for colder climates. 5w-20 has greater features in colder climates, and it runs vehicles smoothly.

The 5w-20 oil is available in two different variants. It is available in conventional variants and synthetic variants.

What is 10w-30?

10w-30 refers to engine oil in both temperatures. If the number present before the w is low, then it is good for winter climates, and the number after the w is higher, then it is good for higher temperatures.

It works better in both climates. It is an adaptable oil with many features. For example, 10W-30 motor oil functions like an SAE 10W weight oil under 0°C (32°F), and an SAE 30 oil at 100°C (212°F).

The 10w-30 oil can survive below -13 degrees Fahrenheit and above 86 degrees Fahrenheit. 10w-30 is stable in higher temperatures when compared to 5w-20 oil. It can handle high pressure without causing more friction.

10w-30 is a thicker oil and has the same consistency as grease. The greasy consistency is a needed one that gives lubrication to the engine. 10w-30 is oil for higher temperatures.

It does not work well in colder climates. The primary advantage of the 10w-30 is that it can withstand hotter climates and provide no compromise in quality and performance.

It can also handle heavy-pressure environments. Without thinning out, it can adhere to the engine in hotter climates.

10w-30 is known for heavy-duty engines. Since 10w-30 is a thicker oil it can handle heavy loading capacity. The lubricants present in the oil helps for better lubrication.

It protects the engine from pistons and helps for better flow. 10w-30 prevent damage of engine due to frictions. It provides enough lubrication and prevents frictions.

Main Differences Between 5w-20 and 10w-30

  1. When compared to the viscosity of 5w-20, the viscosity of 10w-30 is higher.
  2. The 5w-20 works from -30 degrees to 35 degrees Celsius, whereas the 10w-30 works from -18 degrees to 30 degrees Celsius.
  3. 5w-20 is thinner in low temperature, whereas 10w-30 is thicker in low temperature.
  4. 5w-20 is known for light duty engine, whereas 10w-30 is known for heavy duty engine.
  5. When compared to 5w-20, 10w-30 has lower flash point.


  1. https://ieeexplore.ieee.org/abstract/document/1234892/
  2. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/05698198308981493
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