5w30 vs 5w40: Difference and Comparison

5w30 is an engine oil used mainly in diesel engines and patrol. In today’s time, 5w30 is a multi-graded oil ranging from a higher viscosity grade of 30 to a lower viscosity of 5.

Its working viscosity is from 9.3 to 12.5mm2/s.

5w40 is also an engine oil that indicates the weight or viscosity of the engine oil as tested by the society of automotive engineers. 5w40 operating viscosity is 12.5 to 16.3mm2/s.

Key Takeaways

  1. 5W30 and 5W40 are classifications of motor oil based on their viscosity, or resistance to flow, with the numbers and letters representing their performance at different temperatures.
  2. 5W30 motor oil has a lower viscosity at high temperatures than 5W40, providing better fuel efficiency but potentially less protection for high-performance engines under extreme conditions.
  3. Choosing between 5W30 and 5W40 motor oil depends on vehicle specifications, driving conditions, and personal preferences for fuel efficiency versus engine protection.

5w30 vs 5w40

5W-30 oil is widely used in modern vehicles, offering good fuel efficiency, smooth engine performance, and protection against engine wear. It is also ideal for use in colder climates. 5W-40 oil is a popular choice for modern vehicles, providing excellent protection against engine wear and maintaining engine cleanliness.


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5w30 vs 5w40


Comparison Table

Parameter of Comparison5w305w40
Meaning5w30 is engine oil with lower viscosity of 5 and higher viscosity of 30.5w40 is engine oil that indicates the weight and viscosity of the engine. Its lower viscosity is 5, and its higher viscosity is 40.
ThicknessIt has a lower viscosity, so it is thicker5w40 oil is not thicker as it has a higher viscosity.
Temperature5w30 has lower viscosity hence it is suitable to use in hot or lower temperatures.5w40 has higher viscosity hence it is not suitable at all temperatures.
Types of oil5w30 is a multi-graded oil which is suitable to use in lower temperatures.5w40 is the crude oil that can be used in a vehicle with unleaded and leaded gasoline.
Price5w30 is an expensive engine oil as compared to 5w40.5w40 is not expensive engine oil.
AvailabilityIt is rarely available to use.It is always available to use.
Oil flowIt flows oil through the engine very smoothly.It has high pressure, but it has less flow.
Operating viscosityIts working viscosity is from 9.3 to 12.5mm2/s.5w40 operating viscosity is 12.5 to 16.3mm2/s.


What is 5w30?

5w30 is engine oil that has a lower viscosity. The W in 5w30 represents “WINTER”, and the number represents the oil’s viscosity at high temperature.

The Society of Automotive Engineers established a numerical code system for grading engine oil called “SAE” they grade the oil according to its viscosity characteristic. The viscosity of oil changes with the temperature, but the multi-graded oil protects the temperature range.

The number 5 in 5w30 describes the oil’s viscosity at cold temperatures. If the number is lower, the oil will be thinner. Thus it will help to flow in the engine very smoothly, even at a cold temperature.

Number 30 represents how well the oil works at an average operating temperature. 

5w30 is also known as multi-graded oil because under any condition, like hot or cold, it is thin enough to flow at a low temperature and delicate enough to flow at a high temperature.

This oil is mainly used in light-duty petrol and diesel engine. It ranges from lower viscosity of 5 to higher viscosity of 30.

5w30 engine oil differs from others as it has a viscosity of five means less thin at a shallow temperature, and a viscosity of thirty means less viscous at high temperature. It is the most commonly used motor oil, mainly suitable for all vehicles and engine types.


What is 5w40?

5w40 is a motor oil that helps the engine to work smoothly and prevents the moving parts from overheat because of friction. 5w40 transfer heat from the combustion cycle and assist in keeping the engine clean by burning by-product and protecting the engine from oxidation.

The external and internal temperature of the running engine affects how well the motor oil will perform.

The number before W indicates the weight or viscosity of engine oil. The higher the number, the thicker the flow will be in the engine.

The W indicates cold or winter. 5w40 has a lower viscosity of 5, and a higher viscosity is 40.

This is a crude oil that can be used in a vehicle with leaded and unleaded gasoline. The operating viscosity of 5w40 oil is 12.5 to 16.3mm2/s.

5w40 motor oil has a winter viscosity of 5, which means it is less viscous at freezing temperatures. The higher viscosity grade is 40, which means it is just viscous at a high temperature.

This engine oil is mainly from Europeans with gas-powered engines and American diesel pickup trucks.


Main Differences Between 5w30 and 5w40

  1. Both 5w30 and 5w40 are motor oil, but they have different viscosity.
  2. 5w30 works smoothly on the engine as it is thicker. On the other hand, 5w40 is not that much thicker.
  3. 5w30 works smoothly regardless of high and low temperatures. On the other hand, 5w40 works smoothly in cold temperatures.
  4. 5w30 is expensive engine oil, whereas the 5w40 is not costly engine oil.
  5. 5w30 cannot be available everywhere, whereas 5w40 is readily available.
  6. 5w40 has a higher viscosity rate as compared to 5w30.
  7. 5w30 has a lower viscosity rate of five and a higher viscosity rate of thirty. On the other hand, 5w40 has a lower viscosity rate and a higher viscosity rate of forty.
Difference Between 5w30 and 5w40

  1. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301679X11002106
  2. https://www.sae.org/publications/technical-papers/content/2007-01-3539/
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