The American Petroleum Institute, or API, is a national trade organization that oversees and represents all the aspects of the oil and natural gas industry in the United States. It sets forth API standards for these industries.
For many years, this organization has developed API standards for petroleum equipment and operating standards. This organization has more than 500 API standards covering recommended practices and compliance with industry standards.
Engine oil marketers often use these standards, as well as the licensing and certification programs that signify that their oil meets specific API standards and quality levels.
In addition to following API standards, there are other standard that motor oil suppliers follow. As you know motor oil performs many functions, including ensure that your engine starts easily, lubricating engine parts, reducing friction, keeping engine parts clean by protecting against rust and corrosion, minimize combustion chamber deposits, cooling engine parts, and more.
API standards also outline SAE viscosity gradings. The gradings include, from low to high, 0, 5, 10, 15, 20, 35, 30, 40, 50, or 60. Some of these gradings are suffixed with the letter “W” indicating the winter or cold start viscosity. Often, this “W” is mistakenly thought to stand for “weight”.
API standards also cover recycling and proper disposal of motor oil. Many people do not know that oil does not wear out, it just becomes dirty and should be recycled or disposed of properly. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, 200 million gallons of used oil are improperly disposed of each year, which adversely affects the environment.
It takes 42 gallons of crude oil to produce 2.5 quarts of new, high quality lubricating oil. On the other hand, recycling one gallon of used oil will produce the same amount of oil.
When considering the best motor oil for your car or the best oil change places, you should consider the API standards that cover motor oil. You want to make sure that your motor oil meets these API standards so that it can perform well in your car. Additional, make sure your oil change locations are properly disposing of used motor oil under the API standards.