The best 5W30 engine oil

5W30 engine oil is a popular choice for a reason, read our guide to find the perfect one for you.

Engine oil being poured into an engine

by Ryan Gilmore |

There are plenty of different engine oils available, but 5W30 is a clear favourite. Designed for use in both cool and warmer weather, 5W30 engine oil is perfect for the British climate and is preferred by the majority of modern vehicle manufacturers. Whilst they all do the same primary job (lubricating your engine's internals), most oils offer different additives to help your car in a variety of ways.

We've put together a list of the best 5W30 engine oils so you'll be sure to find the one that suits your vehicular needs.

Castrol Edge 5W30 engine oil

A brilliant all-round option
Castrol Edge 5W30 engine oil
Amazon

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This 5W30 engine oil does everything you'd want a good engine oil to do. It protects the internals of your engine, it helps improve efficiency and it helps the engine perform better. It also doesn't cost the Earth, which makes it an excellent choice overall.

Pros:

Keeps your engine in top order

Fully synthetic

Cons:

Small price premium over other 5W30 oils

Castrol Magnatec Stop-Start 5W30

Protect your engine
Castrol Magnatec Stop-Start 5W30

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If you're used to traffic jams and stop-start driving, then this 5W30 oil from Castrol is a brilliant way to protect your engine. Stop-start driving can wear engine components out so this Magnatec oil is formulated to offer extra protection and lubrication, saving your engine from damage.

Pros:

Perfect for commuters

Keep your engine safe from damage

Recommended by several car manufacturers

Cons:

Not optimised for long-distance driving (it'll still keep your engine protected, however.)

Triple QX 5W30 oil

Boost your fuel economy
Triple QX 5W30 oil

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One of the easiest ways to boost fuel economy is to upgrade your engine oil. This offering from Triple QX is designed to help your mpg figure climb by removing combustion residue and offering improved lubrication of your engine components, making them more efficient.

Pros:

Lower fuel consumption

Helps avoid engine corrosion

Cons:

It's expensive

AmazonBasics 5W30 engine oil

Best budget option
AmazonBasics 5W30 engine oil
Amazon

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If you want a 5W30 engine oil but don't want to splash out on a premium offering, then this option from AmazonBasics is a good shout. It will still lubricate your car's engine and help fuel economy without the premium price point.

Pros:

Will keep your engine working

Good value option

Cons:

The semi-synthetic blend is not as refined as other offerings

Shell Helix 5W-30

Keep your emissions low
Shell Helix 5W-30

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Who thinks about their exhaust when buying oil? It's not the first thing we consider, but it's something we should. Without proper lubrication, build-ups can occur that reduce engine power. Shell Helix Ultra is designed to stop this build-up as well as help exhaust catalysts and diesel particulate filters.

Pros:

Improve your fuel economy

Protect your exhaust from buildup

Cons:

Expensive option

GADLANE 5L 5w30 Engine Oil

Great for reducing sulphur and phosphorus levels
GADLANE 5L 5w30
Amazon

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This 5W30 oil from Gadlane offers great performance for a reasonable price tag. The low evaporation prevents excessive oil consumption, meaning longer trips between top-ups, while resistance to thermal breakdown and wear will keep your engine healthy for longer.

Pros:

Helps reduce sulphur and phosphorus levels u2013 extending the life of emission control systems

Petrol and diesel compatibility

Cons:

Expensive in comparison to some other 5w30 engine oils

Choosing the right 5W30 engine oil:

Semi or fully synthetic?

Most 5W30 engine oils are either semi or fully synthetic. This means that at least part of the oil's construction is artificially designed in a lab. The main benefit of synthetic is better refinement than natural oils, but there is an added cost associated with synthetic oils. Fully synthetic engine oil will perform the best, but will inevitably cost more.

Semi-synthetic options blend both natural and synthetic together. The benefit to this is that it still offers good refinement but is cheaper to buy.

When to add oil to your engine

The most obvious time to add oil is when the oil lamp-shaped dashboard light comes on. In this situation, you need to do it ASAP or you'll risk expensive damage to your engine.

However, it's a good idea to regularly check your oil levels even if your car indicates everything is ok, just to keep your car in the best possible condition. To check your oil levels, you need to make sure your car's engine is switched off and wait five or so minutes for the oil to settle. Make sure your car is parked on flat ground or you won't get an accurate reading.

Remove your car's dipstick (found under the bonnet) and clean it with a dry cloth. Reinsert it and remove it once more. The amount of oil in your engine will be clearly displayed

There will be two markings on your dipstick; one for the full and the other for the minimum oil level. A healthy reading will be somewhere between the two of these. If your oil level is near the minimum reading, then it's time to top your oil levels up.

How to add oil to your engine

Before adding oil, make sure that your engine will accept the oil. Check the user manual to see what oil your engine needs. If your car is in need of a top-up and you have the correct oil, then look under the bonnet for the oil filler cap (it will probably say oil or have an oil can illustration on it).

Remove this cap and insert a funnel (even if you have an amazing aim, a funnel will help avoid spillage) before adding oil. Add the oil in small increments so you don't overfill your engine (unless you like massive repair bills). When you think you've added enough, wait for the oil to settle and re-check your oil levels with the dipstick. If you're happy with the levels, remove the funnel and re-attach the oil cap.

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