5 Best Oils For Duramax Reviews

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It’s that time of the year again that you have to change the oil on your vehicle. You visited the market and were bombarded with recommendations from tens of manufacturers.

Now, you need someone to guide you to avoid all the wrong products. Or else the probable chance is that you will end up getting the wrong oil which will cause issues for your engine.

This is common the case with owners of Chevrolet and GMC vehicles with Duramax engines.

That is why I have compiled a list of the best oils for Duramax, which are guaranteed to work perfectly for your vehicles.

So let’s not waste any time and get straight into it!

5 Top Rated Motor Oils For Duramax Comparisons

Shell Rotella T6 Full Synthetic Engine Oil

Shell Rotella T6 Full Synthetic Engine Oil

Amsoil SAE 15W-40 Heavy Duty Diesel And Marine Motor Oil

Amsoil SAE 15W-40 Heavy Duty Diesel And Marine Motor Oil

Mobil 1 Super 96819 15W-40 Motor Oil

Mobil 1 Super 96819 15W-40 Motor Oil

Royal Purple 04154 Oil

Royal Purple 04154 Oil

AmazonBasics Full Synthetic Motor Oil

AmazonBasics Full Synthetic Motor Oil


1. Shell Rotella T6 Full Synthetic Engine Oil

Shell Rotella T6 Full Synthetic Engine Oil
$70.41 ($0.18 / Fl Oz)
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11/10/2023 02:13 am GMT

Earning the top spot with over 6000 ratings is the Rotella T6 Full Synthetic Engine Oil by Shell.

I have checked out this one before, and it earned second place on that article. It is an excellent option for vehicles that run on diesel.

The first thing I want to mention is the improvement in fuel economy by using this product. Yes, you read that right; this one allows you to get better fuel efficiency when you use it.

Now, the difference is not a lot, but 1.5% is still better than nothing. So you can get better consumption just by changing the vehicle’s oil says a lot about its performance.

The oil uses a Triple Protection Plus formula which combines both the base oils and the special additives to give your engine a longer lifespan and an overall healthy life.

Now, I know you must be thinking that I am referring to the engine’s health like a human being.

However, the reality is the engine needs a lot of care to make sure it performs in an excellent manner. The special additive technology is a dream comes true for off-roaders.

If you are worried about dust and debris lessening your oil’s effectiveness, you can relax.

Those effects are reduced, so your engine does not suffer, and nor do you have to compromise on your activities.

The same additives also help reduce the formation of deposits which prevents the engine from using its resources efficiently.

Buyers commonly reported that they received bottles that were leaking when they arrived.

This causes inconvenience, and getting a refund for shipping mishaps is quite difficult to get. Shell needs to address this problem, so more consumers don’t face this issue.

  • Triple Protection Plus formula
  • Reduces the effect of dust and contaminants
  • Less chance of deposit protection
  • Better fuel consumption
  • Leaking when arrived

Nothing is perfect. It can be close, but something is always left behind. Shell has created a fantastic product that has left buyers nothing short of impressed.

Well, this applies to those who got their bottles intact.

2. Amsoil SAE 15W-40 Heavy Duty Diesel And Marine Motor Oil

Amsoil SAE 15W-40 Heavy Duty Diesel And Marine Motor Oil

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Coming in at a very close second is the motor oil by Amsoil. This is yet another product which has been written upon by me.

This product has been designed for both on-road and off-road applications, making the ultimate choice for those who like to do both.

The most important feature of this product is that it extends your drain intervals by quite a lot. This is possible due to a variety of reasons.

First, the formula combined with their in-house additives allows engine protection and cleanliness.

Second, the most common reason people have to change oils quicker than usual is soot. Soot particles combine to form deposits that cause wear on the engine.

This also controls the viscosity, hence prolonging the lifespan of the oil. This oil is also perfect for people who live or frequently travel in colder climates.

It can work flawlessly in temperatures as low as -44-degrees Fahrenheit. So, you won’t have to worry about starting problems in exceedingly low temperatures.

Another thing this one does is it reduces emissions from your engine. Due to this product’s lower volatile nature, it is consumed less and produces less by-product.

Highly volatile oils pass vapors into the combustion chamber, which produces toxic gases. Plus, you also get to feel good about reducing your impact on air pollution.

If you want the maximum drain interval from this product, then make sure to use it in unmodified vehicles.

Whether you have used a tuner or have done some performance enhancements, they will affect the oil’s ability to provide you with maximum performance.

Buyers were generally satisfied with this one. There were no shipping mishaps or anything that may have compromised the driving experience of users’ vehicles.
  • Extended drain interval
  • Reduced emissions
  • Controls effect of soot
  • Works in low temperatures
  • None

You can buy this oil with complete peace of mind that it won’t cause you any issues. Amsoil has left me impressed with this one.

I hope the same can be said for you if you choose to order it for your vehicle.

3. Mobil 1 Super 96819 15W-40 Motor Oil

Mobil 1 Super 96819 15W-40 Motor Oil
$75.00 ($0.15 / Fl Oz)

We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
11/10/2023 05:43 pm GMT

Coming in third place is the 96819 15W-40 Motor Oil by Mobil 1, another highly regarded manufacturer worldwide.

Their product lineup covers most engines and is by far one of the excellent on the market.

This product uses a synthetic blend formula instead of being purely synthetic. It has its benefits, which I will detail in the next paragraph.

The manufacturer states that these oils meet and can even exceed OEM requirements. What this means is that it performs better than stock oil, in all regards.

It has been designed to be used with all sorts of diesel engines, whether old or new. So, unsurprisingly, it has no compatibility issues with the Duramax engine.

So whether you use your vehicle for on-road or off-road purposes, this one is perfect for any scenario.

The optimized base oil technology has the perfect combination of stock oils and additives, which allow the oil to have an extended drain time of up to 50% than OEM recommendations.

The same formula also allows the oil to reduce wear on the engine, prolonging its lifespan too. You are also getting rust control.

Oxidation is one of the main reasons for engines to give up quicker than they should and why oil tends to get dirty even with oil filters.

You don’t have to worry about that anymore. Due to the lower viscosity of the oil, it can easily be used in low-temperature environments.

You won’t have to worry about your engine having starting difficulties after leaving the vehicle out in the cold for several hours.

I don’t know why the brand does this, but they ship out the order in parts.

So you have to wait for other bottles to arrive so you can complete the changing process. Mobil 1 should look into this issue, so customers don’t have to experience that again.

  • Synthetic blend
  • 50% longer extended drain time
  • Reduces risk of oxidation
  • It can be used in cold environments
  • Order shipped in parts

If only the company had fixed its shipping issues, it easily would have scored the top spot on this article.

4. Royal Purple 04154 Oil

Royal Purple 04154 Oil
$35.99 ($0.28 / Ounce)

We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
11/10/2023 02:18 pm GMT

With almost 500 ratings, arriving in fourth place is a product by the brand Royal Purple.

Again, this is the second time I am writing on one of their products; for one reason, they are excellent at what they do.

The oil has been manufactured to squeeze every bit of performance from your engine.

Combining premium oils with the company’s additives makes the oil the ultimate tool to protect your engine while giving you the performance boost you need.

In addition, the same additives prevent metal-to-metal contact, which reduces friction. Less friction automatically means better fuel efficiency.

The saving in fuel provided by this 5W-30 oil meets the recommended requirement of a 5W-20 one. That is insanely impressive.

They also prevent the formation of sludge that is a common issue with oils that have alcohol content higher than 20%.

The brand also states that during their extensive testing, there were no signs of rust at all, which is also a major plus.

They also suggest changing the oil every 3000/5000-mile mark to reduce the chance of formation of deposits.

Although it can be used for a longer period, it is still better to change them at the recommended drain interval.

Choosing a synthetic oil comes with many questions, some of which I have answered in the buying guide at the end of this article.

The most common one is if this type of oil can cause leaking. The brand has answered this question itself and states that it is not possible.

But the removal of deposits may expose damaged seals, which may then leak.

Some buyers had issues with the product, such as receiving an incomplete package or a leaking one.

So the same is the case with Royal Purple that they need to improve their shipping standards so that buyers won’t face these issues.

  • No sludge formation
  • Zero rusting
  • Less friction
  • Improved fuel efficiency
  • Incomplete package
  • Leaking when arrived

If you disregard the shipping problems, the oil is a superior product that will keep you and your engine satisfied for a long time.

5. AmazonBasics Full Synthetic Motor Oil

AmazonBasics Full Synthetic Motor Oil
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Whoa! I had to read the number of ratings twice of this motor oil by Amazon.

This full synthetic motor oil has a whopping 18000 ratings; most of them give a solid five stars to the product. But as you will see, a number of ratings are not everything.

Being an Amazon product, you can be sure that it will be of the highest quality at an affordable rate. You get all the goodies you would expect from decent oil.

It has an excellent performance in both types of engines, one used for everyday tasks and one that is used to rack up mileage.

The oil has been API certified, meaning it has been checked thoroughly to make sure it is perfect for everyday use.

If you are one of those whose engine’s performance went down at your previous oil change, then this one will bring it back.

It also applies itself to small cracks, which then reduces the oil interval. It is also perfect for people who want lesser emissions.

The low viscosity design reduces friction, which in turn improves fuel efficiency. As a result, you may expect a slightly better fuel consumption.

However, it must be kept in mind that such improvement is rarely observable. As I said before, if Amazon creates a product, there is a guarantee that its quality will be good.

Even the bottle used for this oil has been made to make sure oil does not leak during shipping.

In addition, the comfortable to hold handle makes sure that you will add oil to your engine effortlessly.

Buyers noticed strange sounds coming from their vehicles and also reported poor performance after using this one.

This causes inconvenience and should be addressed by the manufacturer ASAP.

  • Low price
  • API certified
  • Better fuel efficiency
  • Nice bottle design
  • Engine issues after installation

This Amazon product should be at the last of your consideration list due to its compatibility issues with various engines.

However, if it works, then you will have a surprisingly pleasant experience.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1. Does GM Recommend Synthetic Oil?

Yes, they do. The manufacturer recommends the latest and greatest type of oil for all diesel-powered vehicles released in 2011 and later.

For older variants, however, it is recommended to use semi-synthetic oil for optimum performance.

The above list mentions one oil that has a synthetic blend design if you have an older vehicle.

Q2. What Is The Best Heavy-Duty Diesel Engine Oil?

I understand that many of readers use their vehicles for heavy-duty purposes such as towing or mining.

And it is completely logical to question if the above options are suitable for such use.

However, with full confidence, I can say that you can use these oils in any scenario without ever having to worry about anything.

Q3. Can I Use 5W-40 With My Duramax?

You ask some difficult to answer questions.

So I searched the internet to make sure if it is suitable, and surprisingly, GM recommends the 5W-40 for vehicles used in temperatures equal to or below 0-degrees Fahrenheit.

It can also be used in the summer, but it is better to use the recommended oil and don’t risk it when not needed.

Q4. How Often Should I Change The Oil On A Duramax?

Due to it being a diesel-powered engine, it is recommended to get an oil change every six months.

This is to ensure there is no deposit formation and the engine remains rust-free and clean.

You can use them for longer intervals, but it is best to follow recommendations to preserve the life of your engine.

The oil filter must be changed too at the same interval because it filters all dust and debris from the oil, keeping it clean.

If you choose not to do this, then you are looking at shorter drain durations.

Q5. Is It Better To Use Thicker Oil On Older Engines?

This is a bit of an odd question. It is common knowledge that lesser viscosity means better performance. Many people asked about this.

Thicker oil will increase wear. If your old Duramax engine has the option for thick oils only, then you should find the least dense out of all of them.

Thinner oil has more advantages too. It flows easier, keeps the engine cooler thanks to its efficient heat dissipation, and lubricates every single part better than thicker options.

So, it’s clear that you should avoid thick oils unless you don’t have any other option.

However, it must be kept in mind that thick oils won’t destroy your engine entirely. They give you better performance, but thin ones outweigh them easily.

Q6. Is Amsoil Good For Duramax?

This is yet another strange question. If a brand could score a spot on this article, buying products from them is worth it.

Oils have different types. Some are meant to give you all the performance you want, while others, like the Amsoil one in this article, are designed to give your engine better health.

An Amsoil oil can be used for up to 25000 miles. This is crazy!

Who wouldn’t want to recommend such an excellent product to others?

Nonetheless, Amsoil is worth buying because it is an excellent choice for the Duramax.


Who makes the most popular motor oil for a Duramax diesel engine

There you have it fellow readers, my compilation of the best oils for Duramax.

I can guarantee you that no matter how much you search, these five options will be recommended by almost everyone.

They are superior to all other offerings from various brands on the market.

But if I have to choose one to recommend to you, I would recommend the Shell Rotella T6, which also earned the first spot on this article.

It is the best thing you can buy for your engine, and you will feel the performance coursing through it.

Regardless of my recommendation, you can choose anyone from the above list; you will be satisfied.