Will High Mileage Oil Cause Leaks (2023 – 2024)? What you Need to Know [Explained]

If you’re a car owner, you know that oil changes are a necessary part of maintaining your vehicle.  Keeping things running smoothly requires a little extra boost for older vehicles with higher mileage. Here’s why high-mileage oil is so important.

You can help your car last longer by using high-mileage oil to prevent wear and tear associated with old age.

Will high-mileage oil cause leaks? And did you know that the type of oil you use can actually prevent leaks? These are the common questions that most people are bothered with.

High mileage oil is specifically designed for older vehicles with over 75,000 miles on them. This type of oil contains special additives that help to seal any existing leaks and prevent new ones from forming.

Will High Mileage Oil Cause Leaks?

Gaskets and seals inside the engine become brittle as they age, allowing oil to seep through. Oil stains on a garage floor or driveway can sometimes be seen as a result of this process. 

It is possible for motor oil to leak into combustion chambers when valve-guide seals wear out, and the engine will literally start burning oil. It’s possible that small leaks will not show blue smoke from the exhaust, but your oil level will probably consistently fall below the full mark.

Many high-mileage motor oils contain seal conditioners that rejuvenate seals to their original size and shape, reducing and eliminating small leaks and seepages. You might not be able to justify switching to high-mileage oil unless the engine isn’t leaking or burning oil, or if it uses less than a quart every 6,000 miles or so.

If you have 100,000 miles on your car but use little or no motor oil, then you should pay more for high-performance oil.

The engine doesn’t hurt by using high-mileage motor oil, and it may prevent leaks from developing. An engine should consume some oil between oil changes, according to most vehicle manufacturers.

Older engines require high mileage oil because it contains detergents. The rest is irrelevant. It is unlikely that the cleaning detergents will cause a leak. High-mileage oil can’t cause leaks, but it is not the only factor. Other factors that can contribute to leaks include:

  • Worn or damaged seals and gaskets
  • Age and mileage of the engine
  • Operating conditions (such as excessive heat or cold)

Moreover, degraded engine seals in high-mileage vehicles lead to oil leaks and more oil consumption. The regeneration of degraded seals by high-mileage oil results in a reduction in oil consumption and burn-off. Engine sludge is less likely to accumulate in older engines as a result of other motor oils.

Best High Mileage Motor Oils

Best Overall
Mobil 1 Extended Performance High Mileage Full Synthetic Motor Oil 5W-30

  • Go upto 10,000 miles
  • Outstanding Engine Performance
  • Improved Fuel Economy
Best Overall
Castrol 03102 GTX High Mileage 5W-30 Motor Oil

  • Prevent Deposit Build Up
  • Superior Oil Burn Off Protection
  • Reduce Leaks
Best Overall
Pennzoil Platinum High Mileage Full Synthetic 5W-30 Motor Oil

  • Protection From Friction
  • Protect Engines
  • Pistons upto 45% Cleaner

Every product was carefully curated by an Esquire editor. We may earn a commission from these links.

If you have an older vehicle with high mileage, it is better to have the seals and gaskets inspected regularly. If you notice any leaks, have them repaired as soon as possible to prevent further damage to your engine.

How does High Mileage Oil Work?

It acts like a powerful multivitamin, preventing further wear and tear and restoring worn engine parts.

By expanding and rejuvenating seals, seal conditioners within high mileage oil prevent oil from seeping out. As a result, oil consumption is reduced, resulting in fewer oil changes and fewer engine problems in the future.

In addition to antioxidants and detergents, high-mileage oils contain additives for reduced wear and friction and all these factors benefit old engines.

High-mileage oils often contain more detergents to clean sludge inside engines plus other additives intended to reduce wear on moving parts in addition to seal conditioners.

Regardless, all motor oils claim to do great things inside engines. As a result, your engine purrs like a kitten while removing grime and sludge naturally built up over time.

The mechanic might also recommend using synthetic oil additives or switching to a thicker (higher viscosity) oil such as 10W-30 full synthetic oil instead of 5W-20 full synthetic oil.

Engines that run on thicker oil have a harder time starting during cold weather. They also circulate less oil around the engine, and they tend to have higher oil pressure, so the oil has to exert more pressure to get past seals and gaskets.

Related Article: Can You Use High Mileage Oil in a New Engine? [Explained]

What are the Risks of using High Mileage Oil in your Car?

If you’re using high-mileage oil in your car, you might be taking a risk. High mileage oil is only designed for cars with over 75,000 miles on them.

It’s a thicker oil that helps protect older engines from leaks and oil burning. However, it might also clog filters and cause oil pressure problems.

If you’re not sure whether high mileage oil is right for your car, consult a mechanic.

What are the Possible Causes of Leaks in an Engine?

There are many possible causes of leaks in an engine. Some of the most common causes include:

  1. Worn or damaged seals or gaskets
  2. Holes or cracks in the engine block or cylinder head
  3. Failed or damaged O-rings
  4. Worn or damaged piston rings
  5. Failed or damaged bearings
  6. Worn or damaged valves

Methods to Prevent Engine Leaks?

There are a few things you can do to prevent engine leaks:

  1. Check your engine oil regularly and top it up if necessary.
  2. If you notice any oil leaks, get them fixed as soon as possible.
  3. Make sure you use the correct type and weight of oil for your engine.
  4. Have your engine regularly serviced and maintained.
  5. If you drive a lot in stop-and-go traffic, have your engine oil changed more frequently.
  6. Avoid using engine oils that contain additives, as they can increase the risk of leaks.
  7. Store your car in a cool, dry place to prevent engine oil from breaking down.

What are the Benefits of using High Mileage Oil?

Here’s a look at the benefits of high-mileage oil:

  1. It can help extend the life of your engine. As your car gets older, the engine begins to wear down. This is due to the build-up of deposits and sludge, which can cause parts to malfunction or even fail. High mileage oil is formulated to protect against this build-up, helping to keep your engine clean and running smoothly for longer.
  2. It can improve fuel economy. A clean engine is a more efficient engine, and that means better fuel economy. Over time, the savings can really add up!
  3. It can help reduce emissions. Dirty engines produce more harmful emissions.

So if you’re looking to keep your car in tip-top shape, be sure to use high-mileage oil the next time you change your oil. It could just save you from a costly repair down the road.


1. Can high mileage oil damage your engine?

In addition to preventing aging seals and gaskets from becoming brittle and leaking, high mileage oil also prevents oil stains from appearing on the pavement where the car is parked. Oil consumption can increase and engine damage can occur as a result.

2. Should I use high-mileage oil if I have no leaks?

Engine oils designed for high-mileage engines are designed for engines with more than 60, 80, or 150,000 miles beyond their warranties. If you notice a leak or rattling, use it.

3. Is high-mileage oil really worth it?

The oil that is specifically formulated for older engines may seem overkill at first, but it will pay off in the long run. Oil additives in high-mileage oils provide a variety of benefits to keep your engine running efficiently and reliably.

4. What is the most common cause of oil leaks?

A degraded engine gasket, a leak from the oil pan, or worn-out seals are common causes of oil leaks. The oil pan drain plug can also be loose or missing, or the valve cover gasket can deteriorate.

5. Should I use high-mileage oil or synthetic oil?

Vehicles with over 75,000 miles require high-mileage oil. Seals are protected by additives in such oils. As a result, old cars are less likely to leak oil and burn off oil. If your vehicle is a high-mileage and high performance, it’s suggested that you go with this type of synthetic oil.

6. What is high-mileage oil?

High mileage oil is a type of motor oil designed for vehicles with over 75,000 miles on the odometer. It contains additives that help reduce oil consumption, seal leaks, and protect aging engine components.

7. Can high-mileage oil fix existing leaks in my engine?

High mileage oil may help slow down or even stop minor leaks in your engine by conditioning the seals. However, it cannot repair significant leaks caused by damaged or worn-out components.

8. How often should I change my high-mileage oil?

The frequency of oil changes for high mileage oil is similar to that of conventional or synthetic blend oil, typically every 5,000 to 7,500 miles or six months, whichever comes first. However, it’s always best to consult your owner’s manual or a certified mechanic for specific recommendations.

9. Can I use high-mileage oil in a vehicle with low mileage?

Yes, you can use high-mileage oil in a vehicle with low mileage. However, it may not provide any additional benefits compared to conventional or synthetic blend oil, and it may be more expensive.

10. Can I switch back to conventional oil after using high-mileage oil?

Yes, you can switch back to conventional oil after using high-mileage oil. However, it’s best to consult your owner’s manual or a certified mechanic for specific recommendations on the type of oil to use in your vehicle.


Based on the information gathered, it seems that high-mileage oil will not cause leaks. However, it is important to keep an eye on your oil level and check for leaks regularly. If you do notice a leak, it is important to get it fixed as soon as possible to avoid any further damage to your engine.

Leave a Comment