Best Oil for High Mileage 5.3 Vortec

A huge powerful engine such as the 5.3 Vortec engine can be a lot of fun. However, it needs regular maintenance, especially in the oil department. The following is a guide on the best oil for your 5.3 V8 engine.

The 5.3 Vortec engine is a large high mileage engine found in Chevy Silverado trucks. It is the engine that supplies Silverado truck with all so much raw power and torque perfect for towing. As a high mileage engine, it requires the right type of oil for maintenance. With regular or standard oil, the engine would fail and this is why it’s important to use the right oil. After consulting multiple mechanics, car professionals and mechanic forums, we were able to select the top oils for high mileage engines. The following are the best oils for high mileage 5.3 Vortec engines.

List of Best Oil for High Mileage 5.3 Vortec


Top features


Royal Purple SAE 5W 30 High Mileage

Reduces engine wear and tear

Protects gaskets

Reduces oil consumption

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Mobil 5W 30 High Mileage Motor Oil


Protects against clogs

Great for high or low temperature

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Castrol GTX High Mileage

Suitable for old trucks

Protects against oxidation

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Valvoline High Mileage SAE 5W 30

Cleaning agent

Seal conditioner

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Pennzoil Platinum High Mileage Synthetic

Prevents leaks

Ideal for high mileage vehicles

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Royal Purple SAE 30 High Mileage

Royal Purple Brand is known for its high quality engine products and the SAE upholds this reputation. This is because the Royal Purple SAE 5W is one of the most highly recommended oil for high mileage engines. Furthermore, it meets the 5W-30 oil viscosity requirements for the 5.3 Vortec engine. To achieve this, the oil is made from zinc ad phosphorus additives that also serve as an anti-wear and tear compound.

The oil is best known for reducing the rate of wear and tear in old engines and therefore restoring performance. Additionally, it helps the engine resist oxidation that improves overall durability of the engine. The Royal Purple oil also assist in preventing leaks. It does this by swelling the oil gaskets and reinforcing the hardened seals and gaskets. In turn, this reduces friction and significantly improves the engine performance as well as reducing oil consumption in the process.


  • Reduces engine wear and tear
  • Minimizes leaks
  • Protects seals and gaskets
  • Reduces oxidation in the engine improving durability
  • Lasts for many miles


  • Not the best for very low temperature areas

Mobil 5W 30 High Mileage Motor Oil

The Mobil 5W 30 oil is one of the most popular High Mileage oils. What makes this product so unique is that it is synthetic. However, there is also a non-synthetic version that is not recommended for 5.3 Vortec engines. The reason for this oil’s high popularity is because it is the recommended oil by the manufacturer of the 5.3 liter Vortec Chevy Silverado. There are a few reasons why it is so highly rated. First, being synthetic, it serves as a great lubricant hence reducing wear and tear in the engine. This property also means protection against buildups ad clogs. On top of this, the oil has very high melting points and low freezing points making it ideal for extreme temperatures. With that, it is also our top pick. The following are its pros and cons


  • Serves as lubrication reducing wear and tear
  • Works well in extreme temperature conditions
  • Helps maintain great fuel economy
  • Prevents buildups and clogging in moving parts of the engine


  • Slightly expensive

Castrol GTX High Mileage

Another highly reputable product on our list is the Castrol GTX 5W 30 Motor oil. It is a high mileage oil that is designed for vehicles with over 75000 miles on them. The product is recommended for 5.3 Vortec engine as it meets the 5W-30 Silverado oil requirements. However, there’s also a 5W-20 version for less older engines. The Castrol Oil comes with several features that make it ideal for high mileage trucks. For instance, it uses a phosphorus replacement technology that prevents buildups and clogging in the catalytic converter. In addition, there are several additives that protect old gaskets and seals and consequently preventing leaks from occurring. This maximizes efficiency in the engine and improves the performance of the vehicle


  • Comes in two viscosity ratings: 5W-30 and 5W-20
  • Recommended for very old trucks
  • Prevents oxidation
  • Prevents sludge buildups and leaks
  • Minimizes oil consumption


  • Does not improve engine power
  • Not wholly synthetic

Valvoline High Mileage SAE 5W 30

Our fourth selection is another SAE 5W high mileage motor perfect for 5.3 Vortec Silverado engines. Unlike others, this comes in five viscosity ratings including: 10W-30, 10W-40, 20W-50, 5W-30 and 5W-20. This product is made from MaxLife Technology which helps in rejuvenating old seals and gaskets in old engines to prevent leaking. Furthermore, it also comes with wear and tear protection. But the perhaps its most unique feature is the detergent compound that helps clean the engine and prevent the buildup of oil sludge and leaks.

Valvoline High Mileage SAE comes in a 5 Quarts plastic bottle with an easy pull tab and a precise pouring spout that ensures no drop goes to waste.


  • Great for vehicles with over 75000 miles
  • Acts as a cleaning agent
  • Prevents clogging and buildups
  • Multiple viscousity ratings for different engines
  • Seal conditioner


  • Bottle may leak

Pennzoil Platinum High Mileage Synthetic 5W-30 Motor Oil

If you’re looking for a budget friendly product for your engine truck, the Pennzoil Platinum 5W-30 Motor Oil might be just the right choice for you. This high mileage oil works well with engines with over 75000 miles on them. It also meets the required oil viscosity for 5.3 liter Vortec engines. Moreover, the product contains cleaning compounds that keep pistons 40% cleaner than other motor oils. Pennzoil Platinum is also great in very high or low temperatures meaning you don’t need to worry about seasonal changes. Using PurePlus gas to liquid technology, the oil improves engine performance. However, the oil isn’t just for old trucks, it is recommended for modern sports cars since it helps protects the effects of low speed pre-ignition in turbo charged engines. Lastly, Pennzoil conditions cracked seals to prevent leaking and burn offs.


  • Prevents leaks and clogging
  • Suitable for extreme temperature conditions
  • Great for high mileage vehicles
  • Seal and gaskets conditioner
  • Prevents loss of power in engines


  • The oil burn off isn’t that great
  • Does not improve fuel economy

Buying guide for the best high mileage oil for 5.3 liter Vortec engines

When choosing a motor oil for your 5.3 liter Vortec engine, there are a few consideratins to always keep in mind. This help you pick the best oil for your vehicle.

Oil Viscosity Ratings

Different motor oils come with different viscosity ratings depending on the type of engine they are made for. Some ratings you’ll see on motor oil bottles include: 0W-30, 10W-40, 20W-50, 5W-30, and 5W-20, among others. However, the 5.3 liter Vortec engine in the Chevy Silverado requires oil with a rating of 5W-30. To understand what this means, we’ll break it down for you. The digit before the ‘W’ is the lowest temperature the oil can work without thickening. The ‘30’ stands for the maximum operational temperature the oil is recommended for. Some Silverados may allow other oil such as 5W-20. This is why it is important to always consult your mechanic or any other car expert before choosing oil for your truck.

Vehicle Weight and Capacity

Cars vary in size and weight depending on the model year. The Chevy Silverado older models may require more oil than newer models. For instance, the 2019 model needs 6.02 US quarts of oil which is one whole bottle. But older models from 2015 require up to 8 quarts. This is because they are larger, heavier and have less efficient engines than new models. Once again, always consult with your mechanic before putting any oil into your engine.

Frequency of oil changes

Another important consideration when choosing motor oil for a 5.3 liter Vortec engine is how often you change the oil. Chevrolet recommends that oil is changed at least once each year or every 7500 miles – whichever comes first. However, this sometimes depends on the kind of oil you are using for your truck. Some engine oils are made to last 5000 miles while others may last up to 12000 miles. Ensure you always know how long the oil lasts before buying. This will help you avoid all the effects of spoilt or bad oil inside your engine.

Synthetic vs blended oil

There are two major kinds of oil: synthetic and blended oil. For the Silverado engine, fully synthetic oil is recommended for use. Although blended oil may work, it is not great for engine and may eventually lead to serious engine damage. With synthetic oil, your engine enjoys great benefits such as cleaning, rejuvenated seals and gaskets, minimized leaks and clogging among others. Therefore, fully synthetic oil is the best for your 5.3 Liter engine.

How to change oil on your 5.3L Vortec engine

Find the Filter and Drain Pipe

In large trucks like the Silverado, reaching the drain pipe is relatively easy. Start by jacking the vehicle up and support with a jack stand. Ensure the stand is strongly properly supporting the truck. As the car is hoisted, place a cardboard underneath on the floor before lying down on it. This ensure you’re insulated from the cold floor as well as preventing oil leaks from staining the floor.

Remove the Oil fFlter

While lying on the ground, you will be able to see the oil filter. Remove the oil filter before draining the oil to eliminate the possibility of dropping it into the oil pan full of oil. Place a drain pan beneath the oil filter. Loosen the filter by turning it anticlockwise. Once the seal breaks, oil will run down the sides of the filter. Let it drain for a few minutes and finish unscrewing the filter. After this, clean the oil filter seals and ensure there is no dirt while installing the new filter

Install the new Oil Filter

Use clean motor oil to lubricate the filter rubber seal. By doing this, you ensure there’s a good seal between the filter and engine. Furthemore, it minimizes the chance of damaging the seal. To install the new filter, screw it on clockwise and ensure it is hand tight. Do not use the wrench to tighten the filter. It’s also important to ensure you use the right oil filter for the Silverado such as the Fram XG10060.

Drain the engine oil pan

Place the pan under the drain plug and ensure you remove the old oil filter before draining the engine. This makes cleaning and filter disposal simpler. Now, using the wrench, break the drain plug loose. Once loose, you can screw it out by hand. Allow the oil to drain fully into the pan. Once the oil is well-drained (about one drip every 10 seconds), clean the threads before putting back the plug. Once clean, reinstall the plug tightly. With everything all done under the car, remove the tools and lower the car to the ground.

Add Fresh Oil to the Engine

Now that the oil filter is replaced, it’s time to add new oil to the vehicle. Consult the owner’s manual or your mechanic on the best oil for your Silverado. Any of the motor oil mentioned above will be suitable for your 5.3 liter Vortec engine. Use a funnel while adding the oil to minimize waste through spilling.

Here is video on how to change oil.


What type of oil does the Silverado take?

The Chevy Silverado uses a 5.3 Liter Vortec engine. This means it requires synthetic oil with a viscosity rating of 5W-30

How much oil does the Silverado need?

Depending on the model year, the engine on the Silverado requires between 6 and 8.5 US Quarts of oil

How frequently should I change my oil?

It depends. Some engine oils are made to last 5000 miles while others may last up to 12000 miles


Now that you have the best oils for your high mileage 5.3 liter engine, you can easily pick the one that checks all you boxes. All the motor oils above are however guaranteed to work well with your old Chevy truck.

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