Re: Best weight oil for 2005 Ford Escape
Even with the warm outside temps there's not much difference in burnoff between 5W20 and 5W30. As long as the engine cooling system maintains temperature there's no worry.
I've been running 5W30 Amsoil full synthetic in my 3.0L 2V Taurus for nearly a decade; change the oil once a year as I'm lucky to put on 16-17K a year and it runs like new. Even now, it's been 14K since last July holiday weekend and isn't due for an oil change until that time this year. The oil is still golden brown as of two days ago when I checked it last. I add about 1 full quart throughout the year for burn off. In 3 or 4K mile oil change intervals you won't notice any burn off.
Ford specified 5W20 for my '99 Taurus. As mentioned, it's primarily for fuel economy reasons so Ford can keep their CAFE low. However, that wasn't synthetic 5W20 oil. I get 28-30mpg highway in my Taurus at 65-70mph. It's EPA rated at 26mpg with the new (revised) EPA ratings of 2008. I can't complain.
With your 2.3L you could easily go a year on an oil change. The only time it's not good to use synthetic oil is if you go through more than a quart of oil in a standard oil change (every 3-4K miles) as the cost will add up when you factor in adding 4-5 quarts of full synthetic throughout that year. The added time of stopping to get the oil changed, even if you change it yourself, is well worth the added benefits of going synthetic. Better mileage is another bonus.
'11 Ram Quad Cab 4x4 SXT 5.7L HEMI (stock); 48,500m
'06 Pontiac G6 GT 3.5L 220hp; 64,000m
'12 Chrysler 200 Limited 3.6L 283hp; 28,000m
'99 Taurus 3.0L 2V Vulcan 145hp; 154,300m - Traded
Amsoil in all vehicles!