Quick Lubes Cut Semi-synthetic Prices

The average cost a quick lube charged for an oil change using five quarts of semi-synthetic oil dropped more than 20 percent to a bit more than $43, while declining less than 1 percent to just shy of $75 for full synthetic, compared to 2016, National Oil & Lube News reported in its 2017 Fast Lube Operators Survey.

Published in three parts – in its September, October and November issues – the 2017 survey compiled data from more than 7,000 facilities, up from 5,837 facilities for the 2016 survey, in all 50 U.S. states. The survey examined quick lube operations, prices, demographics, employees, sales, products and services.

Quick lubes surveyed on average charged the following for an oil change using five quarts of oil:

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  • $37.99 for conventional, down 7.7 percent from $41.18 in 2016.
  • $43.04 for semi-synthetic, down 20.3 percent from $53.97 in 2016.
  • $50.47 for high-mileage oil, which was not tracked in last years survey.
  • $74.97 for full synthetic, down less than 1 percent from $75.45.

Part three of the survey included breakdowns of the best-selling motor oils among the fast lube operators surveyed.

Among popular conventional motor oil brands in quick lubes, Valvoline led with 19 percent of reported sales, followed by Pennzoil at 18 percent, Mobil with 15 percent, Havoline at 14 percent and Castrol at 11 percent. Remaining shares included Service Pro (4 percent), Total (4 percent) and all others (11 percent). The survey found that 4 percent of quick lube operators surveyed didnt offer conventional oil.

Among synthetics carried by fast lubes, Mobil dominated, with 28 percent of operators listing it as their best-selling synthetic oil. Valvoline was second at 15 percent, followed by Havoline with 14 percent, Castrol at 9 percent and Pennzoil at 8 percent. Brands accounting for the remaining shares included Service Pro (5 percent), Amsoil (5 percent), Cam2 (4 percent) and Total (4 percent). Other brands accounted for the remaining 8 percent.

Pennzoil was listed as the best-selling synthetic blend oil by 19 percent of quick lube operators, just ahead of Valvoline at 18 percent, followed by Havoline at 15 percent and Castrol with 10 percent. The other brands shares included 6 percent each for Mobil and Service Pro, 5 percent accounted for by private label, and 3 percent each for Cam2, Sunoco and Total. Others made up the remaining 13 percent.

Twenty-one percent of operators surveyed cited Valvoline as their best-selling high mileage oil, followed by 18 percent for Pennzoil, 17 percent for Mobil, 16 percent for Havoline and 13 percent for Castrol. Brands accounting for remaining shares included Cam2 and Service Pro with 4 percent each. Other brands were sold for the remaining 7 percent.

In terms of motor oil sales by weight/grade, SAE 5W-30 led with a 34 percent share, followed by 5W-20 at 26 percent, 0W-20 with 18 percent, and 15W-40 at 10 percent. Remaining shares included 6 percent for SAE 10W-30, 5 percent other and 1 percent for 5W-40.

The 2017 survey also includes data on the best-selling SAE 5W-40 and 15W-40 diesel oils at quick lubes.

Among operators surveyed, 35 percent said Shell Rotella T was their best-selling SAE 5W-40 diesel oil, followed by Mobil Delvac at 20 percent, Valvoline Premium Blue with 13 percent, Chevron Delo 400 with 12 percent, Castrol Hypurion at 7 percent and Amsoil with 4 percent. Other brands accounted for the remaining 9 percent.

For SAE 15W-40 diesel oil, Shell Rotella T held a large lead over other brands with 51 percent of quick lube operators surveyed citing it as their most popular brand. Chevron Delo 400 was next at 12 percent, Mobil Delvac at 11 percent, Valvoline Premium Blue at 10 percent and Castrol Hypurion with 4 percent. Other brands composed the remaining 12 percent.

For more information on the 2017 Fast Lube Operator Survey, visit the NOLN website.