Best Oil for Duramax

10 Best Oil for Duramax in 2021 – Reviews & Buying Guide

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If your truck is blessed with a high turbo Duramax engine, then you need the best oil for Duramax to lubricate the mechanism and allow the engine to generate high torque. You see, the Duramax engine is actually a 6.6-liter V8 engine that was manufactured as a joint venture between GM and Isuzu.

Due to its massive horsepower, this engine is used on heavy-duty high utility trucks to tow various equipment and carry heavy cargo. Regarded as a beast of burden, the Duramax engine demands special care if you’re looking for a long-term engine operation. Due to this reason, the best synthetic Duramax oils are the perfect option to consider.

And, the main reason for this is because these oils are designed to maintain fluidity and viscosity over a wide temperature range. This makes them the best for both high and low-temperature conditions giving your engine full protection in different weather conditions. So, in this guide, we’re going to list 10 of the best Duramax synthetic oils that will lubricate and protect your engine at the same time.

 

Best Oil for Duramax: Editor’s Top Picks

 

Things to Consider When Buying Motor Oils for Duramax

Although we’ve discussed ten of the bestselling engine oils, picking the best oil for Duramax from a shelf full of different options can be an intimidating task. Although most of these oils will possess similar components, they will differ widely when it comes to the specifics. For that reason, we’ve gathered a checklist of attributes that will help you pick the right oil for your specific engine.

 

1. Drivability:

The first parameter that will demand critical consideration is the type of vehicle you’re driving. Is it a personal vehicle or is it a heavy-duty utility Duramax truck? You see, in our review section, we’ve mentioned a lot about motor oils.

If your vehicle is intended to tow heavy equipment or haul heavy cargo, then there’s a specific oil that’s suited for that. Also, if your vehicle uses a modern turbo/supercharged engine, an old engine, or maybe if it’s gas or diesel powered, then you’ll need to find the right oil that’s recommended for that specific engine.

 

2. Compatibility:

Compatibility is actually one of the factors that are usually bypassed by most motorists when servicing their vehicles. Whether you’re buying an old car or maybe you’re looking to replace your old oil with something younger, you need to put engine compatibility at the forefront.

As you can see in the review section, most of the motor oils we’ve discussed differ in terms of viscosity and formulation. Some oils will be compatible with your Duramax engine while others will not.

Also, each oil has its own unique formulation. Some of the additives present in certain oils maybe suited in flushing out sludge and deposits. Others may be formulated to strengthen the oil film to improve engine mileage. So, whether you’re dealing with an old or a new Duramax engine, never fail to check the oil’s compatibility with your engine.

 

3. Viscosity:

When purchasing engine oil, one thing you’re likely to see on the jug is the viscosity rating. In most cases, you’re likely to see ratings such as 5W-40, 5W-30, 15W-30, and 15W-40. But, what is viscosity rating? Well, in technical terms, this is the oil’s resistance to flow.

When buying engine oil, you need to be very careful with the viscosity rating as it the one that tells you how fast the oil will drain the engine parts to lubricate them and also lower the time for a cold start in cold weather.

Now, to understand how viscosity works, you need to master the numbers. In most cases, the figure before the W represents oil thickness in cold weather. The number after the W represents the thickness of oil in hot weather.

So, when looking for the best motor oil for lb7 Duramax, you need to pick an oil that has the right viscosity grade. In case you pick the wrong oil, what happens to the oil is that it fails to flow correctly to lubricate the bearings, the rod, and the crank as per the engine’s interest.

 

4. Additives:

There has been a long debate over the years between conventional and synthetic oils. What most people don’t realize is that motor oils consist of 10% base oil and 90% of a proprietary blend of additives. With such a composition, it’s quite clear that most oils, whether conventional or synthetic, are rated based on the effectiveness of these additive packages.

For instance, some Duramax motor oils might have detergents and dispersants as part of their additive packages. With such additives, such oils are best for flushing out rust, soot, and deposit build-up in the engine while preventing the formation of solid particles that can affect the engine performance.

Other oils might have corrosion inhibitors and antiwear agents that will lubricate moving parts to prevent premature wear. These oils are also the best in preventing the formation of moisture inside the engine that’s responsible for the build-up of rust.

Lastly, some oils might have viscosity index improvers that strengthen the oil to prevent it from thinning in hot weather or thickening in extremely cold conditions.

 

5. Oil Type:

When looking for the best oil for lb7 Duramax, you need to be very keen on the type of oil you’ll be getting. In most cases, motor oils come in two primary grades that are fully synthetic oils and synthetic blend oils.

  • Fully Synthetic Oils:

This type of engine oil is considered a pure formulation that’s made with a complex and very unique molecular structure. Its composition doesn’t contain any impurities making it a clean motor oil that merely causes black residues.

  • Synthetic Blend:

On the other hand, a synthetic blend is a mix of synthetic base oil with conventional oils. Since its formulation contains different oils, most engines burning it will foam soot and black deposits that can lower the engine’s performance if left to build-up.

 

Top 10 Best Oil for Duramax Reviews:

1. Shell Rotella T6 Full Synthetic 5W-40 Diesel Engine Oil

Shell Rotella T6 Full Synthetic 5W-40 Diesel...

 

Product Specifications

  • Viscosity: 5W-40
  • Liquid Volume: 3.785L
  • Content: Case of three
  • Oil Type: Synthetic
  • Brand: Shell

The Shell Rotella T6 Full Synthetic Oil has appeared as an editor’s choice in most reviews across the board. That’s all thanks to its special formulation that improves engine performance while lowering engine wear to the minimum. Looking at its composition, this engine oil has a 5W-40 rating that works wonders in almost all weather conditions.

For instance, this oil allows optimal engine performance in extremely hot weather while still offering advanced engine protection in cold weather. As if it’s not enough, the Shell Rotella T6 Full Synthetic Oil is packed with an advanced triple Protection Plus formulation. This comes in form of special additives that are combined with synthetic base oil to offer advanced engine protection.

These additives lower the accumulation of soot, dirt, and other contaminants in the engine parts. They also help to control exhaust emissions and harmful engine wear as the engine ages. This oil is designed to resist breakage and viscosity loss when used in extreme climates. It also improves fuel economy by up to 1.5% making it the best for heavy-duty utility vehicles.

Highlighted Features

  • Offers an improved fuel economy of up to 1.5%
  • The 5W-40 viscosity rating makes this oil usable for all weather conditions.
  • The oil resists breakdown and viscosity loss for efficient engine protection
  • Special additives reduce the accumulation of soot, dirt, and other contaminants
  • Packed in a case of 3 × 1 gallon jugs

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2. Liqui Moly 2041 Premium 5W-40 Synthetic Motor Oil

Liqui Moly 2041 Premium 5W-40 Synthetic Motor Oil...

 

Product Specifications

  • Viscosity: 5W-40
  • Capacity: 5L
  • Oil Type: Synthetic
  • Engine Type: Modern gasoline and diesel engines
  • Brand: Liqui Moly

The Liqui Moly 2041 Premium Synthetic Oil is a German-made oil that suits both gasoline and diesel engines. In fact, this oil is hugely recommended for most engines using the latest technology such as multi-valve, turbocharging, variable cam, supercharging, and intercooler engines.

Now, just as its name suggests, this engine oil has an SAE rating of 5W-40. This rating makes this synthetic oil an instantaneous lubricant that suits a wide range of temperature fluctuations. So, whether you’re using it for cold starts in extremely cold temperatures or hot summer weather, this oil will hold on without breaking or losing its viscosity.

When it comes to engine protection, the Liqui Moly 2041 Premium Synthetic Oil contains a powerful composition consisting of special additives. These additives are essential in cleaning the engine by removing sludge, soot, deposits, and other contaminants for improved engine performance. This synthetic oil is packed in a 5-liter jar making it the best for a wide range of modern engines.

Highlighted Features

  • Improves fuel economy significantly
  • Compatible with both gasoline and diesel engines
  • Suitable for modern engine types
  • Has a viscosity rating of 5W-40 for all-weather use
  • Special formulation eliminates sludge, soot, and deposit build-up

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3. Valvoline Premium Blue Extreme SAE 5W-40 Full Synthetic Diesel Engine Oil

Valvoline Premium Blue Extreme SAE 5W-40 Full...

 

Product Specifications

  • Viscosity Rating: 5W-40
  • Liquid Volume: 12 Quarts
  • Quantity: 3 × 1-gallon jugs
  • Oil Type: Synthetic
  • Engine Type: Modern gasoline and diesel engines
  • Brand: Valvoline

Coming in at third in our discussion is the Valvoline Premium Blue Extreme Synthetic Engine Oil. Unlike most conventional oils, this synthetic oil offers a lot of benefits to your engine such as extended service and improved fuel economy. In fact, most American engine manufacturers and dealerships such as Cummins, Volvo, Mark, Caterpillar, and Navistar have hugely recommended this oil to their clients.

Now, the Valvoline Premium Blue boasts of having a viscosity rating of 5W-40. This rating puts this oil in the list of the best all-weather synthetic oils that offer advanced engine protection regardless of weather conditions. It also performs well in most diesel and gasoline engines as well as modern engines that rely on Exhaust Gas Recirculation or Diesel Particulate Filters.

As if it isn’t enough, this synthetic oil is equipped with a Dispersive Polymer Technology that consists of a proprietary blend of special additives. These additives are responsible for protecting the engine and all its moving components against soot, wear, and piston deposits. Available as a pack of 3 × 1 gallon jugs, the Valvoline Premium Blue is one of the best oil for lbz Duramax.

Highlighted Features

  • Specifically endorsed by Cummins for their Dodge Ram turbo engines
  • Compatible with most modern engines
  • Formulated for both diesel and gas engines
  • Equipped with a Dispersive Polymer Technology
  • Offers advanced engine protection and improved fuel efficiency

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4. Royal Purple 05154 API-Licensed SAE 15W-40 High-Performance Synthetic Motor Oil

Royal Purple 05154 API-Licensed SAE 15W-40 High...

 

Product Specifications

  • Viscosity Rating: 15W-40
  • Liquid Volume: 640 fluid ounces
  • Capacity: 1 × 5-gallon jar
  • Oil Type: Synthetic
  • Brand: Royal Purple

The Royal Purple High-Performance Synthetic Oil is another motor oil that has managed to muscle its way into this list. Its brilliant combination of base oils with proprietary additives is one reason why this oil is heavily regarded as the best for Duramax engines. In fact, most independent tests have claimed that this oil has a high-strength film that’s 2 to 3 times stronger than most full synthetic oils.

Now, one factor that backs up this claim is Royal Purple’s use of a Proprietary Additive Technology. With the addition of a patented ZDDP anti-wear additive, this oil is believed to offer immense engine protection by improving the lifespan of certain components such as emission catalyst systems.

Besides, this synthetic oil offers advanced lubrication to all engine-moving components to reduce the rate of wear caused by metal-on-metal contact. Another purpose of Royal Purple’s special additive formulation is offering superior cleaning to the engine by removing soot, sludge, and piston deposits. Designed to offer advanced fuel efficiency, the Royal Purple Full Synthetic Oil has met the dexos1 and ILSAC GF-5 specifications making it one of the best oils in the business.

Highlighted Features

  • Compatible with most fuels that contain ethanol
  • Meets dexos1 and ILSAC GF-5 specifications
  • Protects engine parts against wear caused by metal-on-metal contact
  • Offers advanced protection to the emission catalytic system
  • Best in flushing out sludge, rust, and piston deposits

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5. Shell Rotella T4 Triple Protection Conventional 15W-40 Diesel Engine Oil

Shell Rotella T4 Triple Protection Conventional...

 

Product Specifications

  • Viscosity Rating: 15W-40
  • Liquid Volume: 128 fluid ounces
  • Content: 1 × 1-gallon jug
  • Engine Type: Both modern and old diesel engines
  • Brand: Shell

The Shell Rotella T4 is another engine oil that has a lot to offer to those driving V8 diesel engines. This engine oil is designed with an advanced formulation that protects both modern and old diesel engines from severe engine conditions. One of the factors that have allowed this engine oil to stand out is the use of Triple Protection Technology in its formulation.

Now, this formulation is designed to serve three major functions. The first one is to offer advanced lubrication of all moving parts to prevent wear caused by metal-on-metal contact. The second one is to flush out sludge, soot, and other engine deposits to allow effective engine performance. In fact, this oil is believed to offer 50% resistance against oxidation meaning your engine will increase in mileage while lowering fuel consumption.

The last function of the triple protection formulation is improving oil viscosity to allow it to perform at its best when under pressure. While most 15W-40 oils break and lose their viscosity under pressure, the Shell Rotella T4 resists possible oil breakdown even when exposed to high temperatures. So, whether it’s a modern or an old Duramax engine, the Shell Rotella T4 is a synthetic oil that will never disappoint you.

Highlighted Features

  • Stable enough to control oil viscosity and oil breakdown
  • Advanced triple protection flushes out sludge for optimal engine performance
  • Lubricates engine’s moving parts to prevent wear caused by friction
  • Meets and exceeds API CJ-4 requirements
  • Prolongs engine life by offering 50% resistance against oxidation

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6. Schaeffer Manufacturing Co. 0701-005 Supreme 7000 Synthetic Plus Engine Oil

Schaeffer Manufacturing Co. 0701-005 Supreme 7000...

 

Product Specifications

  • Viscosity Rating: 5W-30
  • Liquid Volume: 640 fluid ounces
  • Engine Type: Gasoline engines
  • Oil Type: Synthetic plus
  • Content: 1 × 5-gallon pail
  • Brand: Schaeffer Manufacturing Co.

The Schaeffer Supreme 7000 Synthetic Plus Engine Oil is another big name you’re likely to hear when searching for reliable engine oil. While most oils are packed in a 5-gallon jar, this synthetic oil is packed in a 5-gallon pail making it quite easier to apply without spilling. Designed for heavy-duty engines, this oil has managed to combine its superior additive technology with its synthetic base oil to produce a formula that’s highly effective in protecting your engine.

Now, if you’re used to driving your car in stop-and-go conditions, the engine is likely to develop sludge and piston build-up that can lower its efficiency. Thankfully, with the Schaeffer Synthetic Oil, this motor oil will use its special formulation to flush out all the sludge and deposit build-up leaving your engine clean and working efficiently.

Besides, this engine oil has an SAE rating of 5W-30. With such a viscosity, this oil can withstand tough weather conditions without breaking or thickening. This oil is also designed to flow smoothly to offer proper lubrication of all moving parts. Recommended for all gasoline engines, the Schaeffer Synthetic Oil is one of the highly-rated oils in this Duramax oil review.

Highlighted Features

  • Contains a special formulation that flushes out sludge, soot, and carbon build-up
  • Resists thinning and thickening in both hot and cold temperatures
  • Protects the engine against wear, scuffing, and abrasion
  • Significantly improves fuel economy
  • Best for gasoline-fueled engines such as turbo and supercharged engines

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7. Liqui Moly (2011 Top Tec 4200 5W-30 Synthetic Motor Oil

Liqui Moly (2011 Top Tec 4200 5W-30 Synthetic...

 

Product Specifications

  • Viscosity Rating: 5W-30
  • Capacity: 5-liter jug
  • Oil Type: Synthetic
  • Engine Type: modern gasoline and diesel engines
  • Brand: Liquid Moly

Another engine oil that has appeared quite late in our discussion is the Liqui Moly 5W-30 Synthetic Motor Oil. Made in Germany, this oil is one of the best alternatives if you’re driving a modern gas or diesel engines such as the turbocharged direct-injection engines or those vehicles equipped with diesel particulate filters.

The reason why this oil has outperformed most oils in this business is the clever combination of unconventional base oils with the latest additives using modern HC synthetic technology. What this means is that this oil will offer exceptional engine protection against wear and oxidation to preserve its valuable horsepower for years to come.

Besides, these additives supplement this oil by giving it enough strength to tolerate extreme temperatures. So, whether it’s in hot or sub-zero weather, this oil will never fail to provide its unwavering protection to your engine and all its moving parts. Lastly, the Liqui Moly Synthetic Motor Oil is one of the oils that hold up well over long intervals between oil changes. This helps to prolong your vehicle’s mileage and lower fuel consumption at the same time.

Highlighted Features

  • Offers impressive engine tolerance
  • Ideal for most modern engines that use gas or diesel
  • It’s versatile enough to be used on most engines
  • Special additives clean the engine to improve its efficiency
  • Perfect for engines that stay longer between oil changes

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8. Delo 400 SDE SAE 15W-40 Motor Oil

Delo 400 SDE SAE 15W-40 Motor Oil - 1 Gallon Jug,...

 

Product Specifications

  • Viscosity Rating: 15W-40
  • Liquid Volume: 1 gallon
  • Content: 3 × 1-gallon jugs
  • Oil Type: Super-premium conventional oil
  • Engine Type: Low-sulfur diesel and gas-powered engine
  • Brand: Delo

The Delo 400 SDE SAE 15W-40 Motor Oil is one of the oils that have managed to suit a wide range of applications in most diesel and gasoline engines including Duramax engines. Formulated with a unique ISOSYN advanced technology, this motor oil is an excellent pick for most four-stroke engines such as the GHG 17 compliant engines and the EPA 2010 low emission compliant engines.

Thanks to its advanced ISOSYN formulation, this motor oil is capable of lubricating hardworking engines to prevent wear caused by metal-on-metal contact. It’s also designed to cope well with changing temperatures thus preventing it from breaking or thickening when temperatures are too low or too high.

Other than lubricating your engine, the ISOSYN special formulation does well in cleaning your engine by flushing out sludge and CO2 deposits. This makes it an excellent pick for most engines with Excellent Emission Control systems such as the SCR, DPF, and EGR. Other than being used in automobiles, this motor oil can suit a wide range of other applications such as in industrial machinery and marine vessels.

Highlighted Features

  • Premium quality oil manufactured in the USA
  • Compatible with ultra-low sulfur diesel and gas engines
  • Specifically formulated for most GHG 17 and EPA 2010 compliant engines
  • Offers advanced engine wear protection
  • Best for flushing out soot, sludge, and CO2 deposits

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9. Castrol 03559 Edge 5W-30 C3 Advanced Full Synthetic Motor Oil

Castrol 03559 Edge 5W-30 C3 Advanced Full...

 

Product Specifications

  • Viscosity Rating: 5W-30
  • Liquid Volume: 160 fluid ounces
  • Engine Type: Turbo diesel engines
  • Content: 1 × 5 quarts gallon
  • Brand: Castrol
  • Oil Type: Full synthetic oil

Although the Castrol 03559 Edge 5W-30 Motor Oil has appeared so late in this list, it’s one of the best engine oil for lb7 Duramax, and for a good reason. Now, this oil is specifically formulated to suit most turbocharged diesel engines especially those that work under high engine pressure. With a viscosity rating of SAE 5W-30, this motor oil has successfully combined its full synthetic base oil with a fluid Titanium technology to offer advanced engine performance.

Inside this formulation lie special additives that sustain exhilarating engine performance by flushing out sludge and piston deposits. Now, we’re all aware of how utility vehicles work under high pressure right? So, to prevent friction caused by metal-on-metal contact, the Castrol 03559 Edge 5W-30 Motor Oil offers immense lubrication of all moving parts to prevent wear.

Lastly, high engine pressure can cause an increase in temperature right? So, to prevent the oil from breaking down, the fluid Titanium technology improves the oil film strength by nearly 30% making this oil 10 times stronger when used in extreme weather conditions. This oil is also designed to maintain good structure under high pressure making it the best for utility vehicles.

Highlighted Features

  • Specifically formulated for turbo diesel engines
  • Sustains its structure even when used under high pressure
  • Offers an improved fuel economy
  • Cleans all engine deposits to improve its performance
  • Offers advanced engine wear protection

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10. Shell Rotella T5 Synthetic Blend 15W-40 Diesel Engine Oil

Shell Rotella T5 Synthetic Blend 15W-40 Diesel...

 

Product Specifications

  • Viscosity Rating: 15W-40
  • Liquid Volume: 128 fluid ounces
  • Capacity: 3 × 1-gallon jug
  • Oil Type: Synthetic blend
  • Brand: Shell
  • Engine Type: Diesel engines

Trailing in at tenth is the Shell Rotella T5 Synthetic Blend Engine Oil. Now, unlike most SAE 15W-40 motor oils, the Shell Rotella T5 has set itself apart by combining its synthetic blend base oil with an advanced Triple Protection Plus Technology. The results are nothing less than premium additives that actively combat engine wear and engine breakdown due to high pressure.

The synthetic blending of this motor oil has made it an excellent pick for most engine applications ranging from heavy-duty utility trucks, industrial machines, construction, and agriculture equipment. The premium additives alongside the SAE 15W-40 viscosity rating allow this motor oil to maintain its structure when exposed to low or high temperatures.

When it comes to advanced engine protection, the Shell Rotella T5 has exceeded the CK-4 specifications by offering up to 37% better engine wear protection. Recommended by major engine manufacturers such as Mark, Ford, Detroit, Cummins, and Caterpillar, the Shell Rotella T5 is a versatile oil that can suit engines that require API CK-4, CI-4, CH-4, CJ-4, and CI-4 PLUS.

Highlighted Features

  • Offers up to 37% better engine wear protection
  • Triple Plus Technology helps to flush out deposits to improve engine performance
  • Exceeds API CK-4 engine requirements
  • Maintains its viscosity in both hot and cold weather
  • Suits a wide range of diesel engine types

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FAQs: Frequently Asked Questions 

 

Q1: What’s the Best Time to Change My Duramax Oil?

Changing your engine oil is a crucial step that helps you to protect your engine and guarantee optimal performance over a longer time. Now, if you’re worried about the best Duramax oil change interval, then it’s wise if you check your car’s owner’s manual.

However, as a rule of thumb, engine oil should be changed every 5,000 to 10,000 miles. However, this rule is not written in stone as it can change depending on your drivability. For instance, if your vehicle is towing heavy cargo, experiencing frequent stop-and-go, or maybe you frequently go off-roading, then perhaps the oil change may be more frequent.

Q2: How Long Can I Store My Duramax Engine Oil?

The best oil for lb7 can last for anywhere between 12 months to 5 years. However, this shelf life will hugely depend on how and where you’re storing the oil. If the oil is kept tightly closed and stored in a temperature-regulated environment, then its shelf life is generally increased.

On the other hand, if the oil is exposed to threats that can alter its quality, then its shelf life will be reduced significantly. Some of the factors that can alter the quality of your motor oil include extreme temperatures, moisture, and microbes.

Q3: Is Synthetic Oil the Best for Duramax Engines?

Yes, they are. In fact, what makes these oils the best for Duramax engines is the unique combination of premium additives in the synthetic base oil to boost its performance. With these special additives, your motor oil is capable of cleaning the engine while still offering advanced protection against wear.

Most additives also strengthen the oil’s film to offer higher viscosity retention and superior flow in both cold and hot weather.

Q4: What Happens if I Don’t Change My Engine Oil?

Engine oil is like the blood that runs through your heart. In case the oil is exhausted and you’re yet to replace it, then this can cause severe engine breakdown due to overheating. Remember, your Duramax engine oil serves several purposes. One of those is to lubricate all engine moving parts while the second purpose is to flush out sludge and CO2 deposits from the engine.

So, if your motor oil is yet to be replaced, then it’s likely to tire causing it to lose its efficiency. As a result, your engine is likely to suffer to a point of lowering its efficiency.

 

Final Verdict

When pickling a particular motor oil from a selection of hundreds of options, it’s easy to assume that all the oils are the same. But, if you happen to dig deeper into these oils, you’ll be amazed to find a myriad of different features that make these oils entirely different.

While some oils are the best in improving your engine’s mileage, others are suitable for improving fuel efficiency while others have special additives that clean your engine while still protecting it against premature wear.

Therefore, when choosing the best oil for Duramax, you need to know that there’s more than what meets the eyes. Thankfully, this guide has discussed everything you’d like to know regarding motor oils to ensure that you make an informed decision that will not haunt you in the future.

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