How Often Do You Really Need to Change Your Oil?

This is the most controversial question going around in the automotive industry today. Whatever the answer, it’s agreed upon that keeping up with oil changes is the most cost-effective maintenance item needed to keep your vehicle operating at its peak performance level.

So how often do you really need to change your oil? Some vehicle owners either don’t understand what kind of oil change to have or they think they are saving money by skipping an oil change. The repair for engine damage caused by dirty or low oil is far more costly than paying for regular oil changes, especially if you use your shop’s oil change coupons.

5 Facts to Consider About Oil Changes:

  1. Purpose. The engine needs to be lubricated constantly so that the metal components aren’t grinding against each other, creating excessive heat. Changing the oil carries away dirt, dust, and other contaminants that can clog up the engine parts.
  2. Mileage interval. This will vary depending on the age of your vehicle, the type of oil used, and driving conditions. With today’s upgraded oils, the interval for many engines is now between 5,000 to 7,500 miles, or some oil (particularly full synthetic) is good for 15,000 miles.
  3. Warning light. Most dash warning lights are programmed to come on automatically at 3,000-5,000 miles after each oil change. However, don’t rely on this light as the oil level may already be too low before it comes on.
  4. Temperature. The Society of Automotive Engineers developed designations to indicate the viscosity of the oil. Some oil is designed to be less viscous (thinner) when cold and more viscous (thicker) when hot. For example, for 10-30W oil, the “10” refers to the viscosity when the engine is cold and the “30” refers to the viscosity when the engine is hot.
  5. Type of Oil. There are three general types of oil–conventional, premium, and synthetic. Most mainstream engines use conventional oils. Premium oils have extra additives useful for special driving needs, and blends that combine synthetic and premium conventional oils are often used for trucks and SUVs.

Follow your owner’s manual, or ask your mechanic as to what type of oil is best and what the appropriate mileage interval should be for your vehicle.

Looking for oil change coupons? Contact our ASE Certified technicians at Dependable Car Care for more information about how often do you really need to change your oil and to schedule an appointment. Our auto shop proudly serves residents in the community of Ventura, CA, and the surrounding area.