When To Get An Oil Change? Does Your Car Need An Oil Change?

When should you get an oil change? Even though having the oil changed in your vehicle regularly is necessary, it is frequently put off and can cause problems with the engine.

Having your oil changed properly and at the right intervals can make the difference between your engine running efficiently or having problems develop due to insufficient oil levels or waiting too long to get an oil change. The following is a guide to when you should get an oil change.

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Results of Putting Off An Oil Change:

Most car repair manuals and warranty information recommends that vehicles have an oil change completed every 3,000 to 5,000 miles.

But

Putting off regular oil changes can have negative effects on your vehicles engine. The oil in your engine can be compared to the blood running through your veins. It plays a vital role in keeping the parts operating efficiently.

Having the proper amount of oil helps your engine to operate at the correct temperature, allowing the parts to last longer instead of wearing out from excess heat. When the oil is too thin, the parts wear against each other, creating more heat in the engine and wearing out the parts faster.

Conversely, if there is too much oil in the engine, it can cause the parts to have to work harder, making them wear out faster.

Its important to use the right weight motor oil to keep your engine running properly. Check your vehicle manual for the suggested engine oil to use in your vehicle. Newer vehicles tend to use a lighter weight oil due to the more advanced engine designs.

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When you don’t change the oil in a timely manner or not at all, it can result in several things happening to the engine. Just a few of the ways it can negatively effect your engine is:

  • Extreme heat can melt parts
  • Thin oil can cause parts to break
  • Engine can seize up from lack of oil
  • Dirty oil can cause parts to break down faster

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How to Tell When You Need to Change the Oil:

So, other than changing the oil according to the mileage on the vehicle, there are other ways to tell when to get an oil change as well.

Some of the effects of needing to change the oil include hearing loud banging or metallic sounds coming from the engine, a drop in the oil level on the dipstick, oil is dark or thick and gives off a pungent smell, small shavings of metal are on the dipstick, engine oil light comes on or gauge is reading at a low level.

These are just a few of the symptoms that will appear when your engine oil needs changing. It’s important to pay attention to these and other symptoms to keep from having to pay huge repair costs or replacement of parts. By changing the oil regularly you can avoid having to replace parts so often.

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Benefits of Getting a Regular Oil Change:

There are a number of benefits that can result from changing your oil regularly. Regular oil changes can provide better engine performance. When the engine is well lubricated the parts can move freely and will produce a smoother, quieter ride.

Better engine performance allows the parts to last longer, reducing your repair costs. Regular oil changes also keep dirt from building up inside the oil and getting deposited on the engine parts. When this happens, the dirt tends to wear against the parts and causes them to wear down quicker.

Dirt deposits often result in clogged engine parts and more frequent replacement of parts.

Regular oil changes can also help you vehicle get better gas mileage. When your engine is running properly, the fuel is used more efficiently and you can get more miles per gallon. By simply knowing when to get an oil change, you can keep your engine running longer and more efficiently.

It will provide you with better emissions and exhaust. Dark and older oil tends to burn more, creating dark exhaust fumes that are sent out through the tailpipe.

These darker exhaust fumes are more hazardous to the environment and can create other problems such as a buildup of contaminants in the exhaust pipe.

Just like your blood pumps better if there is no buildup on the artery walls, exhaust fumes are more environmentally friendly if not mixed with older contaminants from darker fumes.

Knowing when to get an oil change and what type of oil to use will go a long way in extending the life of your engine and keeping repair costs down. Check with your vehicle manual or automotive dealer for the recommendations on how often to change the oil and what type of oil is best for your vehicle.

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Sources

http://www.carfax.com/blog/when-to-change-oil/

http://auto.howstuffworks.com/car-driving-safety/safety-regulatory-devices/never-changed-oil.htm

https://www.bellperformance.com/blog/does-oil-change-affect-performance

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