When Should I do My Oil Change?
Did your mechanic ask if you want an oil change, and you have no idea what to answer him? Don’t worry, it’s normal; it isn’t easy to know exactly when you should change the oil in your vehicle. A few years ago, it was encouraged to change your oil every 5 000 kilometers. Is this still the case? In fact, the frequency of an oil change varies a lot, and depends on several factors: the age of the vehicle, its usage, the environment we drive in, etc.
Why do we need to Change the Oil in Our Vehicle?
Oil plays a key role in making sure your motor runs smoothly. It has several functions: lubrication (to avoid the parts of the motor rubbing together and creating premature wear), protection (protecting metal parts from corrosion), cleaning (attracting deposits and carrying them to the filter), and cooling (in the places where the antifreeze can’t pass through). It is one of the fluids that should be changed regularly in order to maintain the vehicle’s manufacturer’s warranty and avoid premature wear of its mechanical components.
By making sure the parts of your car’s motor don’t rub together, motor oil prevents energy loss and allows you to reduce your fuel consumption. Clean oil also extends the life of your motor by protecting its different parts. This explains why it is important to know when to change your motor oil. Try not to wait until the warning light flashes; if you don’t change your motor oil you are exposing your vehicle to premature wear. Neglecting to do your oil changes is risking destroying your motor.
When to do Your Oil Change
You’ve probably heard that you should change your oil around every 5 000 kilometers, but is this really what is recommended? In fact, there is no universal rule applicable to all vehicles. It really depends on the type of vehicle and the way you use it.
Even within the same brand of vehicle, the frequency of oil changes depends on:
- The model of the vehicle
- Its year of fabrication
- The type of motor
- The use of the vehicle
The simplest thing to do is to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations, which can be found in the user’s guide. By following the recommendations of your vehicle’s manufacturer you will be sure to maintain your warranty. Once a month, try to remember to check your oil level, parked on a flat surface. Certain vehicles are able to calculate your oil levels through a system that keeps track of the number of times it was started, and will flash a warning light accordingly. Be careful, especially before long trips: checking your oil level should be on your maintenance list before leaving for vacation.
It should be noted that older vehicles need their oil changed more frequently, whereas recent vehicles can reach 6 000, 10 000, and even sometimes 25 000 kilometers before an oil change is needed. According to your vehicle’s needs, it could only be necessary to change your oil every 3 months, 6 months, or more! Vehicles that run all day and mainly in the city, such as taxis and ambulances, are required to change their oil more frequently. The 5 000 kilometer recommendation is sometimes applicable in these cases. It is also important to do frequent oil changes if you live in a rigorous climate.
Which Oil to Choose for Your Motor
Have you found a mechanic who does oil changes at a fixed and low price? Be wary; it is not recommended to use the same type of oil for every vehicle. The price of an oil change should therefore be fixed according to the type of oil required, and it is very difficult to fix a price before having checked the recommendations for the vehicle.
Make sure you know which motor oil is recommended for your vehicle. There are:
- Mineral oils
- Synthetic oils
- Semi-synthetic oils with varying viscosities
Certain manufacturers even certify specific oils for specific vehicles. Make sure you’re using the right oil in order to make sure your warranty isn’t affected. Of course, all of these oils come at different prices. Before purchasing a vehicle, check what kind of motor oil it requires; this way you will know if your future oil changes will be expensive.
Aside from the oil, it is also important to choose the right filter. Low cost filters might seem like a good idea now, but they don’t do well with synthetic oil and won’t filter anything. You will need filters made of a specific material to ensure that your oil passes through smoothly. Come and see us at your local Centre Auto Point S, we will be happy to help you make the right choice for your vehicle.
Finally, it is important to check your oil level regularly in order to know when to schedule your next oil change. Once your appointment is taken, your local Centre Auto Point S will be able to tell you which oil is recommended for your vehicle. Don’t forget, a healthy motor relies on the right oil and quality filters!
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