An oil change is one of the most basic car care services, yet there is still confusion about it. How often do you need an oil change? What type of oil should you use? How can I save money on my oil changes?
The most common rule of thumb is that you should change your oil every 3,000 miles. Some offer a range from 3,000 to 5,000, and others say you can go as far as 10,000 miles between oil changes.
There are also different guidelines for different types of oil. Full synthetic versus standard, different weights or brands… if each option has a different guideline, how do you know what’s right for your vehicle?
The best place to start is your owner’s manual. Follow the guidelines laid out for your specific vehicle. Your manufacturer will recommend the best weight and type of oil and the frequency of oil changes based on your specific engine’s performance.
Keep in mind, the guideline listed in the recommended maintenance schedule is the minimum requirement for your vehicle. If it recommends an oil change every 3,000 miles, this means you need to have the oil changed at least that often.
Motor oil, whether it’s synthetic, standard, or a blend, functions to lubricate the components in your vehicle’s engine. It should be able to flow freely through the system to protect the components.
The oil will begin to thicken as it ages. Once it hits a certain point, called specific gravity, it needs to be changed. The oil can no longer perform its job as effectively. You may notice reduced performance in your vehicle and the engine is at risk for increased wear and tear.
Your best bet is to follow the most common rule of thumb – have your oil changed at least every 3,000 miles.
Keep up with the regular maintenance at least as often as manual recommends. Our technicians will help you know the right guidelines for your vehicle. We’ll even track your maintenance for you so you know exactly what services your vehicle needs to continue performing its best.