DIY Oil Change: How Often Should You Change Oil in Car?

Car owners often feel that changing oil on a timely basis isn’t that important, but neglecting this issue can lead to tremendous damage to certain parts of the vehicle. You have to shell out exorbitant amounts for repairs and replacements.

Why should you get oil changed?

The oil in your car lubricates internal parts of the vehicle, to prevent friction (engines are designed using components that rub against each other for generating energy). The engine demands extensive usage of the oil that gradually leads to the break down of motor oil’s chemical makeup. It means the oil is incapable of lubricating properly, so engine parts rub together and result in severe damage and eventually shutting off the system. New, fresh oil has to be added for effective lubrication.

How often should you change oil in car?

The time interval between oil change varies depending on several factors. For example, synthetic oils are specifically formulated to tolerate extreme temperatures, so the lifespan is longer as compared to conventional oils – the interval for an oil change is more for the former.  If you spend a lot of time in heavy stop-and-go city traffic that causes a strain on the engine, an oil change could be required quicker.

Best conditions

Check the car manufacturer’s instruction manual – at times it is recommended that oil be changed every 7500 miles or more, but keep in mind that the figure is based on optimum operating conditions. New vehicles operate longer on the same oil as compared to old ones, while motor oil comes with enhanced efficiencies, so you can change the oil every 5000 miles or 6 months, depending on what comes first. Don’t exceed the recommended maximum interval between oil changes.

Extreme conditions

As mentioned, stop-and-go driving in the city or rush-hour traffic is considered to be an extreme condition, along with making short trips daily and leaving the car parked for a long time to have the engine cool down between them. This means the engine doesn’t heat up sufficiently to evaporate water in the crankcase, so sludge accumulates in the engine. Please remember to change the oil when you cross 1000 to 3000 miles on older vehicles. Take a look at the manufacturer’s recommendations if your car is new.

The correct time for oil change plagues most car owners but rather than seeking advice from here and there, follow the automaker’s recommended service intervals or check the vehicle’s oil life monitoring system to know more about the right time.

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2 thoughts on “DIY Oil Change: How Often Should You Change Oil in Car?

  • July 26, 2019 at 8:10 pm
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