The owner’s manual for your car will provide you with recommendations on how frequently your oil should be changed. That baseline number is a very good starting point. However, other factors like your personal driving habits and wear-and-tear of the engine might mean that you need to change the oil in your vehicle more often (or you might be able to extend the interval to a bit longer).
First, Check Your Owner’s Manual
The maintenance manual or owner’s manual for your car is the major source to get oil change information. If you don’t have your manual, look online or check with your dealer. The owner’s manual provides recommendations on engine oil for your car’s specific engine, model, make, and year. Capacity, viscosity (weight), and oil types are as important as how often you change the oil, so make sure you use oil that is compatible with your vehicle.
Usually, today’s auto manufacturer’s specific different intervals for oil changes for both “special operating conditions” (also referred to as “severe service conditions” sometimes) and “normal operating conditions.” Normal driving conditions are based on the national averages of 11,500 miles a year, with 55% highway driving and 45% city driving, and only light cargo and passengers. Severe service describes drives that spend most of their time hauling heavy loads, making a lot of short trips, or in stop-and-go traffic. More highway miles is actually better for your car’s transmission and engine.
A car that is driven under normal driving conditions will need less maintenance. For these cars, the oil change schedule that is recommended maybe every 10,000 miles or 7,500 miles. If it is driven in “special” or “severe” conditions, then the oil change schedule that is recommended bay be every 7,500 miles or 10,000 miles for the same car.
Examine Your Vehicle and Driving
Where and how you drive is as important as the type of car you drive and oil you use. For example, when you drive in stop-and-go traffic a lot that can result in deposits, oxidation, and overheating, while short trips do not allow enough temperature and time to burn water condensation off, which is a result that naturally occurs with the combustion process. If that sounds similar to your style of driving, the follow the recommended schedule for severe service and have your oil changed more often.
On the other hand, if you mainly drive on the highway, then your engine will have plenty of temperature and time for the accumulated water to burn off. It is safe for you to extend the time interval for your oil changes. You can also get this done at garages such as the BGS.
Synthetic oil has a tendency to last longer compare to conventional oil due to having fewer impurities in it. When your car is using synthetic oil, you can change your oil less often and use the normal service schedule.
The engine oil’s lifespan can be reduced by engine problems. Worn piston rings and seal can increase the consumption of oil so that there is less oil for running the engine. Overheating may lead to deposits and oxidize oil aster. Cylinder misfires may lead to thinning the oil, which can reduce its lubricant effectiveness. If you are experiencing any of these engine problems, then your engine should be repaired and your oil should be changed more often.
Why Oil Changes Are So Important
Engine oil is a hydraulic fluid, coolant, and lubricant. It is very important for your engine’s longevity and function. Over time, all engine oils wear out, which reduces the protection level that they can provide. That is why you need to change it on a regular basis. A new oil filter and fresh oil change will restore piston cooling and free-flowing lubrication to extend your engine’s life.
Keep in mind that oil is consumed by all engine and many engines leak. Therefore, your engine oil should be checked and adjusted on a regular basis. Your oil should be checked every 1,000 miles. It just takes a rag and a couple of minutes. Your owner’s manual will show you how to do this, but if you are not sure, you can ask for help from a trusted technician. Carry a funnel and extra oil to top off the oil if the level goes under the “Low” marker.