When Should I get my oil changed?
Luckily for the vast majority of us going about our busy lives, oil changes aren’t something very many of us have to keep track of. With technology keeping tabs on everything from tires pressures to low windshield washer fluid, we get notices of almost anything our vehicles may need, including a service notice when our oil needs to be changed. If you’re running an older model, you can still keep good track without pulling your hair out as a good service shop will put a sticker on your windshield highlighting the number of kms or date you should reach for your next oil change service. Barring that, a good rule is to have it changed every 5,000kms for conventional oil and 10,000kms for synthetic.
Why should I change my oil?
Your engine is comprised of a variety of moving parts, and all of them should be kept lubricated and cooled. Engine Oil is pumped throughout the Block to avoid to reduce friction and heat helping to prevent components from wearing out. Engine oil doesn’t last forever, and when it breaks down it doesn’t do a very good job of lubricating the engine anymore and will allow deposits to start to build up inside the engine. These deposits will reduce oil flow and increase heat and wear. You need to change your oil in a timely manner so it doesn’t have the chance to break down and lead you on the path to possible engine damage. Changing your oil regularly keeps is the best thing you can do for your vehicle as it plays a huge role in your engines’ health, longevity and keeping engine repair cost down. The great shops are usually doing a complementary Safety Check for you at the same time giving you that piece of mind.
What are the benefits of synthetic over regular motor oil?
Synthetic Oil was initially developed for the racing world of extreme heat, higher compressions and close tolerance engines for its’ durability and thinner viscosities. As manufactures have applied what has been learned from that environment to high end vehicles and now more modest vehicles we have better performing engines in our vehicles. Some vehicles now require Synthetic Oil by design and some do not. The benefits of synthetic oil over normal or conventional is it’s durability leading to longer service intervals and it flows slightly better from its’ finer molecules. While it does cost more to do a Synthetic Oil Change when directly compared to conventional oil change, the costs basically break even as you will do more regular oil changes in the year that you would synthetic. There is also the environmental benefit of less oil overall being used throughout the life of your vehicle.
What type of oil does my car need?
The type oil your vehicle needs will have been determined by its’ own design and tolerances. First, check your owner’s manual for the thickness or viscosity of oil such as 5W30 or 5W40 and it may specify in plain English if Synthetic is required. Additionally it will likely give you the manufacture’s specification number. The manufacturers’ specification number takes in to account your engines’ operating temperatures and many other factures to determine the specific properties the Oil needs to be correct for your engine (like Synthetic of not). This information can then be used to select your oil based on required Viscosity and meeting the required Specifications. While manufacturers will have a brand they use, any reputable brand with the right viscosity and meeting the manufactures’ specification is good for your engine. If all else fails, your local trusted mechanic can certainly help but remember, although it may have to be change out soon, any oil type is better than no oil on that dip stick!