How Often Should You Change Engine Oil?

January 3, 2022 Published by Leave your thoughts

Engine oil is the lifeblood of any vehicle. As the oil ages, it starts to collect all sorts of engine debris that robs your vehicle of high performance and leads to other issues under the hood.

The only solution to these problems is an oil change, but that begs the question: “How often should I replace my car’s engine oil?”

The answer depends on these factors:

  • Oil type: Engine oil has become more advanced over the years, leading to better performance and longer time frames between changes. If you use a full-synthetic blend, you can go up to 15,000 miles between oil changes. Conversely, lower-grade oils need to be changed every 5,000 to 7,000 miles.
  • Car age: Older cars typically require more frequent oil changes than newer models. After all, their engines have seen better days and typically don’t perform as well. We recommend bringing your older vehicle in for an annual inspection to see if it needs new oil.
  • Manufacturer’s recommendations: Perhaps the best way to answer the question, “How often should I get an oil change?” is to read the owner’s manual. The handbook will say how frequently the oil needs to be changed and what type of oil should be used for peak performance.

Signs it’s time for an oil change

Knowing how often you should get an oil change is often as easy as checking the odometer or reading the owner’s manual. Here are some cases in which an oil change is required sooner rather than later:

  • Falling oil level: Some drivers will top off their oil to prolong the time between oil changes. While this can be an effective strategy, you shouldn’t need to add oil too frequently. If that’s the case, there’s likely something wrong with your entire oil system.
  • Loud engine noises: As your engine oil gets old and thin, it’s less able to lubricate all the necessary components under the hood. If your engine is knocking or making other strange noises, it’s time for new oil. You’ll also want a mechanic to look at your engine to ensure there’s nothing else wrong with it.
  • Persistent check engine light: It’s easy to ignore a check engine light, and that’s what too many drivers do! If your check engine light is on, bring your car to a mechanic for a diagnostic test—it could mean you need an oil change.
  • Ticking sounds: A ticking sound when starting your vehicle means that your motor oil has an improper texture and needs to be changed. Improper texture makes your engine valves work harder than they have to, leading to premature engine failure.

Bring your car to M & M Tire & Service Center

Whether you’ve noticed any of the troubling signs that it’s time for an oil change or you’ve reached your oil change mile marker, visit our pros at M & M Tire & Service Center. We’re experts in all things related to auto repair, and we’re standing by to answer all of your questions about how often to replace your car’s engine oil.

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