How Often Should You Really Get Your Oil Changed?
There's no way around it: owning your own vehicle requires regular maintenance.
On top of regularly topping off the gas tank, oil changes are crucial to keeping your car running as optimally as it should. The problem is many of us can't even remember the last time we got our oil changed!
If this sounds like you, then you need this guide! With help from the experts at Valvoline Oil Change, we’ve created this informative, how-to guide to help you better understand how your engine works and why oil changes are so necessary.
If you’d rather skip the messy and time-consuming job of changing your own oil, why not let car maintenance experts handle it? Valvoline Oil Change offers stay-in-your-car, full-service oil changes in about 15 minutes. You don’t need an appointment and their car care experts will perform 18 additional vehicle security checks - completely free of charge!
Just make sure you grab one of our Valvoline Oil Change promo codes for an extra $10 discount!
How often do I really need my oil changed?
You've probably heard the old benchmark that a car needs its oil changed every 3,000 miles. But this is just a benchmark and not a golden rule. Why? Because there are many different variables that go into how often a car should actually have its oil changed.
For instance, if you regularly drive in severe weather conditions like ice and snow, you might want to consider an oil change every 3,000 miles. Even if you don't drive often but when you do you're frequently stuck in stop-and-go traffic, then you might require an oil change much sooner than you think.
Every vehicle has different specifications and tolerances when it comes to having its oil changed. When in doubt, the best thing that you can do is check your owner’s manual.
Remember that you’ll also need to log your oil changes and keep your receipts. If you’re a Valvoline Oil Change client, they’ll actually keep track of your receipts for you!
Can I check the oil myself?
Absolutely! Learning how to check your oil periodically is a good habit that can even save you money in the long run on costly repairs.
If your car is new, once a month will do. If your car is old or could use some repairs, the risk of burning or leaking engine oil is greater, so you might want to check your oil weekly or more.
Checking your oil level is simple and requires no expertise. Just follow these steps:
- Park your car on a level surface and let the engine cool for at least 5 minutes.
- If you are extremely unfamiliar with where everything is under your hood, your owner’s manual should provide detailed instructions on how to find your dipstick.
- Once you’ve found the dipstick, remove it and wipe the oil off with a clean rag.
- Reinsert the dipstick and pull it back out again.
- Check the oil level at the bottom of the dipstick.
That’s all it takes! While checking your oil regularly is important, if you don’t feel quite up to the task, just let a professional handle it. The car maintenance experts at Valvoline Oil Change can check and change your oil for you in as little as 15 minutes.
Be aware of the check engine oil light
Is your check engine light on? This usually means that the oil pressure in your vehicle has dropped and you need to take immediate action. If you fail to heed this important warning your car is giving you, it could lead to some serious damage to your vehicle.
The check oil light usually means that your oil is low, dirty or leaking but it might also mean that your oil pressure sensor or oil pump needs to be replaced. Unless you have the tools and the expertise to check the problem yourself, have an expert technician troubleshoot the problem for you.
The bottom line
Engine oil is the lifeblood of your vehicle and without it, you won’t get very far! Make periodically checking and changing your vehicle's engine oil a regular part of your car care maintenance routine.
We hope this guide has shown you the importance of getting your oil changed regularly and helped dispel some oil change myths.
If you’re thinking to yourself that it’s been quite a while since you’ve had an oil change, grab one of our Valvoline Oil Change promo codes and get started!