If your car needs no other maintenance, it will need an oil change – among other things. How often you do this will depend on your vehicle and how much you drive it. Cars are more efficient then they used to be but the oil still needs changing. Age is an important factor just as much as how many miles you have travelled. If you have a yearly service on your vehicle it is likely the mechanic will change your oil for you, but why? What’s so important about engine oil? Quite a lot actually:
- Oil protects your engine components from wearing prematurely by adding a layer of protection. This layer of protection protects against the heat of the engine, and metal grinding on metal, much like bikes and any other mechanical parts often need oiling.
- Oil protects engine components from corrosion caused by weather such as condensation.
- Your engine uses fuel more efficiently when the oil is good and stocked up, meaning better MPG (miles per gallon) and reduced fuel costs.
- Changing your oil regularly can add years of life to your vehicle by helping to keep the components healthy and putting less strain on the whole vehicle. You should also need less repairs and visits to the garage.
- Oil does an important job of keeping your engine parts cooler and clean from dirt and debris which can reduce efficiency.
- Skipping oil changes means that metal engine parts can grind together with not enough good lubrication to protect them from damage. If your engine components grind together then tiny fragments of metal can find their way into the oil and circulate around the engine, increasing risk of damage.
The problem with old oil
- Older engine oil is more damaging to the environment, producing greater levels of emissions. It can affect you when you go to have your state emissions test and may end up costing you.
- As oil ages its ability to lubricate diminishes, regardless of how many miles you have driven.