As often as you hear it, it remains true. Oil is the lifeblood of your vehicle. Its importance cannot be underestimated. The following are some frequently asked questions about oil and oil changes.
How often should I have my oil changed?
Opinions vary widely as to how long you should wait between oil changes. The age-old adage of 3,000 miles is no longer considered accurate. Most people say between 5,000 and 10,000 miles. Your best source for this information is your owner’s manual. The automaker will recommend an oil change schedule in your manual.
My oil is all black. Is something wrong?
Black oil does not mean bad oil. Oil contains helpful additives that can change the oil’s room-temperature amber color. Color is not a reliable indicator. Stick to the recommended schedule in your owner’s manual and ignore any potential change in color.
What’s the difference between conventional oil and synthetic oil?
Conventional oil is made from petroleum while synthetic oil is made in a lab. This may lead you to believe that synthetic oil is “greener.” Though it’s true that synthetic oil creates harmful by-products during its production, it is “greener” than regular oil. The benefit of synthetic oil, both financially and environmentally, is that it lasts considerably longer than conventional oil. You use less over time.
Is it okay to change my oil myself?
Many people choose to change their oil themselves. While it can be done although without proper jacks and jackstands, it can be dangerous. It’s often more expensive to do it yourself because shops buy oil and filters in bulk and those savings are passed on to you. Also, one considerable benefit of taking your vehicle into a professional to get your oil changed is that you can often tack on helpful inspections to the oil change for cheap.