How Often Should You Change Your Oil?

Checking oil level on dipstick

Regular oil changes help to keep your car running smooth and safe on Omaha area roads. It used to be the rule to have your oil changed every 3,000 miles, but with advancements in oil and engine technology, most vehicles can be driven 7,500 to 10,000 miles before needing an oil change. It’s always best to check your owner’s manual to find the recommended oil change schedule for your specific vehicle. When it’s time for your next oil change, just stop by the Sid Dillon service center near you.

Oil Change Frequency Guidelines

While it is generally recommended that you change the oil in your car, truck, or SUV every 7,500-10,000 miles, certain driving conditions will require more frequent oil changes. Check with the Sid Dillon service center near you if you use your vehicle for any of the following:

  • Off-roading
  • Commercial use
  • Racing
  • Heavy towing
Adding oil to engine

More Oil Change Tips

Before you visit one of our service centers in the Fremont area, check out these facts about oil changes:

  • Even if you don’t do a lot of driving, you should still get an oil change at least twice a year. Oil breaks down over time even if your car isn’t being driven.
  • The oil filter needs to be replaced whenever you get your oil changed. If you’re changing the oil yourself, stop by your local Sid Dillon parts department to find the right oil filter for your vehicle.
  • Synthetic oil vs. conventional oil: Synthetic oil can cost more, but some vehicles require it. Check your owner’s manual.

How Often Should I Check My Oil Level?

By checking the oil level once a month you’ll be able to catch any leaks before they become problematic. You should also check the oil’s color, and look to see if there are any metal particles in the oil, which can be the sign of a serious problem. If you’re low on oil or notice another issue, have one of our certified service technicians take a look.

What Happens If You Don’t Change Your Oil?

While often overlooked, oil is actually a critical component of your vehicle. The purpose of motor oil is to lubricate the moving components to minimize friction. This helps to keep your vehicle operating efficiently and minimize the possibility of engine damage. That is why regular oil changes are so important. So what happens if you don’t change your oil? It could lead to costly repairs down the road. 

Over time, engine oil begins to break down, and when this happens, it doesn’t lubricate important engine components as it should. Debris and other contaminants also begin to accumulate in the oil, which can cause an increase in friction. More friction leads to more heat, which in turn can lead to expensive engine damage. 

The Purpose of Motor Oil

The main role of motor oil is to reduce wear and tear on moving parts due to friction. However, that is not its only purpose. Why else is motor oil essential to your vehicle?

  • Motor oil with dispersants helps to clean sludge from the engine.
  • Detergents in motor oil are designed to clean varnish from the engine.
  • When you keep up with regular oil changes, your vehicle’s motor oil can help neutralize acids that form from fuels, improve piston ring seals, and cool the engine by dispersing heat. 

How Do I Change the Oil Myself?

Now that you know a little more about what happens if you don’t get your oil changed, you may be wondering how to perform a DIY oil change. It is actually quite simple. Before you get started, you will want to look at your owner’s manual to see what type of oil is recommended by the manufacturer. When you have what you need, you can get started.

  1. Jack your car up with jack stands or steel ramps.
  2. Find the oil drain plug on the bottom of your oil pan beneath the engine. Put an oil basin right under the plug. When it is in place, you can start to unscrew the plug and allow the old oil to drain out completely. Keep in mind that this step can take as long as 15 minutes to complete. When you are certain that all of the old oil has been drained, you can put the plug back in place. 
  3. Use an oil filter wrench to take out the oil filter. It is likely that a bit of extra oil will drain out when you take out the filter. That is why you want to leave the oil basin where it is. 
  4. Take the new filter, and rub a bit of oil around the rubber seal. Do not skip this step because it ensures your filter is watertight.
  5. Set the new filter in place, then tighten it by hand. 
  6. When these steps are complete, you can remove your oil cap. Pour in the specified amount of new oil, and when it is at the proper level, you can put the cap back on.
  7. It is a good idea to check your oil level by pulling out the dipstick.

Visit Sid Dillon for Your Next Oil Change

At our Sid Dillon service centers, we offer low prices on oil changes as well as on tire rotations and a wide range of other maintenance and repair services. We also offer the full range of auto body repair, including paintless dent removal. What’s more, we’re happy to teach you how to reset your tire pressure light, or perform other necessary services, right from the comfort of your home! For quality solutions to all of your auto care needs visit one of our Blair or Lincoln area service centers today.

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