What Every Driver Wants To Know About The Frequency Of Their Vehicle's Oil Changes

When it comes to the fluids in a vehicle, many drivers consider oil to be the most important to keep track of. There could be a possibility that old oil-changing habits need to change. While most drivers still religiously change their oil at the 3,000 mile mark, it has been suggested by Edmunds.com (for one) that with more modern vehicles, this is not always necessary. To get down to the facts, it is a good idea to take a look at some of the most frequently asked questions about these more modern claims about the basic oil change.

Why would the recommendations about oil changing be different now?

There are a few different reasons why modern oil could last longer in modern vehicles. For one, the engines of today are made tighter, meaning the breakdown of oil is not as big of a problem as it once was. The second thing to keep in mind is that automobile oil has seen its own advances over the last several years. The oil is much more durable, with properties that prevent breakdown that once was a bigger issue.

What is the best way to truly know when your oil needs to be changed?

Many of the most modern vehicles are equipped with an oil quality sensor that actually shows the vehicle owner when the oil is getting close to the point that it needs to be changed. This is an incredibly useful tool and its accuracy is reliable. However, you should also adhere to the manufacturer's guidelines about when you should change your oil.

Are there different recommendations about oil changes according to how you drive your vehicle?

What many drivers do not know is that the answer to this question is yes. If you consult your driver's manual, you will likely see two different sets of oil change recommendations. Your oil should be changed more frequently if you commonly make short trips. On the other hand, if you drive long trips more often, the recommendation will be that you change your oil less frequently. Heat in the motor tends to break down the oil faster, and vehicles on stop-and-go trips or idling for long periods will usually run at hotter temperatures than those going long distances on the highway.

The next time you are considering an oil change because you are getting close to that 3,000 mile marker on your odometer, make sure you take into consideration that changing the oil at the 3,000 mile point may just be an old habit. Refer to the owner's manual of your vehicle to find out just how often your oil should be changed.