You’ve been driving your car for a while, and you’re getting ready to take it into the shop for an oil change. But are you sure that an oil change is necessary? Here’s how to tell:
Check the odometer.
If you’ve driven less than 3,000 miles since your last oil change, it might be time for another one. If you’ve driven more than 3,000 miles since your last oil change and haven’t had the car serviced recently (or ever), then it is probably time for an oil change.
Listen to your car.
Listen to your car. If it’s making any unusual noises or vibrations, or if an odor is coming from the engine compartment, it could be a sign that an oil change is in order.
If you’re not sure whether or not your vehicle needs an oil change, bring it into one of our service centers for a checkup with one of our experts. We’ll let you know what we find and help keep your vehicle running smoothly for years to come!
Look at your oil on the dipstick.
- Look at the color of the oil. If it’s brown or black, that’s not a good sign! It means that your engine has been burning oil and needs to be replaced soon.
- Check the level of oil on your dipstick–if it’s low, you might need an oil change soon.* Look at how consistent it is; if it looks like peanut butter (thick), then there may be something wrong with your car.* If all else fails, just ask someone who knows about cars!
Be aware of engine performance issues.
If you’re having trouble with your car, it’s important to know if an oil change is going to help or not. Some common symptoms that indicate a need for an oil change include:
- Engine performance issues
- Low engine temperature and/or overheating
- Low engine compression
Know when to change your oil.
The owner’s manual is your best resource for knowing when to change your oil. It will tell you the manufacturer’s recommended interval, which can range anywhere from 5,000 miles to 10,000 miles (or more) depending on the type of oil used.
Other factors that affect how often you need to change your car’s fluids include driving habits and climate. If you drive aggressively or frequently tow heavy loads, then it may be necessary for you to go beyond what is advised in the owner’s manual. In addition, if you live in an area where temperatures regularly exceed 100 degrees Fahrenheit during summer months or drop below freezing during winter months-or both!-then it might be prudent for these conditions as well as others like frequent stop-and-go traffic or dusty roads will shorten how long an engine oil can last before needing replacement.*
There are several different ways to tell if your vehicle needs an oil change.
There are several different ways to tell if your vehicle needs an oil change. First, check the owner’s manual for recommended maintenance intervals (if you don’t have it, you can find it on the manufacturer’s website). Second, look at the oil dipstick; if you see a layer of black sludge on top of the oil level line and/or bubbles in the fluid itself, it means that old dirty engine oil has been leaking into your new clean one and needs changing right away. Finally, listen carefully to what your car is saying: If it sounds like its engine is groaning under load or running rough when accelerating at highway speeds–and this isn’t how it always sounds–it could mean there’s something wrong with its transmission or engine.
Now that you know how to tell if your car needs an oil change, it’s time to get out there and check. Remember: these signs aren’t foolproof–they can indicate other problems as well. But if all else fails, at least now you have some tips on what might be wrong!