Oil Changes..Why Are They So Important?
December 30th, 2016
You’ve heard it for years…oil change service at regular intervals is the best way to get the most miles out of your vehicle. Why is it so important, though?
Your engine has hundreds of moving parts that all slide or spin against each other at extremely close clearances. Without a film of lubrication, they would soon overheat due to friction, to a point where they would actually weld to each other and seize the engine. Motor oil cuts premature wear due to friction and helps dissipate heat.
Unfortunately internal combustion engines tend to run a little dirty. The combustion process generates a lot of carbon, water vapor and acids, which contaminate the oil along with microscopic metal particles from normal wear. These contaminants break down oil to a point where it loses its lubricating properties.
Motor oils contain dispersants and detergents that will suspend particles in the oil so they can circulate and be trapped by the oil filter. In time, though, the oil filter’s paper pleats will be saturated and the gunk will start to build up as carbon deposits or sludge on crucial moving parts. If you’ve ever seen the inside of an engine that didn’t have regular oil changes…it isn’t a pretty sight at all.
Conventional oil service should be done every 5,000 miles to prevent premature wear. For engines with over 100,000 miles on them, synthetic blend oil is available. This high-mileage formulation contains detergents and friction modifiers for an older engine’s looser tolerances; it also contains seal conditioners that will swell older gaskets and seals that may have shrunk and dried out, causing oil leaks.
Everything you may have heard about synthetic oil is true. Real world results show that synthetic oil offers better engine protection than conventional oil in just about every respect. While it’s about twice as expensive per quart, synthetic oil service can be done every 12-15,000 miles (check your owner’s manual for manufacturer’s recommendations).
What’s your odometer say? How long since your last oil change service? Make an appointment with us at JBC Tire Complete Auto Care for your next oil change!