Why Do You Need An Oil Change? | Scott's Fort Collins Auto

Why Do You Need An Oil Change?

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Two mechanics working underneath a car.

Does it seem like every time you turn around you need another oil change? We know an oil change is just one more thing to try and squeeze into your busy schedule, but it’s well worth your time. An oil change is a very cheap service for customers that want to maintain the health of their engine, as the engine needs oil lubrication in order to function. Without it, your engine wills tart to break down, and those cost thousands of dollars to replace. Here are some of the top reasons you need those frequent oil changes!


Why Does Your Car Need Oil?

You may always hear the term “oil change” when you take your car in for the shop, but what does that term actually mean for your car? Is oil actually needed? The answer is yes! You have countless moving parts in your car. Some cars will have as many as 90,000 car parts that all work together to make your car move. So that parts don’t constantly grind together and wear down incredibly fast, various oils are used to lubricate parts and make them last longer.


You get oil in your car mostly to protect your engine, which is the most important part of your car. As your engine works hard, it uses oil to resist engine breakdown and helps prevent problems caused by high temperatures from working parts.


Some studies show that driving short distances consistently will make it harder for standard oil to heat up enough. If it doesn’t heat enough, the oil is not able to burn off moisture and impurities that can damage your engine. Most standard oils work for the majority of cars, but if professionals (or the car manual) suggests something specific, consider buying synthetic motor oil.


Motor oil being poured into a car.

Types of Oils Used for Cars

Many people don’t know the difference between the types of oils they can get at an auto shop, and especially which type of oil is best for their vehicle. Your car manual will always steer you in the right direction. Somewhere inside that manual, it will say what type of oil is best for your car. Based on how much you use your car, the type of oil you get for an oil change may differ as well. If any oil is fine, you are good no matter what you choose. If the car manual says you need “synthetic” oil, make sure that is the one always used on your car.


Synthetic oil is different than crude oil. For one, it is artificially made specific to what cars need. It is a lubricant made from chemical compounds from petroleum that has been chemically modified. It is different than crude oil and will be smoother than crude oil. Consumer Reports states that synthetic oil is specifically designed to prevent breakdown better than conventional oil. However, not all cars will need synthetic oil. It costs more money (sometimes up to 4x as much as conventional) and it’s not always needed.


Car professionals that are working underneath a car. One of them is smiling at the camera and cleaning a dipstick.

What Is An Oil Change?

You will need to get an oil change frequently for your car if you want that car to work properly. Besides keeping all your moving car parts from breaking down, proper oil can help cool all the engine components that are always fired up from friction. You want to make sure you always have enough lubrication and cooling ability from your motor oil, which is why you should frequently check your car oil levels. Most cars will have a dipstick (located under the hood) that you can remove to see where the oil line is.


If you’ve never done this before, have a professional check your oil levels instead of just guessing at it. Most drivers should have an oil change and check about every 6 months if they drive often. For mileage, that’s around 7,500 miles between each oil change. Some cars will burn more oil than others, which is why you may need to stick to every 6 months.


For your oil change, we will check your levels and either top you off on oil (if the oil is still good), or we will change out all the oil. We do this by removing the drain screw in your car so that all the oil empties into a disposal container. Once all the old oil is removed, we replace the screw for the oil pain and fill new oil into the pan through an access spout in your engine. Your car will use that new oil until another change is needed. During an oil change, we will check your car for other maintenance issues that need to be fixed.


Oil and Maintenance Checks

Does it feel like every time you turn around, it’s time for another oil change? We know an oil change is just one more thing to try and squeeze into an already busy schedule, but it’s so worth it for the health of your car. At Scott’s Fort Collins Auto & Repair we promise to make it as quick and painless as possible. Simply call us at (970) 682-4202 to schedule your oil change and maintenance check!

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