Oil Change in New Berlin, WI

Engine Maintenance >> Oil & Filter Change

How Often Should You Change Your Oil?

Oil & filter Change Waukesha, WIRecommended frequency of oil change varies based on driving habits, vehicle make/model/year, city vs country driving, and more. Typical drivers can follow these guidelines for when to get their oil changed:

  • Older Cars - Every 3,000 miles is the typical oil change frequency for older cars, around 2007 and older. Less efficient engines with more wear means a more frequent need to change your oil.
  • Newer Cars - Every 5,000 miles is a good measure of how often to change your newer vehicle's oil & filter (around 2008 and newer). If you aren't doing a lot of stop-and-go driving, it's even okay to go 7,500 miles between oil changes

How Often Do Oil Filters Need to Be Replaced?

Oil filter change in New Berlin, WIIt is highly recommended to get your oil filter changed at the same time you change your oil. The oil filter's job is to catch debris, dirt, metal fragments and more to keep your oil clean and engine running smoothly.

If it's not replaced on a regular basis, it can't filter out the junk that collects in your oil. Best advice: have the oil filter replaced at the same time you have your oil changed.

Oil Changes for Newer vs Older cars

If you have a newer car, you need to follow the manufacturer’s recommendation for frequency of oil changes (mileage and/or time), and oil type in order to not void your powertrain warranty. You’ll find this in your owner’s manual.

With older cars, when you change your oil depends a lot on your driving style and driving conditions. Severe driving conditions will require more frequent oil changes (3,000 to 5,000 miles). Severe conditions include:

  • Mostly short trips of 5 miles or less
  • Mostly short trips of 10 miles or less in freezing cold temperatures
  • Stop and go driving in hot weather
  • Driving long distances at low speed
  • Driving on dusty, sandy, muddy or gravel roads
  • Towing a trailer for a long distance

Are Synthetic Oils Worth the Cost?

Synthetic oils cost more, but extend the intervals between oil changes to 10,000 or more miles. They’re designed to resist high temperature breakdown better than conventional oils and keep dirt and particulates in suspension longer so they can be trapped by the oil filter.

Synthetic oil also lubricates engine components better and is more stable in cold weather. Most newer cars ship with synthetic oil, and most manufacturers recommend them. If you have a newer car (built within the past 5 years), we recommend sticking with synthetic oil.

If you have an older, high mileage car, you might think switching to synthetic oil will help extend its life. However, as engines wear the internal tolerances loosen and oil consumption goes up. You aren’t likely to get the 7,500 mile interval between oil changes, so the extra expense of synthetic oil probably isn’t worth it—especially if you know you’re going to be replacing the car in the next year or two.

In this case, we’d recommend a conventional oil formulated for high mileage vehicles (over 75,000 miles). These oils have additives the manufacturers claim will reduce engine wear and rejuvenate brittle seals and gaskets to prevent leaks. They are often a mix of synthetic and conventional oils.

If your car isn’t leaking oil and uses less than a quart every 6,000 miles, though, it’s probably not worth the extra cost for a high mileage oil, although it may prevent a leak from starting.

Can You Switch from Conventional Oil to a Synthetic Oil?

Yes, unless your car was built before 1990 and has a lot of miles on it. The problem is that older cars often have seals, gaskets and other components that just don’t have the tighter tolerances of newer models.

Synthetic oils have specially formulated additives to clean out sludge better than conventional oils, to the point they can remove deposits that are sealing gaps created by seals and gaskets that have shrunk over time. The additives in synthetic oil can even compromise gaskets, and this can cause oil leaks.

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