Everyone knows that oil changes are part of regular vehicle maintenance. Whenever the windshield sticker date comes due, or your instrument panel’s oil light comes on, it’s time to get your vehicle to the shop. But, do you know why your vehicle needs regular oil changes? Did you know that you have many options to choose from, even if your newer vehicle is covered by a factory or aftermarket warranty?
In this article we’ll go over the basics, describing how we change your oil, why it’s necessary to do so at regular intervals, and we’ll also answer some of your most frequently asked questions.
If you need an oil change, just visit our contact page or send a text to our main line at 403.398.9833 to set up an appointment.
Service Description & Procedure
There are several major reasons why it’s so important to get regular oil changes – we list the main ones here. The first 3 are directly related to your engine oil, but the 4th reason is often overlooked.
- The job of your engine oil is to continually pump through your vehicle’s engine to keep it running smoothly. Considering how hot it gets inside your engine, it is no surprise that over time your oil will experience thermal breakdown. When this happens, the oil loses its efficacy as a lubricant. When the oil stops lubricating properly, engine components rub together and will wear out faster.
- Modern oil contains additives that help neutralize acids. Once these additives are all used up, the Ph of your oil will drop (becoming acidic) and your engine will be vulnerable to this acidic environment.
- Although engine oil exists in a closed system, it will eventually absorb and hold in suspension water, dust, and other byproducts of engine combustion. Once the oil becomes saturated with these contaminants, your engine components will start to wear down.
- All of our Oil Services include a complimentary Service Inspection. We create a detailed report complete with pictures, videos, and easy to understand descriptions of any concerns or recommendations. Then, we email or text you a weblink to this report so you can check it out at your convenience. Catching potential mechanical failures with a Service Inspection is the best way to stay on top of problems before they happen. We are able to save you time and money with a bit of preventative maintenance.
The procedure itself is straight forward. We remove any undertrays, drain all of the old motor oil from your car’s engine, and replace it with fresh new oil. While we’re in there, we replace the oil filter as well – no sense running clean oil through a dirty filter. We have partnered with local recycling providers so we can responsibly recycle your used engine oil and oil filters.
How often should I change my oil?
Every vehicle is different, every driver is different, and the climate in Calgary varies greatly throughout the year, so it’s hard to come up with an answer that works for everyone all the time. That being said, a good rule-of-thumb is to get your oil changed every 8,000kms or every 12 months, whichever comes first.
Many of our clients drive 2,000kms per month, and therefore see us every 4 months for an Oil Service + Service Inspection. We strongly recommend AGAINST relying on the vehicle’s built-in computer reminder to tell you when to get your next Oil Service. The vehicle’s manufacturer recommendation is typically biased towards achieving the lowest cost of maintenance during the warranty period of the vehicle, with little to no consideration taken for those that want to own the vehicle past the warranty period. To keep things simple, we always put a sticker on your windshield with the suggested date and odometer reading for your next oil change.
What happens if I don’t change my oil?
Think of your oil change as an insurance policy against future repairs. Clean oil helps your engine run smoothly and prevents premature wear on its components. Oil changes are relatively inexpensive, and when you add in the value of the complimentary Service Inspection, it just might be the highest value piece of regular maintenance you do on your vehicle.
The ultimate result of neglecting oil changes would be an engine rebuild. When you consider the cost of oil changes vs a total engine rebuild, it’s a no-brainer.