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How Often Should You Change the Oil in Your Car? | Chicagoland Jiffy Lube®

Oil changes are one of those chores that always seem to end up on the bottom of the to-do list. They’re easy to put off. After all, your car isn’t going to implode if you skip an oil change here and there, right? In reality, properly maintaining your vehicle, including getting regular oil changes, will extend the life of the car considerably. So, how frequently do you really need an oil change? The answer depends on a number of factors, including the make, age and mileage of your vehicle.

How Often Do You Need to Get an Oil Change?

You’ve probably heard that a general rule of thumb is to change the oil in your vehicle every 3 months or 3,000 miles, whichever comes first. But does every car really require oil changes this frequently? In reality, the answer to this question varies depending on the model, make, year, and mileage of your particular vehicle. The best thing to do is consult your owner’s manual for maintenance instructions specific to your car. There are also some key questions you can ask yourself to determine whether your vehicle needs oil changes more or less frequently than the general recommendation.

What year is your car?

Older cars require oil changes more frequently than newer models. There have been some major advancements in automobile manufacturing that have reduced the need for oil changes in newly manufactured automobiles. Newer cars are made from tougher materials that enable them to operate more efficiently and reduce the need for oil changes.

How Many Miles Does Your Car Have?

The more mileage a car has, the more frequently you need to change the oil. A new car with low mileage may only require an oil change every 7,500 miles, whereas a car from the early 2000s topping 150,000 miles will definitely require oil changes every 3,000 miles, if not more.

What is the Make of Your Vehicle?

Different automobile brands have wildly different oil change needs. For instance, BMW says owners only need to change their oil every 15,000 miles for a newer car, whereas Ford and Toyota recommend every 10,000 miles.

How Do You Use Your Vehicle?

Believe it or not, the way you use your car also impacts the need for oil changes. Operating the vehicle in a way that increases stress on the car will increase its oil needs as well. Off-roading, towing trailers, stop-go driving, and driving in extreme weather conditions can all wear on your car, requiring more frequent oil changes. Driving a car primarily in the city, where you stop and go regularly, will result in a greater need for oil changes than highway driving.

What Are the Benefits of Regular Oil Changes?

So, you know you need to get oil changes regularly, but what’s all the fuss about? Are oil changes really as important as mechanics claim? The answer is yes. Regular oil changes improve the safety and lifespan of your vehicle. Here are some of the core benefits oil changes provide.

Regular oil changes save you money in the long-run.

I often hear people lament over the cost of cars. Not only are they expensive to purchase, but the ongoing costs of maintenance can feel financially burdensome to many. However, if the cost of driving is your main complaint, that’s all the more reason to change your oil regularly. The leading causes of engine failure are friction and wearing down of the parts. Old oil accumulates sediment and debris, which wears on the engine as it cycles through, increasing the risk of engine failure. Engines can cost anywhere from $2,000 to $5,000, sometimes more, depending on the make of the car. A couple of oil changes a year is small change in comparison.

Regular oil changes increase gas mileage.

Engines run more efficiently with clean oil, meaning better gas mileage and better engine performance. The cleaner the oil in your car, the better lubricated your engine will be. This enables the engine to run smoothly and efficiently, reducing gas mileage and wear on your car.

Regular oil changes are better for the environment.

An engine with clean oil runs more smoothly and emits fewer emissions. You won’t have to worry about failing your emissions test, and you’ll be contributing to cleaner air in your locale.

Your engine will be quieter.

You know those cars that you can hear coming from miles away? They screech up to the stop light with the engine roaring and smog sputtering from the exhaust pipe. They fill the neighborhoods with noise and air pollution, making them the bane of every other driver on the road. Those are the cars with neglected engines that have skipped too many oil changes along the way. Routine oil changes ensure your engine runs clean, quiet, and free of debris, so you can avoid the shame of being the noisy car on your block.

Where Can I Get an Oil Change Near Me?

Now that you know the benefits of routine oil changes, you’re probably wondering, “Where can I get an oil change near me?” Jiffy Lube boasts 2,000 locations nationwide, making it conveniently located to just about everyone. With expert mechanics and consistently quality service, you can ensure your engine is in the most competent hands.

The experts at Jiffy Lube will not only change your oil, but they’ll also assess your vehicle based on make, year, mileage, and engine wear to inform you of the oil change needs specific to your vehicle. With the average oil change costing less than a new pair of sneakers, there is no sense in delaying. Routine oil changes will extend the life of your vehicle, and save you money by reducing engine wear. To learn more about the oil change needs specific to your vehicle, drive into Jiffy Lube today, and talk to one of their many specialized mechanics.