The 5 W’s: Oil Changes

Posted on December 16, 2017 by Lewis Automotive Inc in Auto Repair

You might remember learning about the 5 W’s in grade school (who, what, when, where and why). The 5 W’s are important questions to ask when finding the solution to a problem. For this article, we will focus on the issue of an oil change. If you’ve never dealt with it before, here’s all you need to know!

Who should change my oil?

Oil changes can be conducted by anyone who has the knowledge needed to complete the process. What I mean by this, is even you could change your own oil. There are countless guides and videos for doing so online as well for the ambitious ones who want to do it themselves. If this still sounds a little too left-field for you, pretty much any auto repair shop can perform an oil change for you, and it shouldn’t take long!

What oil does my car need?

Different cars need different types of oil and filters depending on make and model. You can determine which type of oil you need by conducting an internet search here, or by taking your car to a mechanic. Your mechanic should already have the oil your car needs, so you don’t need to purchase any before taking your car in.

When should I change my oil?

Mechanics used to suggest changing your oil once every 3,000 miles. Now with so many different types of oil available for different cars, you may be able to go as far as 5,000-7,000 miles in between changes! Again, this fully depends on the oil your car uses, and other components such as climate and vehicle purpose. To decide what’s best for your car, check your owner’s manual or consult with your mechanic. Make sure to communicate your vehicles purpose and ask him or her how often your specific oil needs to be changed, not just car oil in general.

Where should I change my oil?

It’s easiest to change your oil on a flat, even surface (like a parking lot or a garage) so that you can use a jack if you need to raise the vehicle for access. If changing the oil yourself, do it somewhere it’s easy to catch all of the old oil! Use a sealable container to catch old oil and lay down a tarp underneath the workspace, just in case. Oil is harmful to the environment and can be disposed of correctly pretty much anywhere oil changes are available, and also at recycling centers. Your mechanic also has the perfect space, tools and oil disposal services if you’re not sure you have the right spot to change your own.

Why do I need to change my oil?

Your engine functions with the help of many parts working together, and in order to work together these parts rub against each other and create friction, which in turn creates heat. To prevent overheating and support functionality, these parts need a lubricant to absorb the heat and reduce friction. This is the purpose of your car’s oil! Over time, the oil in your engine starts to break down and isn’t as good at its job, causing engine issues and malfunctions. That’s why it’s important to change it as recommended.

Problems associated with oil can be easily avoided with simple car maintenance. These 5 W’s should help you gain a better understanding of oil changes in general and how to approach them. If you still have questions or have decided you want an oil change service, feel free to contact us! We are happy to help.

Written by Lewis Automotive Inc

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