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Change Every 3000 Miles - Good Advice or Just a Sales Pitch?
people are told by their mechanics that the oil in their car needs
to be changed every 3,000 miles.
But is that really necessary? Can the oil in your car
possibly last longer than 3,000, 5,000 or even 7,000 miles? Somehow
changing the oil at 3,000 miles feels safe and reassuring of no
are only a few basic reasons why it is necessary to change your oil,
and they all, in the end, have to do with decreased protection of
your engine and decreased performance. If these elements can be
minimized, then there would be little or no reason to change the
"ideal" driving conditions, you could extend the period
between changes to as much as 7500 miles.
A new engine with little or no wear can probably get by on
7500-mile oil changes. However, how do we determine ideal
conditions? What many
of us consider to be ideal conditions, your owner’s manual
describes as “severe” conditions.
These include: stop-and-go driving; frequent short trips
(under 10 miles); wet weather driving; hot weather driving (above 90
degrees F); cold weather driving (below 40 degrees F); trailer
towing; and long periods of idling.
We can better appreciate the need for changing the oil
every 3,000 miles if we understand how oil breaks down in our car.
The most significant
difference from one oil to another is how quickly breakdown occurs.
Although there are many factors that contribute to the breakdown,
heat is one of the most important.
As an engine accumulates miles, it dumps more unburned fuel into the
crankcase, which dilutes the oil. This causes the oil to break down.
are two types of oil, petroleum and synthetic. The first major
difference between petroleum and synthetic oil is heat tolerance.
Petroleum oil begins to break-down almost immediately. A high
quality synthetic, on the other hand, can last for many thousands of
miles without any significant reduction in performance or protection
engines are expected to put out more power from a smaller size and
with less oil than engines of the past. Therefore, the engines run
much hotter than they used to. That puts an increased burden on the
important to note that synthetics do a much better job of
"cooling" engine components during operation. Because of
their unique flow characteristics, engine components are likely to
run 10 to 30 degrees cooler than with petroleum oils. This is
important, because the hotter the components in your engine get, the
more quickly they break down.
Help Your Engine?
It is true that
the additives in many oils begin breaking down after only a few
thousand miles. Additionally, there are different quality
"grades" of additives as well as different quality grades
of just about any other product out in the market today. You also
need to consider that there are different combinations of additives
that tend to work for better and for longer when combined than when
that additives in oil die after 3,000 miles is no different than
saying that automobile tires only last for 30,000 miles. We all know
that there are plenty of tires on the market that do indeed last for
only 30,000 miles, but we also know that there are many tires on the
market nowadays that will last over 75,000 miles.
same holds true for motor oils. Many oil companies are using the
same additives in their oils as all of the other companies because
they are cheap. That's why the oil costs less. You get what you pay
people who use synthetic oil believe it gives them piece of mind.
They know that when 20,000 miles rolls around, they still have a few
thousand miles left to find time to change the oil. However, unless
you have a new car, synthetic oil is not recommended.
Finally, don’t forget to change your filter every time
you change your oil – it only costs $2 or $3.
It doesn’t make any sense to change the oil just to have it
re-contaminated by trace elements in the filter.
Car's Mechanical Condition
Auto Repair Manuals for the Do-It-Yourselfer
-are you the fix-it-yourself type? Find great
sources for your manuals.
Let your Mechanic Take you to the Cleaners
-more tips for choosing
a trustworthy mechanic.
vs. Remanufactured Engines
-Your engine has
failed and must be replaced. Which type do you choose?
Your Oil Once a Year or Every 35000 Miles!
synthetic oil and it's advantages for you.
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brought to you for general information purposes only and there are
no warranties as to accuracy, completeness, or results obtained from
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