Every vehicle owner knows they are supposed to take in their car to get regular oil changes. Here inn San Diego and across the nation, routine oil changes and related maintenance can keep your car running in top condition for a long time. But what exactly is an oil change, and why is it generally viewed as one of the most important auto repair services you can get for your car, truck or SUV?
Why Are Oil Changes Needed? The Basics
Your vehicle’s combustion engine is what makes your car go. Pistons rapidly moving up and down inside your engine cause mini, well-ordered detonations to go off all at once. These constant firings ultimately give power to your vehicle. Motor oil serves to both lubricate these pistons to minimize friction and to lower the overall temperature of the engine’s internal components. When you drive your car, dirt and grime build up over time, which causes the engine to have to work a lot harder to produce the same output. This puts more wear and tear on the engine.
If the oil isn’t replaced on a regular basis, it starts to act more like a coagulant rather than a lubricant. That is, instead of greasing your engine’s moving parts so they can move freely, this dirty oil sticks to those parts causing them to deteriorate. Oil should have a base viscosity level that is thick enough to protect the engine’s parts but not too thick to mud them up. Dirty oil becomes too thick to be useful and actually becomes harmful instead.
An oil change works by basically draining out your dirty oil and replacing it with new oil that is free of dirt and contaminants. This fresh oil should also have the right level of viscosity – see your owner’s manual if you don’t know which grade is best for your vehicle’s make and model – so that it runs optimally. Nice clean oil makes for a happy, high-performing engine.
Even the Cheapest Oil Change Can Save You Thousands in Engine Repair
Considering all they do, a oil change is one of the most inexpensive automotive repair services you can get for your vehicle. If you choose to save the $50 and skip it, dirty oil in your car could accumulate and cause your engine parts to wear down or even seize up completely. The cost of engine repair or replacement can be several thousand dollars. Yet most engine block repair is caused by failure to get regular oil changes for your vehicle. As such, spending $50 on an oil change should be a given.