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Having your vehicle’s engine oil changed on a regular basis is one of the easiest and least-expensive ways of extending the life of your car. It also helps prevent you from having to pay a lot later in mechanical repairs.

How often should I have my oil changed?

There are a lot of different opinions about how often you should have your oil changed. In the past the standard was every 3000 miles. These days manufacturers are making vehicles better and better and their recommendations often vary between 3000 and 10,000 miles.

Other factors should be considered: the age of the engine, what type of driver are you, environmental factors, and many others. Many impartial experts believe that every 5,000 miles will help your engine last longer. You may want to consider more frequent oil changes if:

  • You drive on dirt, rocks, or sand frequently.
  • Your engine is older or not operating properly.
  • Your driving habits include fast starts, faster speeds, or quick acceleration.
  • Your environment is very cold or very hot.
  • You want to use your maintenance records to help improve resale value of your vehicle.

The reality is that the better the oil you have in your vehicle the more likely your engine will last and your chances of avoiding expensive repairs are improved. Routine oil changes are an inexpensive way to have peace of mind and improved vehicle performance.

What are the benefits of changing my vehicle’s oil?

Minimize mechanical repairs & costs - Without good lubricant the parts of the engine rub together and wear out faster. So your engine won’t last as long as it could with good oil.

Better gas mileage - Routine oil changes keep the engine oil slick and the engine parts moving freely. Old oil requires the engine to work harder which means more fuel is used.

Extended engine life – Dirty oil does not provide as much lubrication for the moving parts in your engine. This means the engine parts will wear out faster if your engine oil is old and dirty.

Convenient maintenance timing – Routine, scheduled oil changes helps prevent unexpected maintenance requirements which might leave you stranded when you need your car the most.

Improved engine performance – Routine oil changes helps keep cleaner oil in your engine which enables the engine to run more smoothly since the lubrication is better.

Reduces pollution - Getting routine oil changes can also lower harmful emissions. When your engine is running on clean oil instead of dirty or old oil, it will release less exhaust. If your vehicle is older, it may burn old and dirty oil. Fresh oil is less likely to burn, and it will better absorb engine debris, making your vehicle pollute much less.

Better resale value – Many car buyers and dealers put a high importance on how well a vehicle has been maintained when deciding whether or not to purchase it or accept it as a trade-in. If you have performed routine oil changes and other maintenance then potential buyers are likely to pay you more for your used vehicle.

What does oil do?

Oil is a lubricant that is put in your engine to help the parts move more freely and absorb heat. Many oils also contain ‘additives’ that help improve lubrication.

Why do I need to change my oil?

When your vehicle’s engine operates and the different parts start moving they rub against each other. This creates a lot of heat from friction. Oil is used as a lubricant to allow your engine parts to move more freely by lubricating the engine parts and absorbing heat.

As the engine runs, the oil in your vehicle starts to break down. Once this occurs the oil is not as effective at lubricating the moving parts of your engine. Without good lubricant the parts of the engine rub together and wear out. So your engine won’t last as long as it could with good oil.

What’s the difference between synthetic and traditional oil?

There are four categories of engine oil that you most likely will run across: Conventional, Synthetic Blend, Full Synthetic, and Higher Mileage.

Conventional - Commonly used oil that comes in many different grades and qualities. It uses base oils and it often includes additives to improve its lubrication qualities. This oil is often identified for normal driving and routine uses, however, manufacturers are creating engines these days that require synthetic oil. Be sure to check your manufacturer’s recommendation in your owner’s manual.

Synthetic Blend - A blend of synthetic and conventional base oils. Often recommended for vehicles that are heavier or carry heavier loads like trucks, SUVs, vehicles that pull trailers, vans, etc...

Full Synthetic – Engineered oil created to provide lubrication even at high temperatures. Often provides a higher level of engine protection. Typically better protection during the starting of the vehicle and better protection against heat.

Higher Mileage – A blended oil designed for older vehicles or high mileage vehicles, normally, 75,000 miles or more. This oil is engineered to help in sealing oil leaks and improved performance for older engines.

Who should change my oil?

With the engines in today’s vehicles becoming more & more complicated it is often advisable for a professional with the proper tools & training to change the oil in your vehicle. Identifying the recommended oil for your vehicle is important. Inappropriate work may void warranties. Very often these manufacturer-trained technicians can do it faster and with minimal expense at your local dealership.

How long does an oil change take?

Typically, it is advisable to allot one hour for an oil change. It often takes much less time. While you may be able to save a few minutes at a “splash & dash” type shop, these stores often provide very little benefit beyond the few minutes that were gained. Vehicles are a high-dollar investment. Cox Toyota offers a quick multi-point inspection at no additional charge to be performed by manufacturer-trained technicians. This will help provide safety and better ensure that needed maintenance is identified to save you from more serious breakages and costs later.

How much does an oil change cost?

Oil changes (with a filter) typically cost between $40 for smaller vehicles and $80 or more for very large vehicles. Much of the cost depends on the vehicle that you drive, the quality of the filter, the quality of the oil, and the amount of the oil needed. Often, cheaper filters and lower-quality oil doesn’t last as long so oil changes may be needed more frequently to avoid engine damage. Type of oil matters, as well, with synthetic and specialty blends costing more. Often specials are run or coupons are available that may bring the cost down to $19.95 or even less. Cox Toyota always uses high quality, manufacturer-recommended filters and oil. Check the Cox Toyota website for oil change and other service specials.


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