We all know that motor oil is an essential part of our vehicles’ maintenance routine because the owner’s manual and/or our trusted mechanic recommend that we change the oil every 3,000 to 7,500 miles (depending on actual manufacturer specifics), but why? Very simply put, motor oil is like a shield for your car; it’s what keeps metal from grinding against metal when the engine is running. Motor oil has many different jobs, like lubricating and cooling vital engine parts, separating moving parts, reducing wear, and keeping dirt and other deposits from settling or forming in the engine.
What does that have to do with you? Well, if you want your vehicle to maintain its reliability, preventative routine maintenance is key. Keeping your motor oil effective is an essential piece of vehicle maintenance because it is actually running through the engine each and every time you turn the key! It keeps the engine running smoothly and prevents overheating.
So why do we have to change it? You may be surprised to know that engine oil is not composed of one ingredient. While the majority of it is actually made up of oil, there are many additives, lubricants, and other chemicals added. The extras, while super important, don’t last forever. As they break down and the oil collects dirt and debris from regular driving it becomes necessary to change the oil. Without routine maintenance your vehicle’s motor oil would slowly stop doing its job. If you never changed your engine oil, it would eventually lose its ability to reduce friction. You might even notice that slowly your car would have more and more problems, until one day the engine finally stopped functioning.
While you can’t ruin your car overnight or even by forgetting about one oil change, it’s easier to stick with a routine when it comes to preventative vehicle maintenance. As the saying goes, “A picture is worth a thousand words.” So I’ve included a really quick, but informative video from Castrol Motor Oil to show you motor oil in action.