Independent Motors has been doing oil changes in Boulder for more than 30 years. An inexpensive maintenance procedure, it’s one that is crucial to the long-term health of your car engine. Whether your oil change schedule is based on mileage (every 3,000 to 5,000 miles) or the calendar (every 3 to 6 months), it should be adhered to and thought of as affordable insurance against engine problems that can actually cost more to fix than the car is worth.
Your vehicle owner’s manual will set out the type and weight of the oil required by your car, as well as how often it must be changed. While people sometimes claim that interval is simply a marketing gimmick and boast that they go much longer than recommended without an oil or filter change, following manufacturer specifications may in fact not only enhance the performance of your engine but also extend its life.
Reasons You Need An Oil Change
There are a number of personal factors that go into determining how often you should change the oil in your car, from the age of the vehicle to the way you drive (freeway vs. stop-and-start in the city) and even the weather conditions you regularly drive in and the tires you use. So, if your mechanic advises a more frequent oil and filter change schedule than you thought necessary, you can blame those summertime Sunday drives through desert with your two-ton RV in tow.
Other Benefits to Getting An Oil and Filter Change
A side benefit of bringing your car regularly for routine maintenance is that you get a professional who can assess myriad other issues at the same time. Most mechanics do a visual once-over of your car when you take it in for an oil change. For example, here at Independent Motors in Boulder, your oil change gives us an opportunity to do the following at no extra charge:
• Check all tires for wear
• Inflate tires to their proper specs
• Inspect the air filter
• Visually inspect belts and hoses
• Inspect antifreeze level and condition
• Visually inspect the exhaust system
• Top up windshield washer fluid
• Top up most under hood fluids
• Advise on any seen leaks
• Inspect windshield wipers
• Inspect all lights
• Replace most burnt out light bulbs at no labor charge
• Inspect CVJ boots
• Inspect shocks and struts
Recommended Oils, Filters and Additives
Most mechanics today recommend the use of synthetic oil and a top-grade filter, rather than somewhat less expensive products. This is because cheap filters clog up very quickly, and so are almost useless; and synthetic oil lasts longer and performs better than conventional oil, especially in conditions of extreme cold and heat, which are hard on the engine.
During your scheduled oil change, you might also be asked whether you’d like additives, called motor and transmission treatments, which work with the oil to prolong the life of the engine and boost performance. These anti-wear treatments reduce friction, corrosion and blow-by, although no additive can do the a good filter job, which is to clean dirty oil.
When In Boulder For Your Oil Change
The bottom line is that the old 3 months/3,000 miles rule of thumb for oil changes may not fit your car and driving habits. While the mileage is important, you also need to pay attention to how you’ve been driving your vehicle and whether it has been subjected to weather extremes. If you happen to be looking for a trustworthy service facility in Boulder for an oil change, swing by Independent Motors.