It’s affordable, it’s easy and it’s important. An oil change is one of the most straightforward vehicle maintenance measures out there—but it’s also one that can be easy to push off when we get busy.
Your car is pleading with you to stay on schedule. When you go too long between oil changes, your engine suffers. So does the value of your vehicle, and subsequently, so does your wallet.
Here are signs that you are long overdue for an oil change:
- Your Engine is Noisier than Normal
The point of oil is to lubricate the engine. When the oil level is low or the oil that’s left in the crankcase isn’t up to normal standards, your engine complains about it. Listen for grating, rumbling noises when you turn your vehicle on. In some cases, your gas-powered engine may begin to clatter like a diesel engine.
- You Can’t Remember When You Last Had Your Oil Changed
This one is easy. If the oil change reminder sticker has long since fallen off your windshield or you can’t remember the last time you had an oil change, it’s time to get one.
- Your Engine Oil Level is Low
Many engines will “use” oil between oil changes. If you find you’ve driven a few thousand miles or more and the oil level is low, you don’t need to worry just yet about an oil leak. It’s quite possible that you simply need an oil change.
Need help remembering and scheduling your oil change? Let US do all the work with our free Concierge Club.
- The Engine Oil is Black on the Dipstick
If you’re checking the oil level, you’re also going to be able to tell if the oil is semi-transparent brown or a thick black color. If it’s the latter, you’re likely due for an oil change.
- Your Check Engine Light, Low Oil Light or Maintenance Needed Light is on
These handy lights let you know your engine needs help. While most newer cars have a “maintenance due” light, some of the older ones turned on the Check Engine Light when the vehicle sensed an issue with engine lubrication.
Please Note: If your Low Oil Level light is on, pull over safely and check the oil level immediately. This light usually means there isn’t enough oil in the engine, and continuing to drive that way can lead to permanent, costly engine damage.
With CARS of America on your side, we’ll remind you when you’re due for an oil change with our no-effort oil change window stickers and email service reminders. Need a little more assistance? Sign up for our Concierge Club today, and let us do all the work for you.