How often do I need to change my oil?
An oil change is the the most important preventive maintenance service you can do on your vehicle. It’s also one of the cheapest.
We recommend an oil change every 3,000 to 4,000 miles (or 3-4 months) for conventional motor oil and every 5,000 to 6,000 miles (or 5-6 months) for synthetic oil. Although some experts say it’s better to wait longer in between oil changes, we know first hand that this can be a costly mistake in the long run. You can’t hurt your vehicle by changing the oil too often, but you can hurt it by not changing it often enough. And for the $35 on average it costs, it’s cheap insurance.
We’re happy to answer them!
If you refer to your owner’s manual as a guideline, be sure to pay attention to the fine print that says certain types of driving require more frequent oil changes, such as: Schedule now
Need an oil change?
- Frequent stop-and-go traffic.
- Regular trips of less than 5 miles.
- Excessive idling.
- Towing, plowing or other heavy-duty uses.
- Extreme temperatures, which we know a thing or two about here in Glenview and Evanston.
At CARS, the $35 to $40 you invest in your oil change also includes a vehicle inspection. Our technician will change the oil, rotate your tires, and inspect your car for any needed safety items or needed repairs. Preventing a breakdown is far less expensive than the cost of towing and repair and the loss of your time, not to mention the stress that comes with both.
Signs my oil needs to be changed:
- The oil looks black and gritty.
- Your engine sounds noisier.
- Your oil level has dropped.
- Your Maintenance Due light is on.
- Your oil change sticker says so. (We find that most clients rely on their sticker.)
- You can’t remember the last time the oil was changed.
Safety risks if my vehicle is showing these signs:
If your engine isn’t getting the lubrication it needs, you’re setting yourself up for costly car repairs and a possible breakdown. Oil is the lifeblood of your engine. It cleans, lubricates and cools (to a degree) all of the internal parts of your engine.
When you don’t change the oil, it becomes dirty, contaminated and sludgy. It can also become more watery, which wears the engine. Dirty oil wears your engine faster than clean oil. In severe cases, the low oil light will turn on because the fluid level is too low, or the Check Engine Light will turn on because the oil is too sludgy to circulate through the engine.
For a $35-$40 oil change, is it worth risking an internal engine failure? At CARS of America, we prefer to prevent problems, rather than invite them.
Oil Change Prices
- Good: This oil change service includes up to 5 quarts of Valvoline synthetic blend oil, a premium oil filter, and chassis lubrication on applicable vehicles. We’ll also rotate the tires, perform a 27-point courtesy check, top off your fluids, check the tire pressure in all five tires (if the spare is accessible), and wash your window exteriors. You’re also eligible for free fluid top-offs between services. $34.99 plus fees and tax – Code W16LOF
- Better: This service is ideal for higher mileage vehicles or motorists who like to drive 5,000 miles between oil changes. We’ll change your oil and filter using DuraBlend, a synthetic blend designed specifically for longer service intervals and cars with more miles on the odometer. We’ll also rotate the tires, perform a 27-point courtesy check, top off your fluids, check the tire pressure in all five tires (if the spare is accessible), lubricate the chassis when applicable and wash your window exteriors. You’re also eligible for free fluid top-offs between services. $49.99 plus fees and tax – Code W16LOF
- Best: For our synthetic oil change clients, this service features full synthetic SynPower oil from Valvoline. We’ll also rotate the tires, perform a 27-point courtesy check, top off your fluids, check the tire pressure in all five tires (if the spare is accessible), lubricate the chassis when applicable and wash your window exteriors. You’re also eligible for free fluid top-offs between services. $69.99 plus fees and tax – Code W16LOF
How do I know if the automotive repair center is being honest?
- They don’t get offended if you question the necessity of the work they are recommending. A reputable shop will welcome the opportunity to earn your trust by explaining the costs, level of urgency and any safety risks. They should also take into account how long you plan on keeping your car and if it makes financial sense to do the repair work based on those plans.
- They offer a fair price, but not necessarily the lowest price. Some automotive repair centers compete for customers on price by using lower quality parts or less experienced technicians to perform the work. You won’t know they are doing this unless you ask, so ask. Are your technicians all ASE (National Institute for Automotive Excellence) certified? What is the warranty on the repair work?
- They take the time to show you the results of their safety inspection. Honesty, integrity and reliability are what you are looking for in an automotive repair center. An honest repair shop will demonstrate this by taking the time to show you what is wrong with your vehicle and explaining recommended repairs.
CARS of America is committed to earning your trust!
We know that to earn your business, we must provide helpful service, inspire confidence, be honest and value you as our customer. One of the ways that we do that is by offering a lifetime auto repair warranty, which transfers to the new owner if you sell the vehicle.