How Often Should You Change Your Oil

How Often Should You Change Your Oil

A regular oil change is the most essential step in making sure your car runs smoothly. However, the big question remains -- how often should you change your oil? Factors like model year and mileage are crucial factors that help to decide when it’s time for an oil change.

Traditionally, it has been thought that you must head in for an oil change every six months or 3,000 miles, whichever comes first. Yet, according to experts in the field today, the latest standard shows that an oil change after every 5000 miles is more practical.

Furthermore, your driving environment, manufacturer recommendations, and your car condition also play a large role in deciding when to get your oil changed.

Purpose of Using Oil

An engine has several moving parts constantly rubbing each other. During continuous movement, they heat up. This heat creates friction. Oil reduces this friction by acting as a lubricant and dispersing the heat between these engine parts.

Fresh and clean oil is initially golden brown. It churns between the engine parts, cleaning them and collecting buildup on the way. By the end of its life span, the oil turns into a thick black slime, which can create a burning smell within the vehicle.

The Necessity of an Oil Change

We know that by the end of its life span, oil becomes dirty and sludgy. Dirty oil jeopardizes your vehicle’s engine. The supplements in the used oil boil down, creating contaminants that eat the engine parts. Also, water accumulates over time, creating a thick sludge. This oil, being used repeatedly, has more caustic metal particles that affect the engine parts.

It is vital to keep everything clean by changing the oil at the manufacturer recommended intervals to keep everything running as efficiently as possible.

Oil Changes in Extreme Operating Environment

You may face extreme driving conditions like excessive heat or debris. Extreme driving conditions like these demand an oil change every 1,000 to 3,000 miles for old cars. In the case of new vehicles, you must adhere to the manufacturer's guidelines for extreme usage.


Oil Changes in Optimal Driving Conditions

The primary use of your vehicle may be for short trips. If this is the case,  you should plan on going in for an oil change about every three months. The reason being it takes time for the engine to reach its adequate operating temperature. If your engine does not reach this temperature, the result is excessive condensation in the crankcase, allowing the oil to dilute with gasoline. On the other hand, vehicles used for longer trips can wait for over six months before needing to go in for an oil change.

Oil Change Recommendations for Ford Vehicle

Ford Motors suggests you change the oil every 7,500 miles for models launched after 2008. For vehicles made before 2007, the recommendation is an oil change every 5,000 miles under usual driving conditions.

For extreme operating conditions, the company's recommendation is to increase the oil change frequency, regardless of the car model.

Ford models manufactured after 2011 have a new feature called the Intelligent Oil-Life Monitor, which displays warnings like “Oil Change Required.” However, this function requires a reset after every oil change in order to continue to accurately show the oil-life.

In summary, find the Ford dealer in your area. These experts understand concepts like oil change intervals for new and old models alike.