What Happens If You Don’t Change Your Oil?

Dirty Oil Filter

Oil serves a very important purpose within your vehicle’s powertrain: lubricating the moving components to minimize friction, maximize efficiency, and reduce the risk of damage. So what happens if you don’t change your oil? Oil breaks down over time and gets less effective at lubricating — it also picks up debris that can increase friction. As friction increases, things get hot — hotter than the manufacturer intended — and that’s when the damage starts.

Below, our Auffenberg CDJR service center experts will detail the importance of regular oil changes to ensure your car, truck, or SUV continues to run smoothly on Belleville roads for years to come.

What Does Motor Oil Do?

Motor oil is a lubricant for your engine. More precisely, oil has the following important roles:

  • The main role of motor oil is to reduce wear and tear on moving parts due to friction.
  • Motor oil with dispersants is designed to clean sludge from the engine.
  • Detergents in motor oil help clean varnish from the engine as well.
  • When changed regularly, motor oil can help neutralize acids that form from fuels, improve piston ring seals, and cool the engine by moving heat away

Trust us, you don’t want to find out what happens if you don’t get your oil changed.

Oil Pouring Into Engine

How Often Should I Change My Vehicle’s Oil?

Previously, technicians would recommend that you change your oil every 3,000 miles. These days, newer cars can often go between 7,500 and 10,000 miles between oil services. Those numbers are just an average though, and oil change frequencies should be adjusted to the driver’s habits. For example, if you drive your Dodge Charger long distances every day, you may need more frequent oil changes.

How Do I Change the Oil Myself?

Committing to doing your own routine maintenance is a great way to keep your Ram or Jeep in top condition. If you want to change your own oil, check your owner’s manual first. This should indicate what specific kind of oil you need, whether it’s conventional or synthetic oil.

Oil Changing Steps

  1. Jack your car up with jack stands or steel ramps.
  2. Locate the oil drain plug on the bottom of your oil pan underneath your engine. Place an oil basin directly underneath the plug, then unscrew the plug and allow the old oil to drain out completely. This may take up to 15 minutes. When you’re sure all the oil has drained, you can replace the plug.
  3. Locate your oil filter, and remove it with an oil filter wrench. Keep the basin underneath, extra oil often drains out after removing the filter.
  4. Grab your new filter, being sure to rub a bit of oil around the rubber seal – this ensures your filter is watertight and is an essential step.
  5. Set the new filter in place, then tighten it by hand. Screw the oil drain plug back into place
  6. Now that your old oil is completely drained and a new filter is in place, you can remove your oil cap. Pour in the specified amount of new oil, which you can find in your owner’s manual if you’re unsure. Finally, replace the oil cap.
  7. Before you call it a job well done, you should check your oil level by pulling out the dipstick. If you’re still low, you may add another ounce and check the level again. Once you get a proper oil level reading, you’re ready for the East St. Louis streets!

Turn to Auffenberg CDJR for Oil Change Service and More

For those who like getting their hands dirty, we’re happy to share more car maintenance and repair tips. Our certified technicians have prepared guides to help you learn how to jump start a car, and perform basic maintenance tasks like checking your coolant levels. Need to schedule a repair appointment? You can do so online! We’ll get you in and out as fast as possible.

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