Get Smart on Oil:

Many car owners view their vehicles as “beasts of burden”.  They don’t truly understand how the engine (along with their transmission) shuttles them down the highway at 70+ mph.  The don’t need the details.  After all, they just turn a little key or push a magic button, and off they go.  However, it’s imperative that drivers take time to learn some basic “Automotive 101” knowledge.  Otherwise, ignorance will likely cost them thousands of dollars. How is that possible?

One of the topics is simple: Oil.  What type and grade of oil you put in your vehicle can determine how long your car continues to run reliably.  The frequency of oil and filter changes matters, too.  But that just takes care of the engine.  Don’t forget about the transmission.

Know Your Engine:

AMSOIL Transmission Fluid and Engine OilThe purpose of the transmission is to transmit the power from the engine to the wheels, allowing you to go “Vroom” down the highway.  The transmission needs a particular type of oil, too, but it’s called transmission fluid (to help the layperson differentiate from engine oil). The two systems (engine and transmission) are not synonymous.  Likewise, the two lubricants (engine oil and transmission fluid) are not interchangeable.

While most modern vehicle manufacturer’s engines are good for 5,000 miles between oil and filter changes (on average), the 5,000 mile figure is only a recommendation.  It largely depends on where you are driving and how you are driving.  City driving (with all of the stop-and-go traffic) is more stressful on engines and transmissions.  Towing heavy loads also produces higher wear-and-tear on the under-the-hood components of your vehicle.

Be a Smart Shopper:

That’s why there are different grades and qualities of oil.  The quality of oils has improved over the past 50 years.  The type of driving conditions your vehicle endures (and the age of your engine) will determine which type is best.  Conventional oil breaks down faster with the high temperatures that modern engines produce.  Synthetic oils are engineered in the laboratory to specifically withstand extreme temperatures for a longer period of time before breaking down.  This allows synthetic oils to provide superior lubrication.

Synthetic oils are better than conventional oils, and they can extend your vehicle’s life for a very nominal expense.  If you cut corners and decide upon cheap “economy oils” that are found at grocery stores and big-box retailers, you’ll likely compromise your vehicle’s future longevity.  You’ve probably heard the expression, not to be “penny-wise but pound-foolish”.  It means, “don’t skimp on minor costs now that will cost you big-time, later.  When it comes to oil, spending a small amount more for quality maintenance (synthetic oil) translates to saving thousands of dollars in maintenance later—or worse, having to prematurely replace your car.

Learn more about caring and maintaining your vehicle properly.  Taking care of your vehicle is important, so explore tips and techniques that will save money, enhance performance, and extend the life of your vehicle.