How Often Do I Need to Change My Oil?
The oil change interval can vary, depending on what type of oil your vehicle needs. Toyota models use synthetic oil, which was specifically designed to hold out on breaking down its compounds to last longer than conventional oil. Toyota recommends that you have your oil changed every 10,000 miles, but to continue with the 5,000-mile service intervals for fluid top offs, inspections, and tire rotations.
How Can I Tell That It's Time for an Oil Change?
While it's important to know the intervals for your vehicle's oil change, there are a few telltale signs that you'll want to keep an eye out for.
- Loud Engine Performance & Knocking Sounds: When your oil is low or dirty, your engine will make more noise than usual because its moving components aren't properly lubricated.
- Check Engine/Oil Change Light: If this light pops on, it means that the sensor has detected low oil in your engine.
- Dark Oil Color: When you check your oil level with the dipstick, you'll see if the oil looks dark and gritty.
- The Smell of Oil: If you can smell oil inside the cabin, it means that there's a leak that you'll want to get checked and fixed.
What Does Oil Do for My Car?
Oil is a lubricant that helps the moving metal parts in your engine function properly without creating too much friction. Since these metal parts rub against each other, they create friction, which can result in heat. Too much heat can seize up your engine. Oil not only lubricates these parts, but it also keeps them cool and helps clean them by removing the crud and dirt particles that are flowing around in your engine.
Why Does My Oil Need to Be Changed?
When you've got oil in your vehicle, it's constantly working to improve performance and efficiency while keeping the metal parts clean and free from debris. Over time, it picks up enough debris that its brown color eventually turns black and becomes thicker. When oil is in this state, it's not as effective at performing its lubrication, cooling, and cleaning functions. After enough time, the oil in your vehicle needs to be swapped out for fresh oil.
Having Your Oil Changed
Now that you're familiar with your oil change interval and the signs to look out for, you're ready to stay on top of this simple yet important form of automotive service. Drivers in the Danvers, Peabody, and Salem areas who notice an oil change interval coming up can always contact us at Ira Toyota of Danvers for help. Schedule your oil change with us today!