For optimum engine health, the ideal marker for getting your oil changed is every 3,000 miles. The health of your oil is affected by many things, including heat, cold, and the hardship of driving conditions. In Fort Collins, our vehicles undergo quite the routine of temperature changes, harsh environmental and driving conditions, and mechanical stress. Motor oil is designed to have a lifespan of over 3,000 miles, but environmental and mechanical factors can accelerate that lifespan. For an oil change in Fort Collins, it is advisable to go with the 3,000 mile change, and not push beyond it to maintain engine health.

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Engine CC Photo Courtesy of princessjack

Cars use motor oil to prevent metal to metal contact within our engines. Engines contain multiple moving metal components that should not connect with one another. If these metal parts do come in contact, friction and wear can damage and destroy them. With enough friction and wear to your engine’s parts, they will warp, distort, and eventually stop working together. What motor oil does is keep all of these metal components lubricated, avoiding friction, grinding, and wearing down that damages and destroys metal engine parts.This lubrication enables easy starting, cools moving engine parts, keeps metal surfaces clean, prevents rust and corrosion, and seals tiny gaps between piston rings and cylinder walls.

Motor oil handles more tasks within an engine than any just about any other component, be it another fluid or a solid material. Motor oil protects the engine by lubricating its moving parts, and keeps critical engine parts cool by transferring heat away from metals. Oil also keeps internal components clean and free from varnish and harmful deposits, like debris and corrosive liquids.

Oil works a lot like water when it passes through your car’s engine. Think of a river or stream, like the Poudre river. As the liquid moves along, it  picks up debris along the way. The difference between oil and water, is that the oil has no place to deposit the debris it collects, like a riverbank or drain, nor a settling pool as lakes have where all the accumulated grit and material get filtered out.

Consequently, that dirt and grit keeps circling through your engine. It becomes dirtier and more abrasive the longer it is in use, until it reaches a point where it starts depositing the dirt on the metal components, instead of flushing that grime away. The oil is no longer functioning to eliminate friction at this point, it is causing it. This dirty oil will now act as an abrasive. Debris and dirt it is carrying will grind against the metal parts, and your engine will no longer be properly lubricated, leading to  wear and tear. This will shorten the lifespan of your engine dramatically. It’s significantly cheaper to change your oil than it is to replace your engine. If nothing else, make a 3,000 mile oil change the top to-do thing for your Fort Collins automotive routine. Not only does oil inevitably become too dirty to be effective as a lubricant, oil additives get used up, causing the engine oil to degrade. At this point the oil will begin to deposit sludge, also adversely impacting the health of your vehicles metal components. When the oil is drained, the contaminants are removed with it.

Regular oil changes are essential to keeping your car mechanically sound. This simple step will aid in preventing many mechanical problems, and extend the life of any vehicle.

As part of your oil change, have your Fort Collins automotive tech replace the oil filter along with the motor oil. Dirty filters will dirty up the new clean oil. Think of pouring some fresh water into a very dirty glass tumbler. that clean water you wanted to drink is now not palatable, as it has been spoiled and dirtied by the grime in the glass tumbler. Dirty filters automatically dirty up the clean oil you’ve just put into your car, making the oil change itself rather pointless.

Oil filters have an emergency bypass valve which allows oil to enter your engine without going through the filter if it’s clogged. however, if the filter is clogged, your car will have no choice but to use that bypass valve, flooding your engine with the dirt within the filter itself.

It is generally  standard practice to have a filter change included in your oil change, but it is vital to be sure that your mechanic does include a new filter as part of the oil change, or that you change out the oil filter if you’re a do it yourself oil changing type of folk.

Something as simple as a regular oil change is one type of preventative maintenance that can do wonders to extend the life of your car. Oil changes greatly reduce the risk of engine problems down the road, as well as keeping your vehicle running efficiently. For your next oil change, come see us at Fort Collins Foreign Car Service, and we will make sure your car is well taken care of.