Oil changes are vital for protecting your engine and extending its life– which in turn saves you money on repairs and gas. And like all good habits, they can be done by anyone who makes time for them if they want to work at it. In this blog, we will learn the 10 signs that your engine needs an oil change or maintenance.
Engine oil is one of the most important parts of an engine, and it needs to be changed regularly for your car or truck to work properly. There are a number of signs that you should look out for if you think your engine might need an oil change. These include low oil pressure, excessive smoke from the exhaust pipes, clattering noises when turning corners at slow speeds or accelerating hard, blue smoke coming from under the hood, loss of power on acceleration or sudden surges in power while driving slowly. If any of these sounds like something you’re experiencing with your vehicle then it’s time to have an expert check it over and see what repairs are needed.
It has a bright amber colour to it if you’ve never seen clean, new motor oil before. Used oil, on the other hand, turns a much darker, almost black colour as it becomes old and dirty due to the build-up of residue particles in the engine.
Checking the condition of your oil on a regular basis should become a habit for you. Simply take your oil dipstick out of the bottle and examine the colour of the oil on it. To get a more accurate result, wipe the end of the dipstick on a paper towel. If your oil is dark brown or black, it’s time to change it.
After a while, engine oil becomes old and worn. It’s for this reason that car manufacturers recommend changing your oil every 5,000 miles or so. If you have old oil in your car, it is likely to become dirtier and thicker over time.
This will make it more difficult for the oil to effectively lubricate your engine’s components. As a result of the lack of lubrication, your engine will begin to make a variety of metal-on-metal noises. Get an oil change right away because ignoring the problem can lead to serious engine damage.
If your vehicle’s interior cabin begins to smell like burned oil, you have an oil problem. It usually indicates that there is an oil leak somewhere, which is causing oil to drip onto hot engine parts.
It also means your engine is running low on oil, which is causing it to overheat. Take care of the oil leak as soon as possible and replace the oil.
If you live in a cold climate, you’re probably used to seeing vapour coming out of your vehicle’s tailpipe. However, if you notice blue or grey smoke coming from your exhaust, you most likely have an oil leak.
This is accompanied by a burnt oil odour, and the smoke is caused by a lack of oil in your engine to lubricate its parts as a result of the leak. So, fix that oil leak and replace the oil.
If you’re driving and your vehicle begins to stall, then you could have a small problem or a bigger issue. A small problem would be if you have a clogged fuel filter or bad spark plugs. Something like this can be replaced with a simple tune-up.
A larger problem would be something like a bad fuel pump or clogged catalytic converter which needs replacing.
Fuel Economy is Getting Poor
If you notice your gas mileage isn’t as good as it used to be, it’s likely time for an oil change. If you don’t change your engine oil, it will gradually thicken and eventually turn into a sludge-like substance. Thick oil provides more resistance to your engine’s moving parts, causing it to work harder and consume more fuel.
Poor gas mileage can be caused by a variety of factors, but if your oil is dark and thicker than new oil, an oil change can help.
If your engine doesn’t have enough oil or hasn’t been changed in a while, it won’t do as good a job of lubricating the components as it should. The engine will heat up even more and eventually overheat as a result of this. Changing your oil and replacing it with new oil will usually solve the problem.
Hard to Start the Engine
If you’re having trouble starting your car on a regular basis, you should inspect the connections on top of your battery for corrosion and clean them with a wire brush. If your battery is more than a few years old, it’s probably time to replace it.
The engine may hesitate before starting up, and the dashboard lights may dim slightly. Clearly, you require a tune-up, which may include cleaning the battery posts and terminals or even the replacement of the battery.
Today’s vehicles have computers and sensors that make it easier to detect a problem early on before it gets worse. If an indicator light on your dashboard illuminates, consult your owner’s manual to determine what it means. Warning lights will alert you to a variety of issues, including a low battery, a burned-out tail light, transmission problems, and so on.
Some newer vehicles will even monitor your oil condition (via sensors or a predetermined interval) and notify you when it’s time to change it. The check engine light may illuminate in some cases, requiring you to use an OBD2 scanner to diagnose the problem or have it scanned by a mechanic.
If you’re driving an automatic vehicle, shifting gears shouldn’t be a problem for you. However, if you notice hesitation or lag when shifting gears, it’s possible that you’re in need of new transmission fluid or filters. Of course, it could also indicate a more serious issue. That is why taking your car in for a tune-up will at the very least identify the issue.