Every manufacturer recommends oil changes at different intervals, but the general rule of thumb is that oil changes should be performed every 3,000 to 5,000 miles or every six months. When it comes to ensuring that your vehicle is in tip-top shape, the oil change is the most frequent automobile maintenance task that will need to be performed. To make certain that your vehicle is getting what it needs and to stay on top of things yourself, here are three questions that you should be asking the mechanic who is performing the oil change.
Question #1: What Exactly Is Included in the Oil Change Service?
As a general rule, an oil change will require that the mechanic drain the old oil out of your engine and replace it with new oil—and the new oil will need to be designed specifically for your vehicle based on its type, usage, and even climate conditions. The oil filter will also be replaced, and the chassis will often be lubricated.
If you purchase a higher-end package, there may be other tasks that are performed. For instance, the pressure in your tires may be checked, in addition to the fluid levels such as power steering, transmission, etc.
Question #2: How Were the Fluid Levels?
Speaking of fluid levels, if the mechanic does check your fluid levels, it is important that you find out what they were. If the mechanic doesn't check them, you should ask the mechanic to check them and top them all off, if necessary.
Generally, the fluids that will be checked will include antifreeze, windshield wiper fluid, power steering fluid, and transmission fluid. Specifically, you need to find out if any of these fluids were unusually low, because if they were, it could indicate that you have a leak somewhere. Before you leave, double-check that the mechanic did in fact refill the low fluids.
Question #3: What Type of Oil and Filter Will Be Used?
More often than not, the mechanic will allow you to choose the type of oil and filter that you want to be used in your vehicle. Some people have a preference over certain brands, while others don't have a clue or don't care. If you are uncertain, ask the mechanic what they would recommend for your vehicle, usage needs, and climate conditions.
Keep in mind that while synthetic oil does cost more than regular oil, it will offer enhanced protection for your vehicle's engine. If winter is approaching, you will want to consider a thinner oil, as this makes it easier for your vehicle to start during the colder temperatures.
For more information, reach out to auto service shops like Furgerson's Garage.