Should You Change Dirty Motor Oil?

Why Oil Gets Dirty

The Benefits of Oil

If you want to keep your car healthy, you know to keep an eye on the motor oil and change it routinely. That’s because clean oil is the key to a healthy, well-performing engine. It lubricates parts to prevent excessive wear and overheating. It also collects any contaminants to prevent them from building up on parts and slowing down performance. The benefits of motor oil only lasts as long as it does, which isn’t forever. Eventually, it breaks down and needs to be replaced to keep the engine protected. So when does it need to be replaced?

Checking Oil Quality

Some vehicle owners use a dipstick to check the quality of the motor oil regularly. If they see that it has changed colors or collected lots of dirt, they think it’s time to change it. While this might be true for some cars, it isn’t true in all cases. If you inspect your oil regularly to see if it’s dirty, don’t jump too quickly to changing it. You might not be getting the most for your money if you change it too soon!

Dirty Oil Is Doing Its Job

If oil is dirty, that means it’s doing its job, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that it can’t continue to perform its functions in the engine. Whatever contaminants were in the engine are now being suspended in the oil, as designed. Unless it has been months or thousands of miles since your last oil change, you don’t always need to replace it just because it’s dirty. Let the oil do its job and get the most from the money you spent on it!

Metal Flakes

You should replace motor oil that has visible metal flakes in it. This means that something in the engine is damaged and falling apart, which could lead to a serious breakdown. It could be a cylinder, camshaft, crankshaft, valve, or any other component. You’ll need an expert to come in and inspect the system or you put your vehicle at risk of a complete engine failure.

Contact the Experts

Dirty oil doesn’t mean it’s done doing its job. But if you see metal flakes in your oil, that’s when you need to call in the experts! Jeff’s Auto Repair in Renton, Washington can help you with all of your vehicle’s fluid service needs.

Written by Jeff's Auto Repair

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