What difference will an engine oil and oil filter change make?
The answer to our first question is: it could save your engine from expensive damage that you could have easily avoided.
Your engine oil is designed to keep all the internal workings of your engine running smoothly and safe from harm. It protects moving parts by removing friction, and in doing so, prolongs their life.
Over time, due to the infiltration of dirt, grit, residue from burnt fuel and other contaminants, these elements added into your oil will prevent it from doing its job correctly. The tiny pieces of dirt in your oil will add wear to the very components that it’s designed to protect, and shorten their lifespan.
For a relatively small expense, your oil and filter change cost could add years to the life of your engine.
How much is an oil and filter change?
Compared to replacing your engine? Not much.
If you choose a franchise or dealer to carry out the work, you can expect to pay anywhere from £70 to £80 up to £150. Your local mechanic will do it for less, of course; between £50 and £75 is pretty reasonable.
You might think you can save a little money by opting only to change your oil. It’s a false economy. For around £5 or £10, your filter is worth every penny when you’ve just spent £40 or £50 on engine oil. You should consider the change of oil filter price part and parcel of getting the job done properly.
How often should I change my oil?
Here’s the age-old argument. There isn’t a hard and fast rule; so many factors can affect the condition of the oil in your engine.
Here are a few of those all-important pointers:
- How you drive – A careful driver won’t be adding pressure to the performance of their engine.
- Your typical speed – High-speed driving can add wear to engine parts, especially with contaminated engine oil.
- The type of oil you use – Synthetic oil will operate at a higher level and for longer than conventional oils.
- Where you drive – Driving along dirt tracks or country roads is more likely to introduce dirt and grit into your engine as opposed to driving on motorways or in suburban areas.
- The weather – Snow and rain will make it easier for contaminants to get into your engine and your oil.
So as you see, there isn’t really a one-size-fits-all answer, but if we have to…
Modern synthetic oils can typically last up to 10,000 miles in a modern car. Older cars using traditional engine oil may only get 3,000 miles of healthy use between changes.
Should you change your oil filter every time you change your oil?
Absolutely. Your oil filter’s job is to collect any dirt that your engine oil has picked up. While your filter has been working hard over the mileage between oil changes, it will end up saturated with much dirt and debris.
The more clogged your oil filter becomes with such contaminants, the less effective it is at doing its job. A new filter is going to work far better than your old one could, and there’s no chance of it introducing the past year’s dirt into your brand new oil.
Your oil filter change cost isn’t going to make a great deal of difference to the total bill. So, choosing to skip it isn’t worth the risk.
Should I use conventional or synthetic engine oil?
The way synthetic oil is manufactured makes it superior in performance without a doubt. They contain fewer impurities and are more consistent and durable. This gives you better protection and better flow at both hot and cold temperatures.
You probably won’t notice the difference, but it will provide you with the slightest bit more power and added mileage from your fuel.
It also lasts longer between changes. So for a little bit more in price, you get a lot more from its performance.
What’s the worst thing that could happen when you skip an oil change?
Given we’ve outlined the job it does and how important that job is, skipping the odd oil change might not appear to be doing any damage, but that’s because you can’t see what’s happening inside your engine.
The accumulative damage to your engine is slow, and might not affect performance for a long time, but it does.
Eventually, that damage will cause your engine to seize and stop working altogether. Do we have to remind you just how expensive that is to correct? Most of the time, it’s more than the value of your car. And for what? £50 every now and again? It’s really not worth it. As experts in the motor industry, you should take our word for it.
“Can I carry out my own engine oil change?”
Sure! As long as you know where the drain plug is on your engine, and you can find your oil filter, it’s a fairly straightforward process.
As with most jobs, preparation is key. Make sure you’ve got a container big enough to catch all of your old oil and a way to get it to a responsible recycler. You can’t just throw your old oil away. You’ll also want to protect the ground from any accidental spillage. In the event of such a mishap, cleaning used oil and removing oil stains from your driveway can turn into a nightmare.
“How do I find the best place for an engine oil and filter change near me?”
You already have. Fixter will arrange for a mechanic to collect your car and carry out the work without you lifting a finger. We can also save you money. Our garage prices are incredibly competitive, just type ‘oil and filter change prices near me’ into Google to see just how much.
Engine oil car care tips
The main point that we’d stress is to replace your oil and oil filter at the same time.
You should never wait for an engine light to dictate when you need to make the change. By then, a lot of damage could already have happened.
Vary your journeys
It’s an old wives tale that letting your engine warm up before use will extend the life of your car’s engine. Modern cars are designed to run straight from the off—hot or cold—as different temperatures of oil vary its consistency and will reach or protect different parts of your engine in different ways.
There is a school of thought that warming your engine up before every journey can do more harm than good.
Also, that consistently driving at low speeds won’t achieve the full range of your engine oil’s operation.
Varied driving, both around town and out on a clear A Road or motorway, are simple ways to keep your car engine, and its oil, running at its optimum condition.