What Happens If You Don’t Change Your Oil?

Mechanic Holding Oil Filter

We get it — life happens and sometimes it becomes difficult to keep up with car maintenance. As a result, one of the questions we’re asked at our service center is, “What happens if you don’t change your oil?” Motor oil breaks down over time and loses its viscosity. This means it becomes less effective at lubricating your engine’s moving parts and regulating the temperature. If your engine overheats, serious problems can arise. Below, you can learn more about the purpose of motor oil, and why it’s so important to keep it clean!



What Does Oil Do in a Car?

The main job of motor oil is to lubricate your engine’s moving parts and carry heat away from the engine. In addition, it does the following:

  • Reduces wear and tear on engine parts caused by friction
  • Uses dispersants to clean sludge from the engine
  • Uses detergents to clean varnish from the engine
  • Helps neutralize acids from fuels, leading to strong piston ring seals

Although it’s just another one of your car’s fluids, it’s crucial to preventing serious engines issues from developing.

How Often Should I Change My Oil?

Nowadays, the recommended oil change interval for most cars is 7,500 to 10,000 miles, depending on the OEM. Of course, every driver has different driving habits, and you may need to change your oil more frequently if you use your car for commercial purposes, towing, or motorsports.

What Happens if You Don’t Get Your Oil Changed?

To put it simply, you don’t want to find out for yourself! Depending on how long you’ve neglected oil changes, a lot of problems can arise:

  • Sluggish Performance: Deteriorating oil leaves behind carbon deposits that clog the positive crankcase ventilation and exhaust gas recirculation valves. The result is sluggish performance.
  • Reduced Fuel Economy: Eventually, oil will deteriorate to a point where it’s so thin that it slides right past seals and rings, and burns in the combustion chamber. Fuel usage increases, as does the smoke that trickles out of the exhaust.
  • Engine Overheating: When car engines overheat, it’s often because the motor oil has lost its viscosity and no long provides the proper level of lubrication.

Schedule an Oil Change at Bettenhausen Automotive Today!

To sum up, you don’t want to skip oil changes to the point where your engine is overheating. Is your car due for an oil change? Schedule your service appointment today by using our online scheduling tool. If you have questions about our oil change prices, contact us online or call us at 708-840-8252 to speak with us directly.


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