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How often should I change the engine oil in my car?
It is recommended to replace engine oil every 7,000 to 10,000 kilometers, but you may need to change it earlier if the car is used in harsh conditions, the engine is old and often operates under high loads (particularly over short distances and in traffic jams), after engine overheating, or if the lubrication system leaks or coolant got into it.
If you use the car on rare occasions and drive for short distances, replace the engine oil once a year even if you have driven a few thousands kilometres. This is especially true for mineral and semi-synthetic lubricants which contain natural components and are highly prone to ageing.
What happens if I don’t change the engine oil in my car?
Being exposed to high temperatures, the oil loses its operational properties. Over time, its anti-wear and anti-corrosion characteristics, and film-strength are impaired, which leads to rapid wear of the engine components. In addition, accumulation of contaminants in the oil increases the risk of carbon deposit formation on engine parts. Due to evaporation, the viscosity of the lubricant rises. This can cause oil starvation, especially when you start a cold engine. The risk of overheating increases. All this results in premature deterioration of the cylinder-piston group, rapid wear of the oil-scraper and compression piston rings, connecting rod bearings, and valves. In addition, contaminated oil is dangerous for the turbocharger.
Please note: oil top-up is not an alternative to its complete change, as a large amount of contaminated and degraded oil still remains in the lubrication system. However, you should top up the lubricant every time you notice that it's level is lower than required.
Can I mix different engine oils?
No. Each type of engine oil has its own set of additives, which, when mixed, may react with each other, causing sediments to form in the lubricant, or the oil to thicken. This is very dangerous as it leads to clogging of oil channels, rapid wear and overheating of engine parts.
We do not recommend mixing products from different manufacturers and lubricants of different viscosity, such as 5w20 and 10w30 or 5w30 and 10w30: they may contain incompatible components.
Can I replace motor oil myself?
If you have the required skills, you’ll be able to change engine oil yourself with the AUTODOC CLUB video tutorials. Apart from motor oil, you’ll need a new oil filter, a reservoir to drain an old product, as well as a set of spanners to unscrew the fasteners and a clean cloth to cover car body parts. You can also buy an engine flush.
The sequence of oil change steps may vary from vehicle to vehicle. So you should read the manual carefully before you replace the lubricant. These are common steps for changing engine oil:
The engine flushing procedure depends on a product you use for it. For instance, there are products which are added to old oil just before changing it. There are also products which should be added to the lubrication system a certain number of kilometres before the scheduled oil change so that they can dissolve the soot and deposits on the engine elements.
Is it better to change oil hot or cold?
It is recommended to warm up the engine to its operating temperature before changing the oil. This will help to remove as much soot, sludge and deposits from the motor surface as possible, as well as to drain the sediment.
What happens if I pour too much oil in a car?
An excessive amount of oil can result in the increased pressure in the lubrication system. This can push out the oil seals of the engine and to cause their rapid wear.