5 signs to check if your car needs an oil change

Updated Dec 12, 2017 | Same topic: Handy Maintenance Tips

Here are 5 simple signs to decide if your next oil change is due.

Regular engine oil checkup is a very significant part of car maintenance. A healthy oil change schedule will keep your engine components running smoothly and ensure your car engine in top shape.

However, many car owners fail to have their engine oil changed in a timely manner. Some underestimate the importance of having regular oil change while others simply forget to do so or neglect the obvious warning signs.

In this article, Philkotse.com will point out 5 signs to check if you need to change your engine oil. Remember that proper car care will help you save a considerable amount of money on repair bills.

Now take a look to see if your next oil change is due.

>>> Click here to find more tips to ensure the tip-top condition of your car

How to Change Your Oil (COMPLETE Guide)

1. You need to change your oil if the engine light on dashboard is always on

Check engine light on car dashboard

Engine light on means your next oil change is due

Before you look for any other signs, make sure you have already checked the engine light. Many modern cars nowadays come equipped with this useful feature to remind car owners when the next oil change is due. This feature is set upon the manufacturer’s recommendation and will be reset after each oil replacement.

If you notice this light on your dashboard is on, your car engine is calling for an oil change. Learn more about important car warning signs on your dashboard here.

2. You need an oil change when the engine oil turns to dark color and contains grit

two bottles of engine oil

Originally, the color of engine oil might vary from light yellow to honey brown

This sign requires frequent car checkup and good observation to realize.

Originally, the color of engine oil might vary from light yellow to honey brown. After a couple weeks of use, normally 3,000 to 5,000 miles, it will gradually get darker. In fact, dark color does not necessary indicate problems. However, if your car oil turns black, becomes thick AND contains dirt and grit, it’s time to have your engine oil replaced.

3. You need an oil change if the oil level keeps dropping below minimum indicator of the dipstick

oil dipstick

Remember to regularly check your oil level to know when engine oil should be changed

Normally, your engine oil level will be gradually lowered during use. However, if it keeps dropping off below the minimum level of the dipstick even though you have already filled it up, there must be something wrong. After being in use for a while, the engine oil tends to lose its lubricating properties and becomes less effective in keeping moving engine components running smoothly.

As a result, your engine will likely drink more oil and requires to be continually topped up. In such case, don’t just top it up. Keep an eye on it. There might be a leak or it might be time for oil change.

4. Change your oil if you cannot recall when was the last time you have it done

topping up engine oil

Changing your oil is one of the cheapest ways to prolong the lifespan of your car engine

Having a schedule for your oil change is a very simple thing to do yet it ensures the healthy operation of your car and even helps extend your engine life. If you don’t remember when you last replaced your engine oil, you’d better do it now and start to set out a healthy schedule for regular oil change.

5. You need an oil change when you hear louder noise from your engine

under the hood of a car

Take care of your vehicle by paying attention to how it usually sounds

As the owner of your car, you are better at detecting unusual noise from your engine than anyone else. Oil helps lubricate internal components of your car engine, preventing them from overheating. However, as oil gets old, there will be not enough lubrication for your engine parts to keep moving smoothly. They will probably grind against each other, leading to serious damage and causing unusual noise from under the hood.

Pay attention to how your car engine usually sounds while driving is also a good way to take care of your beloved vehicle.

If your car owns one of the above signs, we suggest you to think of replacing your engine oil as soon as possible. Before doing so, make sure you’ve already looked through our guide on how to choose the right oil for your engine.