A lot of people change their car oil by themselves. While this is a good measure which saves you the time and money you would have otherwise given to a mechanic, it might not be properly done. There are some mistakes you could make while changing your car oil, which can be avoided by a qualified mechanic. Here are some of them:
CHANGING THE OIL TOO FREQUENTLY, NOT FREQUENTLY ENOUGH,OR NOT AT ALL
It is best to follow the instructions in your car’s owner’ manual when it comes to car oil changing. If you mostly do Stop and Go driving, spend a lot of time idling, r live on a dirt road, you might need to follow the Severe oil change schedule. Changing oil frequently isn’t going to damage your engine. However, it is expensive. However, not changing enough leads to costly engine repairs.
NOT CHECKING THE OIL BETWEEN CHANGES
In times past, it was recommended that you check your oil every time you fill up your gas tank. Today, you are probably safer to check every week or two. This is unless you know your car consumes a lot of oil.
NOT PERFORMING OTHER ROUTINE MAINTENANCE AT THE SAME TIME
If you bring your car to the mechanic for an oil change, they would recommend so many other checks and maintenance. However, if you change your oil yourself, you probably wouldn’t tend to these other tasks, which could lead to complications in future.
USING OIL ADDITIVES
With today’s oils and engines, using an oil additive is quite unnecessary. In some cases it could even harm your engine. Generally, if your car is in good shape and you follow the recommended oil change interval and use the recommended oil type and weight, an additive wouldn’t make any sense.
USING THE WRONG WEIGHT OF MOTOR OIL
If you still using 10w30 because that’s what you always used or because that’s what others use, you are probably using the wrong oil weight. Most modern cars are not designed to use 10w30 anymore.
USING TOO EXPENSIVE OR TOO CHEAP A MOTOR OIL
If your owner’s manual specifically recommends synthetic oil, follow the recommendation. Otherwise, synthetic oil isn’t really necessary. Furthermore, synthetic oil is not recommended for use in some engines, for example in rotary engines where it can damage seals.
OVERTIGHTENING THE FILTER OR DRAIN NUT
Tightening a clean new oil filter with one hand is usually enough, and makes removing it much easier. Overtightening will just cause problems when you need to remove the filter or drain plug.
NOT REPLACING THE DRAIN PLUG CRUSH WASHER OR OIL FILTER COVER O-RING
On some cars, the oil drain plug will use a soft metal washer to seal it. These are often not reusable, because they get crushed the first time the drain plug is tightened. If you don’t replace the washer, you may end up with a slow and annoying leak. If your car uses a replaceable oil filter instead of a normal filter, you might want to consider changing the oil filter cover o-ring at every oil change as well.
NOT ROTATING YOUR TIRES
Oil changes often coincide with a tire manufacturer’s recommended tire rotation schedule. Rotating your tires every car oil change can be quite daunting, but it would help them wear more evenly.
NOT KEEPING TRACK OF CAR OIL CHANGE
Usually when you get your oil changed at a shop, the mechanics will place a sticker on your windshield, telling you when the oil was last changed. This acts as a reminder of when your next oil change is due. If you are changing your own oil, keep track of the mileage and date.