With the low economy it’s common to be looking for ways to save money. When one turns 16 and gets a drivers license, they probably learn that they are supposed to change the oil every 3,000 miles. This may not be the case these days.
“The 3,000 mile thing used to be a good rule of thumb to go by,” Bryant Henrie of Larry H. Miller dealerships said. “Nowadays cars can handle and keep oil good for much longer.”
The amount of mileage one can get between oil changes varies. “Well if your car was made within the last seven or eight years, you’re looking closer to 8,000 miles. Maybe even 10,000 if you have high quality oil,” Henrie said.
A large percentage of daily traffic through fix-it and tune-up shops is for oil changes. Meaning they are whistling a different tune than the dealerships.
“The sticker we put in the car window is still 3,000 miles because to keep your car in top shape a 3,000 mile cycle is what it needs,” Ibrahim Choudhary of a Salt Lake City Sinclair shop said.
Salt Lake Community College has an automotive shop on the Larry H. Miller Campus in Sandy. Dan Rogers, an instructor at the facility and a former employee of a dealership repair shop had this to say about the 3,000 mile “fable”.
“Every car is different and uses oil different. I see cars in here that do need oil changes at 3,000 miles and see cars that look like the oil hasn’t even been used at 3,000 miles. It’s case-by-case, car-by-car sort of thing. Although it’s more likely that a newer model of car will last longer on one oil change.”
SLCC student Brad Kasteler has already caught on to the money saving plan.
“I think you’re supposed to change it every 3,000 miles or something like that, and I usually go like 9,000 miles between changes. My car still runs great,” he said.
“Keep an eye on your dip stick, if the oil is dirty or low then change it. If it looks like its got more miles in it, then use those miles,” Henrie said.
With the average oil change costing around $30, this is a way for students to keep more money in their pocket. Also using oil to its fullest will keep unused oil out of waste lands.
While the sticker may say 3,000 miles, the oil may tell a different story. Get the most out of your oil and your wallet by taking a look at your dipstick, and not your sticker.