Winter is about to rear its ugly head, so as a car owner, you might be wondering whether or not the temperature changes outside have any effect on how your motor oil works. It is commonly known that you need to change your car’s oil eventually, but how often? And should you do so when the temperature changes with each season or does it depend on other factors?
In general, changing your vehicle’s oil is essential for its longevity and performance, and it will provide you with protection against wear and tear of your engine and excessive heat. The measurement used for motor oil is its viscosity, or the thickness of the oil.
Before synthetic oil was invented, car owners used to rely on oil formulations, which had only one viscosity. So, for cooler winter months, mechanics would choose to use a lightweight oil and then for warmer months, the oil would need to be changed to a 30 or 40-weight oil. The heavier oil was able to prevent it from breaking down in increased heat temperatures.
These days, with the invention of multi-viscosity oils, this solves the problem of needing to switch oil every single season. Multi-viscosity oils provide a better flowing oil, which can remain thin during cold months, and thicken on its own in the warmer months. Multi-viscosity oil can provide the same type of protection as any other viscosities of oil, but can provide this protection year round.
So the answer is: No, vehicle owners no longer need to change their motor oil due to hot or cold weather.
How Does Multi-viscosity Oil Work?
Multi-viscosity oil offers protection for engines in any temperature, therefore, it is considered some of the best oil options for vehicles all around. Multi-viscosity oils use additives called viscosity improvers. These viscosity improvers expand and shrink depending on the temperature; they expand in higher temperatures and shrink in cold temperatures to make them highly adaptable compared to older types of oils.
Signs You Need To Change Your Motor Oil
Since you no longer need to worry about switching out your motor oil when the seasons change, what are some other signs that you should pay attention to? No matter the quality of oil you choose, it will eventually need replacing. Look for these signs that your car needs an oil change:
- If your engine is running louder than usual, this could be an indication that you must change your oil. The excess noise can be due to engine parts rubbing together.
- Your check engine light or oil light is on and remains lit. This tells you that there is a problem with the engine or oil levels.
- If your mechanic tells you your oil looks black and gritty.
- Smoke coming from your exhaust when it isn’t cold outside can indicate low oil levels.
Additionally, most mechanics will place a sticker in the car to indicate when you should get your oil replaced again, so you can check it for your convenience. Your next step would be to book an oil change appointment with trusted auto experts at Evolve Auto in Markham.