Oil is the fountain of youth for any vehicle. It keeps trucks running smoothly. If you want your truck to age well and avoid breakdowns in the future, changing it out regularly is not just recommended – it’s essential. Consider it like hydrating for an Olympic athlete. Without enough water, it’s only a matter of time before the body breaks down.
But knowing when to change it is not exactly easy. Your truck can guesstimate how many miles should pass before you’ll need your next oil change, but there are other factors at play. Every vehicle is different, and as the car ages, its needs increase. Unless you have a new truck that monitors your oil needs, there is no blinking red light that perfectly indicates when it’s time. If you rely solely on how many miles have passed until you change your oil, you might be waiting too long.
Luckily, there are other ways to tell if it’s time to call your repair shop for an oil change. Check out our list for some helpful hints so you can keep your truck youthful for many years.
Check out the manual.
Even though the manual doesn’t perfectly reflect when your truck is ready for an oil change, it’s a good place to start. It will give you guidance on when your truck should be ready for an oil change. You can use that mileage number as a baseline for when you start to factor in other information that might affect how soon you make your appointment.
How old is your truck?
Just like everything else on earth, vehicles require more maintenance and care as they age. If your car is old or has heavy mileage, you should be changing the oil more frequently to account for that.
What kind of oil do you use?
You should be using a higher quality oil as low-quality oil can be bad for your truck’s performance. But that isn’t the only reason. You can also get more miles from a high quality oil. When you use low-quality oil, expect to change it out more frequently.
Consider what kinds of drives you do.
If you’re someone with a very heavy foot who winds through twisty roads on a daily basis and faces a lot of weather conditions, you’re going to need more oil changes than the person who drives on mostly straight roads and goes under the speed limit. It doesn’t matter if you drove the exact same number of miles. That’s because all of that wear and tear requires more oil. So, either be more tender with your gas pedal or get to the shop sooner.
How low are the levels?
One final way to figure out whether you’re in dire need is to check the oil level manually. For this, you have to look at the dipstick to see if the oil levels are low. Once you’ve determined how many miles your truck can go before it needs an oil change, start checking the oil levels regularly as you approach that mileage. This will help you fine-tune your estimations.
Hopefully, you’ve found some useful information here on how you can calculate your truck’s oil change needs. We’ll see you out on the road!