How To Determine Oil Change Intervals

oil changes

Many cars now come with a system that displays a message on the instrument cluster indicating when it’s time for a change. Rants on the Internet, however, would have you believe that such indicators are the work of the devil—devilish automakers, that is, who program the oil-life monitors to extend change intervals so that engines wear out sooner, forcing motorists to buy new cars. But you can dismiss such conspiracy thinking. Oil-life monitors do their job quite well. Oil is an engine’s lifeblood, and like a blood test, an engine-oil analysis can identify potential problems before they become serious—and expensive.

Most oil-monitoring systems don’t actually measure various substances in the oil. Instead, they track driving habits, using algorithms that take into account such variables as mileage, engine speeds, and operating temperature to estimate when the oil is likely to be cruddy enough to require a change.

The monitors typically alert the driver to change the oil between 5,000 and 10,000 miles. But the interval could be shorter or longer depending upon your driving routine. If most of your driving is long-distance at relatively high speeds, the monitor may not indicate a change for 12,000 or even 15,000 miles. If tootling for a few minutes down the road to the market or mall is the only driving you usually do, the monitor may go off in as little as 2,500 or 3,000 miles.

Oil lubricates the engine’s internal moving parts, and short-distance driving is particularly hard on motor oil. Moisture from condensation and combustion gases form acids and sludge in the oil that inhibit lubrication and accelerate wear. Allowing the oil to reach its optimum operating temperature burns off contaminants—and that may take up 20 or 30 minutes of driving, especially in colder weather.

Though oil-life monitoring systems work well, you’ll still need to crack open the good book—your car’s owner’s manual. And that means reading the fine print. For instance, the manual may say not to exceed 10,000 miles between changes despite the oil-life monitor’s instructions. Or, it may specify an oil change once a year, even though the car’s oil-life monitor hasn’t called for one. An annual oil change also gives your mechanic a chance to inspect your car and alert you to problems that might have developed during the year.

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The Future of Car Audio is Here With Pioneer’s NEX In-Dash Receivers


Key features in the Pioneer NEX receivers include:

  • Robust Built-in Navigation – In addition to the latest mapping and turn-by-turn directions to 7.9 million Points-of-Interest, such as restaurants, gas stations and ATMs, the AVIC NEX models that feature built-in navigation can obtain over-the-air traffic information for further assistance and convenience in getting consumers to their destinations.
  • iDatalink® Maestro1 – Enables convenient and unobtrusive integration of NEX receivers with OEM (original equipment) systems to retain many of the original features found or tied with the stock radio, including Bluetooth® connectivity and key services such as OnStar®, Sync®, uConnect®, SiriusXM®, and more.
  • MirrorLink™ – Consumers can connect compatible smartphones using Pioneer’s optional CD-MU200 USB cable ($35 SRP) for access to certain music and map applications.
  • Expanded Bluetooth® Capability – Offering Bluetooth AVRCP 1.4 to enable browsing a user’s media library and HFP 1.6 with wideband audio for clearer overall sound quality.
  • Siri® Eyes Free – Users of an iPhone 4s, iPhone 5, iPhone 5c or iPhone 5s device can take advantage of Siri Eyes Free for accessing many iPhone functions such as music selection, listening to and composing text messages, Maps, Calendar information, Reminders, and more.
  • Pandora® Station Creation –Users can quickly create new Pandora stations based on the currently playing track, artist, or genre from a connected iPhone or compatible Android™ smartphone.
  • SiriusXM-Ready™ – Ready for use with optional SXV200 Connect Vehicle Tuner (sold separately, subscription required) for access to SiriusXM’s commercial-free music, premier sports and live events, comedy, news, exclusive talk and entertainment channels. The NEX receivers will also be the first SiriusXM-Ready in-vehicle receivers to display album art delivered via satellite.
  • HDMI® Connection (except AVIC-5000NEX) – The integrated HDMI port on back of the receivers can be used for smartphone connectivity.
  • Aha™ Radio – Aha seamlessly organizes and integrates the user’s favorite content (over 40,000 stations available) from the web, like news, entertainment, weather, audiobooks. The feature also provides audio updates from Facebook® and Twitter® when the receiver is connected to a compatible smartphone, allowing easy access and audio playback.
  • FLAC file support – First in the industry to support internal decoding and playback of FLAC “lossless” digital audio files.
  • Touchscreen Display – Large WVGA touchscreen displays, in either 6.1- or 7-inch size, provide quick access to sources and convenient features. In addition, the flagship AVIC-8000NEX is the Industry’s first navigation system to offer a 7-inch capacitive touch panel display.
  • Dual Camera Inputs – Enable users to add a reverse (rear facing) camera and additional front facing or other view applications camera.
  • Built-in Auto EQ and Time Alignment – Provides tailored audio adjustments specifically for the car and user preference.
  • 13-Band Graphic Equalizer – Touch panel swipe setting and built-in high/low pass crossover with adjustable points and slopes
  • Dual USB Inputs
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A Little Auto Care Goes a Long Way


Performing simple preventative maintenance on your vehicle will go a long way toward protecting your vehicle investment, says the non-profit Car Care Council.

Buying a new car today comes with a hefty price tag when you add up the down payment, monthly car payments and higher insurance rates. Neglecting its care can mean even higher costs down the line in the form of more extensive repairs and lost resale value,” said Rich White, executive director, Car Care Council. “By following a proactive auto care plan, the typical car should deliver at least 200,000 miles of safe, dependable, efficient and enjoyable performance.”

National Car Care Month in April is the perfect time of year to give your car some extra attention. The Car Care Council recommends following a vehicle service schedule, keeping a free copy of the council’s Car Care Guide in the glovebox and performing the most common routine maintenance procedures to keep your vehicle performing at its best.

  • Check all fluids, including engine oil, power steering, brake and transmission as well as windshield washer solvent and antifreeze/coolant.
  • Check the brake system annually and have the brake linings, rotors and drums inspected at each oil change.
  • Check the tires, including tire pressure and tread. Uneven wear indicates a need for wheel alignment. Tires should also be checked for bulges and bald spots.
  • Check the hoses and belts to make sure they are not cracked, brittle, frayed, loose or showing signs of excessive wear.
  • Check the heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) system as proper heating and cooling performance is critical for interior comfort and safety reasons, such as defrosting.
  • Check the wipers and lighting so that you can see and be seen. Check that all interior and exterior lighting is working properly and replace worn wiper blades so you can see clearly when driving during precipitation.

Be sure to fully inspect your vehicle annually, including performing a tune-up and wheel alignment,” continued White. “If you ever suspect there is a problem, it’s a good idea to address it quickly before minor repairs become more complicated, expensive repairs.”

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Ask Six Simple Questions to Select the Right Auto Repair Shop


Ask six simple questions to help identify the right auto repair shop to properly care for one of your most valuable assets, your car.

  1. Does the business employ ASE-certified technicians? Credentials and affiliations are indicators of professionalism and the management’s commitment to training and education.
  2. Is the shop and customer waiting area clean and organized? Cleanliness and organization are signs of a well-run business.
  3. Are customers greeted and treated in a friendly and respectful manner? Many auto repair businesses excel in the area of customer service and satisfaction. A simple phone call to the shop to inquire about their services can give you a glimpse of how they treat customers.
  4. Does the business provide a written estimate? The business should complete a written estimate and request your signature prior to starting any repairs on your car.
  5. Does the business offer a warranty? Most auto repair businesses offer a warranty on parts and labor and the warranty is usually in writing or posted in the waiting area.
  6. Does the business have a list of satisfied customers or references that it is willing to give you? Satisfied customers and recommendations from family, friends and neighbors are helpful in finding a good shop. Many auto repair facilities also have company websites that are worth checking out as they often include testimonials and additional information about the business.

A vehicle is a major purchase for most people, so it makes sense to take the time to select an auto repair facility that will take the best care of that investment. Being an informed auto care consumer means not only learning about your vehicle and its service needs, but also the facility that will make the repairs.

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It’s not always easy to recognize when your vehicle is suffering from engine damage as symptoms can be overlooked and seen as “normal.” While not all sounds and smells may threaten the life of your engine, there are some obvious warning signs that require a vehicle inspection right away.

Early diagnosis of engine damage can most likely be treated, but it is important to be aware of potentially damaging symptoms and have the vehicle inspected if something doesn’t seem right. By acting quickly and making necessary repairs as soon as possible, you could be saving yourself from the cost and hassle of breaking down along the road.

One of the signs of engine trouble is an illuminated check engine light. This light indicates that a vehicle system, such as the ignition, fuel injection or emission control, is not operating properly, even if the vehicle appears to be running normally. Ignoring the check engine light can negatively impact your fuel economy or cause damage resulting in more costly repairs.

Many motorists are familiar with the noises their vehicles make on a daily basis. However, any noise that is new, different or suspicious may indicate a problem, including a high-pitched squeal, grinding or thumping. Sounds under the hood, such as hissing, can also indicate that your vehicle is in need of attention.

Although all cars burn fossil fuels that create undesired emissions, these odors should remain outside of the car. Unusual smells that could signal engine damage include: burnt rubber, hot oil, gasoline, sweet smell of syrup, burning carpet and rotten eggs. When you smell any peculiar odor, you should not ignore it.

Another symptom of engine damage is excessive amounts of smoke or steam. Although some smoke is normal, excessive amounts of dark smoke in particular indicates that oil is leaking into the combustion chamber and is being burned along with the gasoline.

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Hummer H3 20″ Xd wheels


Come by the shop and pick up some new wheels!

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Ferrada Wheels in Stock


Come out and get your Ferrada wheels! They come in 4 different wheels in 4 different colors squared or staggered sets and custom sizes , colors and offsets on forged series. Come in to get prices & check availability.

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