The Dreaded Oil Change

I'm curious … have you found your "auto home?" Did you ponder my advice from last month? Let's be honest, going into your "auto home" certainly won't be the feeling you get when you hug your Marine son after being separated from him for 13-long weeks of boot camp (as I recently did). But it should give you "warm fuzzies" as you walk in the front door. Not because you are excited to spend money on your car but because you know that your shop is honest and will take care of it while you relax comfortably. I hope you have found this or that you have a place in mind to try … if not, give me a shout and I can hook you up.

Now then, fasten your seat belt and let's get started on the basics … the dreaded oil change. When was your last oil change in Rochester, MN? Is that little oil change sticker looking at you as a reminder that you are long overdue? Are you putting it off for some reason? Not enough time? Inconvenience? You might figure, "It's already 3 months past-due, what's another week, right?" Wrong!

Ladies, let me ask you this … would you put off your hair appointment one extra day if it was due or even overdue? And gentlemen, would you mow the lawn two weeks after it's due? Really, if you did delay either of these, the only repercussions you might have are some straggly hairs or lawn. Now then, if you wouldn't put off your hair or lawn maintenance, why would you put off more important maintenance that could possibly result in expensive repairs?

Remember how I mentioned blowing up the engine of my first car? This is the reason: I did not have my oil changed. In my particular case, I believe my car was burning oil for some reason and because of that it ran low and eventually ran out. An engine cannot run without oil, just like your body cannot run without water. Additionally, your vehicle does not like dirty oil, and eventually, that dirty oil will turn into sludge; a petroleum jelly-like substance. This jelly can clog passages and prevent oil from reaching certain areas of your engine. This causes premature damage to parts of the engine and will lead to expensive engine repairs. Either of these situations (lack of oil or the jelly) can be avoided if you get regular oil and filter changes. Even waiting an additional week past when you notice it's overdue can make a difference.

How often do you change your oil? Your manufacturer will have recommendations on how many miles you can go between changes so your oil can be changed according to how much the engine is used. They will also recommend the number of months between oil changes. This is because the additives in your oil will break down over time and not be as effective. This time/mileage schedule is based on the type of oil recommended. If you are using synthetic oil, generally you can go longer between oil changes. Keep this in mind: If your manufacturer recommendations are based on the use of synthetic oil, and you're using conventional oil, you will need more frequent oil changes.

Do you even know what type of oil you are using? Or should be using? This can seem more complicated than it really is. Most of you probably use good old-fashioned crude oil with the proper viscosity and grade recommended by your manufacturer. Certainly, there is nothing wrong with this option and, of course, it's the least expensive option. But have you ever considered other options? Based on where you live (cold climates?) and how you drive (stop-and-go traffic?), synthetic oil can benefit you greatly. Synthetic oil keeps the engine cleaner, reduces engine wear at high temperatures, provides better cold-temperature starts and improves fuel efficiency. That's great news considering how expensive gas is these days! Though it's more expensive at the time of the oil change, in the long run it can lead to a healthier vehicle, fewer future repairs and even more time between oil changes (5,000 miles vs. 3,000 miles). Let me put it this way: If you buy a better quality pair of jeans, that may cost a little more in the beginning, but you know they will look better, fit better and last longer, do you choose those? Or do you buy the cheaper pair of jeans that may not wear as well, look as good and need to be replaced sooner? Which is the better option? As you ponder this, think about this in relation to oil. Did you know there are other oil options, such as the high-mileage and semi-synthetic, as well? I recommend you ask which oil is best for you the next time you visit your "auto home."

Do you know the brand of oil your "auto home" uses? Reputable oil brands can make a difference. Some oil companies will add just a bit of synthetic and call it a partial or semi-synthetic. Does this really make much difference? The best way an auto repair shop can be sure they're using quality oil is to buy it from a company with a good reputation. Thereby, selling it to you will leave you and your "auto home" with peace of mind.

At Babcock Auto Care, we have many oil change options in which to choose, ranging from Full-synthetic Mobil 1 oil to a basic conventional oil. We have an array of generic options as well as Mobil options. We also have upgrades to choose from including filters and BG additives. It has been our experience that some vehicle owners has particular preferences for their vehicle and there are others who do not and need more guidance in making decisions. 

You don't have to be auto-savvy - that is your mechanic's job. It's your job to make your expectations known and ask questions. Reputable mechanics in Rochester, MN don't want to lead you astray - they want to help you choose the right oil for your vehicle based on make/model, driving habits, amount of time you want to go between oil changes, and maintenance longevity based on your goals in how long you want to keep your vehicle. 

Our advisors, at Babcock Auto Care help you determine the best oil for your particular make/model vehicle and educate you on any upgrades or additions that will help keep your vehicle better maintained for a longer period. Additionally, with every oil change, we perform a comprehensive vehicle inspection so that you can be alerted to problems or future problems. Our mechanics take pictures of your vehicle so you can see they see - transparency in auto repair! Periodic inspections like this can alert you to a problem early before it becomes a safety issue or even a bigger, more expensive problem. 

If you are looking for the best oil change in Rochester, MN, choosing Babcock Auto Care is a great decision! We will be here to guide you in the oil change process and inspection results. We also encourage you to get your oil changed on time, every time .. and hug your children every chance you get! 

Want to schedule an oil change? Click here! 

Here are more oil change articles:

Assessing your relationships and oil changes

How much does an oil change cost in Rochester, MN?

Diesel truck oil change in Rochester, MN

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Words from our clients:

Babcock Auto Care, without exception has always gone above and beyond in the service of my family's vehicles. Ever helpful, understanding, knowledgeable, and professional are their service reps and techs. Jeremy and Jenna Babcock, and staff, I personally thank you for all you have done to keep our family's cars safe and running on the roads.
Mike Tesulov
5
Friendly, prompt, and transparent. Available and happy to answer questions on the diagnostic report that they text/email you. They offer further services and explain them well, but do not pressure you to opt for these services.
Brian Johnson
5
Brian, Thank you so much for your review and your first-time visit to us for auto repair in Rochester, MN! We are passionate about providing excellent service and we are glad you felt that when you brought your 2014 Toyota Tacoma in for an oil change and BG service. Please let us know how we can take care of your vehicle in the future! ~Team Babcock
I feel like family there. You know they really care about you and offer solid advise.
Jason Carey
5
Your front desk and courtesy car driver are the best. You honor your warranties and that speaks a lot.
Tom Miller
5
Very happy with the complete service I received. I especially liked the online report of my service with pictures of the service items that need replacement.
Jim Miesbauer
5

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