How often should your oil be changed? Well that depends on what vehicle you drive, what your driving habits are, how long you are planning to keep your vehicle, and what type of oil you are using. Used to be everyone went by the 3,000 mile interval. Not any more. Some vehicles still recommend the 3,000 mile interval, some vehicles recommend oil changes every 5,000 miles, and some European models that require synthetic oil recommend oil changes every 12,000 miles!
If you plan on keeping your vehicle for 100,000 miles or less we recommend sticking with the manufacturer’s recommendations. If you are using synthetic oil instead of conventional oil, you can go farther between oil changes because the synthetic oil does not break down as quickly. If the manufacturer does not require synthetic oil and you use synthetic oil you can go an additional 2,000 miles between oil changes.
If you are planning on keeping your vehicle till it dies (like me) you might want to change your oil more frequently to maximize the life of the engine. My rule of thumb is for conventional oils change every 3,000 miles and for synthetic oils change every 5,000 miles. Although the synthetic oil costs more, when you factor in less frequent oil changes the cost per mile is virtually identical.
For the current model year GM now requires all GM vehicles use oil that meets their Dexos specifications. Oils that meet this specification are synthetic or synthetic blends. At Wayne’s Automotive Center we use Castrol GTX Syntec which does meet the Dexos specifications and will keep your car in warranty.