Ultimate Fresno Oil Change Guide

Oil Change Guide

Routine oil change service can save your engine. Combine this with the fact that most engine failure is due to owner neglect and you have a solution that can keep your vehicle running as long as possible.

When you bring your car into Goodguys for routine maintenance such as a car oil change, you are protecting your investment. With our oil change coupons and other great discounts, we’d like to make it as cost-effective as possible!

Benefits of Regular Oil Changes

There are valid reasons for all of the printed and email reminders you receive about scheduling an oil change. Below are some of the most important reasons:

A Clean Engine

If nothing else is clean in your car, your engine should be. The number one job of clean oil is to trap the dirt and grime that naturally builds up in your engine. If the oil isn’t changed regularly, all that gunk can clog the oil filter and the oil has no way of working. Then, engine parts start to wear down and may have to be repaired or replaced soon. You never want to hear your Fresno mechanic tell you that you need a new engine, especially if it could have been prevented.

Avoid stressing and incurring costly vehicle expenses later by scheduling an oil change and an oil filter change today!

Reduced Friction & Wear On The Engine

No one wants to hear the sound of metaloil being poured during car oil change service grinding against metal in their car. But once the oil gets old and the filter hasn’t been changed, grinding can occur. This results in the metal parts no longer being lubricated as they continue to do their jobs. Eventually, they begin to wear against each other, which can cause the engine to seize up. At this very moment, your vehicle becomes undrivable and must be towed and repaired. If the car gives out in a remote or otherwise unsafe place, it can be dangerous to you and your passengers.

Absorption of Heat From The Engine

All those metal parts moving inside your engine create a certain amount of heat. If it is allowed to build up, the engine can overheat. Clean oil absorbs the normal heat that builds up in the engine when it’s running. Dirty oil will lose its ability to absorb the excess heat, which is one of its jobs. Then, the dirty oil begins to reflect the heat, creating even more of a hot house effect for your engine to deal with.

Prevention of Rust & Corrosion

Rust and corrosion are two of the most destructive enemies of anything primarily made of metal such as a car. One function of clean oil in a car’s engine is to keep both from building up in the engine. Car owners can help by changing the oil regularly and not “topping off” oil when it gets low. This isn’t helpful because diluted oil doesn’t have enough strength to keep an engine clean.

Better Fuel Efficiency

When an engine is working smoothly, without undue friction, this is a sign that the car’s fuel efficiency is better, as well. Dirty oil and a dirty filter result in higher friction between the metal parts in the engine, which reduces fuel efficiency.

Other Engine Issues Identified

An experienced oil change specialist knows to look for other problems with a vehicle as they change the oil. This is one of the best reasons to go to the same shop over time; the mechanics will know your car and its history. And you will know that you can trust them to do a thorough, professional assessment of your car.

Help your engine last as long as possible. Book an appointment at Goodguys in Fresno today!

auto mechanic conducting oil change service

Rely on The Best Oil Change Service at Goodguys in Fresno, CA

It’s tempting to save money by booking a cheap oil change for your car. However, the money you save upfront will be lost later when low-grade products are used and the service is poor. Choose a shop with ASE-certified mechanics who work hard to provide the best service along with professional, experienced car care at competitive and fair prices. You may pay a few dollars more, but any investment you can make in car maintenance will be worth it.

What does a professional oil change service include? At our Fresno auto shop you can expect:

  • A lubrication of chassis
  • Five quarts of Valvoline 5W-20 or 5W-30 oil (or less)
  • An installation of a new oil filter
  • A tire rotation for $5 upon request
  • A 22-point inspection of your vehicle

What Actually Goes on During an Oil Change?

It’s often tempting to perform DIY oil changes. But there are some valid reasons for letting the professionals do what at first glance appears to be a simple process. At second glance, we see it’s not quite that easy if it is done properly.

An experienced oil change specialist at a high-quality Fresno auto shop will:

  • Assess the current condition of the oil and filter.
  • Remove old oil and refill with new oil.
  • Remove the oil filter and replace it.
  • Inspect the rest of the vehicle’s fluids, such as steering, transmission, windshield washer, and antifreeze.
  • Run safety checks on batteries, lights, belts, hoses, tire pressure, and wiper blades.
  • Lubricate high-wear areas, such as hood and door hinges and chassis.
  • Inspect the air filter and cabin filter.

As you can see, a lot is happening out of sight as your oil is changed. Plus, it’s done with the proper equipment and diagnostic equipment. Any problems brewing in the mechanics of the vehicle will be identified before they have any negative effects. This saves you time and money because repair costs are inevitably higher once an issue begins to impair the way the car operates.

Conventional, Synthetic, Blend, or High-Mileage?

Walk into an auto store and you’ll see an astounding array of selections of motor oil. It can be confusing, plus your options change as your vehicle ages or your driving needs change.

Before we get to that, here are two important things to look for: Viscosity and weight of oil.

  • Oil viscosity is referencing how easily oil pours. Thin oils have low viscosity and pour easier at low temperatures. Thicker oils have higher viscosity and pour less easily. Thinner oils reduce friction in engines, which helps engines start easily during cold weather. The viscosity rating is printed on the oil bottle. All motor oils have viscosity ratings given by the Society for Automotive Engineers. The most common viscosity grade is 5W-30.
  • Weight describes the viscosity of an oil. The Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) sets this standard and gives a viscosity number, or weight, to oil based on how it flows at 210 degrees Fahrenheit, which is about the operating temperature for most motors.

Here’s a quick recap of the types of oil to protect your vehicle’s engine:

Conventional means widely accepted and that describes this grade of oil. It is the standard choice by many drivers, but this automatic choice needs to be re-evaluated, occasionally. Conventional oil is partially refined, which makes it less expensive. Using this oil for routine oil changes provides protection for your engine, but it does get dirty faster. That means you will need to get oil change service more frequently.

Conventional oil is capable of getting your engine to 200,000 miles.

This oil is manufactured in a lab rather than out of the ground like conventional oil. It’s as good as conventional oil with none of the negatives. It holds up better in high temperatures, breaks down more slowly than conventional oil, and lasts longer. It costs more than conventional oil, but If you want the highest level of protection for your engine, a full-synthetic oil change is your best choice. Most manufacturers are now recommending fully synthetic oil.

Take conventional oil and blend it with synthetic oil. The result is the best of both oils, especially for drivers who aren’t able (or willing) to pay the price of full-synthetic oil.

About 45% of all vehicles currently use either synthetic blend or full synthetic oil. Since conventional oil can often get a car up to 200,000 miles, which one do you think is the best option?

  • Synthetic blend contains mineral oil, so much depends on the concentration used. The higher the concentration of mineral oil, the lower the performance of the oil. The longevity of the engine is shorter, too. On the other hand, the cost is lower and it only has to be changed a little more than synthetic oil.
  • Full synthetic oil increases that 200,000 mileage number because the compound has better chemical stability, better performance at high and low temperatures, and better viscosity overall. It also more effectively resists oxidation, thermal breakdown, and oil sludge build up.

Diesel engines run dirtier than others, so they need an oil with more additives to keep the oil clean. Plus, the bigger the diesel engine is, the more it requires an oil that can deal with more dirt and debris. This, in turn, means more frequent oil and filter changes.

Older engines, those over 75,000 miles, need more protection. High-mileage oil was created for this reason. The oil was developed to attack specific problems of older cars, like higher burn-off of the oil and engine corrosion. This extra protection comes through anti-corrosion agents, special cleaner and seal conditioners, and viscosity modifiers.

As with many car related topics, the obvious question is which should I choose? The safest choice would be to use what is recommended by your vehicle’s manufacturer. Most owner’s manuals will recommend a range of oils, considering how harsh your winters are and whether you tow heavy loads. Engines vary in age, mileage, size, and driver need so the choice of oil matters. And, yes, you can switch between one grade of oil and another with no adverse consequences to the vehicle.

The question of which oil to use is not a one-size-fits-all answer. Your car’s owners manual will make a recommendation, so it’s best to begin there. Then, take into consideration how you drive. Still in doubt? Ask your Goodguys oil change specialist for their advice.

Frequency of Oil Changes

This is probably the most asked question about oil changes: How often? The answer is, it depends! Here are some guidelines to start with:

  • Start with your car’s manual for their recommendation.
  • Have it changed every 5,000 to 7,500 miles if using synthetic oil.
  • Have it changed every 5,000 for synthetic blend oil.
  • Have it changed every 3,000 miles, if using conventional oil.
  • Change it more often as your car ages and mileage increases.
  • Change it more often if a truck idles a great deal while generating power for loads.
  • Change it more often if the engine begins to burn oil and/or smoke routinely.

So, the real answer remains, “It depends!” There doesn’t seem to be any caution given about getting the oil changed too much, so you can also simply have it changed whenever you have any other car maintenance done. In any case, this is a good reason to have a shop and mechanics that you trust over time. Check with your Goodguys Fresno auto shop and get their input now.

And don’t forget about oil change coupons!

Signs Your Car May Need An Oil Change

Take another step in keeping your engine purring along by checking the oil yourself between scheduled oil change appointments. If you see or experience any of the following, head over to Goodguys in Fresno and ask them to check it out.

  • Flecks on the dipstick
  • Darker than normal oil
  • Low oil level on the dipstick
  • Unusual or loud noises
  • The “check engine” light is on
  • Engine performance weakens

How To Check the Oil Properly

Here’s a quick guide on how to check your own oil:

  1. Make sure the car is on level ground. Turn the ignition off and put the car in PARK.
  2. Find the dipstick under the hood. Its handle is usually yellow or orange and it’s probably marked with an oil-can symbol.
  3. Pull the dipstick all the way off and look at the current oil level, usually marked with two lines or “Low,” “Add,” or “Safe.”  Wipe the oil off with a rag or paper towel.
  4. Put it all the way back into the tube.
  5. Take it back out and look at the oil level compared to the markings on the stick.
  6. If the level indicates LOW or ADD, you can add a quart of oil only until you can get to your auto shop. Have it checked out quickly.
  7. As always, check your car’s owner manual for more information.

Don’t wait to follow up on low oil levels. It’s easy to let it slide, but damage can be eating at your engine out of sight. Have it checked out by Goodguys right away!

adding oil to car during oil change service

Oil Filters 101

The oil filter matters, too. As we’ve seen, it acts in tandem with the oil flowing through it. Simply put, if the filter is dirty or worn out, it can’t do its job and the oil won’t be able to get through at all, or the oil that is getting through will be dirty. In either case, your car’s engine will suffer.

Here is a quick run-down on the various types of filters:

This is probably the most often used filter by many auto manufacturers. Often called the primary oil filter, it cleans all of the oil flowing through a car’s engine. Some filters don’t. This filter is especially good in cold climates, as it allows motor oil to move freely through the engine, no matter how cold it is outside.

The secondary filter is exactly what the name implies; it acts as a backup for the full flow filter. It removes contaminants the primary filter missed.

The cartridge filter is the same as the full flow filter except it is made from recyclable material.

This is also a secondary filter. It uses centrifugal force to trap contaminants, some generating force more than 2,000 times greater than gravity. Even the smallest contaminants are removed due to this force. They are extremely effective, but more costly.

Another secondary support to a full-flow filter. It effectively removes metallic contaminants from the oil, but does not remove much dust and grime. It also doesn’t need to be changed; it simply needs to be cleaned periodically.

This is yet another full-flow oil filter. It has both a steel canister paired with a paper element. They are simple to use and require minimal tools.

Oil Changes: The Best Investment You Can Make in Your Car

Although there are many factors to take into consideration, making an appointment to get the oil changed in your car is the best investment you can make to keep your car running at peak proficiency. If you don’t, the consequences can lead to an overheated engine, worn parts, and finally a seized engine.

Goodguys Tires & Auto Repair professional service staff is ready to partner with you in all your auto maintenance and repairs!

Oil Changes: The Best Investment You Can Make in Your Car

Although there are many factors to take into consideration, making an appointment to get the oil changed in your car is the best investment you can make to keep your car running at peak proficiency. If you don’t, the consequences can lead to an overheated engine, worn parts, and finally a seized engine.

Goodguys Tires & Auto Repair professional service staff is ready to partner with you in all your auto maintenance and repairs!

Fresno Oil Change Service FAQs

First, check your owner’s manual for the manufacturer’s recommended answer to this question. Keep in mind that it isn’t possible to change the oil in a car too often, so following the “every 3,000 miles or three months” advice will keep your car’s engine protected. Newer engines that use synthetic oil, though, can run for 10,000 to 12,000 miles between oil changes.

Not keeping up with oil changes leads to buildups of carbon and sludge on bearings and all other moving parts. Skipping an oil change or driving for an extra month or 1,000 miles isn’t too harmful, but not adhering to a schedule at all can limit the life of an engine.

An oil change service can include a thorough inspection of your car's engine system as well as: 

  • Add fresh oil and filter
  • Check all other fluids under the hood, lifting off the top if needed
  • Inspect the engine for leaks
  • Check belts and hoses
  • Check the exhaust and undercarriage for damage or corrosion
  • Check the tire pressure
  • Check the air filter

Your engine cannot run without oil. It provides lubrication between moving parts, which reduces friction and wear. The oil also helps to move the heat away from the engine. Engine oil prevents oxygen from allowing rust to affect the parts.

A vehicle’s oil should be changed more often in any of these situations:

  • Towing or hauling heavy loads
  • Cold weather, especially extended periods in temperatures less than 10°F
  • Extreme heat, specifically long periods in temperatures over 95°F
  • Extensive idling
  • Many trips of less than five miles

All of these situations put added stress on an engine. More frequent oil change services will protect the engine from this stress as much as possible.

Yes. Putting clean oil into an engine still using an old filter would only contaminate the new oil. The filter becomes saturated with carbon, gunk, and acids that it keeps out of the engine. All those contaminants eventually cause the filter to stop doing its job. Give your engine new oil and a new filter each time to keep it running at peak efficiency.

You can top off your oil if you’re in an emergency situation but follow up with a full oil change as soon as you can. When you add oil to bring your oil levels back up to normal, the dirty oil doesn’t disappear and it has often lost much of its efficiency. You are simply mixing it with the new oil. This obviously isn’t going to work as well or last as long as draining out the old oil completely and replacing it with new oil.

When you bring your vehicle to Goodguys for oil changes, instead of a shop offering cheap oil changes, our mechanics will remind you of other services that may be coming up soon and discuss any other possible issues they noticed. Goodguys Tires & Auto Repair is honored to be your partner in the complete care of your vehicles!

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At Goodguys Tires & Auto Repair, our highest priority is serving our customers. We are 100% committed to you, our valued customer. We strive to make every part of your experience with us hassle-free and pleasant. That’s why we’ve created our Customer Bill of Rights. These Rights are our pledge that your business with us is subject to the highest level of service from everyone in our company.

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