Low Mileage Oil Changes

courtesy of Bob, The Auto Answer Man


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DIY Oil Changes

Bob,
I am wondering what would be the best way to go about changing my oil. I have a 1998 Corolla that runs great (112,000 miles on it) and I plan on keeping it until it literally dies on me. I have heard many opinions on when to change the oil. I drive less than 5,000 miles per year and almost all of it is in-town driving (trips consisting of 10 miles or less). I have had the high mileage oil put in (and changed every 3,000 miles) and then went back to the "cheaper" oil. I now see oil for autos in which you don't have to change it for 15,000 miles. Help?
Kay K.

Kay,
The problem you will be facing is not so much oil break down, but water build up. Driving short distances is the worst thing to do. You see, the car never really gets hot enough to burn off all the moisture that it accumulates. You will notice your exhaust pipes starting to rot out faster as well as other things. What I recommend is to take the car out for a nice drive at least once a month and change the oil at least every six months. However, on the day you do change your oil, I would also take it out for a nice drive first. Then, drain it while it's still warm but not hot (you don't want to burn yourself). Remember that the engine oil can get close to 200 degrees or even over!
Good Luck!
Drive Safely!
Bob, The Auto Answer Man


If you have a question for Bob send it to: . He's able to answer many of them personally and we'll include the best questions in future issues of The Dollar Stretcher.

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