The Sunday News
One of our readers is wondering what would happen if one takes time to change oil in his engine.
Many people neglect servicing their cars for as long as they are running well, until they start giving problems then they start giving them attention.
Some automotive guru once said — the blood in your body, the water in the desert and the oil in the engine are all vital — without them someone or something is going to die — it’s that simple.
In Africa “service” refers to the routine maintenance that involves change of oil filters, plugs and the like. Manufacturers have different service intervals from 5 000 to 30 000km but generally it is advisable to change oil every 5-10 000km depending on how one drives. Some people like racing their engines, with heavy acceleration and hard braking.
Others like to hear that sound when the rev limiter kicks in, it’s all good but if you are that type of person then you may need to service your car earlier than others for obvious reasons. When you service your car within that mileage, you will save yourself the trouble of visiting the mechanic and paying that labour bill and parts.
Japanese cars are well taken care of. Most people who import cars from Japan will see the difference there is from buying a car from anywhere else, be it locally or from Europe.
Not to talk down upon European cars but Japanese cars are usually clean with a clean health card too. Should you be Japanese at heart and you are the type of person that like to keep the car clean and running for the better part of the value you paid for, then stick to recommended service intervals and you will eventually notice how loyal your car will be to you.
Sometimes people just change oils and oil filters and think they are done.
While the engine and transmission oils are the most important, everyone wants to enjoy some savings on fuel and running costs.
Dirty old clogged air filters restrict airflow and lack of proper airflow means you will pay more on fuel. You will increase your fuel budget by a significant margin. A clean filter improves airflow and improves performance as well. Be smart from the inside out. Filters are also there to filter out dirt and other unwanted particles that may damage the engine.
Old tattered and clogged filters may not do the job so well.
The other reason to service your car therefore is to avoid unnecessary engine damage and save the fuel bill. Air filters do not necessarily have to be changed every time you change engine oil. Depending on driving conditions, air filters can be changed in 15 to 20 000km but can change as your manufacturer recommends.
Under normal circumstances, a normal service is not just a change of oils and filters. Mechanics who love what they do and respect their jobs check other components for lubrication.
While the engine is the most important part that needs lubrication, there are other parts as well that include the transmission gearbox, the drive-shafts, the differentials and a host of other flexible parts. Routine checks when servicing a car may be worthwhile and also improve your own safety as well as that of other roads users. Most of us own cars and we are not the first time owners. Cars go through a lot of abuse and some have serious damage that you may not see with your naked eye.
But what happens if you do not change your oil? Okay, some people may think that we are just making a fuss about nothing but what really happens if you do not change your oil?
An engine revolves more than a thousand times for every minute that it runs.
That means metal parts are doing what they should to give you power to move. Oil lubricates all these parts to reduce friction and friction is the worst enemy of all moving parts.
Friction produces heat and eventually can make the engine seize. All that movement and friction breaks down the oil as it works to reduce friction.
Dirt particles are also trapped in the oil over time and that dirt becomes a hazard to the life of your engine.
A few hundred or thousand kilometres over the scheduled service interval should not be too much of a problem but running low on oil and longer on old oil may not be too good.
Have you ever wondered why some people will drive their cars through the year with little to no problems at all?
Perhaps they stick to service intervals as per manufacturer recommendation. Perhaps they attend to every whine the engine makes. Cars are like babies, they need tender love and care. However, there are other countless reasons behind keeping the car for long.
One of them being to buy a good car to begin with. It’s hard to keep a car with a history you are not very well acquainted with but as we will help each other you will be able to select a good car from the rest.
n Disclaimer: This material has been prepared with the intent to provide reliable information; no warranty either expressed or implied is made to its accuracy or completeness. No liability is assumed for any loss, injury to persons, property or other damage resulting from either the use of or reliance on the material presented. Always consult the professionals.
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