The best places to do an oil change



Changing the engine oil regularly is one of the most important things you can do for your vehicle. Not only does this routine maintenance extend the life of your engine, it also prevents most powertrain warranties from becoming null and void. There are many places that offer this service, but not all oil changes are created equal. Where are the best places to have an oil change? We break down the options to help you make this important decision.

What does an oil change include?

When you get your oil changed, both the engine oil and the filter need to be replaced. While this is not a requirement, if you don’t change the filter, the new oil will come in clean and come out dirty, negating much of the point of an oil change. A standard oil change typically includes a chassis lubricant, new oil, and a new filter, as well as changing the old oil and replacing it with new oil, replacing the filter, and lubricating the chassis.

Finding the best oil change: things to consider

Quality of work:

When deciding on the best place to have your oil changed, you need to choose a place that does a high quality job. Although an oil change is a fairly straightforward process, not all service providers meet the same standard of quality. For example, some big box retailers offer low cost oil changes. But they are certainly not specialized in automotive work. Wouldn’t you prefer to go to a place that employs auto service professionals?


Price is another consideration. Unfortunately, this is the factor that influences the decision most of the time. Many people see a coupon or flyer for a cheap and quick oil change and take advantage of the offer. While it is true that price must play a role in your decision, paying extra to have the work done by a qualified professional is a good investment. Like many services, the cheapest option is probably not the best option.

Oil and filter brands:

The next factor is oil and filter brands, which may be a matter of personal preference or specified by the manufacturer. If the manufacturer specifies an oil type and you want to secure warranty coverage, it is best to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines. There are people who swear by certain brands, like Mobile, Pennzoil or Valvoline. If you are more comfortable with a particular brand of oil or filter, choose a store that uses those particular brands or purchase your own oil and bring it to the store when you drop off your vehicle. Some stores may order your brand of choice from the local auto parts store if you call ahead. There might be an additional cost for this level of service.

All the extras:

The last factor is what we will call the x factor. These are all the additional services you receive and can find at a full service center. Do they wash your car afterwards? Can they get you in and out within a reasonable time? Can you get a free tire rotation and brake inspection if you need it? Do they check your tire pressure, air filter, and makeup fluid levels like windshield washer and brake fluid? These are all issues that can be factored into that decision if you want anything beyond a base oil change.

Oil type: conventional oil vs. Synthetic oil

No matter where you have your oil changed, you will be asked if you want conventional oil or synthetic oil. Synthetic oil is more expensive, but is it a necessary upsell? A synthetic oil change is better for your engine than a conventional oil change. While conventional oil is suitable and provides adequate performance, higher quality synthetic oil provides better long-term engine protection.

While conventional oil (i.e. mineral oil) may provide adequate lubrication performance, it cannot compete with the overall engine performance and protection provided by synthetics. There is also the option of a fully synthetic blend or a synthetic blend. Fully synthetic oils provide the best protection.

Another advantage of synthetic motor oil is that it generally lasts longer than conventional oil. However, the recommended intervals between oil changes vary by brand and if you have a new vehicle warranty you’ll want to follow the manufacturer’s interval levels no matter what type of oil you use.

High mileage oil

High Mileage Motor Oils are designed for vehicles that have at least 75,000 miles on the odometer and contain ingredients to help preserve older engines. They have special sealant conditioners that can help prevent leaks. While high mileage oils won’t fix existing leaks or engine problems, they will help keep an engine well-maintained for longer.

The best places to get an oil change

1. An independent and reliable local service center

We all know of a place that has been recommended by a friend or family member for our automotive needs. A small private service center, or sometimes not so small, known for its high quality service. If you haven’t found one in your city, you can ask around and check out the community forums. This is a store that basically performs all of the required auto maintenance services. These auto repair shops are great because they usually only hire ASE certified technicians and can always be cheaper than most dealerships. And because they are privately owned, their tire and lubrication technicians are trained in-house. The owners of these stores know how important word of mouth is to their business, so they are often trustworthy companies to deal with. But never take a single person or a written review as the sole indicator. Explore the store’s online ratings and reviews before you decide to use it. Being a service center, it’s usually not hard to find one that will include free tire rotation and brake inspection because they make their money fixing cars and everything.

2. Your car dealership

In terms of quality, it is generally the top of the range. Not only will your dealership have factory-trained technicians, there is no technician more familiar with your particular make of vehicle than someone who works there all day, every day. There’s also the security of knowing that it may be able to tell if there are other issues with your vehicle through a computer diagnostic check and an accompanying short drive around the block. usually an oil change at the dealership. This can eliminate problems that were unknown earlier before they get really expensive to fix. This does not mean that other service providers cannot use these methods, it is just that the technicians at the dealerships generally work on the same make of vehicle every day; they will know more about what to look for on certain models than general technicians would. Many dealerships also offer small perks like a free car wash after service, but dealerships will be the more expensive choice on this list.

3. Renowned gas station

By this we mean a place like Sears Auto Service Center or Wal-Mart’s Tire and Lube Express, or any national chain auto store that is not just a quick lubricant, but rather offers additional mechanical services. . In terms of quality, this one can be hit or miss. Many of these workshops have a high technician turnover rate and employ young and inexperienced technicians. As for the price, it’s the middle of the road. The biggest downside is that a lot of these chains only use certain types of oil and filters, so if you’re picky about your parts it can cost you more.

4. Lube Stop, Jiffy Lube, Pep Boys, Valvoline Instant Oil Change, any other 10 minute oil change service

Remember when your mom told you that it was better to take your time and do something right than to have to do it twice? It still seems like a pretty good rule of thumb. Quick-stop oil change stations are convenient, but they also suffer from the higher turnover rate and less experienced technicians. Because they specialize in providing fast service, quality can sometimes suffer. Oil filters can get stuck, grease fittings can deteriorate, and drain plugs become bare. When you’re rushing to get a job done, small issues like these can turn into big problems if dealt with in a rush. Unless you are in a rush or personally know someone who works at one of these stations that you can trust to work on your vehicle, quick-stop oil change stations are not the place to be. best choice.

5. Do it yourself

In terms of cost and quality, it’s all up to you. The big question is, do you have the time and knowledge to tinker? As we said before, an oil change is a simple thing, but problems can arise. Most of these problems can be avoided completely by doing your own job, but you need to know what you are doing for safety reasons. If you are a technician or a car junkie and can safely do the oil change on your own, this is the cheapest option and the quality of the job is totally in your hands – as long as you have the time and the expertise. .


When choosing an oil change location, you should always do your research and follow your instincts. Whether you’ve had a good experience in an instant oil change service or have a trusted mechanic to do the job for you, the most important thing is that you change your oil according to your car’s owner’s manual using the right oil at the right time intervals. Remember that a lack of oil or compromised oil from not changing your car’s oil on time could damage your engine and shorten the life of your vehicle.

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