Why a “Cheap” Oil Change Isn’t Cheap at All

May 27, 2014
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Oil ChangeIt’s always a great idea to get routine maintenance services performed on your vehicle as recommended by its owner’s manual, such as an oil change. This is perhaps the single-most important thing you can do to extend the life of your vehicle.

It’s often the first instinct to take their car to a “quick lube” establishment when the time comes for an oil change. But there are many reasons this is not the way to go, and some are not immediately obvious to car owners. 

Why Cheap Oil Changes Can Be A Bad Choice

First, “quick lube” workers are typically hourly employees. They know how to perform an oil change (and maybe another service or two), but they have no clue about your car as a whole. It’s this lack of knowledge that can cause other issues, such as filling your engine with too much (or too little) oil … or the wrong kind of oil.

There’s also the chance they could install the filter improperly. Oh, and finally, the brand of oil they use could be inferior to most of today’s major brands. All these things can do significant damage to a car’s engine.

I’ve personally seen and experienced the damage a “quick lube” establishment can do to a car. Some years ago, I stopped in at one of these places (no longer in business). After the oil change I was told I was free to leave. After driving down the street a short distance, my car began to smoke furiously from underneath the hood. I quickly turned around drove back. When they lifted the hood, there was the engine oil cap sitting unattached on the engine block … and my entire engine and other parts of the car were covered with oil. That’s right; because I was just another customer being quickly shuffled through the process, the “technicians” made an inexcusable, fundamental error. I ultimately made them pay for a professional engine cleaning, which they did only because I threatened to let the Better Business Bureau know of my dissatisfaction.

Don’t Cut Corners With an Oil Change

Having an oil change at a legitimate car dealership is the best way to ensure your vehicle is being cared for by a skilled automotive technician who puts the customer first. Additionally, typically stock only name-brand products (oil, transmission fluid, coolant/antifreeze, and more).

Your car is too important for you to cut corners, and today’s automotive dealerships have everything in place for you so you don’t have to! These days, dealership prices are very competitive, and many dealers can have an oil change performed fairly quickly – especially if you call ahead for an appointment.

 

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