Teleworking and virtual learning mean many cars are staying parked in the garage instead of on the local roads. Even with a reduced commute for many, experts with Milex Complete Auto Care recommend keeping up with regular maintenance on your vehicle, including oil changes.
The outbreak of the pandemic last spring forced the temporary closure of many businesses and shuttered schools. Stay-at-home orders required many Americans to work from home and children to attend school remotely. The average commute for a working American was 27.6 minutes in 2019, and only 5.7 percent of American workers over the age of 16 worked from home, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.
Once COVID-19 hit, commutes were slashed, and time spent in cars declined. In April 2020, at least 51 percent of people were working remotely, a survey of 2,730 United States adults by Gallup revealed. While the percentage of people teleworking full time was down to 33 percent in October, nearly two-thirds of U.S. workers who had been working remotely during the pandemic would like to continue to have a home office. Whether you are working remotely or simply spending more time on the homefront and less time on the road, it’s important not to neglect your vehicle.
Guidelines for Getting Oil Changed
Experts used to recommend getting the oil changed on your vehicle every 3,000 miles, but innovations in lubricants now allow drivers of newer cars to space out oil changes between 5,000 to 7,500 miles. If your car requires a full-synthetic motor oil, it only needs to be changed every 15,000 miles. However, engine oil degrades over time, so even if you are not driving your car frequently, you still need to change your oil twice per year, at a minimum.
Why is Oil Important?
Regular oil changes will prevent dirt from building up in your car’s engine. Forgoing regular oil changes will impede engine performance and increase corrosion. In addition, mechanics typically perform a service check as part of an oil change. They will make sure your car’s other fluid levels are topped off. They will also rotate tires and check wiper blades. Regular car maintenance will extend the life of your vehicle and ensure proper resale value.
How to Check Your Oil
Milex Complete Auto Care professionals recommend checking your oil once per month to see if it needs to be changed. If the extent of your car knowledge is putting your vehicle in drive, here’s a quick tutorial on how to check your oil.
- Turn off your car and pop the hood.
- Find the oil dipstick, unscrew it and wipe it off with a paper towel.
- Reinsert the dipstick and pull it out to check the oil level.
- If the oil is below the minimum level, it’s time to get the oil changed.
Take Your Car for a Spin
Even if you don’t need to commute to work or sit in the carpool line to pick up kids at school, take your car out for a spin on a regular basis. If your car is parked for a long time, it can encounter some problems. Most commonly, the battery will die because the battery recharges as you drive your vehicle. Other problems may be a decrease in tire pressure, brake corrosion, and moisture buildup in the engine. In addition to maintaining your regular maintenance schedule, the best advice is to take your car out for a drive a few times a week to burn off moisture, recharge the battery and keep it in tip-top shape. At a minimum, back your car out of the garage and let it run for 15 minutes.
Extend the life of your vehicle by keeping up with your oil changes even when you are working from home. Take it to your nearest Milex Complete Auto Care where our experts will be able to change your oil and service your vehicle safely and efficiently.