How to Check Your Oil

What to Look For

As the lifeblood of your vehicle’s engine, it’s important for you to ensure your vehicle is filled with clean motor oil. Like the other components found in your car, motor oil can wear over time and if left unchecked, can cause serious damage to the engine once it’s dirty. That’s why it’s so important to check it every month, so you can learn of its current condition and if it needs to be changed. A&J Automotive walks you through how to perform an oil inspection and what you need to look for during it!

Check The Level

When looking at the motor oil, the first thing you should inspect is the oil level. On the dipstick, you can find small lines that signify specific levels. The markings will vary based on what vehicle you have, but it should be clear what line defines as full and low.

After inserting the dipstick and removing it, inspect the oil stain left behind. If the stain is at or just below the full line, your motor oil is at a good level, and you will not have to add more oil. If the stain is at the middle of the stick, at the low line, or even below it, you will need to add more oil. Driving with low oil levels will starve the engine of oil, and it could cause additional damage to the system. Make sure to add oil that’s consistent with what you currently have in your vehicle and that the oil is listed in the owner’s manual.

Inspect The Oil

Once you’ve checked the oil level, then you’ll need to inspect the oil itself. If the oil is in good condition, it will take on a smooth, brown appearance. If however, it looks like anything other than that, you may need to have the oil changed. Here are a couple signs of bad oil that you should look out for:

  • Light, Milky Oil

  • Thick, Gloppy Oil

  • Small or Big Metal Particles or Shards

  • Black, Gritty Oil

If you see any of these signs of bad oil in your vehicle, make sure you schedule an oil change with A&J Automotive in Raleigh, North Carolina!

Written by A & J Automotive

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