(WDEF) There was a time when three months or 3,000 miles was sound advice on when to change your oil. But times have changed.
Angie Hicks of Angie's List said, "With the improvements made to engine oil as well as cars you need to depend on your owner's manual for the best recommendation of how frequently your car may need an oil change. It could be 3,000, 7,000, even 10,000 miles."
Vehicles that use conventional motor oil should have their oil changed between 3,000 and 5,000 miles. If you use synthetic, you can go up to 7,000 miles. And if you're not sure, check your owner's manual.
Annie Adams is a consumer. She said, "My car is a fairly new car so it has a computer that tells me that it's time for the oil to be changed. It's pretty simple."
Where and how you drive your vehicle can also play a role. If you're in extreme climates or in stop and go traffic frequently, you may want to increase your oil changes to help out the engine.
Auto Shop Owner Jim Trump said, "If you skip a lawn treatment you can always catch up and recover your lawn, but your engine will wear and you won't get that back."
Checking under the hood and vehicle during an oil change can also help your mechanic spot needed repairs or services before major work is needed.
Hicks added, "Develop a good rapport with a regular mechanic who works on your car because that trusting relationship will help you in caring for your car."
Angie's List says a common complaint they hear regarding oil changes is upselling. Your best defense against being upsold is to know what the manufacturer recommends at specific intervals for your car.