Busting the 5.000 km Oil Change MythPosted by Amsoil, 7th March 2018

Why should you do an oil change?

Whether you change oil yourself or take your vehicle to a garage, there are basically three steps involved in an oil change:

1. Remove the dirty oil

2. Change the oil filter

3. Fill with clean oil

Engine oil lubricates engine parts and prevents wear. It keeps the engine parts clean and reduces engine parts’ friction, therefore guarding your engine from overheating and seizing up. However, engine oil needs regular changing as the oil gets dirty as it cleans the engine. Its lubricating properties do not last forever.

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How often should you do an oil change?

In the past, engine oil manufacturers recommended changing the oil every 5.000 km. They also had a financial interest in frequent customer visits as this helped selling more oil, most of which was regular oil.

Regular oil oxidises and, under extreme pressure within the engine, it breaks down to form dirt and varnish. Regular oil also tends to be more volatile, with the lighter molecules burning off. As a result, the oil becomes more viscous, requiring more energy to pump it through the engine parts.

However, with the advances in lubrication and automotive technology, you don’t have to change your oil every 5.000 km any more. Now, many vehicle manufacturers recommend changing oil every 8.000 or even less often, with BMW calling for 25.000 km between oil changes.

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Synthetic oil technology

Synthetic oil lubrication technology plays a significant role in moving beyond the 5.000 km oil change interval and improving engine performance. Synthetic oil offers better engine wear protection, improved resistance to engine temperature extremes and increased engine cleanliness properties compared to conventional oils. As a result, it is safe to use synthetic oil for more than 5.000 km.

AMSOIL products provide confidence with additional protection that goes beyond the standard. For example, AMSOIL Signature Series Synthetic Engine Oil…

In summary, while it is crucial to carry out oil changes and take care of your vehicle, it is also important to advance your methods with the latest technology. And modern synthetic oils have made the 5.000 km oil change interval a thing of the past.

¹Based on independent testing in the ASTM D6891 test using 0W-20 as worst-case representation.
²Based on independent testing of AMSOIL Signature Series 5W-30 in the GM turbo coking test.
³Based on independent testing of AMSOIL Signature Series 5w-30 motor oil in the LSPI engine test as required for the GM dexos 1® Gen 2 specification.

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