Busting the 3000-mile Oil Change MythPosted by Amsoil, 27th February 2018

Why should you do an oil change?

Whether you change oil yourself or take your vehicle to a garage, there are basically 3 steps for an oil change;

Engine oil lubricates the engine parts and prevents wear. It keeps engine parts clean, as well as cooling and reducing engine parts friction, stopping your engine from overheating and seizing up.

However, the oil gets dirty as it cleans the engine. Its lubricating properties do not last forever. Engine oil needs changing regularly. 

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How often should you do an oil change?

In the past, engine oil manufacturers recommended changing your oil every 3,000 miles. They had a financial interest in seeing customers frequently and selling more oil, most of which was conventional.

Conventional oil oxidises and breaks down to form dirt and varnish under extreme pressure within the engine. Conventional oil also tends to be more volatile, with the lighter molecules burning off. As a result, the oil thickens, 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 as often as 3,000 miles. Now, many vehicle manufacturers recommend changing oil every 5,000 miles or longer, with BMW calling for 15,000 miles between oil changes.

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Synthetic oil technology

Synthetic oil lubrication technology plays a significant role in moving beyond the 3,000-mile 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’s safe to use them longer than 3,000 miles.

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

So, while it’s crucial to do oil change and take care of your vehicle, it’s also important to advance your methods with the latest technology. And modern synthetic oils have made the 3,000-mile oil change interval outdated.

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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