How much is an oil change?
In this article, we’ll tell you how much an oil change usually is and go over the factors impacting your oil change cost. Then, we’ll answer seven oil change FAQs, including how often you should change your oil and how much time an oil change takes.
This Article Contains:
- How Much Is An Oil Change?
- What Factors Impact Your Oil Change Cost?
- 7 Oil Change FAQs
Let’s get started.
How Much Is An Oil Change?
An oil change can cost you anywhere between $50 and $200.
For example, the:
- BMW oil change cost is between $135 and $175
- Lexus oil change prices lie between $75 and $180
- Toyota oil change cost is around $50
But why does the oil change price vary so much?
Several factors can affect your car’s oil change price:
What Factors Impact Your Oil Change Cost?
The cost of changing the oil in your car depends on:
- The year, make, and model of your vehicle — for example, the oil change price of the 2020 Acura TLX is naturally higher than that of a 2020 Toyota Corolla. The cost could be higher for newer vehicles that may demand synthetic oils instead of conventional oils.
- Your engine size — for example, changing the oil in a Toyota 1.8L 4-cylinder engine is cheaper than changing the oil in a BMW X6 3L 6-cylinder engine.
- The engine oil type used — for example, synthetic oil commands a higher price than regular or conventional oil.
- The required engine oil viscosity — for example, engine oil 5W40 (with higher viscosity) is less expensive than engine oil 5W30 (with lower viscosity).
- The oil manufacturer — for example, the original BMW Engine Oil 5W30 costs more than an engine oil from a generic brand.
- The quantity of engine oil used — for example, 5 quarts of oil cost less than 8 quarts of oil.
- Your location — for example, an oil change in Los Angeles, United States, will be more expensive than an oil change in Phoenix, United States.
- Whether you DIY or take the car to a repair — if you’ve got the right expertise, you can change the oil cheaper than if you were to take the vehicle to a repair shop.
If you’d like a more accurate estimate of your car’s oil change cost, fill out this online form.
Now that you know what factors generally influence the oil change price for your vehicle, we’ll answer some of the common questions car owners ask regarding oil change:
7 Oil Change FAQs
Here are answers to seven questions car owners frequently ask about an oil change:
1. How Often Should I Change My Car Oil?
Most vehicle manufacturers recommend changing the engine oil every 5000, 7000, or 10,000 miles. But each manufacturer suggests an oil change interval particular to its engines.
Intervals may vary based on:
- The make, model, and year of your vehicle — newer vehicles require oil changes less frequently.
- Your driving habits — if you let the engine idle for too long in stop-and-go traffic or make frequent short-distance trips (under five miles), your car engine may need oil changes in shorter intervals.
- The environmental conditions — driving in extreme weather or roads filled with debris decreases the oil change interval.
- Type of motor oil used — while an engine that uses conventional motor oil (or regular oil) requires oil changes every 3500 to 5000 miles, engines using synthetic motor oil require oil changes every 10,000 miles.
You can also check your oil indicator gauge. The oil life indicator alerts a driver when it’s time for a change. It’s based not only on mileage, but also on actual conditions that affect the oil quality.
2. Is It Okay To Do The Oil Change On My Own?
A DIY oil change is a reasonably straightforward task, so you shouldn’t have much trouble doing it yourself.
However, to do a good job, you should:
- Be able to identify specific parts of your car
- Have the suitable materials and proper tools at hand
- Be able to measure your oil level correctly.
Otherwise, you may end up with an oil leak. Or worse, you could unintentionally cause engine damage — resulting in costly repairs.
If you’re not very confident about your ability to do a decent DIY oil change job, it’s best to get in touch with a professional car mechanic. They’d be familiar with your engine parts, and have the right tools and expertise required to do a proper regular or synthetic oil change service.
Besides, you can have the mechanic perform other routine maintenance checks on your vehicle. These checks include looking at your tire pressure and tire rotation, checking for engine damage, and inspecting any other car parts.
3. What Happens During An Oil Change?
Here’s what you can expect during a regular or synthetic oil change:
Step 1 — The drain plug under your engine block is removed.
Step 2 — The contaminated, old oil flows out and is collected on a drain pan.
Step 3 — The drain plug is reinstalled.
Step 4 — Your old oil filter is removed and inspected. If the oil filter is damaged or filled with debris, it’s replaced.
Step 5 — The right quantity (for example, 5 quarts) of clean motor oil is added to the engine.
Step 6 — Your engine oil level is checked, and the engine is topped off as needed.
Step 7 — The underside of your car is checked for oil leak symptoms.
4. How Much Time Does An Oil Change Take?
If you’re doing the synthetic or conventional oil change by yourself, the process could easily take over an hour, depending on your level of auto expertise.
On the flip side, if you’re taking the car to a service center or dealership, you can expect to get the synthetic or regular oil change done in under an hour, provided you haven’t got any other time-consuming or costly repairs.
However, a far better option than a DIY or dealership oil change service is to request a mobile mechanic’s service. The mobile mechanic can come to your driveway for the synthetic or conventional oil change service and take care of other auto routine maintenance needs.
5. Which Type Of Motor Oil Should I Use In My Car?
Generally, cars use conventional oil or synthetic oil in their engines.
If you want to learn more about the engine oil requirements used in your car, go through your owners manual or the website of your vehicle manufacturer.
The owners manual would specify:
Alternatively, you may find this info on a label that’s inside the driver’s door jamb.
6. What Are The Different Kinds Of Motor Oil?
There are mainly four kinds of motor oils:
- Conventional oil — made by refining crude oil, the regular oil is less expensive when compared to other motor oils and requires more frequent oil changes.
- Fully synthetic oil — made from refined, distilled, and purified crude oil, the fully synthetic motor oil offers better engine protection than conventional oil (or regular oil) and is more expensive. It requires less frequent oil changes.
- Synthetic blend oil — made by blending conventional motor oil and fully synthetic engine oil, the synthetic blend oil offers better protection than conventional oils but is less expensive than the fully synthetic variants.
- High mileage oil — designed for vehicles that have already covered more than 75,000 miles, the high mileage oil contains additives that help minimize friction and corrosion.
7. What Is An Oil Pan?
In order for a car’s engine to run smoothly, it will need to have the right amount of oil. The oil helps to lubricate all of the engine parts and keep them cool. The oil pan is where the car’s motor oil is stored.
The oil pan is found under the car and can become damaged over time. Having a puncture or rust spots in the oil pan can also lead to serious oil system issues.
Your oil change cost will differ depending on the engine size, whether you DIY or take your vehicle to certified technicians for a synthetic or regular oil change, and other factors. If you want to learn more about the requirements of the engine used in your car, check your owners manual.
If you’re looking for reliable mechanics at affordable prices, look no further than AutoNation Mobile Service — a convenient mobile auto repair solution. Once you book your repairs with AutoNation Mobile Service, our expert technicians will come to your driveway to perform the oil change and other repair services.