Oil changes are considered to be a very simple service appointment, but when it is performed regularly, they can help extend the life of your engine and enhance its overall performance. However, some drivers postpone changing their oil or choose not to change it at all. The reason for this is some don’t know when it is time to schedule a service appointment.

So, give your vehicle the care it deserves by scheduling routine oil changes. Having fresh and clean oil improves the performance of your vehicle because it lubricates parts and keeps the engine clean. However, over time, the fluid will break down and have trouble performing the duties it is supposed to. Here are the top five signs that you need an oil change.

Dark and Dirty Oil

  • Most people think oil is black, but clean oil is actually an amber colour. It is only after a while, when the fluid gets dirty with particles it collects from the engine, that it begins to darken. You won’t really know when the oil colour will start to change, so the best thing to do is to check the condition of your oil once a month. Here is how:
    Step 1: Remove the dipstick from your engine
    Step 2: Wipe it off and put it back in
    Step 3: Remove it again. If you can see the stick through the oil, the fluid is fine. But if the oil is thick and dark, schedule a change right away.

Oil Change/Check Engine Light

  • If the light on your dashboard is on indicating that it is time to do an oil change/there is a low level of oil in the engine, check the oil level with the dipstick. If it’s low, go for an oil change. In more serious circumstances, if your engine light is flashing due to damaged parts or engine damage because of a lack of fluid, it’s definitely time to do a service check.

Loud Engine Noises

  • Clean oil provides a thin barrier between the engine parts that protects against the metal-on-metal contact, which helps keep your engine quiet when you drive. When the fluid starts to break down, the parts don’t lubricate as well, and you will start to hear a loud engine noise. If these sounds get ignored, you will start to hear knocking and rumbling which is a major sign that your vehicle needs an immediate oil change service.

Oil Smell

  • If you start to smell oil inside the cabin of your vehicle, this means that there’s a leak or the smell is mixed with the scent of gas or exhaust fumes. This means that your vehicle is overheating, and oil is burning in the exhaust area. This can cause serious damage to your car and can pose a great fire hazard. If you smell oil inside your car, get an oil change right away.

Exhaust Smoke

  • If notice smoke being emitted from your exhaust pipe, check your oil because there could be an oil leak in your engine. That smoke can also indicate that parts of your engine are faulty, so if there is enough oil in your vehicle, make sure to take it to a service center to get diagnostics to pinpoint the problem and to fix it immediately.


Oil changes are a simple service, and one of the most beneficial things you can do for your vehicle. It helps keep your car healthy and protects it from excessive wear and tear.

If you notice any of these five signs above, then schedule an oil change today!

All credit goes to SK Automotive