Frequently Asked Questions
Engine oil serves many useful purposes. The first is that it creates a film between metal surfaces which reduces wear. The second is it acts as a rust inhibitor by neutralizing acids and by keeping additional moisture away from key engine components.
Since the combustion process required to keep your engine running causes heat, motor oil helps transport that heat away to an oil pan where it can cool before being recirculated back through the engine.
Engine oil has one more purpose and that is to clean the motor. It contains detergents that help minimize the build-up of sludge and that isolate harmful carbon particles.
Oil becomes contaminated over time, and when that happens it can break down and become ineffective. Signs of its ineffectiveness may show up in one of the ways listed above.
It's a good idea though to bring your car in for an oil change at regular intervals and before any of these signs appear.
The answer to this depends on a number of factors such as your vehicle type, the age of your vehicle and what type of driving you do. If you do a lot of city driving, where there is more stop-and-go involved, you will likely need to do it more often.
There is a general rule of thumb however, which is to change your oil every 5,000 kilometers or sooner in severe operating conditions such as lots of rush hour traffic. Speedy can help you to figure out if you should come in before or after that amount.
10W30 and 5W30 are the most common multi-grade conventional oils. The first number represents oil flow in cold temperatures with the lower number meaning it is less thick and therefore flows better. The ‘W' means it can be used in the winter and the 30 represents to how well it flows in warm temperatures.
Although 10W30 is the closest thing to one-size-fits all and is the most frequently recommended, most late model cars recommend 5W30. Be sure to check your owner's manual for what they recommend, especially if your vehicle is under warranty.
Conventional oil is basically refined crude oil which makes it suitable for vehicle engines. Additives like detergents and dispersants, rust and corrosion inhibitors and anti-wear additives are added to perform their various functions.
Synthetic oil was originally introduced to be used with high performance engines. It performs the same function as conventional oil but it is made for more extreme conditions. Synthetic oil is able to remain stable at high temperatures and fluid at low temperatures which reduces engine wear for a cleaner and more efficient engine.