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 All About Oil and Filter Changes

All About Oil and Filter Changes

Oil and filter changes are necessary in order to maintain your vehicle and keep it in proper working order.  There has always been a debate around how often your oil and filter should be changed, and if it’s necessary to use certain oils for your vehicle’s engine.

Unfortunately, there are a lot of consumers who are not properly equipped with the right information in order to make the best decisions for their vehicle.  At Avatar Auto Care, we want our customers to be fully knowledgeable about their vehicles, knowing exactly what should be used in their car and why. 

So, here’s everything you need to know about oil and filter changes in Vancouver.

How Often Should You Get an Oil and Filter Change

All vehicles, except fully electric vehicles require an oil and filter change. But how often to change oil filter with synthetic oil is the real question!

Routine maintenance to this part of your vehicle is mandatory and will need to be replaced more often than anything else in your vehicle.

As a general rule, we recommend getting an oil and filter change every 5,000km or 6 months, in order to keep your engine clean, running smoothly with no issues and to extend your engines lifespan.  This is of course dependant on the vehicles age, usage and the make and model. 

Engine oil is a viscose liquid, which means it’s very thick.  The longer the engine oil is used, the less viscose it becomes.  Why?  As your engine is turned on each morning, it heats up, making the oil thinner and easier to pass through the engine and its pipes.  Once the car is finished being used, the engine is turned off and the oil will cool down and return to its thick viscose state.  The constant process of heating and cooling the oil is what makes it lose its overall viscosity, and therefore eventually becomes old and not optimal for use.  Engine oil also becomes dirty over time, as air comes into the engine carrying contaminants such as pollen, dust and dirt particles, which all contaminate the oil.  Typically, the filter will be able to capture some of these pollutants, but if the filter is not changed frequently, it will only speed up the contamination process.

The major lesson consumers need to be aware of is that an oil change is a mandatory service your car. Having clean engine oil is necessary in order to prolong your engines lifespan and keep it running optimally.

Using the Right Type of Oil & Filter for Your Vehicle

There is no universal engine oil that is suitable for every car, and every manufacture requires a certain grade of oil that works optimally with their engine type.  When you first purchase your vehicle, it is extremely important to pay attention to which oil type your car’s manufacture uses. 

Here’s the different engine oil types that various car manufacturers use for their brands:

BMW – 5w30 Synthetic

Mercedes – 0w30 or 0w40 Synthetic

Honda – 0w20 Synthetic

Toyota – 0w20 Synthetic

Dodge – 5w20 Synthetic

As you can see, each manufacture uses a different type of oil, and their prices vary due to the processes it takes to manufacture the oil.  If the price of your oil is high, it does not mean that you should go for the cheaper oil on the shelf.  Making this mistake can be very damaging to your engine and will ultimately cost you more money down the road.

Why Are Oil & Filter Changes So Cheap at Other Businesses?

This is a question that we get asked a lot and it’s unfortunate but true.  Some of these businesses that offer Oil & Filter changes for $50 do not care about the type of oil they put in your car.  They simply use the cheapest oil possible (and sometimes recycled oil) in order to achieve economies of scale and service as many cars as possible at the lowest price possible.

This is incredibly wrong, because it goes against the knowledge that every car and their engine require a specific type of oil, and when you do not use this type of oil, you are potentially going to damage your engine and thus decrease its lifespan.  Again, there is no universal engine oil that is suitable for every car.

Another reason why oil & filter changes are done so cheaply is because in some instances, the filter not being changed at all!  This is done to cut costs further, making the new oil get contaminated faster as the filter is no longer able to do its job and remove contaminants from the air. 

What Issues Can Arise When You Don’t Change Your Oil & Filter On Time

When you ignore the general rule of changing your oil and filter every 5,000km, there are a variety of issues that can appear.  The issues themselves won’t happen immediately, but the increased probability of an issue arising is higher.

First your engine may have issues starting, especially in the morning when the engine is cold.  Further issues such as the engine underperforming or having no power during acceleration is possible, as there is not enough pressure building up in the engine to be able to propel the car forward.  You may also have engine stutters, sounds such as clicking, or even vibrations or shaking when you’re at idle.

Lastly and the worst possible circumstance is a dead engine, meaning it will not start, requiring you to purchase a new engine.  This is the most neglectful state and will be the costliest issue to fix.  For example, one of our customers went 10,000km over their oil & filter change due date, which had led to their engine fully dying during use.  The car is a 2018 Hyundai with only 80,000km and is requiring a new engine which is costing approximately $12,000 in overall repairs between parts and labour.  This customer has learnt the unnecessary and difficult outcome of not changing their oil and filter on a regular basis.


Changing your oil and filter every 5,000km is necessary in order to maintain the lifespan of your engine and vehicle.  The potential damage to your engine can be catastrophic if it’s not properly cared for. 

Don’t be fooled by cheap oil and filter changes.  There is a reason it’s so cheap so use caution and proper judgement when calling and asking for quotations.  Just because some automotive businesses offer these low prices, doesn’t mean that it’s the right price or products for your vehicle.

At Avatar Auto Care, we see a lot of customers who complain about poor engine performance, engine malfunction, and dead engines, and the biggest contributing factor is not changing their oil and filter on time and not using the appropriate oil for your car make and model. 

Call us today on 604-272-2771 or email us at: [email protected] to speak to us about your next oil and filter change to ensure that your car are well taken care of!