California motorists encouraged to re-think oil change practices

Michael James

Should motorists change their vehicle’s oil every 3,000 miles? Not necessarily, according to the Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle).

With its “Check Your Number” campaign, CalRecyle encourages drivers to rethink their current habits and only change motor oil as needed.

“With significant advances in auto technology, it’s important for drivers to understand that changing motor oil every 3,000 miles is an old default that may not be relevant for their vehicle,” said CalRecycle Director Caroll Mortensen.

“Frequent oil changes do not necessarily mean better performance or longer engine life. By following the manufacturer’s recommendations, you will not only do right by your ride, but you’ll also benefit the environment by using fewer resources.”

A recent survey by CalRecycle indicates almost 10 million Californians change their motor oil every 3,000 miles or less. However, many cars can go farther.

For example, Toyota recommends an oil change every 5,000 miles for a 2005 Tacoma pickup, while General Motors recommends 7,500 miles for its 2007 Chevrolet Malibu.

Reduced motor oil consumption reduces the risk of environmental damage. Changing motor oil according to manufacturer specifications would reduce motor oil demand in California by approximately 10 million gallons per year.

CalRecycle suggests:

* Check Your Number: Advancements in auto technology allow many cars to travel farther than 3,000 miles before an oil change. Check your manufacturer’s recommended oil change interval or visit CheckYourNumber.org.

* Recycle Your Filter: California generates nearly 70 million used car filters, which contain about a pound of steel each and could produce enough metal to build three large stadiums. You hear that Los Angeles? Visit: Used Oil Filters.

For more information, visit: www.calrecycle.ca.gov.

Article Last Updated: February 10, 2024.

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