January 31, 2020
It is often said that the engine is the heart of the car and the oil is its lifeblood. Much like us – our cars need extra care and maintenance to get through the cold season healthy and happy.
THE BEST COLD REMEDY FOR VEHICLES: AN OIL CHANGE
To keep your car in tip-top shape during winter, the best cold ‘remedy’ for your vehicle is an oil change. Cold temperatures can cause your oil to flow slowly or not at all – which puts a lot of stress on your engine. After a while, your vehicle's motor can start to have problems.
HOW TO KNOW WHICH OIL TO USE
Oil is measured by its viscosity (how thick or thin it is). The higher its viscosity, the slower oil flows. Because oil viscosity changes with temperature, different types of oil were developed so your car can continue to run smoothly, no matter what the temperature is. If you look at an oil bottle, they all have a grade rating. The number before the W describes the viscosity of the oil at low temperatures. The lower this number is, the thinner the oil, and the better the oil performs at cold temperatures. The number after the W describes how thick the oil is at the engine’s normal operating temps.
Multigrade oils like SAE 5W-30 and 10W-40 are commonly used because they tend to do well in moderate temperatures. They’re thin enough to flow at low temperatures but still thick enough to perform well at high temperatures.
Don't forget to consult your vehicle's user manual to see what they recommend for your car, and to see whether your car should use regular or synthetic oil.
THE EFFECTS OF COLD WEATHER ON OIL FILTERS
While the lifeblood of the engine is essential, people are surprised to learn that cold weather also affects your oil filter as well. Oil is there to provide protection and lubrication to the inner workings of the engine but if the viscosity of your oil is too thick and you start up the car, your engine forces cold, viscous oil through the filter, triggering pressure to build. The sealing rings, split clamp, and canister can become damaged in the process.
To prevent this from happening, select a high-quality oil filter that can handle high pressure without losing efficiency and change them out when recommended.
Treat your car to a health checkup and get your oil and filter changed; this will help keep your vehicle running smoothly through the winter months.