How Long Can A Car Go Without An Oil Change?

Oil Change Is One Of The Most Common And Regular Maintenance Of Your Car. Maybe The Important One Also. But how often do you need an oil change? 

Finding Oil Change Limitations Through The Car’s Manual Is Not A Big Deal. But A Car Can Go Much Longer Than Recommended Before The Engine Is Completely Damaged. So, how long can a car go without an oil change? 

The two questions we mentioned above are slightly different! The frequency of oil change depends on driving habits, temperature, and usage of your vehicle. So, read till the end to find out the answers. 

Why Do I Need An Oil Change? 

Engine oil can be referred to as a multi-tasking element for functioning the engine properly. It would not be an exaggeration to call it engine’s blood.

It works as a lubricant to avoid high frictions and to grind while the engine is running. As a result, the engine’s internal components remain safe from corrosion. 

The engine generates heat while burning the fuel. So the engine should be cool to perform at its best. Engine oil draws out heat instantly and keeps the engine cool. Unfortunately, during this time, the oil evaporates also—That’s why it’s essential to refill the engine with an oil change. 

Engine oil cleans the engine repeatedly. The oil draws out dust and dirt that gets in the engine. So, oil becomes sludge doing this. Sludged oil is less effective in working for the engine. That’s why it’s essential to change the oil in the recommended mile limit.

Additionally, engine oil provides internal protection to the engine. But, unfortunately, over time, it becomes less effective and sludge. So it’s become necessary to change the oil to save the engine. 

Some Hints Of A Car Engine That Need An Oil Change

Oil becomes sludge and ineffective while lubricating, cooling, and cleaning. With use less oil, your engine has to take stress to perform correctly. Then your car shows some signs that make a prophecy about oil change.  Here  we have listed some critical signs that indicate that you engine oil needed to be changed:

  • Oil Constancy And Color

Fresh engine oil is transparent, translucent, and amber in colour. Oil dries up, becomes sludge and black as it does the job. By removing the dipstick, you can see its colour and constancy. If it’s black and dense, you need an oil change. 

  • Knocking Noise Of Engine

When your engine is top off between oil changes, engine noise becomes louder because friction becomes high without lubricants. 

  • Oil Texture

As oil draws out dust and dirt, it becomes sludge over time. Then the colour and texture change. It becomes thick and dense.  

  • Ticking Sounds When Starting

As soon as the engine begins to start, oil starts circulating. The task becomes more stressful to start without enough oil. Then you may hear ticking sounds while your engine warms up.

  • Low Oil Level  

Dust and carbon from the engine make oil dense. Even overheating dries up oil also. That’s why oil levels decrease. Removing dipstick, you can check the oil level.

  • More Exhaust From Tailpipes

Generally, modern vehicles don’t release exhaust from tailpipes. If you see smoke from tailpipes, you should take it seriously. It may indicate that the motor oil has become older and ineffective. 

How Long Can You Go Without Oil Change? 

An old piece of advice for cars is to change engine oil every 3000 miles or 3 months. But the truth is with updated engine technology and synthetic oil; a car can run 5000-7000 miles between oil changes.

To keep your car performing at its best, you need to change the oil regularly. Most of the mechanics follow 3000 miles recommendations for their favourites. 

Specialists and car manuals also advise that the oil change interval should be between 3000 miles. But, again, this advice is for regular driving patterns. 

But some essential facts you should know about oil change maintenance. Many manufacturers recommend oil change twice a year. However, if your car doesn’t run often, you should change the oil every 1000 miles.

Cars that tow heavy loads or run in extreme weather need oil change earlier than the recommended limit. In this case, an oil change supports approximately 2000-2500 miles.

Vehicles that are equipped with oil life monitoring systems notify when the engine needs an oil change. This system is different in every company but tracks your mileage and driving pattern to calculate how long your car can go without an oil change. 

What Happens If You Don’t Change The Oil? 

Engine without scheduled oil change performs less than expected. As the oil lubricates eternal components of the engine and reduces frictions and grinding, these components are eroded and damaged without oil.

Running engine generates heat which is drawn out by oil. The engine gets hotter if the engine oil is not changed for a long time. It affects the engine’s performance even though it may cause engine failure.  

As time goes oil becomes sludge drawing out dust and dirt that gets in the engine. Without changing engine oil, there’s nothing to clean the engine. So It’s necessary to replace the engine or repair it if you don’t change the oil. 

Finally, changing oil at the recommended time is the condition of the car warranty. Failure to follow this condition may leave you helpless while you need maintenance via a car company. 

How Often Should You Change Your Car Oil? 

Car specialists and car manuals recommend changing oil every 3000 to 5000 miles. However, this limit may increase or decrease due to some factors such as driving pattern, weather, or vehicle usage.

Because oil becomes less effective while it’s in the engine, cars that run short trips may follow this recommendation too. 

Cars in their usual driving pattern go 3000 to 5000 miles without an oil change. On the other hand, synthetic oil may go 7000 to 10000 miles without an oil change because this type of oil is more convenient for the engine and more sustainable than usual. 

Basically, the more a car runs without an oil change, the more the engine becomes stressed. As a result, the engine needs replacement earlier than usual. 


As oil is a multitasking element of the engine, it cleans the engine, keeps it cool, and lubricates internal components. In addition, it provides the best service to the engine between 3000 to 5000 miles of driving limit. 

So Driving without oil change means taking your car engine to death. Changing oil according to car manual recommendations saves your engine from unexpected repair.

If you are not fond of sticking or gambling on your car’s engine, it’s better to follow the oil change schedule than replacing the engine. 



  • Question: When Do I Need An Oil Change? 

Answer: According to the experts and car manuals, it’s recommended to change the oil every 3000 to 5000 miles or every six months.

  • Question: What Will Happen If A Car Goes 10000 Miles Without An Oil Change? 

Answer: Most engines with updated technology and synthetic oil can run 10000 miles without an oil change. Others’ engines will collapse without an oil change in this driving range.

  • Question: Where Can I Get An Oil Change? 

Answer: An oil change is a part of regular maintenance. Every car repair shop can change the oil. 

  • Question: How Long Does An Oil Change Take?

Answer: Every oil change takes only 30 to 60 minutes to remove existing oil, change the oil filter and refill with new oil.

  • Question: How Much Does An Oil Change Cost?

Answer: It’s expected to take 30-70 dollars to change engine oil. These costs may vary depending on the type of oil and service centre.

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