Maintaining the good condition of the engine and guaranteeing the proper functioning of a vehicle requires good lubrication. The oil ensures the cooling of the engine, contributes to the cleaning of the elements composing it while reducing their wear. Here are some tips to check that the level of this lubricant is correct to avoid any mechanical damage.
Why should you regularly check the oil level of your engine?
The longevity of a car goes through a optimal engine maintenance. Among the many actions to be carried out at this level is the regular checking of its oil level. This liquid and viscous material has the main role of lubricating the elements linked to the engine. It reduces the friction that causes parts to wear and heat to be produced.
In addition to lubrication, the oil also guarantees engine protection. It fights the corrosion of various metal parts. Note that due to the blow-by and the emanation of oxygen, an oxidation phenomenon occurs in the oil. Acids escape and cause significant damage when in contact with metal. Fortunately, all oils have now been formulated to combat this phenomenon.
You should also know that this lubricant plays an essential role in cleaning. As it passes through the engine, it picks up microparticles of metal caused by friction and wear, as well as traces of sludge carried into the crankcase.
How to choose the right engine oil?
Not easy indeed, especially since the choice of the right oil also affects the longevity of the engine. The first criterion to consider concerns viscosity index. On the packaging, this is in the form of numbers associated with a letter “5w40”, “10w40″… The first number indicates the fluidity of the oil when cold. When it approaches zero, it means that the product is particularly liquid. The second number shows the hot viscosity. Here, a high index is often a sign of optimal protection at high temperatures.
In principle, there are three types of oils. First we find the products 100% synthetics with an index of 5w30 and 5w40 which are aimed at recent engines with a particulate filter. They are also suitable for very stressed engines (sporty driving, frequent stops and starts, etc.). Then come the semi-synthetic oils with an index of 10w40. They are dedicated to those who adopt a normal driving style and make mixed journeys. The protection offered is correct but more or less regular emptying will have to be done. Finally, it is possible to choose the mineral oils 15w40 which are suitable for older diesel-type engines or which have a high mileage.
In choosing the best oil, the brand is also another criterion to take into account. Except that this approach can perfectly be subjective. It is best to follow the recommendations of the manufacturer. As for the price, it depends on the type of oil. But 100% synthetic products are more expensive than mineral or semi-synthetic oils.
How to check the oil level, step by step
Checking the oil level does not always require the intervention of a mechanic. It is possible to do it yourself provided you know the right techniques. In this context, the first step is to remove the dipstick and clean it with a cloth. Then put it back in its place and wait a few moments before removing it again. In principle, a “minimum” and “maximum” indication is visible on this accessory. When it is below “maximum”, it will then be necessary to add oil. Do the operation gradually until the level reaches the maximum reference bar. Be careful, do not go beyond. This done, finish by replacing the gauge.
Think about emptying!
Apart from checking, the oil should also be changed regularly. This operation depends on the type of vehicle but it is generally carried out every 15,000 or 20,000 kilometers or every year. Thanks to all these precautions, your engine will benefit from a long service life.