Car Oil Change

Car Oil Change

Motor oil is a lubricant used in internal combustion engines, which power cars, motorcycles, lawnmowers, engine-generators, and many other machines. In engines, there are parts which move against each other, and the friction wastes otherwise useful power by converting the kinetic energy to heat. It also wears away those parts, which could lead to lower efficiency and degradation of the engine. This increases fuel consumption and decreases power output and can lead to engine failure.

Lubricating oil creates a separating film between surfaces of adjacent moving parts to minimize direct contact between them, decreasing heat caused by friction and reducing wear, thus protecting the engine. In use, motor oil transfers heat through conduction as it flows through the engine. In an engine with a recirculating oil pump, this heat is transferred by means of airflow over the exterior surface of the [oil pan], airflow through an oil cooler and through oil gases evacuated by the Positive Crankcase Ventilation (PCV) system. While modern recirculating pumps are typically provided in passenger cars and other engines similar or larger in size, total loss oiling is a design option that remains popular in small and miniature engines.

In petrol (gasoline) engines, the top piston ring can expose the motor oil to temperatures of 160 °C (320 °F). In diesel engines, the top ring can expose the oil to temperatures over 315 °C (600 °F). Motor oils with higher viscosity indices thin less at these higher temperatures.

Coating metal parts with oil also keeps them from being exposed to oxygen, inhibiting oxidation at elevated operating temperatures preventing rust or corrosion. Corrosion inhibitors may also be added to the motor oil. Many motor oils also have detergents and dispersants added to help keep the engine clean and minimize oil sludge build-up. The oil is able to trap soot from combustion in itself, rather than leaving it deposited on the internal surfaces. It is a combination of this, and some singeing that turns used oil black after some running.

Rubbing of metal engine parts inevitably produces some microscopic metallic particles from the wearing of the surfaces. Such particles could circulate in the oil and grind against moving parts, causing wear. Because particles accumulate in the oil, it is typically circulated through an oil filter to remove harmful particles. An oil pump, a vane or gear pump powered by the engine, pumps the oil throughout the engine, including the oil filter. Oil filters can be a full flow or bypass type.