Common Causes of Dirty Engine Oil

Mar 15, 2021

You may be diligent in car maintenance and that is a great way to catch any issues with your vehicle before they become big problems. One problem you may encounter is dirty engine oil.  It goes in clear and before you know it, it is dark. Let’s take a look at what causes oil to become dirty and what you need to do about it.

Why Engine Oil Gets Dirty

There are several reasons why dirty engine oil happens. Oil works hard to lubricate and keep the engine cool. The primary cause of dirty oil is ash picked up from the walls of your engine’s cylinders. Also, as oil cycles through your engine, it collects contaminants like bits of metal and carbon. The oil filter usually catches them before they can cause the engine serious harm, but it results in dirty oil and a dirty oil filter.

Signs of Dirty Engine Oil

It is normal for oil to become dirty. However, dirty, sludgy oil can damage your engine and cause it to perform less efficiently, have lower performance, and higher fuel consumptions. A trained auto technician can tell when the oil in your vehicle is dirty. But, you can also check the color of your oil for signs of a problem.

If your oil is turning a darker brown, it could be time for an oil change and new oil filter. If your oil has a milky or foamy consistency, it could be a sign of contamination from a coolant leak. Extreme oil reddening could mean there’s an automatic transmission fluid leak. These are all reasons to schedule an appointment with your mechanic as soon as possible.

Keep Your Engine Clean

Nothing is more damaging for your engine than running it with contaminated oil. We-Fix-It Auto Repair recommends an oil change every three months or 3,000 miles.  But, if you notice your oil is changing colors, it may be time to bring it in sooner! With every oil change we also do a comprehensive 32-point safety inspection, road test your vehicle, and give it a wash and vacuum for no extra charge!

Your vehicle will be running and looking better from the inside out every time you visit We-Fix-It Auto Repair. Give us a call to schedule an appointment today!

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