Sunday, October 30, 2011

Why I Change My Own Oil

It was a beautiful autumn day in Boulder, so I took the opportunity to change the oil in my cars.   All three of them.   

Six liters of Mobil 1 Synthetic and a Mobil 1 oil filter.   Cost: $50.

Knowing it was done right?   Priceless.

A few years ago, I went to Boulder Jiffy Lube and had a horrible experience.   Click the link if you want to read the story.

After that waste of time and money, I vowed either I'd do it myself or I'd take the car to a reputable mechanic.   Most of the time, I step up to full synthetic and do it myself.   

Oh, I know it doesn't make economic sense to take time to do the work, but I get pleasure from taking care of the machinery I own.   There's just something deeply satisfying about turning a wrench.   Crawling around beneath a car also gives you an opportunity to check out the underside.   You can see if your CV boots are cracked, or notice the beginning of an oil leak.   You can ponder your suspension bushings, give your tires a good look over, and see if anything looks out of place.  It's a bonding experience, really.

I should also say there is an economic argument that makes it all worthwhile.  NOT having to drive back to the shop and talk to the manager is certainly worth something, but in all seriousness, doing your own oil change means you can step up to better quality lubricants and filters for about the same cost as having a shop put in the cheap stuff.

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