Want to save some money on auto maintenance?
The next time you get solicited by one of those regional or national oil chains for a 3,000-mile oil change, drop it in your recycling bin. Your Chevrolet Oil Life System will tell you when it’s time.
It could be as much as four times the traditional 3,000 mile interval.
The Oil Life System, introduced in 1998, is a computer-based software algorithm that determines when to change oil based on engine operating conditions. The computer continuously monitors engine operating conditions to determine when an oil change is needed.
“Most Chevrolet customers no longer have to worry about when to change their engine oil because their vehicle will tell them when to do it,” said Matt Snider, GM’s lead engineer for the Oil Life System.
The system allows Chevrolet customers to take advantage of the numerous advancements in engine and oil technology. Mild highway driving in a warm climate could stretch the “change oil” interval to as much as 12,000 miles whereas driving short distances in a cold climate could lead to a message at 3,000 or fewer miles.
When an oil change is needed, the “change oil” message will illuminate at start up on the vehicle’s instrument panel or driver information center. An oil change should be done within 600 miles from when the message is first displayed. Immediately after the oil has been changed, the system must be reset, the process for which is explained in the vehicle owner’s manual.
Driving 15,000 miles per year, a Chevy owner could avoid two or three oil changes annually, Snider said.