Most people possess at least limited knowledge about engine oil because of how crucial regular oil changes are to the performance of the engine in their vehicles. However, engine oil — or commonly known as motor oil — is a crucial element for not only cars, trucks and buses, but for all internal combustion engines; including motorcycles, go-karts, snowmobiles, boats, tractors, construction equipment, aircraft, generators and more. Most engine oil standards don’t break down. Instead, the oil collects dust and dirt and can be harmful to the performance of an engine if not changed properly, and at the right times.
There has been much controversy lately about engine oil, and the way used oil is disposed after a oil change. If motor oil is not disposed and recycled properly, the used oil can be very harmful to the environment. In fact, used engine oil from just one typical oil change could ruin nearly one million gallons of freshwater. When motor oil is dumped improperly, it often finds its way into bodies of water, forming a scum on the top of the water that contaminates the water by blocking sunlight and oxygen. This blockage caused by the oil can kill fish, frogs, birds, plants and other natural forms of life.
Unfortunately, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently released information that estimates nearly 200 million gallons (757,082 liters) of motor oil are dumped illegally each year. Different motor oil types exist, some can cause more harm to the environment than others, but all motor oil must be disposed of and recycled properly. Changing the engine oil without the help of a professional is only recommended if you have the experience, know about motor oil, when to change motor oil, and know how to legally and safely dispose of used motor oil. Changing your own oil can save you money each year, as many motor oil suppliers exist online that allow you to buy bulk motor oil at discounted rates.
If you do not have experience with changing motor oil, it is recommended that you visit an auto repair shop, or other oil change locations. These locations will have professionals that possess the experience and licences to properly change motor oil for all types of vehicles. They know a lot about engine oil, and which oils are best for your vehicle. Before you hire a professional to change your oil, it is a good idea to inquire about how they dispose of their oil so that your used engine oil is disposed legally, and in a manner that won’t harm the environment.