STANFORD UNIVERSITY SCHOOL OF EARTH SCIENCES - EARTH SYSTEMS PROGRAM

Sustainable Choices

Change Oil & Filters Regularly

Simplicity:
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Carbon Impact:
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Money Savings:
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Health Helper:
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Overview
Changing your oil and filters regularly will save you gas and extend the lifespan of your car. The air filter keeps the inside of the engine clean, and the oil filter sifts contaminants out of the oil to keep it cleanly flowing through the engine. The cleaner the oil, the fewer the contaminants. Both are integral working features of your car, and deserve some regular attention. They are also easy and inexpensive maintenance options.

Tips & Tricks
Change your oil and oil filter every 3,000 miles or 3 months. Newer cars may have different recommendations. For more specific information about your car, consult the manual or ask your car dealer or mechanic for details.

Check your air filter with every oil change. For more details about your car, consult the manual or ask your car dealer or mechanic.

Recycle your used oil filters. If you’re changing the filter at home, be sure to dispose of it properly. Contact your local waste management company to learn about proper oil and oil filter recycling.

Web & Print Resources
Oil and air filter care:
www.carcare.org

Find oil-recycling locations near you:
www.epa.gov

Fuel-efficient driving tips:
www.fueleconomy.gov
www.edmunds.com
www.shell.com
www.consumerenergycenter.org

Fun Facts

Replacing a clogged air filter can improve your car's gas mileage by as much as 10%.

Each year the U.S. generates 425 million used automotive oil filters containing 160,000 tons of iron units and 18 million gallons of oil.

Recycling all the filters sold annually in the U.S. would result in the recovery of about 160,000 tons of steel, or enough steel to make 16 new stadiums the size of Atlanta's Turner Stadium.