Q: I recently had the oil changed in my 1998 Honda Accord that has 135,000 miles on it. My mechanic recommended a high-mileage oil, which costs about $10 more per oil change. My question is, is it worth the added cost? I have religiously changed the oil and filter every 3,000 miles in this car since it was new and it burns no oil.
A: Your ’98 Accord is going to give you a lot more miles as long as you keep doing what you do. Changing the oil every 3,000 miles or every 90 days is the way to go. Further, as long as you keep to the schedule there is no need for you to change to the high-price, high-profit, high-mileage oil. The oil itself does not break down; it’s the additive package that we are dealing with for the difference. Either way, valve seals are going to wear out, gaskets are going to leak, and parts will wear down and break. But, if you keep on your schedule, you can keep using the oil you have used for the first 135,000, and you may get another 135,000 miles.
Car care tip: Many cars have what is called a cabin air filter. This filter is for the people riding in your car to help keep the car free of allergens and outside pollutants. Replacing this filter once a year should be sufficient.
Larry Rubenstein is a master technician who owns a North Shore service station. His column appears on Tuesdays. Write to Larry at the Gloucester Daily Times, c/o Auto Scanner, 36 Whittemore St., Gloucester, MA 01930, or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.