Engine oil is an amazingly under-appreciated element of a car. Many believe you can wait until this gets low to top it up, or wait for your next service. This simply isn’t the case. Once your engine oil gets low the top of the engine WILL be incurring higher wear and tear, with higher friction. I recommend never letting your oil get to the half full point, keep it topped up to minimise the wear on your motor!
This guide aims to give you a simple step by step guide to topping up your engine oil, and is based on the Peugeot 206.
Source your Engine Oil
I’ve bought mine from EuroCarParts in the past, but you can get engine oil in petrol stations, or any car parts store (e.g. Halfords). Car parts stores will be able to tell you the right oil for your vehicle, your car manual will also show this. The key details you need is the viscosity (e.g. “10W40”) and the type (e.g. “Synthetic”).
It is vital to get the correct oil for your engine. A shop may recommend a slightly different oil to the manual… this isn’t an issue, the point is that it will be similar to that recommended. I use a 10W40 Synthetic oil for my Peugeot 206. For awareness, the viscosity is the thickness of the oil, the two numbers represent the thickness of the oil at low and high temperatures.
It is generally recommended to top-up oil on a warm engine (having used the car, but having left it for 10 mins to cool a little). This said, I top-up on a cold engine sometimes, but I don’t go for a complete fill if the engine is cool, as I believe the oil may expand in a warm engine).
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