Responsible auto owners recognize the importance of following the manufacturer’s recommended maintenance schedule.
Following these guidelines will help to lessen the likelihood of mechanical and electrical failures, as well as reducing the number of preventable expensive repairs. Timely tune –ups, tire rotations, and oil changes are three simple maintenance tasks that can significantly influence vehicle performance.
Most automobile manufacturers suggest changing the motor oil and filter every three to five thousand miles. This advice originates from experts who know that dirty motor oil forces the engine system to work harder causing unnecessary wear and avoidable damage. Clean oil will help keep the engine running smoothly and help extend the overall lifespan of the vehicle. Once the car has come to the end of its life, it is advisable to recycle it at an auto recycler.
Dangers of Used Motor Oil
Used motor oil is considered hazardous waste and should be disposed of properly or recycled. It should never be drained onto the ground or poured down a drain. Used oil should be captured and stored in an appropriate, leak-proof container. Containers of dirty oil should be labeled and kept out of reach from children and pets. Consumers can contact local waste disposal services or local government agencies regarding proper disposal methods, for oil and filters, and recycling options. An abundant amount of information, including many recycling locations, can be found online, as well.
Thanks to widespread media coverage and global communications via the internet, it is easy to see the devastating effects of oil spill disasters around the world. Photos and videos reveal the immediate damaging effects these tragedies have had on the environment. However, the actual severity of the long term affect on wildlife, marine life, fresh and salt water, groundwater, plant life, forestation, soil and more remains uncertain. Motor oil, antifreeze, paint, pesticides and many other commonly used consumer products are hazardous waste. If not disposed of properly, or recycled, these contaminants can enter the soil, groundwater and air eventually negatively impacting the environment.
Benefits of Recycling Motor Oil
Recycling used motor oil is a great way to make a positive contribution toward “saving the earth.” Recycled oil is cleaned, refined and processed into furnace fuel, marine fuel, lubricants, re-refined motor oil and more. Recycled oil can be used in power plants, also. In fact, it takes only two gallons of recycled oil to power an average sized home for about twenty four hours. Recycling used motor oil not only reduces the introduction of pollutants into the environment, it also conserves energy and valuable resources.
Next time an oil change is due, concerned pro-active do it yourself consumers can begin by shopping for re-refined motor oil at the auto parts store. Look for the API “donut” symbol that indicates the product has energy conserving properties, an acceptable performance level and verified viscosity. Check to be sure the label bears the API “starburst” certification mark, as well. Also, ask if the retailer participates in an oil recycling program. If so, bring the properly contained and labeled used oil back to the store for recycling. And, of course, don’t forget to dispose of the dirty oil filter according to EPA guidelines. If the local auto parts store does not stock re-refined oil or participate in recycling, a quick internet search will provide available alternatives.
Conscientious automobile owners that opt to have a professional take care of changing the oil can simply shop around for a service provider that participates in an oil recycling program. Also, ask if re-refined motor oil is an available option. Patronizing businesses that are proactively involved in environmental causes tends to encourage other businesses to become involved. Obviously, if more people and businesses become involved and take action, more progress will be made.
Climbing aboard the used motor oil recycling bandwagon may seem like a small, insignificant step on an endless journey but it really does make a difference. Picking up a discarded styrofoam cup on the side of the road makes a difference. Every effort to reduce the amount of pollutants and contaminants, including recycling used motor oil, will have a positive impact on the future of the environment and the quality of human life on this planet.