When it comes to cars, information gets passed around through many different channels. One way many of us learn about car ownership and maintenance stems from word-of-mouth information. Whether it’s your buddies, your family, or a passerby, it seems like everyone has an opinion.
While sharing knowledge and techniques can be a great way to learn more about car maintenance, you need to be careful. There is plenty of misinformation out there—myths that are just downright wrong. Here are a few that really grind our gears.
- Change Oil Every 3,000 Miles
You’re just wasting time and money doing this. This myth stems from something that was once true 40 years ago. Back in the day, engines and motor oil were not nearly as efficient as they are today. In reality, most engines can run perfectly fine for 10,000 miles without an oil change.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, there are those who believe cars never need an oil change. This is obviously false. Oil lubricates your engine, allowing it to run smoothly. The more you drive, the more dirt and grime gathers in it, turning the oil from a translucent brown to opaque black. The dirt and grime sticks to various parts of the engine and can cause damage. The best course of action is to change your oil at a reasonable rate—not too much, but not too little.
- Premium Fuel is Always Better
Don’t spend money on things your car doesn’t need. If your owner’s manual says regular gas is fine, then regular gas is fine. Just cars with premium-only engines see the actual “benefits” from premium fuel.
Your premium-only friends can never put regular gas in their tanks because the octane levels are too low. In other words, the fuel doesn’t burn fast or hot enough to work in their engines. Conversely, engines that only require regular gas and lower octane levels receive absolutely no benefit from premium gas. The only thing you’ll be burning is money.
- The Wider the Tire, The Better
This myth is a harder one to debunk. Unless you plan on entering your car in the Indy 500, your regular, manufacturer-recommended tires are more than fine. In general, wider tires lead to more traction. Many people translate more traction to mean safer handling. However, unless you’re trying to do improve your quarter mile time or use your car for serious hauling, a wider tire isn’t going to make much of a difference.
Another common misconception is that more traction is safer for things like rain and snow. Believe it or not, it’s just the opposite. The more surface area your tires cover, the greater the chance of your tires losing their grip and sliding or hydroplaning.
There you have them, 3 car myths you can finally put to rest. They next time you and your friends or family are hanging out in the garage, you can dazzle them with your seemingly endless automotive know-how.
You know what’s not a myth? The benefits to your engine and fuel economy when you add Additech to your next fill-up. Our fuel service system helps keep your engine clean, fends off costly repairs, and enhances the overall life of your car.
Have any other car myths you hear often? We’d love to know!