When you drive a Lexus, you don’t just expect a luxury vehicle — you expect a reliable one. If you’re experiencing issues with your car’s performance, dependability or longevity then it is possible that oil sludge accumulation may be the cause. In general, Lexus owners should be especially aware about these dangers due their high quality cars requiring extra care when servicing them so they don’t end up costing even more in repairs down road.
The build-up of sludge in an engine can cause all sorts of problems, from reduced performance to increased strain on the cooling system. In extreme cases, it can even lead to engine failure. The first indication of a problem is usually a dark, oily residue on the top of the engine, the valve cover, and the oil pan. When sludge forms, it prevents oil from properly lubricating the moving components of the engine.
When you begin to see sludge or sticky/thickened oil in your Lexus, it’s a potential oil sludge that needs to get cleaned up. It is easy to spot engine sludge. It has a thicker texture than ordinary oil and is generally found in clusters. If you suspect that your Lexus has oil sludge accumulation, you should have it checked out by an expert. An expert will be able to tell you whether or not the sludge is just old oil and if a simple oil change will suffice or if the sludge has caused more damage and needs to be cleaned out by a professional. Oil sludge can cause all sorts of problems for your Lexus including:
Because oil is a lubricant, it allows the components in the engine to operate smoothly in cooperation with one another. However, as oil is used to lubricate these parts over and over again, the heat and friction can cause it to begin to break down. Typically this is fine, as the old oil will be flushed out and replaced during an oil change, but if you neglect your maintenance, oil sludge becomes a very real possibility.
Another potential cause of engine oil sludge is using substandard oil in your Lexus. Any mechanic that is well-versed in Lexus vehicles should know which oils to recommend; using anything else can result in sludge and eventual engine damage. This is one reason it is important to rely on service technicians who know Lexus vehicles well.
Low quality fuel can also cause oil sludge, as it can damage the fuel system and suffocate the engine, making the engine work harder and damage the oil faster.
If you let your engine idle for long periods of time, that can also cause sludge in your engine oil. Of course some idling is inevitable, but repeated periods of long idling can take a toll on your engine.
The best tip on preventing oil sludge is simply staying on top of your car’s recommended maintenance, and keeping an eye out for the oil light on your dash. It can also be helpful to read your car’s user handbook so you can be aware of what types of oil you should be using in your car. Cheap oil may be easier on your bank account in the short term, but it doesn’t have the additives your engine needs to protect it, and often has higher levels of contaminants. This leads to the faster accumulation of sludge, which can cost you more money in the long run when you need repairs or have to have oil changes done more often.
Another thing you can do to help prevent oil sludge in your Lexus is to try to avoid extended idling and stop-and-go driving as much as possible.
Putting off an oil change can cause additional damage to your vehicle, leading to more costly repairs down the road. Tanner Motors in Phoenix, AZ offers convenient online scheduling for your Lexus service needs. We understand that your time is valuable, so we make it easy to get the Lexus service you need without having to work it into your busy schedule. Waiting too long for an oil change can allow oil sludge to build up in your engine, causing a variety of problems. So don’t wait – give Tanner Motors a call today or schedule your Lexus service online now.