mechanic performing change oil

Reliable Automotive in San Marcos is the place for all your oil change service needs. We offer full-service oil changes performed by ASE-certified professional mechanics. 

Instead of taking your car to a quick lube shop, bring your vehicle to Reliable Automotive for a San Marcos oil change. We perform a thorough visual inspection of the entire car to identify any major safety problems.

Make An Appointment For An Oil Change in San Marcos TX Here!

Preventative Oil Changes Protect Your Car’s Engine

The engine in your vehicle is the power source. But it can’t work without the oil to make all the parts work together. And the best way to keep an engine running at peak performance is through a regular oil change schedule. 

Engine oil does all of the following to prevent engine wear:

Cools the Engine

A working engine generates heat simply by running. The oil put into an engine absorbs this heat. It then moves it to other places in the system so it doesn’t build up to dangerous levels. The oil itself accomplishes about 40 percent of the necessary cooling of the engine in this way.

Prevents Corrosion

All metal machinery is prone to rust and corrosion. Engines are no different, so motor oil is used to keep the engine as clean and corrosion-free as possible. 


Engine oil is a combination of petroleum with additives infused. This combination deposits a protective layer over all the moving engine parts to reduce friction and excessive heat.


Keeping an engine clean and in good working order is a job for both the oil and the oil filter. The contaminants that get into the engine are absorbed by the oil. The oil flows through the system, and those contaminants are blocked by the oil filter so they don’t go back into the engine. This is why the oil filter must be changed regularly, too.

Even under the best conditions, though, engine oil does break down. It becomes ineffective over time depending on the kind of oil there is in the engine. It also depends on how well the engine is being maintained. 

Continuous protection is a result of the oil and the oil filter being changed regularly. If not, the engine can overheat, pistons will stick, debris will clog the system, and the engine will eventually fail.

Oil Change Schedule

Most auto industry experts recommend an oil change every 3,000 miles (or three months, whichever comes first). It’s a safe standard to follow, so ask our San Marcos auto shop service staff to add this to your preventative maintenance visits.

Oil change frequency also depends on:

person pouring car oil in yellow can into vehicle

  • The recommendations in your owner’s manual
  • The age of your car
  • Your driving needs (towing and hauling)
  • Hot or cold climate
  • Type of oil being used
  • Your driving habits (frequent short or long trips)

Many new cars are being manufactured to require fewer oil changes at longer intervals. Discuss this with one of our oil-change specialists if you have questions. 

Benefits of Synthetic Oil

Reliable Automotive in San Marcos uses only the best synthetic oil available. This ensures you are getting the most from your oil changes. 

Synthetic oil is lab created and uses a highly controlled process according to stringent standards. It contains only the best additives and elements of oil. For this reason, synthetic oil provides the highest level of engine protection available. The result is fewer oil changes, usually between 5,000 to 7,500 miles. 

Check our latest coupons for oil change specials!

Watch For These Warning Signs That You May Need an Oil Change

Owner neglect is one of the top reasons for car problems. You can prevent many major car repairs by checking the oil in your car between regular oil changes. Make it a habit about once a month, and look for the following:

  • A low oil level when checking the oil dipstick
  • The “Check Engine” or “Oil Change Required” light illuminated on the dashboard
  • Overly thick, dark, and/or milky oil that comes out in globs
  • Unusual pinging, knocking, or ticking engine noises while the vehicle is running
  • Blue exhaust smoke coming from the tailpipe while the vehicle is running
  • Strong burning oil odor inside the vehicle

If the oil level is low, you can top it off as a temporary measure. Make sure to use the same oil as what is already in the car. Then take the car to Reliable Automotive in San Marcos to find out if there is a leak somewhere in the system.

Set an appointment at Reliable Automotive in for an oil change in San Marcos as soon as possible.

An Added-Value: Free Shuttle Service

Today is the day for your oil change, but work is busy and you have obligations to your family. Reliable Automotive makes it possible for you to get back to work while your car is being serviced. 

Request our free shuttle service when you make your appointment for an oil change. We drop you off at your destination and then pick you up when your oil change is done.

San Marcos Oil Change Service FAQs

Several factors make up the exact timeline for when you’ll need an oil change. The type of oil, vehicle, and your driving habits all impact your engine’s oil and maintenance schedule. While we typically recommend checking the owner’s manual from the manufacturer for an exact timeline, you will likely need an oil change about every 3,000 miles. The average driver will hit 3,000 miles every three months.

Maintaining a consistent oil change schedule is essential to keeping your vehicle in optimal condition. Keeping the oil in your car fresh gives your engine what it needs to run well for years.

If you are maintaining a regular oil change routine, there may not be a noticeable difference. However, if it has been a while since your last oil change, you may notice some of the following changes:

  • Better fuel efficiency: Because your engine needs clean oil to run smoothly, old oil can force the engine to work harder than it needs to. When you replace older oil with an oil change, it can help your engine work more efficiently.
  • Smoother ride: If your engine isn’t properly lubricated, it can cause a vibrating, knocking, or jostling ride. When you replace the oil, it could solve these problems and create a smoother driving experience.
  • Quieter driving: Strange noises are often a sign of bad oil. An oil change could eliminate some of the sounds coming from your engine.

Older cars and engines often need to have their oil changed more often than newer cars. Over time and use, the engine will lose its tolerance for dirty oil and engine debris. This loss of tolerance makes the engine more sensitive to smaller particles of waste in the oil, so it requires fresh oil more often than a new engine would.

Like all things in your vehicle, the engine oil has a limited lifetime. With older models, the lifespan of engine oil can be greatly reduced. While a new model can tolerate an oil change every 3,000 miles, an older car may need an oil change as often as every 1,500 to 2,000 miles.

Everyone likes to save money where they can, but your oil change shouldn’t be something you skimp on. While it’s certainly possible to change your oil yourself, it may not be as easy as you think. Many modern cars are equipped with additional systems and sensors that can complicate the oil change process. This added difficulty can often be too much for most non-mechanics to work with.

Additionally, you benefit from the expertise of a professional mechanic by letting them change your oil. A trustworthy San Marcos auto repair shop can look for any other issues you may not have noticed. It’s better to let an expert handle your auto service.

At Reliable Automotive in San Marcos, our team goes above and beyond for your oil change service. We put our customers first and offer the total package for an oil change. When you come into our San Marcos locations for an oil change, you can expect the following:

  • Up to five quarts of new oil
  • A new oil filter
  • Complete removal of the old oil and oil filter
  • Thorough inspection of multiple safety points
  • Lubrication of your vehicle’s chassis
  • Free tire rotation (upon request)
  • Expert mechanical service

If you’re looking for a new place for an oil change in San Marcos, our crew has you covered. Our full-service oil change is precisely what your car needs to keep running smoothly. Book an oil change appointment today!

If you suspect your oil level might be low or it’s been a while since your last oil change, checking for yourself is a relatively simple process. You’ll need a clean cloth and dipstick to check your oil level at home. You can do so by following these steps:

  • Turn off the engine
  • Pop open the hood and locate the dipstick
  • Remove the dipstick and wipe it clean with a rag
  • Reinsert the dipstick and remove it again
  • Check where the oil mark is on the dipstick and compare it to your oil
  • If the oil level is below the indicator on the dipstick, you need more oil

Not necessarily. Every vehicle is unique, and your car may have specific oil requirements. In general, however, most cars can be switched to a new oil during oil change services.

However, some older models of cars may only tolerate a conventional oil change. This is because the engine was designed around the only engine oil available at the time. The reverse is true of newer models. Because of advancing technology, some more modern cars only function properly with synthetic oils.

We recommend consulting your owner’s manual to learn if your vehicle has special requirements.