Change oil before or after absence?

If I’m going to leave for 2 months at the time I would ordinarily do lube and oil change, is it better to do before leaving or on return? (Have '93 Caddie w/ 117K, and 93 Colt w/ 67K.)

Not critical for just 2 months, but if it was me, I’d do it before. Also put the recommended amount of fuel stabilizer in the tank, drive it around to mix it up.

Two months won’t make any difference. Change the oil whenever it’s convenient.

Change Is Good!

I like to put engines on hold with nice clean oil in them. I park my lawn tractor with clean oil for the winter and park my snow blower with clean oil for the summer.

I change the oil and then warm it to operating temperature once to circulate the new oil through the bearings and run til warm to keep from adding moisture to it. Combustion produces water, like when it drips/runs from your tailpipe.

I was told by an aircraft mechanic once that if you start an engine then you had better let it reach operating temperature, especially if it is going to sit for a while.

I figure I am getting a lot of acid stuff, some moisture and a lot of stuff like ash and junk that could “settle out” right out of the engine with the old oil.

This isn’t very scientific, but that’s what I do.

Two months? Makes no difference to the car. Do it before the trip if convenient. Then there’s one less item to remind yourself for your return.

Two month is really a non-issue; many used cars sit on the dealer’s lot for longer than that! As others point out, run the engine till it is thorouhgly warmed up before you park it. A litle fuel stabilizer will do no harm either. If you are worried about the battery draining itself, buy a battery tender; it will keep the charge up.

Interesting point. I remember purchasing my 2004 Subaru WRX in June 2004 with 35 miles on it. It was made on June 2003. I changed my oil 4 months later. So basically the first oil change was done 16 months later it appears.


Hey, come on!

What do you mean “others point out, run the engine till it is thorouhgly warmed up before you park it.”

That was common sense answer that said that! Every once in awhile I come up with something.

By “others” I meant YOU, and not ME. Many threads in the past have had posters recommend driving a car till thoroughly warmed up to avoid condensation in the crankcase. I personnaly do not take credit for coming up with this.

I’m just joking with you. I didn’t invent it either. When I worked a small airport, if you started an airplane for any reason, even if it was only going to sit overnight, then you had better run it to operating temp. Therefore, we did a lot of pushing and pulling with tow bars!

it does not really make much difference. but i would do it when you get back because then you have the 3 mounths or 3000 miles of use. they say 3 mounth because there are chemicals that are in the oil that will brake down so you want get that 100% oily good ness.

Contaminated oil contains an acid which can etch bearings. I always change the oil of my lawnmower before I put it away in winter storage. 2 months should be insignificant though. I really wouldn’t worry about it. But if you get delayed and can’t make it back for 6-7 months…it might be worth thinking about getting it changed now. Why take the chance.

theres no point in changing it until you come back,as the majority of the oil will drain down into the oil pan.when you return change it asap and you can then drive it without worrying for 5000 miles,just to let you know some manufacturers here in england recommend 20,000 mile /or 2 years for thier oil change intervals!!which is too many miles in my opinion,i only drive my ford 3,000 miles a year and change mine yearly.most people over here reckon that 100,000 miles is “high mileage” and wont buy a car with this mileage unless its very cheap,but ive noticed in the usa,that 100,000 miles is nothing for you guys!! and even 200,000 plus miles is not unheard of!(must be all those oil changes you guys do hey???)