It can happen. Oil can fall victim to premature aging. Typically, this occurs with poor quality or counterfeit oils, but it may also happen when using good oil too. If the piston rings let in combustion products from the cylinder to the interior chamber of the engine, the chemical components of the fuel can react with the oil. As a result, the oil can oxidize, become too thick and no longer lubricate the engine as it should.
If, after a start-up, the oil indicator on the dashboard does not go off when it should, immediately check not only the oil level, but its condition as well for color and viscosity. If the oil is black and flows down the dipstick slowly, immediate service is critical. If the oil is not dark at all during vehicle use, then the oil is not performing its cleaning function or retaining the particles deposited on the inside surface of the engine. It’s important to remind your customers of the importance of regularly checking their oil, as it could signal the difference between a simple oil change or more costly engine repairs.
Additionally, it’s also essential to remind customers about the danger of replenishing their oil direct from the barrel at filling stations. Sediment can accumulate at the bottom of the barrel and enter the oil reservoir during fill up. When that contaminated oil is introduced in the engine, an engine overhaul may be necessary.
If the premature oil deterioration is not due to the oil itself, it may be that the wrong oil has been used for that vehicle make and model, and must be changed to the correct vehicle manufacturer specifications and by international standards.