Cheap oil change? Yes .. do it yourself and save money taking care of your own maintenance. Keep checking or call and ask your local auto parts stores if there are any specials on your favorite brand oil. Even if the sale happens to be going on when your oil change isn't due yet. Buy it anyway, it may not be on sale when when it is due for the change. Save those hard earned dollars!
OK .. admittedly enough there are some of those quicky lube places that may be cheaper than buying the materials to do it yourself. Now honestly .. do you get to watch what they are putting in your Jeep? You paid for a premium brand oil but they dump some generic stuff in. Yet .. still charge you for the premium brand.
Or .. if they see a person is totally clueless or doesn't observe their actions. They simply take a few minutes to act like they are doing something. Spray some window cleaner on your dirty oil filter and wipe it down till it looks new on the outside. Yet .. still charge you for the oil change.
Please don't get me wrong. There are lots more honest shops than there are crooked. But I do know one thing for sure .. I'm not going to cheat myself! When I do my own maintenance such as an oil change. I know what I put in my engine ... I know that filter is new. I now I did the job right! That alone to me is worth paying the few extra dollars that I may have to pay over the cheap oil change places. Sorry .. peace of mind is priceless!!!
Also another thing to keep in mind. Some people may disagree with me and that's fine. I am not a fan of just dumping in whatever kind of oil is cheap at the moment. Oil is not just oil. There are different formulations between different brands. When you go mixing different brands it can cause the oil to break down faster. Sludge contamination inside the engine impeding oil flow. Many different issues can come from going to one brand/type of oil to another repeatedly. Dumping different brands of oil in for a cheap oil change may not turn out so cheap later down the road. Pick a brand and stick with it.
The next big debate .. conventional vs synthetic oil. What should you run in your Jeep?? I am no professional but I do have lots of years in building engines. Here is the practice I live by myself. This doesn't mean you have to follow it or my word is the all mighty know it all.
If the engine is old and wore out, I run conventional. If it's a new engine, I break it in on conventional oil (add ZDDP additive if it's a flat tappet cam engine). After break in, switch to fully synthetic. Why?? If an engine has lots of miles on it .. say 100,000+ and has run conventional oil all it's life. Then you switch it to fully synthetic because the fancy commercial on TV said it was the best. I've seen many times that the engine starts developing oil leaks.
Why does it develop leaks?? Simple ... As the engine gets lots of miles on it, the seals and gaskets get very fine cracks. The conventional oil, in its dirty little nature seals all these cracks and doesn't allow the oil to seep through.
When the old engine gets some super clean synthetic oil dumped in to replace the dinosaur oil, those tiny cracks get cleaned out. Guess what happens .. that super expensive synthetic oil squeezes right through creating an oil leak. Then people start blaming the expensive oil saying it's crap. Nope ... its just showing you what was already there the whole time.
Synthetic oil runs so much cleaner and is much better on the gaskets and seals. But this is only true on a new or newer engines that is in great shape to begin with. Also synthetic has a much longer performance life.
Click here is a great article about oil change myths.
Whew .. that was a bit long winded for a "cheap oil change" subject. I just wanted to give you the best information I could based on my experience.
Here I'm just going to say "consult your owners manual". Here is what I do .. this doesn't mean my actions are law or gospel. I change the oil in my Wrangler, Thunderbird and both my motorcycles every 3000 miles. They are older engines with miles and I don't run synthetic in them.
The Mustang is soon coming to life with a new engine that I built. It will come to life on conventional oil during break in. After break in, it goes to synthetic for life. Remember what I said above ... it's a new engine.
As for oil filters .. don't buy the cheapest thing on the shelf.
Remember ... oil is the blood of the engine that helps you live your day-to-day life. The filter .. filters that engine blood. What happens if you have bad blood in your body??? Enough said :-)