It seems like every payment you make these days also come with tipping. When bringing your vehicle in for a routine oil change, you may be wondering if you also have to tip for that service, too. So the question arises: Do you tip for an oil change? The answer is it depends. Most of the time, you do not have to tip the mechanic for performing an oil change, because they have an hourly wage.

Read on to learn more about the occasions where you might tip a mechanic for performing an oil change and how much that tip should be.

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Should You Tip For an Oil Change?

The short answer? No. Mechanics do not have to be tipped, because they are working for an hourly wage. Even if they ask for a tip, you can refuse.

Still, whether or not to tip for an oil change is ultimately up to your personal preference. But in general, it is not necessary or expected to tip for this type of service. Oil changes are typically considered a basic and routine maintenance task, and the cost of the service is usually clearly stated upfront. Tipping is usually applicable to the service industry, including wait staff, hairdressers, and those gig workers delivering your grub.

When Should You Tip For an Oil Change?

Tipping for an oil change at Jiffy Lube, for example, is not customary or expected. That said, if you feel that the service provided was exceptional, or if the staff went above and beyond to ensure your satisfaction, you may choose to leave a tip as a gesture of appreciation.

You can also tip if you always go to the same place and have the same technician working on your car. For the mechanic, this cements that you appreciate their time, effort, and the rapport they have built with you.

How Much of a Tip to Give Your Mechanic

Here is a scale most people go by:

  • $5 – For a standard job; a thank you
  • $5 – Tipping the entire crew for the holidays
  • $10-$15 – Long-term relationship where you trust the mechanic
  • $20-30 – A generous tip for an outstanding job

Besides, it pays to be known as the “tipping customer” at an auto service center or lube shop.

When Not to Tip For an Oil Change

Although you can decide for yourself when to tip a mechanic, there are certain instances when you absolutely do not have to do so. The following instances are when you should not tip for an oil change:

  • You do not have extra money. You have already covered the cost of an oil change. There is no reason to burden yourself to tip someone in a place where it is not expected.
  • The mechanic did not behave professionally. Rude, impolite behavior, as well as a lack of communication and transparency, should be frowned upon. As such, this person does not deserve a tip.
  • There is a no-tipping policy. If this policy exists, do not try to tip your mechanic. They could get in trouble if they accept.
  • The mechanic is also the business owner. They are making money on every single job that comes in rather than hourly pay. Since an oil change does not take long, tip the person making the hourly wage, not the owner.
  • The service did not meet your expectations or you were left unsatisfied in some way. Did the mechanic make a mess under the hood? Did they forget to change your oil? Always make sure the job you asked to have done was done thoroughly before leaving the lot or considering giving the staff a tip.

Final Thoughts on Tipping for an Oil Change

Though it is not necessary to tip for an oil change, a tip could always make your mechanic’s day, especially when they go above and beyond your expectations. Most of the time, a $5-$15 tip is more than enough to express your gratitude, but when the service center is outstanding, giving up to $30 isn’t out of the question.

Categories: Oil Guides

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