On Fri, 2 Sep 2011 23:13:04 +0000 (UTC), Jules Richardson
The "formulation of the oil" is NOT the same.
Emission standards are NOT the same.
And even if you have a VW, BMW or Mercedes here in the U.S.
a European spec (ACEA) oil will probably be recommended.
And most likely synthetic.
It's not like a Chevy or Toyota owner just grabbing the recommended
weight of the cheapest API spec brand.
So surely you're not Shirley.
On Fri, 2 Sep 2011 14:46:41 +0000 (UTC), Jules Richardson
The main reason oil change intervals are longer in Europe is the OEM's
take part in oil "design." Of course longer changes is a marketing
I have no idea how long European engines last compared to this market.
No idea how much repair work is done there versus here due to
All I know (unless I want to argue) is I change oil at 3-4000 miles
and don't have lube related issues.
The cost of doing that is a drop in the bucket of car ownership costs.
All my recent cars got close to 200k miles before rust made them junk.
No lube issues at all.
I don't have a problem with people doing extended changes.
But it's really unwise to tell folks to do extended oil changes when
you don't know what the results of that will be for them.
You won't find conclusive scientific testing anywhere that supports
long duration oil changes. It's all marketing.
Anecdotally, for instance Toyota engine sludging, the evidence
supports 3-5000 mile oil changes.
Just as it is financial interest the overriding reason the oil change places
slap that 3000 mile sticker on the windshield. They don't care how you
drive, they just want the money. Best to read the manual, assess your
driving conditions and make an informed decision.
As for cost, I drive 25000 miles a year and get maybe 4 changes versus 8 at
I was talking about people here flatly saying that it's okay to do
6-8000 mile oil changes without knowing the driving circumstances.
I change my own oil and jot down miles.
When my work schedule had me at the lube places their stickers worked
for me. Nobody is forced to follow their schedule.
Extended oil changes are a marketing tool as much as 3000 mile
It's not unusual to see people plunking down +$30 for a car, including
$thousands for a trim package, then crowing about how they only have
to change the oil every 10k miles for a huge savings of what - 30-80
bucks a year?
And some cars are now requiring synthetic.
In some of their cars Toyota requires synthetic and still wants 5000
mile oil changes!
My car is driven 12 miles round trip a day, 5 days a week for
That's 3120 miles a year, max speed is 40, mostly 35, all stop and go.
Average about another 25 per weekend for shopping and visits.
1300 miles a year, 90% max speed is 40, mostly 35, all stop and go.
Once a year I put on about 2500 highway miles on vacation.
At my destination I drive about another 200, stop and go.
This year I'll add a 1000 mile trip for a wedding to that.
That's a bit over 8000 miles this year.
This car is a 1997 Lumina with a 3.1 and 160k miles on it.
I agree about reading the manual.
Mine says that this qualifies for the short trip schedule.
"Most trips are less than 5 to 10 miles (8 to 16 km).
This is particularly important when outside
temperatures are below freezing."
I live north of Chicago and we have freezing winters.
"Every 3,000 Miles (5 000 km): Engine Oil and Filter
Change (or 3 months, whichever occurs first)."
So I'm following the manual pretty close.
I change more like every 4 months.
BTW, for mostly highway driving the manual recommends the 7500 mile
changes you do.
So that's at least 15 years GM has been recommending this.
My next car will probably be a Chevy or Buick with the oil sensor and
no schedule. It'll be interesting to see how that works.
All my cars for the last 20 years or so went over 200,000 miles with
6000 mile oil change intervals. My 78 Chevy pickup with original 350
small block V8 was around 270,000 when I finally got rid of it, and
the engine still ran fine. Current 96 Jeep Cherokee has 166,000.
When the game is over, the pawn and the king are returned to the same box.
Larry Wasserman - Baltimore Maryland - lwasserm(a)sdf. lonestar.org
And while you're at it, don't forget to change the air in the tires. You
SHOULD change the air in your tires every 3,000 miles, unless you live in
the inner city, where there is pollution, and then 1,500 is advised. In
some metropolises, daily changes are suggested.
My last car was a 2004 Toyota Camry. After the warranty expired, I
changed the oil every 12 to 15 thousand miles. I drove the hell out of
that thing and had over 180k on it when I got rid of it and never had
any problems except replacing a windshield wiper motor. It even had
the original brakes on it.
The car I had before that was a 1998 Subaru Forrester. Same oil change
habits and bad driving habits with that one but I traded it in after
160k miles. I did have to get the timing chain idler pulley replaced
once on that one tho. That one still had the original rear brakes when
I got rid of it. I must not stop or slow down much. :)
I hope I have similar luck with this 2009 Matrix I'm driving now.
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