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(Edmunds)   American automotive service industry: You should definitely change your oil every 3000 miles. American automotive consumers: Uh ... nice try   (edmunds.com) divider line 129
    More: Unlikely, Americans, Honda Fit, loan servicing, Jiffy Lube, design engineer, waste management, american car, window stickers  
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7082 clicks; posted to Business » on 27 Jan 2013 at 8:43 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-01-27 01:02:14 PM
going on 16,000 since i put in a 10k filter, lucas oil stabilizer, and 5w-20 synthetic. Added a quart a week ago just to get through the coldest weather. My car has 264k and counting, not even an engine knock. The oil stabilizer is the shiat. $11 well spent ($40 or so doing my own oil changes.)

/Usually, I shoot for every 10k to 12.5k, just too damned cold and I'm lazy.
//Drives 30k anually, usually highway mileage
 
2013-01-27 01:06:47 PM

offmymeds: Bigger Leftist Intarweb Schlong: I go whenever the sticker on my windshield tells me to go. They also check and change all the other assorted engine fluids. Last time they replaced one of my taillights for me that I didn't realize was out, free of charge.

I love my mechanic.

This.

We've been taking our vehicles to the same mechanic now since '99. Honest and reliable. That's hard to find anymore.


Can I say this. I don't think it is that hard to find great mechanics. Every town I have lived in for the last 30 years or so, I have been able to find smart, reliable, honest mechanics. I think that shady mechanic fear is over blown.
Except Jiffy Lube, fark those guys, not that they are mechanics, just fark those guys.
 
2013-01-27 01:09:43 PM
I don't have to change my oil ever. My car burns enough that the oil inside it almost all "new" all the time, since I'm adding a half quart every 200 miles or so.
 
2013-01-27 01:21:09 PM
Huh? When I bought my car last year they told me it would be at least 8000 km before it needed an oil change (5000 miles for those of you using obsolete measurement systems).
 
2013-01-27 01:31:36 PM
I take my car to the dealership every 5k miles for service. They do a bunch of crap to it, I don't know what. I pay them and I go home

I am not a car person
 
2013-01-27 01:38:34 PM

studs up: offmymeds: Bigger Leftist Intarweb Schlong: I go whenever the sticker on my windshield tells me to go. They also check and change all the other assorted engine fluids. Last time they replaced one of my taillights for me that I didn't realize was out, free of charge.

I love my mechanic.

This.

We've been taking our vehicles to the same mechanic now since '99. Honest and reliable. That's hard to find anymore.

Can I say this. I don't think it is that hard to find great mechanics. Every town I have lived in for the last 30 years or so, I have been able to find smart, reliable, honest mechanics. I think that shady mechanic fear is over blown.
Except Jiffy Lube, fark those guys, not that they are mechanics, just fark those guys.


Yep. I gotta agree with you on that one. Fark Jiffy Lube.
 
2013-01-27 01:38:48 PM
I change the oil and filter once a year in my 2002 Golf TDi. It's at 206,xxx miles now and still getting 50 mpg while charging up and down the Left Coast at 80 mph. Sooo...that's about 20,000 miles per oil change.

/uses cheap WalMart Delo 400 diesel motor oil
 
NFA [TotalFark]
2013-01-27 01:54:24 PM
I work with a number of PhD mechanical engineers.  One of which worked for Ford developing engine control systems for the Triton engine line.  He claims that it is a well known fact among auto design engineers that many of the claims made by the synthetic oil industry are false.  He said that there are research papers published showing that synthetic oil increases engine wear in cars driven in stop and go traffic but reduces engine wear when driven at highway speeds.  He said he personally does not use any synthetic oils but uses standard mineral oils changed at 3000 mile intervals.  He said if he does a lot of stop and go driving in unusually hot temperatures, he changes the oil more frequently.

I've read the research papers but to be honest I couldn't make heads of tails of them they're written at a level beyond my engineering knowledge and comprehension.

I've also spoken with Harley Davidson mechanics who have been wrenching for 30 or more years.  They claim they see a higher rate of spun bearings in engines which use synthetic oil.

I had a Jeep Wrangler which from the first oil change to the last, I used Mobil 1 synthetic oil.  I babied that vehicle, never drove it hard and changed the oil myself religiously at 3000 miles.  At 135,000 miles the engine stopped pumping oil the the cylinder head and spun a cam bearing.  This happened in the 258 cubic inch inline 6 engine which is known to be virtually indestructible.
 
2013-01-27 02:11:54 PM

WhackingDay: Jetta TDI. I get the oil changed every 10k.

But I think VW recommends synthetic, so that generally lasts longer anyway.


The new clean diesels are quite specific about which oil you can use, because ones that don't meet the spec can create residue which will clog the particulate filter on the exhaust.
 
2013-01-27 02:37:39 PM

Dear Jerk: Changing oil or plugging a flat are two things you should know how to do yourself, or sleep with a guy who does.*

*disclaimer: I will consider trading light automotive work for sex.


plugs are a temporary fix and not designed to continually run and I believe in some states illegal.

why is it that customer's expect auto techs and shop owners not to make a profit. Amazing how many people except a shop to install a battery for free and when the customer decides not to pay the $10 to have it install, wants to borrow some tools off the tech to do it himself in the parking lot.

You walk into a shop and an experience mechanic might have close to $30,000-$50,000 in tools including the box. Why should he work for free.
 
2013-01-27 02:46:35 PM
I change the oil every 3 months in my 2004 Toyota Matrix.  That works out to be anything between 4000 and 6500 miles.

I'm almost at 199K and the only major thing I've had to replace is the catalytic converter.  Best damn care I've
ever owned.
 
2013-01-27 02:48:07 PM
I worry about brakes because I let them go once and ended up rear ending a Ford Escort hatchback. That hatchback was very expensive, and wow it took years to pay it off.
Anyway, this article is saying that the brake fluid needs to be replaced and/or flushed every two years. I claim it's BS. What do you say?
Link
 
2013-01-27 03:07:31 PM
I change my oil once a year. Seems to work for me, since I rarely drive more than 5k miles a year.
 
2013-01-27 03:21:28 PM
I remember having to get oil changes, along with other periodic & regular maintenance, like coolant changes, transmission fluid, differential oil, etc . . . Then I bought an electric car:
sphotos-a.xx.fbcdn.net
 
2013-01-27 03:40:52 PM

MrSteve007: I remember having to get oil changes, along with other periodic & regular maintenance, like coolant changes, transmission fluid, differential oil, etc . . . Then I bought an electric car:


Not sure if troll or just stupid. You realize you still have a transmission, right? And that that transmission still requires transmission fluid to function properly? Oh, and that nice fancy battery powering it? Yeah, have fun buying a new one of those when your current one fails. And differential oil? Please. There's a reason differential cases are sealed and don't have drain plugs: unless there is a mechanical failure like a gear breaking or a bearing going out, there is no need to ever open them. And if you think that electric vehicles are immune from mechanical failure, then you are a naive idiot.
 
2013-01-27 03:59:14 PM

MrSteve007: I remember having to get oil changes, along with other periodic & regular maintenance, like coolant changes, transmission fluid, differential oil, etc . . . Then I bought an electric car:
[sphotos-a.xx.fbcdn.net image 717x538]


Here's my honest question: What's the recharge time, and how easy is it to find a recharging spot? Because that's my big problem with getting a fully electric car at this point in time.

I recently moved 3000 miles across the country, and every 400 miles or so, I'd fill up 3/4 of a tank, and it would take 15 minutes. But in an electric car, I could not have done that at all because it would have taken hours to recharge the battery. Or my current plan to take a weekend and jump down to LA for the lols because it's only about 5 hours from my current position. (Mostly for Magic Mountain, home of the most roller coasters in any one spot in the country that I've been wanting to go to for half my life since I learned it existed).

As an everyday driver with a 4 mile commute, it'd be totally fine if I had a charging spot (which since this is Mountain View, I might soon). As a everyday driver, plus occasional "driving hundreds of miles today for lols" vehicle, it kinda sucks.
 
2013-01-27 04:22:10 PM

grinding_journalist: I don't have to change my oil ever. My car burns enough that the oil inside it almost all "new" all the time, since I'm adding a half quart every 200 miles or so.


You still need to change the filter, that's the weak point.
 
2013-01-27 04:27:19 PM
With the price of oil these days, you should probably lock your car's oil plug in case someone comes by to steal your oil overnight.
 
zez
2013-01-27 04:28:49 PM
I change the oil in my cars twice a year, when I change the clocks.
 
2013-01-27 04:36:54 PM

limeyfellow: Lsherm: My car has been 7500 since new, and the service manual doesn't indicate that the interval should change over the life of the car.  I'm just getting to 150,000 miles, so I've been doing it every 5K just to be safe, but I could probably still get away with every 7500.  I've been meaning to try synthetic, but the local oil change shops charge a goddamn fortune for it and I'll have to do it myself for it to make any economic sense.

You don't change your own oil? I didn't think such people existed.


Why would you change your own oil? I get my changes for $20, by the time I have to go to the store and buy oil and a filter, and lug used oil back, I save no money by doing it myself.
 
2013-01-27 04:51:37 PM

StrangeQ: MrSteve007: I remember having to get oil changes, along with other periodic & regular maintenance, like coolant changes, transmission fluid, differential oil, etc . . . Then I bought an electric car:

Not sure if troll or just stupid. You realize you still have a transmission, right? And that that transmission still requires transmission fluid to function properly? Oh, and that nice fancy battery powering it? Yeah, have fun buying a new one of those when your current one fails. And differential oil? Please. There's a reason differential cases are sealed and don't have drain plugs: unless there is a mechanical failure like a gear breaking or a bearing going out, there is no need to ever open them. And if you think that electric vehicles are immune from mechanical failure, then you are a naive idiot.


Heh, you're calling me stupid? The Nissan Leaf doesn't have a transmission. It's direct drive electric with a single speed reduction gear. Link The service schedule is about 2 pages, 99% of which is simply reminders to rotate tires. Link

The battery warranty is for 5 years, and covers reduction of batt capacity. Even Nissan says you won't have to replace the entire battery, just failed modules in the battery. The cost? A couple hundred bucks. Link

On my 05 Toyota Tacoma, there's a front diff and rear diff (with electric diff lock), along with transfer case. Depending service duty, these require fluid changes every 30k or 45k miles. There certainly are drain plugs on them.
www.4x4wire.com
/4runners and Tacoma's have the same drivetrain.

You're wrong about the transmission, you're wrong about the battery, and you're wrong about standard vehicle differentials. Actually, nothing you said was correct.
 
2013-01-27 04:54:22 PM

lc6529: I've always change at 5K because it is easy to remember, - 10K, 15K, 20K, etc...

I used to always change my own oil but with the price of oil and the hassle of having to drive a sloshing container of oil to the recycling center, I found I am only saving about $20 from having the local Toyota dealer change it so I let them do it.


I do it myself, but not to save money, I do it to make sure that it gets done correctly. When you turn your car over to the stealership, how do you know they're even changing the oil? Do you check the dipstick each time? How do you know they're using the brand/type of oil you want? How do you know they tightened the oil drain plug to the correct torque and didn't cross-thread it or something?
 
2013-01-27 04:57:14 PM

Dear Jerk: Changing oil or plugging a flat are two things you should know how to do yourself, or sleep with a guy who does.*

*disclaimer: I will consider trading light automotive work for sex.


By the way, does that work??
 
2013-01-27 05:13:41 PM

Lsherm: My car has been 7500 since new, and the service manual doesn't indicate that the interval should change over the life of the car.  I'm just getting to 150,000 miles, so I've been doing it every 5K just to be safe, but I could probably still get away with every 7500.  I've been meaning to try synthetic, but the local oil change shops charge a goddamn fortune for it and I'll have to do it myself for it to make any economic sense.


My car (a 2004 model) was one of the last that carried the 3000 mile interval. The cars introduced in the following years that used exactly the same engine raised it to 5000 miles.

Ive used synthetic oil since new and changed it between 4k and 5k. It has 161k and counting, burns/leaks no oil at all and runs great. Of course I attribute that as much to the synthetic oil as to the change interval.

It should also be noted that regular changes are as important as the actual mileage in between. Also, always make sure the filter is changed as well.
 
2013-01-27 05:14:29 PM

MrSteve007: StrangeQ: MrSteve007: I remember having to get oil changes, along with other periodic & regular maintenance, like coolant changes, transmission fluid, differential oil, etc . . . Then I bought an electric car:

Not sure if troll or just stupid. You realize you still have a transmission, right? And that that transmission still requires transmission fluid to function properly? Oh, and that nice fancy battery powering it? Yeah, have fun buying a new one of those when your current one fails. And differential oil? Please. There's a reason differential cases are sealed and don't have drain plugs: unless there is a mechanical failure like a gear breaking or a bearing going out, there is no need to ever open them. And if you think that electric vehicles are immune from mechanical failure, then you are a naive idiot.

Heh, you're calling me stupid? The Nissan Leaf doesn't have a transmission. It's direct drive electric with a single speed reduction gear. Link The service schedule is about 2 pages, 99% of which is simply reminders to rotate tires. Link

The battery warranty is for 5 years, and covers reduction of batt capacity. Even Nissan says you won't have to replace the entire battery, just failed modules in the battery. The cost? A couple hundred bucks. Link

On my 05 Toyota Tacoma, there's a front diff and rear diff (with electric diff lock), along with transfer case. Depending service duty, these require fluid changes every 30k or 45k miles. There certainly are drain plugs on them.
[www.4x4wire.com image 640x480]
/4runners and Tacoma's have the same drivetrain.

You're wrong about the transmission, you're wrong about the battery, and you're wrong about standard vehicle differentials. Actually, nothing you said was correct.


If you ever decide to change the differential fluid yourself, be sure to remove the fill plug first, before you remove the drain plug. That way if the fill plug is stuck or frozen, you can still drive it somewhere to fix it while you still have fluid in the differential.
 
2013-01-27 05:21:18 PM

beer4breakfast: Mister Peejay: On the other hand, changing the timing chains and guides at 60k because of lack of maintenance is very profitable.

You don't need to change a timing chain. A timing belt, yes, but only every 120K miles or so.



You do when you don't change your oil often enough.

Sound familiar, ECOTEC owners?
 
2013-01-27 05:23:20 PM
I change my oil every six months, even though I only put 1500-2000 miles on it in that amount of time.

Ishkur: "I see you're using the wrong type of anti-freeze for this type of radiator. Would you like us to...."
"Nothing wrong with the anti-freeze. Just the oil please."


The last time I went to Jiffy Lube, the mechanic was suggesting I replace my radiator cap since it was getting old and might not hold pressure well (on a 3-year-old car). I declined and went on my way. A few days latter, I hear my engine making a funny noise, which upon opening my hood turned out to be coolant boiling out of my radiator, since the mechanic had left the cap sitting next to the radiator instead of putting it back on.
 
2013-01-27 05:24:08 PM
Steve Mazor, manager of American Automobile Association's Research Center, said that more-frequent-than-necessary oil changes will not "gain any additional life for your engine or any improved fuel economy." He added, "In reality it will make little or no difference to the performance of the vehicle."

Sounds like you've bought into one of the logical fallacies discussed in the article...


The importance of oil changes to the life of your engine probably has something to do with the year it was made and the conditions you drive it under. I change my oil every 3K miles. I do it because the car is 23 years old and back in 1990, vehicles needed it changed that often. The fact that it is now 2013 doesn't make my car need oil changes less often. I also change it every 3K miles as that is twice a year. We have ~140 degree temperature difference between the coldest night in winter to the warmest day in summer. I have them put the thin winter oil in in the fall change and the thicker summer oil in in the spring change. Simply changing the oil may not extend the life, but having winter weight oil in means that at -40 (as it is today) that oil will get to the engine rather than sitting in the pan like peanut brittle, and THAT extends the life of your vehicle.

TL:DR - frequency of oil changes depends on the car and conditions.
 
2013-01-27 05:27:38 PM
My van has a monitoring system and I typically go 14-16K miles between changes. The stealership told me "We ignore the computer. You should change the oil every 3000 miles."
 
2013-01-27 05:30:34 PM
I just replace the dipstick when the oil on it is black.

/kidding. I check my oil, never gets low, but I change it when it feels like oiled sand, which comes to about every 9000 miles.
 
2013-01-27 06:03:35 PM

limeyfellow: You don't change your own oil? I didn't think such people existed.


Last I checked oil was about $5-$6 per quart and the filter runs another $8-$10 so even if you catch a good sale we're talking $35 minimum.

Trip to the parts store. (Time and gas)
Jack up my car, crawl under and drain oil and replace filter.
Let the car down off jack and replace oil.
Clean up the oil that inevitably spills on floor/driveway.
Drive across town to the place that recycles oil. (More time and gas)
All said about 3-4 hours out of my day.

-OR-

Drive to the oil change place.
Enjoy free coffee and doughnuts while I get my oil changed, all fluids topped off, tire pressure checked, interior vacuumed, windows cleaned and 30 minutes later I'm driving away. All that for $45.

You go on with you bad self and change your own oil, I have better things to do with my time.
 
2013-01-27 06:28:42 PM
MityVac and a cartridge filter on top of the engine make it easy. Enjoy a beverage while it works and don't get dirty.
 
2013-01-27 06:45:12 PM

meyerkev: Here's my honest question: What's the recharge time, and how easy is it to find a recharging spot? Because that's my big problem with getting a fully electric car at this point in time.

I recently moved 3000 miles across the country, and every 400 miles or so, I'd fill up 3/4 of a tank, and it would take 15 minutes. But in an electric car, I could not have done that at all because it would have taken hours to recharge the battery. Or my current plan to take a weekend and jump down to LA for the lols because it's only about 5 hours from my current position. (Mostly for Magic Mountain, home of the most roller coasters in any one spot in the country that I've been wanting to go to for half my life since I learned it existed).

As an everyday driver with a 4 mile commute, it'd be totally fine if I had a charging spot (which since this is Mountain View, I might soon). As a everyday driver, plus occasional "driving hundreds of miles today for lols" vehicle, it kinda sucks.


Recharging works like this:
Standard 110v wall plug: 4 miles, per hour of charging
220v dedicated charge point: 20 miles, per hour of charging
480v "fast" charger: 80 miles on 25 minutes

I have a 65 mile round trip commute a day. With the 110v "trickle" charger, I charge at home at night, and I charge at work from an outlet in a light pole. The nav system gives you local 220v charge points, updating daily. If you go beyond the range of the nearest charge point, it'll warn you.

There are plenty of points available, here's a single company's public charging points. Link
I agree, it isn't a good road tripping vehicle, but with the crazy low operating cost, it's cheaper to have an electric car and rent a combustion car for your semi annual road trips. Unless you drive well over 15k miles a year, electric cars work fine for 90% of drivers.
 
2013-01-27 06:51:29 PM

Omnivorous: I offered to bring a new car in early for the first oil change. The Ford dealer's service supervisor said, "Don't bother: wait for the notification light because they put in a special blend for the early life of the engine." The Ford notification system comes on at 95% of oil life.


Ditto. My 2012 F150 has an adaptive oil life monitor system. It adjusts the oil life based on my driving habits and Ford's paying for my oil changes anyway for the life of the vehicle so this is their problem not mine.
 
2013-01-27 07:03:34 PM
"As a result, even the most cautious owners are dumping their engine oil twice as often as their service manuals recommend."

Diagram this sentence. FFS, even colloquialisms require

ReapTheChaos: limeyfellow: You don't change your own oil? I didn't think such people existed.

Last I checked oil was about $5-$6 per quart and the filter runs another $8-$10 so even if you catch a good sale we're talking $35 minimum.

Trip to the parts store. (Time and gas)
Jack up my car, crawl under and drain oil and replace filter.
Let the car down off jack and replace oil.
Clean up the oil that inevitably spills on floor/driveway.
Drive across town to the place that recycles oil. (More time and gas)
All said about 3-4 hours out of my day.

-OR-

Drive to the oil change place.
Enjoy free coffee and doughnuts while I get my oil changed, all fluids topped off, tire pressure checked, interior vacuumed, windows cleaned and 30 minutes later I'm driving away. All that for $45.

You go on with you bad self and change your own oil, I have better things to do with my time.



Every parts store runs a rotating sale on synthetic oil. I get the absolute best oil (which has properties *far* exceeding regular oil) with the best filter for almost exactly $35, now that ya mention it.

Plan your week and drop in while on the way somewhere--where the f do you live that doesn't have a parts store every mile?

Change oil in 45 minutes the first time, 30 minutes the next, and on and on until it takes you so little time you didn't even take a sip of beer before you're done and take extra time because "it just can't be that easy".

Your drain plug is not stripped or loose, same for the oil filter. They didn't cover your air filter with soot and try to up-sell you. You now have synthetic oil, increasing the drivability of any car because it smooths the power band rather than increases it. Oh yeah, and bare minimum 15k-mile oil changes with synthetic unless you race the motor like crazy.

You're lazy. Wait, this is Fark: You sound fat.

/actually your way is just as valid, but inferior unless you pay a much bigger premium than your $10 for basic service.
 
2013-01-27 07:05:08 PM

mr_a: To be honest, I always though the purpose of changing oil was more to remove contaminants and metal shavings than because the oil lost lubricating ability.


You only get that the first oil change or . . . ummm . . . the last. :)
 
2013-01-27 07:38:00 PM
The reason you get a list of things that need to be done when you take your car in for an oil change is because that's what we're told to do, and there's also lists of services put out based on the mileage of your car. It's not always about the money, some things we might inform a customer of so they don't come back complaining that no one ever told them their power steering fluid was unusually dirty/low or they've got rodents getting into their air filter box.
 
2013-01-27 07:43:11 PM
stiletto_the_wise

Dear Jerk: ...*disclaimer: I will consider trading light automotive work for sex.

By the way, does that work??

It makes negotiations easier on both sides. A typical guy would be happy to trade out a little mechanical labor.
 
2013-01-27 08:47:13 PM

brukmann: Every parts store runs a rotating sale on synthetic oil. I get the absolute best oil (which has properties *far* exceeding regular oil) with the best filter for almost exactly $35, now that ya mention it.


And my Jeep dealer will do the oil change for well under $35. Last time it was buy three for something like $25 each and get a fourth free.

Seeing as how my Jeep needs 6 quarts (crankcases have been growing, which is one reason behind longer change intervals) for its Pentastar engine and most oil change deals are for five quarts, oil alone would cost more than having the dealer do it. And that's before considering that I still have yet to see the supposedly existing aftermarket Purolator filter (as opposed to the Mopar one) in the wild.

And that's before considering that I can sit in heated or air conditioned comfort with wifi while the dealer does it (and washes the thing too). If I do it myself, I need to block out about a half hour when there's decent light out and no crappy weather. I will then also have to actually pick up the oil and filter and drop off the used oil (OK, I could possibly do that at the same time, but then I still don't want to haul around a gallon or so of used oil while dressed for work).

I used to look down on folks who changed their oil with a checkbook, but anymore it is hardly economical to do it yourself (I will occasionally do it for my truck, but not always), and that's assuming your time is worth nothing.
 
2013-01-27 09:23:15 PM
What pisses me off is when you get an oil change at a dealer and they put that little sticker on your windshield saying to bring it back in 3000 miles...even when the cars manual states that it should be every 5000 miles or whatever...and that dealer SELLS that same car. Seriously, scumbags and assholes, the lot of them...
 
2013-01-27 09:36:15 PM

beer4breakfast:

You don't need to change a timing chain. A timing belt, yes, but only every 120K miles or so.


Not always true. When I was about to turn 16, my sleazy uncle offered to sell me his car for cheap after the timing chain broke (and probably destroyed the engine). Also had a car about 10 years ago where the timing chain developed slack and was slapping against the timing cover. Sounded pretty horrible until I finally learned all about how to change a timing chain.
 
2013-01-27 09:40:02 PM

wildlifer: Rotella oil and amsoil filter change every 4000 miles.
Complete fluid changes at 50k miles.
The minivan has 285k miles
Old truck has 240k miles
My system works for me.


f250 with the 6.0 leaker needs every 3000 miles, the injectors are hydrolic operated off the engine oil
 
2013-01-27 09:40:38 PM

Tourney3p0: beer4breakfast:

You don't need to change a timing chain. A timing belt, yes, but only every 120K miles or so.

Not always true. When I was about to turn 16, my sleazy uncle offered to sell me his car for cheap after the timing chain broke (and probably destroyed the engine). Also had a car about 10 years ago where the timing chain developed slack and was slapping against the timing cover. Sounded pretty horrible until I finally learned all about how to change a timing chain.


Timing chains don't have set replacement intervals. Timing belts usually require replacement at a fixed interval- usually somewhere between 80K and 120K miles. There's no warning before a timing belt goes, hence the mileage interval. Since losing a timing belt often means a trashed engine, you change it whether you need to or not.

With a chain, as you noticed, there is SOME warning, and generally it will last the life of the engine if the oil is changed within appropriate intervals.

There's a reason everybody's been going to timing chains- it drastically reduces the maintenance costs as the vehicle gets to the 100,000 mile interval and beyond so long as it's been getting the attention it needs along the way.

Of course, people can skip oil changes entirely and pay heed to strange engine noises (as your uncle must have done), but there's fark all anybody can do with those folks. They'd break an anvil with a rubber hammer.
 
2013-01-27 09:44:05 PM
The owner's manual on mine said every 3000... was I lied to?
 
2013-01-27 09:54:59 PM

psychosis_inducing: The owner's manual on mine said every 3000... was I lied to?


1) It depends on the car. Newer cars seem to say 5-8K, older ones seem to say 3K.
2) Every 3000 is a fairly good lower limit that won't break anyone's car from going too long, and is a nice balance between "Mechanics like easy money", and "If you said every 5 miles, I'd laugh in your face". (And it doesn't hurt to go too often. It doesn't help, but it doesn't hurt either.)

/Current car is "whenever the sensor goes off". Put 4000 miles on it in 30 days (Bought it in Cleveland, was living in Detroit, and then moved out to SF via I-40), so the guy at the dealership said "Probably be 8000 to start (3300 miles of straight highway driving), going down to 5000 for everyday commuting".

/Chrysler 200. Don't get it. It's an OK car that I, the 6'4" guy with a 7'2" man's torso, can fit in, with a couple of minor little issues that turn into dealbreakers in practice.
 
2013-01-27 10:46:02 PM

stiletto_the_wise: lc6529: I've always change at 5K because it is easy to remember, - 10K, 15K, 20K, etc...

I used to always change my own oil but with the price of oil and the hassle of having to drive a sloshing container of oil to the recycling center, I found I am only saving about $20 from having the local Toyota dealer change it so I let them do it.

I do it myself, but not to save money, I do it to make sure that it gets done correctly. When you turn your car over to the stealership, how do you know they're even changing the oil? Do you check the dipstick each time? How do you know they're using the brand/type of oil you want? How do you know they tightened the oil drain plug to the correct torque and didn't cross-thread it or something?


Because it's documented in their service log. You may know it's been done right, but if something breaks the dealer has no idea if you've done routine maintenence. As for cross threading the drain plug, that did happen and they ended up replacing the oil pan because I could show from their own records that they screwed it up.
 
2013-01-27 10:58:37 PM

poorjon: I've got a Passat with the 1.8T. If you've got a VW turbo and don't make oil changes a religion, the engine will leap out of the hood and try to devour you.

/Maybe not getting a VW next time.


My 2003 has 162,000 miles on it. It's getting pretty beat up because my teenager now drives it. It might be coming to end of useful life. I changed it every 5000 and it was fine. That's what the owner's manual suggested. Now my 2009 Audi says 10,000 in the manual. Newer style engine. The 2.0T. So I do 10,000. It has one of those reminders. When I start it, it displays a message starting at 2000 miles left how many miles to the next oil change. The funny thing is the VW/Audi dealer still insists I should bring that vehicle in every 5000. My statement was "but the owners manual recommends 10". "Yeah but you'll kill your car". Umm....the Audi has 110,000 on it already. No sign of trouble. Meanwhile flip it to changing the timing belt (which will destroy your engine if it breaks) and they freak out about the "recommended" 100,000 mile change. Mechanic showed me the "cracks". To which I said, yeah rubber does that. Those are surface cracks not structural issues with the belt. To which they respond "but the engineers that designed it recommend 100,000 miles!!!". So I said "same engineers that recommend the 10,000 mile oil change?". silence.

Then on top of that, they remember to put that stupid little sticker in the car but can't seem to remember to reset the computer.
 
2013-01-27 11:00:57 PM

Gwendolyn: I just bought a new Volvo yesterday. The manual says every 10,000 miles. The 2003 Jetta I just traded in was 5,000.


See my other post. My 2003 Jetta was 5000 and everyone thought I was destroying it for waiting that long. It's now at 162,000 miles. My 2009 Audi is recommended every 10,000 miles. So the average person will only need to get 1.5 a year.
 
2013-01-27 11:18:27 PM
Business Idea/Question.

So the whole thing with the jiffy lube type places is to be fast and cheap right? Well that's because on a 3000 mile interval the whole experience is annoying and going to a dealer would be twice as annoying. The article (and pretty much any factual analysis) seems to indicate the average person really only needs 1 or 2 a year at most. It would seem that there is a niche for a higher end experience there. I.e. charging a couple hundred bucks and it's all inclusive. You get a nice waiting area. Maybe snacks. Your car gets an oil change, tire rotation, all applicable fluids filled or flushed. The car gets washed and vacuumed. A little scent. All the way up to a full detailing. Sort of a yearly refresh. I know these places exist but maybe they will become more popular and the insta lube places will go the way of the dodo.
 
2013-01-27 11:21:27 PM
Doing a complete fluid job on my truck(1974 Rover). Engine is out of an 83 (normally aspirated diesel, indirect injection). The only reason I would consider running synthetic is its cold weather performance. If you have ever tried starting a 40 year old vehicle at -25f(gas engine at the time). you will come to appreciate the value of synthetic oils viscosity at low temps. Still I run regular oil and use a block heater now, and since when did Gl-4 gear oil cost the same as printer ink?

// getting a kick
 
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