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“There was a time when the 3,000 miles was a good guideline,” said Philip Reed, senior consumer advice editor for the car site Edmunds.com. “But it’s no longer true for any car bought in the last seven or eight years.
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I STILL remember learning from my father how to carefully remove a dipstick to check the oil level in our cars. It was drilled into me — along with turning off the lights when you left a room and clearing the plates off the table after dinner — that oil needs to be changed every 3,000 miles or so.

I’m not sure what I thought would happen if I didn’t, but I vaguely imagined an unlubricated engine grinding to a halt.

Childhood habits are hard to undo, and that’s often good. To this day, I hate seeing an empty room with the lights on.

But sometimes, we need to throw aside our parents’ good advice. In March, for example, I wrote about how we should relearn the dishwasher and laundry soap habits we inherited from our mothers.

Add frequent oil-changing to that list.

“There was a time when the 3,000 miles was a good guideline,” said Philip Reed, senior consumer advice editor for the car site Edmunds.com. “But it’s no longer true for any car bought in the last seven or eight years.”

Oil chemistry and engine technology have improved to the point that most cars can go several thousand more miles before changing the oil, Mr. Reed said. A better average, he said, would be 7,500 between oil changes, and sometimes up to 10,000 miles or more.

The California Integrated Waste Management Board ran public service announcements for several years about “the 3,000-mile myth,” urging drivers to wait longer between oil changes. Although the information is a few years old, the board has a list of cars on its Web site and how often they need oil changes. The concern is not only the cost to drivers, but the environmental impact of throwing away good oil, said Mark Oldfield, a recycling specialist for the agency.







My 9400 oil change report. No break in period.
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That's good to know. Some cars' engines actually pack quite a bit of oil that would make for a whole mess of unnecessary waste if changed early for no good reason.

Speaking of which, the '02 A6 4.2's V8 sports an oil capacity of no less than 8 quarts and an Audi recommended oil change interval of 10,000 miles. :eek:
 

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My '03 Si had a 10k interval, or 5k under severe conditions. I drove it spiritedly so I split the difference and changed it every 7500 miles. It never burned oil or had any engine-related problems despite constant VTAK deployment and several trips to the redline each day.

Same with the Sonata. It calls for changes every 7500 miles, or every 3750 under severe conditions. I split the difference since it mostly sees city driving in hot temperatures.
 

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E46 have required up to 15000 miles oil changes since 1999 with no issue.
 

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This is news? People on the interwebs were saying the 3000 mile OCI was outdated 10 years ago.

BITOG is great, by the way.
 

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Audi Longlife service interval can run up to 18K, depending on the usage pattern of the vehicle. My 99 A8 used to run at that all the time. My A6 wasn't far off either, tending to be about 15K.
 

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Some of the old folks who bring there cars to my work still don't get it. Ford has recommended 5000 mile oil changes for years and now bringing that to 7500-10000miles depending on the car. The new Ford superduty tells you when it needs an oil change depending on how you drive the truck (it knows how hard your working it ) My 1990 Subaru manual states 4000miles :beer:
 

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Sorry but no.. it depends heavily on the car. A honda will go 8k miles on conventional oil no problem.. they are easy on oil. My engine destroys oil, even heavy duty engine oil like Rotella T Synthetic 5w40.. in 5000 miles it is completely destroyed...

Now newer Volkswagens with turbo direct injection engines? Yes your oil analysis will say it looks fine, but your engine won't agree.. every one of these engines I've seen was sludged if the owner ran the recommended interval. Some engines are just WAY tougher on oil than other.
 

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My motorcycle says every 2500 miles. That's fine with me though since it's an easy oil change for me to do myself, unlike my car :mad:
 

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My father still insists on doing the first oil change after a few hundred miles. Olde tymey habits are hard to break.
I always do (usually around 600 miles). Here is what you will find in your oil after break-in. This is just a one of the dozens metal shavings. Do you really want it to float in your engine for a year (10K miles)?



 

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^This.. it is really actually retarded to wait for your first oil change, when your engine is breaking in ...it "shaves" off SO much metal & aluminum. I always do the first one at 1000 miles, then 3k miles later when the car has 4k... and THEN proceed to extend it..
 

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I know a kid that's a mechanic and this topic has come up a few times with us. I always tell him changing it at 3,000 is just a complete waste of time and money but he has trouble trusting that modern synthetics can last over twice as long. I don't understand why it's so hard to grasp for some people though. Everything else in the car continues to be developed and last longer, why is it odd that oil companies would do the same?
 

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I change my oil with full synthetic every 7500 miles.

The "extended oil change" stuff is hogwash.
 

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I change my oil with full synthetic every 7500 miles.

The "extended oil change" stuff is hogwash.
I don't see how it is, I trust the engineering that went into the oil. This isn't the 60s anymore where oil still had bits of twig and sand in it.
 

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Depends on the car.
Subaru's turbo dino oil interval is still 3750 or something. Reduced after oil issues.

5000+ is well in the range of decent syn though unless you're doing trackdays or something. In LGT I do about 5000. My UOA tell me I could do a bit more, but I do a lot of AXes and the turbo motors have some oil issues, so I'd rather be safe. Works out to every 6 mos or so.

I'm still not sure I trust OCIs over 10k. At least without a UOA. Even 10k looks a bit much in the VW. Maybe it will get better after the first 10k, but still.
 

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I don't see how it is, I trust the engineering that went into the oil. This isn't the 60s anymore where oil still had bits of twig and sand in it.
it still gets dirty. Its not a matter of how long the oil lasts to me, but it's a matter of how dirty it gets.
 
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