15K interval on Motorcraft 5W20!

Messages
330
Location
USA
So I'm pulling into my local Ford dealership today and a young lady (in her 20's) pulls in next to me. We walk in I go to the parts counter to pick up some parts I ordered and she goes to the service counter. I can overhear the conversation she is having with the service writer. She is stating that she is getting a red light flickering on and off occasionally on her dashboard. The service writer inquires a bit further but all he can get out of her is a red light flashes on and then off occasionly on her Ford Tribute. It is on the left side of the dash (hey there is a clue). Anyway, they ask her how many miles on the car and she has no idea. The service manager runs out to check. He comes back in with the mileage and they look her up in their computer. I hear the service writer say "Miss, have you had the car serviced anywhere since you were her last?" The young woman says "No.". The service writer says "Do you remember having the oil changed since you were here last?" The woman pauses for a second and then says "No.". The service writer now has a freaked out look on his face and he says "Ma'am, I recommend that you have your oil changed while the vehicle is here". The girl hesitates and says "Do I really need it". The service writer says "It has been 15K miles since your last change. You REALLY need it". The woman says "We'll OK I guess." I pick up my parts, BS with a guy I know that came in and then go over to the service counter. I buy so many **** parts there I've gotten to know everyone. I said to Tony the service writer. Did I hear you correctly "15K since the last oil change?" He says yup and then a few expletives came out of his mouth. I asked him if he had any idea what brand and grade of oil. He said it was a newer Tribute so they would have installed Motorcraft 5W20 and a Motorcraft filter. I said how much you want to bet that red light that flashes on and off was "low oil". I don't even know if this mini-UTE even has an oil level sensor. **** .... I'd love to get a flashlight and peeak inside that valve cover. Some people are really CLUELESS!!!
 
Messages
34,480
Location
NJ
These are the people that make you wonder......you should have grabbed a sample of the oil, would have been a great analysis sample.
 
Messages
8,937
Location
SC
People like that deserve exactly what they get out of a vehicle, IMO. It was probably the oil pressure light. I bet that engine is so sludged up that the top end is hardly getting any oil.
 
Messages
191
Location
KY
quote:
Originally posted by G-Man II: It was probably the oil pressure light.
I second that vote. One guess as to what happened: The oil was fine for approximately 7500 miles, then as the oil wore out towards the end of the recommended service interval (initial 7500 miles), it thinned out (even less than 20 weight) and burned off. How much oil loss do you have to have before the pressure light gets tripped? As for females and their cars, I have informed one of my friends that she needs new tires, and even offered to take the car and get it done (if she writes the check), but I've stopped trying. I know her well enough to know that it's not the money that's holding up progress either...
 
Messages
3,203
Location
Southeastern, PA
quote:
Originally posted by G-Man II: People like that deserve exactly what they get out of a vehicle, IMO. It was probably the oil pressure light...
Nah, it was the "Engine Self-Destruct" light. [Razz]
 
Messages
258
Location
IL
my GF has a ford escape also (the tribute is the mazda variant) i make her get it changed every 3k.... im really pushing mobil 1 on her....never a mile over 3k
 

ssmokn

Thread starter
Messages
330
Location
USA
Oh ya this was a Ford Escape. I said Tribute earlier but that is the Mazda variant of the same thing. Either way. I wouldn't want to buy this car used!!!!!
 
Messages
922
Location
Ontario , Canada
I don't know about you guys, but for the longest time I have refused to ever buy any used automobile that was advertised as "lady driven". To me that phrase means "the **** thing has never had any maintenance done to it ! " . [No no]
 
Messages
4,107
Location
Savannah, GA
quote:
Originally posted by Idrinkmotoroil: I don't know about you guys, but for the longest time I have refused to ever buy any used automobile that was advertised as "lady driven". To me that phrase means "the **** thing has never had any maintenance done to it ! " . [No no]
Or off-lease vehicles for that matter. Every one that I know that leases a vehicle doesn't care about oil changes or longetivity of their vehicle. They know that they are turning them in after two or three years.
 
Messages
617
Location
Joplin
This reminds me of the story my late Uncle told me. He was a police officer for 25 years and worked the downtown beat. One day a lady's car was stalled on the side of road and he stopped for assitance. After making a couple of checks he quickly determined that the car was out of fuel. He told the lady that her car was out of gas. She replied " Do you think it would be OK to drive it home like that ? " [I dont know]
 
Messages
2,235
Location
SE MI
5W-20 has a viscosity of about 8.8 cSt @ 100C. Patman was complaining how 5W-30 thinned to about 9 something centistrokes, so basically using 5W-20 is like watered down 5W-30. I would NOT use 5W-20 in intervals greater than 3000 miles in all seriousness. 48-50 cSt @ 40C, and 8.8 or less cSt @ 100C. Its like **** thin water. And imagine what happened to that engine with 5W-20 for 15k miles!!! ugh
 

Patman

Staff member
Messages
22,017
Location
Guelph, Ontario
quote:
Originally posted by metroplex: 5W-20 has a viscosity of about 8.8 cSt @ 100C. Patman was complaining how 5W-30 thinned to about 9 something centistrokes, so basically using 5W-20 is like watered down 5W-30.
It's true, I do complain when I see an oil thin out, no matter what it starts out to be. But I'd be willing to bet that most 5w20s won't thin out as easily as most 5w30s do. So in the end with a lot of 5w30s they thin out to the same point, but leave behind "useless sludge molecules" in the process, while the 5w20 does not. Once again, I'm not saying 5w20 is good for all cars, I'd never run it in my Firebird for instance. But it's not going to spell the death of these new cars that use it either.
 

Patman

Staff member
Messages
22,017
Location
Guelph, Ontario
In other words, what I'm saying is, if I had to choose between running an oil that starts out at 9.0cst and stays at 9.0cst for the duration of the interval, or an oil that starts out at 10cst and thins out to 9cst by the end, I'd take the first choice. I don't believe either of the cars I own right now would benefit from a thin oil though, FWIW. I'm comfortable with an oil in my wife's car that is in the 11 cst range (which Royal Purple 5w30 is) and I'll be most comfortable when I have an oil in the 12-13cst range in my Firebird. Like I've said many times, each engine has it's own sweet spot (viscosity wise) and a new tight engine can have low engine wear numbers with these 5w20 oils. Not for their entire life, but at least for the warranty period, then as they age, step up the viscosity a notch.
 
Messages
453
Location
Galveston, TX
quote:
Originally posted by segfault:
quote:
Originally posted by G-Man II: It was probably the oil pressure light.
I second that vote. One guess as to what happened: The oil was fine for approximately 7500 miles, then as the oil wore out towards the end of the recommended service interval (initial 7500 miles), it thinned out (even less than 20 weight) and burned off. How much oil loss do you have to have before the pressure light gets tripped? As for females and their cars, I have informed one of my friends that she needs new tires, and even offered to take the car and get it done (if she writes the check), but I've stopped trying. I know her well enough to know that it's not the money that's holding up progress either...

Ahhhh, reading your posts, I am reminded of my ex-g/f of 1997-1998. She bought this used ultra-subcompact Neon from another lady driver. The thing had no radiator thermostat. In the winter, the coolant would not get warmer than last night's leftover soup left in the fridge. When I found out she was running the thing all over the place in a permanently cold engine condition, I freaked out. I had to beat her over the head with a 2 by 4 for several weeks to get her to get the Neon fixed. Had I not done so, she would have to had shelled out for a new engine pretty soon. In the Northeast states, running the car all day at 90 F engine temperature can be fatal to an engine.
 
Messages
8,937
Location
SC
quote:
Originally posted by segfault:
quote:
Originally posted by G-Man II: It was probably the oil pressure light.
I second that vote. One guess as to what happened: The oil was fine for approximately 7500 miles, then as the oil wore out towards the end of the recommended service interval (initial 7500 miles), it thinned out (even less than 20 weight) and burned off. How much oil loss do you have to have before the pressure light gets tripped?

Even though the engine was probably low on oil due to boil off, I would think that whatever shearing the oil was going to do was over with by 7500 miles and oxidation thickening was well under way. By 15,000 miles, I'd say this oil had probably thickened into the 20w40 range, the additives were shot, the TBN was zero, and sludge was affecting oil flow. That in combination with it probably being over 1 quart low would trigger the oil pressure light, especially at idle.
 
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