2016 Kia Soul 1.6 Base G4FD Valvoline 5w30 Advanced FS 2,784 mi/6mo

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Hi all! One of our vehicles is a 2016 Kia Soul 1.6L Base. We own this car since late 2018 (~29k miles) and it was a personal lease, so it has been serviced regularly at the dealer.

Just performed a semi-annual OC, which I do either at 5k miles or 6 months, whichever comes first and this time only after 2,784 mi/6mo only ~2.5qts of oil was drained. I decided to get the oil tested to see if there is any ring material in it but based on the results, there is none. The car does not smoke and is in great shape as I do keep up with the maintenance. I am in the south, so I use 5w30 Valvoline Synthetic Advanced (w/OEM oil filters) as opposed to 5w20 that is recommended by Kia.

When I did the previous OC last November, I decided to look at the IM as well as the valves using my borescope. The intake manifold was covered in gunk, yet the valves were not too bad considering that no one ever looked at them before. The car had 55k miles at that time. I removed and cleaned the IM from the inside as well as the intake valves using the Lucas Deep clean spray by soaking each valve in closed position. While I could not make them clean 100%, they were a lot better (sorry no pics); I did not have to scrub them or anything and I have no access to walnut blaster.

At that time, I replaced the PCV valve and decided to install a CC to keep my IM/IV cleaner. Since that November OC, I drained the catch can probably 3 times; the can was always 1/3 full.

I am looking for some recommendations and thoughts here; should I switch oils? The oil I am using is just fine and seems to be suitable for the GDI motors (https://pqia.org/valvoline-full-synthetic-advanced-sae-5w-20-motor-oil/).

I just do not understand what made it burn almost half of its capacity this time around. The car has no warranty left being that it was purchased used and frankly I do not think I am going to be all crazy about figuring out the cause i.e., pulling and taking apart the engine, etc. It is not the car that is worth messing with or investing into at least in my books. Just trying to get an idea about how much longer I should keep it in service per se.

Thanks in advance!

2022-06-11_11-58-29.jpg
 
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You could try a piston soak to help with the oil consumption. Kia has a service bulletin that’s basically their fancy version of a piston soak and from what I see over on Kia forums, it seems to work more often than not.

Also make sure any open recalls and product improvement campaigns are completed by your Kia dealer. This one, the knock sensor detection system update extends the engine long block warranty for 15 years 150k miles for any owner of the car.

Do you do a lot of short trips? That Valvoline 5w30 looks like it thinned out a bit and there’s some fuel dilution going on, probably more than what black stone is reporting. From what I’ve learned on this forum, black stone is not very accurate with testing for fuel.

Everything else looks ok, lots of moly in Valvoline. My Soul with the same engine liked this oil when I used it.
 
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Check oil weekly, or at every fuel fill up, and top off as needed. Keep it full always and monitor consumption. Your biggest mistake is that you don't exercise the dipstick enough.

Try other 5w30 or 10w30 synthetic oils. All current spec synthetic oils are fine for GDI engines. If you have an issue, then you should assume that maybe the chosen oil isn't fine, or isn't being installed by your technician/dealer/quicklube. So, try Pennzoil QuakerState Mobil1 Castrol RedLine Amsoil RoyalPurple HPL MPT Shell Havoline.... synthetics or whatever is available at your local autopart stores and walmart. And, watch your technician funnel that oil into your engine. Watching is better than hogging coffee/donuts/wifi in the waiting room at the shop.

Piston soak assumes ring land/pack crud/carbon. Where would that come from if you have been using a current spec synthetic 5w30 changed twice a year? https://static.nhtsa.gov/odi/tsbs/2021/MC-10201158-0001.pdf I see it as an Automaker bandaid to reduce engine replacement claims and not a solution. What prevents it from happening again?

If the engine is full of crud and carbon, if its not the oils fault and not the intervals fault, maybe its the oil filter's fault. Years ago, HyundaiKia bragged about their 50 micron filter being superior to 'knock-off's. An old particle count UOA verified that 50 micron claim. Obviously, the filter PN has changed several times but no info has been provided that the newest filters are any better than their older filters. So, my recommendation is to use the filters available at your local walmart or autopart stores. Plenty of good choices out their with <30 micron filtration. I am at the point to even not recommend using OE filters since most are data 'unknowns'.

Catch cans are just condensation cans and do little to prevent intake manifold/port/valve deposits. Its just overhyped cool kid garbage on the web!

Use top tier fuel when/if available and as often as possible.

Should also be using a quality FI cleaner prior to every oil/filter change. Amsoil, Chevron, Redline, Gumout, Hyundai/Kia, RoyalPurple, 3m.... all have similar PEA, solvent, or PIBA based cleaners that you can alternate among.

If you are do it yourself capable, its time to start using an IVD cleaner once or twice a year.

You can also slowly clean the engine by topping it off with a solvent/detergent/ester additive when you are down the 1st pint of oil. Plenty to chose from. Don't use more than 1 brand/pint per interval.

I don't have any brand loyalty or sponsorship. I don't get hung up on fanboy products and simply rotate among what is available.

Hopefully you'll benefit from one of the future class action lawsuits and whatever warranty you have.... pretty sure most dealers are useless in addressing issues and standing up for the consumer.

I did clean several Hyundai/Kia engines by adapting to the issues as they occurred or became known. I would say prevention is more important.
cleaningthethetaii.png
 
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Did you check the dipstick at all during the oil run? I'm curious what it read before you did the oil change. Keep in mind some oil does not drain out, so your 2.5 qts that drained out might be 3 or more that was still in the car. What is the oil capacity?
 
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I’m having trouble understanding your timeline of events. It sounds like prior to your November oil change you had no oil consumption issues. During the November oil change you decided to clean the intake manifold and intake valves. Six months later on your next oil change following cleaning the IM and IV’s you noticed the engine consumed oil.

Couple of things could have happened. 1) you blew all that carbon junk into the cylinders and you have junked up the piston rings. 2) the carbon deposits were blown into the cylinders and scratched the cylinder bores/piston rings.

I would remove the catch can and put it back to OEM configuration. Then I would do a piston soak and hope for the best.

Most manufacturers do not recommend cleaning the intake valves for this very reason. Often times it leads to damage.

I’m not sure why, but it seems Hyundai/Kia owners are the most compelled to clean their intake valves more so than other vehicle brand owners. YouTube is frankly littered with Hyundai/Kia owners posting videos of cleaning intakes valves.
 
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zigziggy

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I’m having trouble understanding your timeline of events. It sounds like prior to your November oil change you had no oil consumption issues. During the November oil change you decided to clean the intake manifold and intake valves. Six months later on your next oil change following cleaning the IM and IV’s you noticed the engine consumed oil.

That is correct. I had no oil consumption issues prior to the most recent OC. I had issues with rough idle (no check engine light though). I didn't plan on doing that last November because all I wanted to do is clean the the throttle body and since it was off the IM, I had easy access to the inside of the manifold. Upon further inspection with my borescope, the inside was covered in gunk, which is why I decided to take it off and give it good cleaning. And since the IM was off, I had easy access to the intake valves, so why not and clean them too? As I said, they didn't look like charcoal sticks but they had plenty of build up and most of it came off.

Couple of things could have happened. 1) you blew all that carbon junk into the cylinders and you have junked up the piston rings. 2) the carbon deposits were blown into the cylinders and scratched the cylinder bores/piston rings.

This could be true if I followed those YouTube methods of cleaning the carbon off when people dump the whole can of some cleaner into the IM while revving the engine at around 3k RPMs and watching how their car smokes thinking that it's all clean now. But I don't think that's the case with me because 1) the valves were closed and 2) I observed how the chemical worked. It dissolved the carbon and turned it into "liquidy" substance. The whole job took me about 5 hours to finish from soaking the valves to cleaning everything. And no, I didn't blow it all out with compressed air like some people do. I've used nylon brushes and my shop vac, which extracted most of it out, so even if some of it leaked into the cylinder, it probably just burned off within the first few seconds after I started the car.

I would remove the catch can and put it back to OEM configuration. Then I would do a piston soak and hope for the best.

Most manufacturers do not recommend cleaning the intake valves for this very reason. Often times it leads to damage.

I’m not sure why, but it seems Hyundai/Kia owners are the most compelled to clean their intake valves more so than other vehicle brand owners. YouTube is frankly littered with Hyundai/Kia owners posting videos of cleaning intakes valves.
As I mentioned, I was not planning on doing all that. All I wanted to do is clean the throttle body so the rest of the procedure was done simply because I was already there. After I made the post last night, I removed all plugs and looked at the cylinder walls with my borescope. I did not observe any abnormal wear on cylinder walls.

As for the catch can, it's just difficult not believe that it actually works. I also looked at the inside of my IM through the throttle body and to my surprise it was in great shape.
 

zigziggy

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Did you check the dipstick at all during the oil run? I'm curious what it read before you did the oil change. Keep in mind some oil does not drain out, so your 2.5 qts that drained out might be 3 or more that was still in the car. What is the oil capacity?
I did once maybe around February or so and it was full, so I didn't bother checking again until next OC... The capacity is right around ~4qts and only 2.5 was drained.
 

FZ1

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Techron in the tank, then, Chevron or other high detergent gasolines. Ymmv
 

zigziggy

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You could try a piston soak to help with the oil consumption. Kia has a service bulletin that’s basically their fancy version of a piston soak and from what I see over on Kia forums, it seems to work more often than not.
Yeah, it looks like this would be my next thing to try.
Also make sure any open recalls and product improvement campaigns are completed by your Kia dealer. This one, the knock sensor detection system update extends the engine long block warranty for 15 years 150k miles for any owner of the car.
There is a hidden catch in this campaign, so I did NOT do it for a reason. When I received the letter, I was under the impression that it would put the car in limp mode each time there is a check engine light on, does not matter what code it is throwing, which will make it hard to drive the car until the dealer clears it. One "problem" we have with this car is high startup idle when the outside temp drop below 50 degrees causing the P050A code. It's discussed here. I have had this probably since 2018, way before the TSB came out last September. I have been going to the dealer like 5 times; all they did was spray the TB with some cleaner, clear the code and calling it done. In other words, they did not have a real fix, so I just kept driving it. The car does not have the Idle Air Control valve, since idle is controlled electronically, so there is nothing they or I could do about it. That said, we just drive the car with the CEL on from late November until early March. It does not affect anything besides high idle, that goes up to 2500 RPMs for 2-3 seconds. I know that revving the engine on cold is never a good thing, but we could not do much about it. The car was not driven a whole lot as you can see since November of last year until my recent OC (less then 3k miles) but I will go and get reflashed before it gets cold again.

Do you do a lot of short trips? That Valvoline 5w30 looks like it thinned out a bit and there’s some fuel dilution going on, probably more than what black stone is reporting. From what I’ve learned on this forum, black stone is not very accurate with testing for fuel.
Yes, from point A to point B is about 5 miles in traffic for the most part. I'm thinking about trying 10w20/30 next time since 5w30 is just way too thin after all according to the report.
 

zigziggy

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Check oil weekly, or at every fuel fill up, and top off as needed. Keep it full always and monitor consumption. Your biggest mistake is that you don't exercise the dipstick enough.
I may have to do that now, the reason I didn't is because it never burned oil before.
Try other 5w30 or 10w30 synthetic oils. All current spec synthetic oils are fine for GDI engines. If you have an issue, then you should assume that maybe the chosen oil isn't fine, or isn't being installed by your technician/dealer/quicklube. So, try Pennzoil QuakerState Mobil1 Castrol RedLine Amsoil RoyalPurple HPL MPT Shell Havoline.... synthetics or whatever is available at your local autopart stores and walmart. And, watch your technician funnel that oil into your engine. Watching is better than hogging coffee/donuts/wifi in the waiting room at the shop.
I maintain my vehicles myself and have been using Valvoline ever since I worked at Sears Auto when I was in college long ago. Nevertheless, I put the same oil in it this time since I had it available in my garage with one last OE oil filter. We'll see how long it takes before I have to top it off.
Piston soak assumes ring land/pack crud/carbon. Where would that come from if you have been using a current spec synthetic 5w30 changed twice a year? https://static.nhtsa.gov/odi/tsbs/2021/MC-10201158-0001.pdf I see it as an Automaker bandaid to reduce engine replacement claims and not a solution. What prevents it from happening again?

If the engine is full of crud and carbon, if its not the oils fault and not the intervals fault, maybe its the oil filter's fault. Years ago, HyundaiKia bragged about their 50 micron filter being superior to 'knock-off's. An old particle count UOA verified that 50 micron claim. Obviously, the filter PN has changed several times but no info has been provided that the newest filters are any better than their older filters. So, my recommendation is to use the filters available at your local walmart or autopart stores. Plenty of good choices out their with <30 micron filtration. I am at the point to even not recommend using OE filters since most are data 'unknowns'.
One other thing to try is lower SAPS oil. I think Valvoline Advanced FS is considered as mid-SAPS oil, which isn't all that bad according to the report. I've been using the OE oil filters since I bought them in bulk but recently had used the last one. WalMart sells OE Hyundai/KIa filters and the cost is the same as Wix for instance so in my books I don't see why go aftermarket when I can use OE Mobis ones...
 
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At least you admit to not checking the dipstick..... why can't anyone else?

When I see HyunKia's needing oil, I simply top off with a 5w40 or 15w40. This way, no matter what oil they used, they are getting that pint/quart of high HTHS stuff. Too many of these engines have the 0w30, 0w40, 5w40, 15w40, and 20w50 options in foreign markets. We get the '5w20' oil caps here in the USA.

Don't get hung up on Valvoline. But, their 5w30/0w30/0w40/5w40/XL3 Euro oils have a good HTHS slug. I would start here:

Pennzoil and Mobil1 have a good range of higher HTHS euro/hdeo oils that can be used. When you stick with one brand, you get that brands issues and imperfections... that could build up. A run of the Pennzoil GTL oils might help clean it up. Same can be said with any other oil using different or propriety additive packages and base oils.

I don't hate Valvoline. After 1/2 dozen OCI's with different oil brands, my next oil change in my VW is the Valvoline Euro 0w20 508 oil. I usually toss in a quart of ANY 5w40 and top off with the 3.5qts 508 0w20. Engine just sounds better and doesn't burn as much. My wife's 2.4 theta2 gets euro 5w30 >3.5 hths oil and for the few ounces of oil consumption, is topped off with a 5w40, or some snake oil product. For example, Lubegard Biotech is my 'winter' choice since it doesn't thicken the oil, and BG MOA or STP Synthetic are added for the few ounces of warm weather consumption. I guess I forgot to add the MOA to the above list of cleaners. https://www.bgprod.com/catalog/engine/bg-moa-extended-life/

Short trips are a killer. At least you are doing the right thing with that 6 month 3000 mile interval, roughly the same that I have all cars in this driveway.

As always, get all recalls and product improvement campaigns as available. Many made the negligent mistake of not getting updates that are required for class action warranty extension/coverage, and then had no coverage for engine failures.
 

zigziggy

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842 mi since the oil change; oil level is still on full but the occ had the following substance:

PXL_20220724_162751854.jpg


Honestly, I expected much more this time around but I'll check back again in another 1k mi.
 
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My 2015 Kia Soul 2.0 used 1-1.5 quarts every 5k miles. I did all the recalls and TSBs. I changed the pcv but the OEM was perfectly clean and working. I ran good oil and Rislone oil treatment to clean up the rings and used 5W30 full synthetic. In the end, I think it is just the low tension piston rings Hyundai/Kia uses to get better mpgs. We finally sold it during peak Covid as the paint on the roof was starting to fail. We loved how it drove, but so many issues we took the Carvana money and ran!
 

zigziggy

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My 2015 Kia Soul 2.0 used 1-1.5 quarts every 5k miles. I did all the recalls and TSBs. I changed the pcv but the OEM was perfectly clean and working. I ran good oil and Rislone oil treatment to clean up the rings and used 5W30 full synthetic. In the end, I think it is just the low tension piston rings Hyundai/Kia uses to get better mpgs. We finally sold it during peak Covid as the paint on the roof was starting to fail. We loved how it drove, but so many issues we took the Carvana money and ran!

I'm thinking about ditching ours too but I'm just unsure of what to get as the replacement at this time. Used cars are overpriced and while Carvana offers ~$15k for it, I will end up overpaying for another used one too. I've owned plenty of Hyundais before and not one of them burned any oil, so this Soul is the first. I do love the cheap maintenance though and I'm probably going to miss it!
 
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I run a small garage, and we get a lot of Hyundai and Kia 1.6’s that come in low on oil. In a cheap econo car, most people just don’t check oil. Most customers stare at me blankly when I ask if they check oil bc their vehicle is low.
It looks like you dodged a bullet, and no damage was done, just keep an eye on the oil level, and the car will run a long time.
 

zigziggy

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I run a small garage, and we get a lot of Hyundai and Kia 1.6’s that come in low on oil. In a cheap econo car, most people just don’t check oil. Most customers stare at me blankly when I ask if they check oil bc their vehicle is low.
It looks like you dodged a bullet, and no damage was done, just keep an eye on the oil level, and the car will run a long time.
Well, I had no reason to check the dipstick as it never gave any indication of burning or losing oil. My garage floor is always dry too. This isn't my first kia/Hyundai, so I never had a similar problem before. Nevertheless, right now it's been over 1k mi since the oil change and besides 50 ml of substance in my catch can I posted above, the level is still on full. I'm curious for how long the oil level is going to be maintained before I have to add some.
 
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