Anyone know what OCIs are for rental cars?

Messages
340
Location
E. Texas
Hertz, Avis and the other car rental agencies must have thousands of cars that are on certain maintenance schedules. When a car is returned they don't know if it was all stop and go, highway mileage, dusty conditions, short trip, etc. In other words, there is no way they can take any severe service into account - or do they? Maybe they always assume severe service just to play it safe. One thing is sure, they have to have cars that are reliable. I have heard stories of people buying used rental cars and they are given a very detailed maintenance record (so my assumption is they have to be doing it right) but I do not know what this record contains. Since these companies do not hold on to the vehicles as long as most individuals do, I am wondering if their service schedule is simply going with the OCIs (and other maintenance items) as recommended in the car's manual. I doubt they would use synthetics but I don't know. It seems to me that would extend the interval and save money in the long run. Perhaps they assume just the opposite and put the cheapest stuff in there since it would be hard to hurt the engine with whatever oil used before they rotate the car out of the fleet. Does anyone know how rental companies figure OCIs and the kind of oil they use?
 
Messages
2,187
Location
Arizona
A very close friend of mine worked for one of the large national rental car companies at their local airport location when we were in college. They took extremely good care of their cars. Oil changes were scheduled for every 2,000 miles, and the oil was delivered to them in drums or shuttles from a local distributor. I do not recall the brand offhand, but being a local distributor in that place at that time means it would have most likely been Texaco, Pennzoil, or Mobil. They did not use synthetic that I know of. I also cannot recall the air filter interval, though I saw them change tham. I hung around with that fiend quite a lot and watched them doing the services many times, so I know they did it right and on schedule. I remember him telling me on a couple of occasions that the manager would explode if the maintenance was not done on time on the cars, and one guy almost lost his job because he did not do an oil change on a couple of cars one day. From that friendship and that set of experiences, I have a very different impression of the maintenance of rental cars than some do.
 
Messages
3,775
Location
Houston, Tex
A couple of years ago I rented an Explorer from Budget for a 2,000 mile trip, which I explained in advance. At the time of pickup the vehicle had 5,900 miles, with what was very obviously the original oil. Midway through the trip (6900 miles) I had the time to inquire within Budget what to do about the oil. They informed me that their regular interval was 6500 miles, and if I brought an oil change receipt to the settlement it would be deducted from the rental.
 
Messages
1,910
Location
Vista, CA
In fleets that I know of, driven by known drivers not renters, there are very definite maintenance schedules and sometimes a bit different from factory schedules, more comprehensive. When these cars are sold, the buyer gets them in batches with very detailed maintenance records. That's part of setting the price. In these fleets maintenance records are also part of the insurance master policy as well. The difference with rental fleets is that the maintenance and operation is less consistant and the insurance is a lot more. Buying an x-rental car can be a bit of a gamble or a bargan but I'll bet the chance of having the maintenance done is better than just a used car. You have a better idea of why a rental car is being sold than a car from a private party. In the San Diego area Budget has a big operation that sells x-rental cars and does the after sales service if the customer so chooses. Their reputation is great and they have many customers that did not buy Budget cars but come in for service. They have a lot of repeat customers that buy cars based only on the word of the service manager and he always makes problems 'right'. btw, I don't work for Budget. I'll ask them what the rental maintenance schedules are like....
 
Messages
1,904
Location
Bay Area, CA
One other thing. Usually, to get from the airport to where you are going will be a pretty healthy trip. To get from an airport to town will often be 5, 10 or even 20 miles. When I rent I am usually going over 75 miles to my destination.
 
Messages
12,385
Location
Northern CA
quote:
Originally posted by Winston: BTW I rent cars frequently and would not hesitate to buy a used car from a rental agency. People always say never buy a rental car because people drive the crap out of them. That is rediculous. Why would I drive a rental car any different than I would drive my own car? What am I going to do? Drive it over curbs? Floor it at every stoplight? Slam on the brakes at every stop sign? Why would I do that?
Some people are harder on rental cars than they are on their own cars. The good news is that it's not the same bozo abusing the car in the same way every day. I wouldn't be skeered of buying a used rental car from a good rental company either.
 
Messages
10,830
Location
Nokesville, VA
quote:
Originally posted by Winston: One other thing. Usually, to get from the airport to where you are going will be a pretty healthy trip.
That, and a lot of these trips are business-related and it's a real bozo that would abuse the car he's counting on to get him to that important meeting on time.
 
Messages
1,381
Location
Southeast Kentucky
[QUOTE]Originally posted by Winston: [QB] BTW I rent cars frequently and would not hesitate to buy a used car from a rental agency. People always say never buy a rental car because people drive the crap out of them. That is rediculous. Why would I drive a rental car any different than I would drive my own car? ...Good point. I have only had the occasion to rent a car 3 or 4 times, but I never abused them. Trucks may be a different story, folks may use them to tow stuff they wouldn't tow with their own vehicle, just a thought.
 
Messages
441
Location
Toronto, Canada
A lot of rental car companies buy fleets through manufacturer buyback plans, where the automaker influences the choice of models and options based on what they think is saleable used. They have a vested interest in the resale value. I would bet that in these circumstances the rental companies are obligated to adhere to a service schedule per manufacturer guidance. At your normal retail location its proabbaly no big deal. I don't know how that would work at some of these "Rental Mills" like big airports. The last time I was in california I rented a Cadillac Sedan DeVille (when in Rome...) and the Oil Life Monitor was ticking down. When I returned it, the OLM was at 2% (whatever that means). I would assume that if they ssaw that and they were a fleet based on MFR BuyBack they would change the oil. However in this place it seemed as though there was about a 5 second gap between return of cars and them checking out. No attempt to clean or anything before the next renter. They definitely were just queueing these things up to go ASAP. I don't see how service of any kind would be addressed. And I always found the whole thing about people abusing rentals strange. It may have been true in the distant past, but come on, they have your credit card, and would not hesitate to charge anyone for damage.
 
Messages
1,904
Location
Bay Area, CA
I don't know, but I would bet that rental companies use dino oil that meets the manuals recommendations. I also would think that they would change the oil based on the the "normal" service interval or what the OLM says. Why would they change the oil mor frequently? BTW I rent cars frequently and would not hesitate to buy a used car from a rental agency. People always say never buy a rental car because people drive the crap out of them. That is rediculous. Why would I drive a rental car any different than I would drive my own car? What am I going to do? Drive it over curbs? Floor it at every stoplight? Slam on the brakes at every stop sign? Why would I do that? I do have more faith that the rental car agency performed maintenance at the recommended intervals than I would have in Joe car owner.
 
Messages
10,830
Location
Nokesville, VA
I work near an airport, to go home I drive the major road that connects that airport to the interstate, and I have NEVER seen any make/model commonly used as a rental car (ie, Taurus, Classic, Impala, etc) being driven in an abusive manner. What I do see being driven in an abusive manner are the cars which are popular with the younger age group, such as any Scion and Honda Civics/Acura Integras. BTW, most rental companies will not rent to anyone under 25 (not coincidentally, insurance companies jack the rates up for people under 25), and now that it's very easy for them to check driving records, they won't rent to anyone who has a bad driving record.
 
Messages
1,838
Location
Southeast Louisiana
quote:
Originally posted by mikemc: [QUOTE]Originally posted by Winston: [QB] BTW I rent cars frequently and would not hesitate to buy a used car from a rental agency. People always say never buy a rental car because people drive the crap out of them. That is rediculous. Why would I drive a rental car any different than I would drive my own car? ...Good point. I have only had the occasion to rent a car 3 or 4 times, but I never abused them. Trucks may be a different story, folks may use them to tow stuff they wouldn't tow with their own vehicle, just a thought.
My brother had a rental truck not to long ago and the holes to put a ball on were plugged up so you couldnt tow with it. Dont know if this is all rental companies though.
 
Messages
22,299
Location
Apple Valley, California
I used to work at a shop that serviced rentals from "Enterprize". They always wanted the cheapest brake parts, don't turn or replace brake rotors just slap on new pads w/o packing wheel bearings etc. We kept records of our own on every car that rolled through the shop and the rentals got Dino bulk SAE30 and a new filter every 10K or more. They wouldn't even pop for multigrade.
 
Messages
10,830
Location
Nokesville, VA
That must have been a very long time ago. As one example, Ford hasn't, as far as I'm aware, made a passenger car with repackable wheel bearings since the last 1993 Ford Mustang rolled off the assembly line.
 
Messages
530
Location
Deer Park, Washington
I just rented a car from Enterprize and had to wait for the vehicle because it was being serviced at a local Pep Boys that was right down the street. The tag under the hood said next service due at 32k, which would of been 7.5k miles. The filter was a AC Delco and the oil was Quaker State 5w30.
 
Messages
1,251
Location
Akron, OH
quote:
Originally posted by Winston: SNIP BTW I rent cars frequently and would not hesitate to buy a used car from a rental agency. People always say never buy a rental car because people drive the crap out of them. That is rediculous. Why would I drive a rental car any different than I would drive my own car? What am I going to do? Drive it over curbs? Floor it at every stoplight? Slam on the brakes at every stop sign? Why would I do that? I do have more faith that the rental car agency performed maintenance at the recommended intervals than I would have in Joe car owner.
If you were me you would sometimes: 1. Do neutral drops just to hear it squeal. 2. Put it in neutral at 65, floor the gas for five seconds and drop it into "R" with the gas floored. 3. Experiment to see how fast you can be going and have the transmission actually GRAB when you go from "D" to "R". 4. Go through a wet spot repeatedly at full thorttle to try to feel the AWD engage.
 
Messages
23,693
Location
CA
quote:
Originally posted by Fatboymoe: I just rented a car from Enterprize and had to wait for the vehicle because it was being serviced at a local Pep Boys that was right down the street. The tag under the hood said next service due at 32k, which would of been 7.5k miles. The filter was a AC Delco and the oil was Quaker State 5w30.
May I ask what kind of car was this? Sounds like a 3.5L GM V-6 from a Malibu Maxx to me. [Confused] Michael
 
Messages
23,693
Location
CA
quote:
Originally posted by Fatboymoe: Michael Wan, It was a LS model with the 3.4 V6. I didn't drive it much but seemed to be a good basic vehicle. I think I drove it about 20 miles.
If it is indeed the Malibu Maxx, then it only comes with the 3.5L, 200HP V6. How did you know it was Quaker State 5w-30? Didn't know that Pep Boys had a "print out" oil change sticker. Quite surprised that they used an AC Delco Filter (Pep Boys has those?)...wonder why they wouldn't just use a Proline. BTW, my local Enterprise on Florin Rd. and Power Inn Rd. in Sacramento have their own service center. [Confused] Michael
 
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