Brand new car....Want to do 1st oil change.

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187
Location
California
I just purchased a new (2003) Chevy Impala LS.It has the 200HP 3.8V6 .The oil filler cap and the owners manual both say to use 10W-30 oil.They do not specify or say to use Dino or Synthetic. In my other cars ( late 60's BBC Chevelle and a late 70's Olds 305 V8).... I have been useing Kendall GT1 oils with as best as I can tell great success.Both run great. The typical ambient air temp in my region is lows in the 40's F and highs in the summer in the high 90's F during the summer.Only a couple nights a year during winter will the temps even get into the 30'sF at night...So it really doesnt get very cold here. I live only a few miles from work and never need to hit the freeways to get there.So it's alot of side street stop and go driving. This engine has only around 400 miles on it and would like to get the origional oil out and change the filters...Both air and oil.... very dusty at work....I have to admit I do change change the oil and filters frequiently in my other cars.Will definatly do the same with the Impala. Can someone suggest weather the Kendall GT1 that I use in my other cars is ok for this use or should I use something else? A store around the corner from work carries Fram and K&N filters...or should I use Wix or OE filters ?? Any help appreciated...Thanks.
 

JHZR2

Staff member
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45,653
Location
New Jersey
Congrations on your purchase, everyone I talk to that has one of those cars loves them. Interesting that your car reccomends 10w-30... They tout your car as havign the best mileage of any of the full size cars, so I would have guessed they would push it as much as they could by using 5w-30 oils. dino/synth choice is a personal one. Use what you would like. You don't libve in an area where flow properties, which are superior with synth oils matter much. Synth oils give a bit better protection in general, and are definitely superior at extended length drains, cold weather, etc. Dinos are cheaper, and if you like to change every 3000, then use it. If you want to use your oil monitor, and be confident with it, then I would go synthetic (unless the oil change monitor is just a countdown from 3k miles, in whichcase it isnt really 'monitoring' the oil. My father has used kendall oil in his toyota for tens of thousands of miles now. he has 145k+, changes it every 5-7500 miles, and has not had any trouble at all. There isnt much info on this site about kendall, so I cant say if it has moly in it, but if you liek the oil and have had good luck with it, and if you plan to not go for extended drains without supporting the idea with oil analysis (so youre sure its still protecting), then go with it. As fior other brands, if youre so inclined, I have seen a lot of chevy dealers using pennzoil, and it is one of the best dino oils that you can buy. Has moly in it, good cold flow properties, and protects well. Castrol GTX has good formulation, and shows good wear numbers, but doesnt have as good cold flow properties. You could go with mobil drive clean, and mix in a few quarts of mobil1 in the winter if you would liek to go with synthetic. Or, you could just use straight mobil 1, which, if you were to go synthetic and want a commonly available one, is the way to go. Regarding filters, I'd avoid fram. I dont knwo much about K&N, so wont say anything. I like AC delco, and also like wal-mart's supertech filters. The AC and supertech filters are both usually pretty cheap, and do quite well, so thats what Id personally use (or an AC delco ultraguard gold, if you can find them for your car and want to pay ~8). Hope this helps, JMH [ March 23, 2003, 05:31 PM: Message edited by: JHZR2 ]
 
Messages
3,202
Location
Far North East Texas
I'm not familiar with Kendall GT-1 oil, but if you've gotten good service out of your other cars with it, surely it's at least an OK oil. For a good off-the-shelf dino oil, I'd probably pick Pennzoil or Castrol. Filter? I'd avoid Frams, & the K&N is expen$ive. A Wix or AC-Delco should give you a good balance of flow & filtration, both have good construction too. Locally, AC's cost $4 normal price, occasionally on sale for half of that. Maybe the dealership where you bought your Impala will make you a good price on the AC's?
 
Messages
226
Location
Virginia
I just changed the oil in my new LS after 4 months at 1200 miles, using Pennzoil 10-30 and a Walmart filter, for breakin to get the factory fill out that had been thru a colder than usual winter season. I will change mine every 6 months from now on using the same dino since I will only put about 6K miles/yr. on this vehicle but plan to keep it 10-12 yrs. I won't be going with GM's recommendation to follow the oil life monitor or change once a year. I wouldn't consider syn unless I lived in a colder climate or had much higher mileage. I have had good experience with GM vehicles by doing maintenance twice as often as recommended.
 

Calvin

Thread starter
Messages
187
Location
California
Thanks for the replys. Yes so far I do really like the car.Hate to say this is the first front wheel drive car I have ever owned but I really am quite pleased so far. I must admit I'm new to learning all the little details about oil.This site has really opened up my eyes as to various oils and what they are made of ect ect...I certinally cant say that I understand all of it... New language to learn so to speak....I still dont have it all in my mind as to what spec's each oil has and what is " better " than something else...So I do appreciate the help from you far more expirenced people. So I guess I'll try the Kendall GT-1 10W-30 and maybe the AC filters.... I guess if frequient oil and filter changes should take care of most problems anyway... I doubt I'll go much more than 1500 miles between changes anyway....That will likely take 4 months to get that mileage due to my fast commute time.
 

JHZR2

Staff member
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45,653
Location
New Jersey
[i]So I guess I'll try the Kendall GT-1 10W-30 and maybe the AC filters.... I guess if frequient oil and filter changes should take care of most problems anyway... I doubt I'll go much more than 1500 miles between changes anyway....That will likely take 4 months to get that mileage due to my fast commute time.[\i] [b]Sounds like a good plan, Id definitely feel safe with the kendall 10w30 in your climate... sounds liek a good schedule, about what Ill do with my truck from now on, I think... The other option which you might think about, since apparently you do short trips and dontdrive far, is to switch to mobil1 0w-40 or mobil delvac 1 5w-40, both being really great synthetic oils with a very strong additive package, which should lasst you a whole year based upon yhour mileage (probably change the filter halfway though). These oils are thinner when cold, so you wont waste as much gas with a cold engine, and thicker when hot, so you might get a bit of better protection. Its really all about the extended drain though... Im thinking of going this route with the 0w40 in my truck which gets used with about the same miles/year as you anticipate... JMH[\b]
 
Messages
12
Location
NJ
Wow havn't hit this forum in a while! Anyway, getting back to your question the popular concensus I believe is that Fram filters are actually sub-par in the quality department. Poor drainback seals don't do well to hold oil in the engine and cardboard endcaps permit much oil to bypass the actual media. My personal opinion after disecting several Fram filters is that they are of very poor construction. Your car may be an exception though. Does that vehicle use GM's increasingly popular cartridge type filter or a traditional screw on type? The cartridge type filter would by design defeat many of the construction defecits of Fram's screw on filters, and in such case may be very effective given that the media is of good quality with adequate surface area. This may in fact be worthy of dicussion on it's own, with the design being relatively new (for GM) and not much information on the subject. My impression of the design is good as it decreases waste and allows for easy inspection of the filter for contaminants and metal, although the cartridge itself is disappointingly small.
 
Hi, my name is Jr and I'm going to be getting a 2005 impala ls with 3.8 litre to. I to was wondering what oil would this engine like. I am a ford guy so I have no ideal what oils these 3.8's like or how they are to oil. I was thinking of using rotella t 5W-40. Other then that I always use motorcraft oils. I think that I will be using ac oil filters. Are ac's good if not what filters are better.
 
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2,768
Location
Tn
quote:
Originally posted by JR: Hi, my name is Jr and I'm going to be getting a 2005 impala ls with 3.8 litre to. I to was wondering what oil would this engine like. I am a ford guy so I have no ideal what oils these 3.8's like or how they are to oil. I was thinking of using rotella t 5W-40. Other then that I always use motorcraft oils. I think that I will be using ac oil filters. Are ac's good if not what filters are better.
JR, my flame suit is on because I'm trying to help a fellow 3800 owner. I have a Ford modular also. The 3800 is more tolerant of the xW-40's, but the Rotella would not be a good choice, imho. I would go with an xW-30. Thicker just gets more sluggish performance and reduced fuel economy. I use GC 0W-30 [Big Grin] The 40wts. don't have a benefit, imho. Hard to beat the value of an AC Delco for a normal, short oci. Wix is good. If you get into extended drains you may want to explore other options. Any good xW30, including left-over Motorcraft would be ok. Justifying a synthetic will be up to you, but xW-30's work well.
 
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9,448
Location
USA
Yes you will be fine. The 3800 is not that picky about it's oil. In your climate you can run 10W30 or 15W40 with no problem. I have ran everything from 5W30 up to 15W40 and find that it like thicker 10W30 and 15W40. I run the 10W30 in the winter and 15W40 in the summer here in Michigan. My engine has 123,000 miles and burns you oil. I have a 97 Buick LeSaber with the 3800 and it calls for 10W30 on my cap and in the owners manual.
 
I have been thinking a little more and looking around and I think that I will choose mobil 1 truck and suv 5W-40 year around and if money is short at oc in the summer I am goin with mobil delvac 1300 Super 15W-40. and I have choosen to stick with a ac delco filter.
 
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