Chronic Dealer Overfill?

Messages
219
Location
Detroit
Purchased a '93 Corvette Saturday and drove her home from Milwaukee to Detroit. Ran sweet. Fluids checked by dealer supposedly before sale. I get home and check the oil next day and it's a fair amount over max so I check around and see that the LT1 engine takes 5 quarts with filter. Checking thru paper receipts given by seller I see several oil change bills from a Chevy dealer who put in 6 quarts every time (Mobil 1) the oil was changed. Does the chevy dealer know somthing I don't? Or were the idiots at the dealership thinking all vette's were LS1's which do take 6 qts. I have a feeling this car has been overfilled for a couple years (3k/year). What problems should I look for/expect from this? I changed immediately to 5 qts Amsoil HDD S3K 5W-30 and a EaO filter. Dipstick reads full. I can't believe the incompetancy of the dealership in WI making such a dumb, boner mistake EVERY time the car was taken in for service. Kinda removes all faith in dealers. Thanks for listening, Craig
 

Craig

Thread starter
Messages
219
Location
Detroit
Oh, I usually always check all fluids when buying a car. However as it was -9 degrees out I neglected to do so as the seller had that day taken the car into the Chevy dealership for a new battery and complete fluid check prior to my purchase. Craig
 
Messages
24,382
Location
Central Florida
Craig, There are some places (quick lubes & dealerships) that don't go by the Factory specs when changing the oil and filter. For example.....regardless of the type of engine. 4 cyl - they put 4 quarts 6 cyl - they put 5 quarts 8 cyl - they put 6 quarts I ran across this same situation 10 years ago when I took my wife's Altima to a Mobil quick lube and they overfilled the engine with 4.5 quarts of oil (needs 3.5) When I asked the manager if they even look at the dip stick after they add oil, he said NO. Because for any 4 cyl engine...."We always put in 4 quarts, sometimes it a bit more" They figure a little extra oil won't hurt and the engine will naturally consume some oil over the OCI. I'm sure you can't wait for the weather to warm up so you can drop the top and enjoy your Vette. [Smile]
 
Messages
1,910
Location
Vista, CA
Anything more complicated and they would have to get someone besides the lot boy to do the oil changes. A guy that can tell the differenc between a 4, 6 or 8 cylinder engine is on his way to becoming a mechanic. He just needs your car for his inservice training. Once they get counting to 4, 6 and 8 it's on to transmission flushing and on up the ladder. Besure to drop your car off. Don't hold up the training because you're worried about nit picking details.
 
Messages
11,372
Location
Florida, Cape Coral
I love it Larryl; So funny if it were not true. My son-in-law had a Pizza driver who couldn't count change, like $9.85 out of $20. So they tried him washing dishes and that didn't work so, they let him go. One week later he was the head lub. monkey at our local Jiffy Lub.
 
Messages
4,478
Location
Southern California
The next week, manager. Now he's at Corporate with a corner office on the 35th floor. His first executive decision? 4 cyl.: 4 quarts 6 cyl.: 5 quarts 8 cyl.: 6 quarts The circle of life...
 
Messages
2,233
Location
Wisconsin
quote:
Checking thru paper receipts given by seller I see several oil change bills from a Chevy dealer who put in 6 quarts every time (Mobil 1) the oil was changed.
In some cases, where the motor oil is not dispensed from bulk oil tanks, 6 full quart bottles are pulled from the shelf & 5.5 quarts actually make it into the customer's crankcase. The 1/2 quart left in the last bottle becomes a freebie for a mechanic or one of the other dealership employees who uses M1 brand oil. I'm not pulling your leg, we get reports of this practice a couple times a year! [Smile]
 
Good thing I change my own oil... My 2.2L 4cyl Ecotec takes 5 quarts and even then it barely touches the dipstick. I add about a half of another quart and it hits full dipstick reading. So 4 quarts of oil would be quite low... What are the effects to an engine being a quart low (in my case) vs a quart high (Craig's case)?
 
Messages
73
Location
Fairbanks, AK
Craig, it's not uncommon for Chevy owners to put 6 qts in a 5qt oilpan. Add a larger filter and it won't raise the level in you pan very much. I put 6 in my Z-28, it takes 5.5 for a normal oil change. There is some good info at www.ls1tech.com that will relate to your LT1.
 
Messages
4,872
Location
MN
Likely the dealer is not putting in a full 6 quarts but more like 5-1/4 or 5-1/2, therefor they charge for the extra quart. Books can be wrong and so can checking techniques, and my personal favorite, leaving an ounce or more in the bottle. -T
 
Messages
118
Location
DFW area, TX
With all due respect, you might be highly surprised at the multitude of differences of engine oil capacities in modern cars and light trucks. It's not NEARLY as simple as it was back when most cars had a "5 quart oil w/filter" oil change! In some cases, you might need to check the vehicle's VIN to see what year of production it might be! Now that we now have cast aluminum oil pans on many motors, it further complicates things unless the factory designers take some pains to make things easy as they formulate those shapes and capacities. Not to mention factory costs saved by that .5 quart decrease in capacity for some engines. Most GM dealers will stock Mobil 1 in the 6-quart package/case. This means that many times the owner will pay for .5 quart more oil than they actually get. IF it was in the bulk drums, the amount can be more accurately dispensed. Yet stocking it in the case packaging can better control the inventory of the (used to be) $7.95/quart product versus the lower priced dino oil in bulk. Many times, the dealership lube techs know more about how much oil each vehicle needs rather than the parts people (with all due respect) who are the ones doing the invoicing on the repair order (typically). Some dealership service price menus are "standardized" so that you pay a flat price regardless of how much dino oil the vehicle might take (excluding diesels and Mobil 1 situations). I've seen some repair orders where, over time, the same vehicle would have 5 quarts or 6 quarts charged out on them, yet I fully suspect that was a parts invoicing error rather than a lube tech "fill error". Key thing is to be an informed shopper and consumer and make sure you get what you paid for in each situation. If they charged you for an extra quart and the dipstick verifies that, kindly let them remedy the situation and then verify the correction--especially at a dealership where they should know better. At a chain lube center, you might specify the amount of oil the vehicle takes when the repair order is written up, so that it appears on the job ticket the technician gets with the vehicle--might not be a bad idea ANYWHERE (then making sure it happens that way too, after the vehicle sits for about 5 minutes on a level surface). In checking oil, some engines need to sit longer than others. This can be important too, in determining actual oil level in the crankcase. Just some thoughts, CBODY67
 

Craig

Thread starter
Messages
219
Location
Detroit
Upon returning from Milwaukee after a 7 hour drive the oil was way over on the dipstick. I think the engine really takes about 4.75 qts with filter. Thanks for your replies, Craig
 
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