Extended drain/interval questions for my cars

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816
Location
McGregor TX
First, let me say I just found this site a few weeks ago and it is awesome! I wish I had found it years ago. I have looked at lots of UOAs and done lots of searches. Nevertheless, I still want to pose this question to the group about my two vehicles and extended drains. FYI, I live in Texas. Vehicle #1: 1997 Pontiac Trans Sport minivan with 3.4L V6. I switched to the regular 10W30 AMSOIL on 5/21/02 (60K miles) for the first time. I did the normal engine flush procedure prior to this. I ran this oil for about 10 1/2 months and 10,500 miles with a filter change midway through. I used AMSOIL filters. I didn't do a UOA (never occurred to me). I changed to the regular 5W30 AMSOIL and have been running that for a couple of months now. Everything is fine with the vehicle and I have about 72K miles on it now. I know these engines are notorious for their coolant leaks, but I've had the intake manifold replaced (new design) prior to this last oil change. Anyway, my question is, is it pretty safe to contiue with these intervals using the regular AMSOIL? I know that the only sure fire way is to do a UOA, but I was hoping not to have to do that. Does 10-12K miles on AMSOIL seem reasonable? Vehicle #2: 2002 Toyota Tacoma, 3.4L V6. I changed the oil/filter at 1500 miles with conventional oil and then switched to AMSOIL XL-7500 5W30 (purchased prior to the reformulation to Group III basestocks) at 5000 miles. I ran it for 6 months/7100 miles and did another oil/filter change again with the same XL-7500 which is in there now. I have the regular 5W30 AMSOIL on the shelf ready for the next change and am planning to do once/year changes. This truck will probably get between 8-10K miles per year with a fair number of short trips. I use AMSOIL oil filters. Remember this is supposedly NOT one of the sludging Toyota engines. Here are my real concerns/questions: 1) Is it safe to continue with AMSOIL at the frequency/rate I am changing it now? I am basically following the AMSOIL guidelines. 2) Would it be better to say, use Mobil 1/Napa Gold filter and change both vehicles at the maximum mileage recommended in the manual (7500 miles for both)? That is really what I am struggling with. Mobil would be a little more convenient to purchase and the intervals wouldn't be THAT much shorter. But I've really heard/read good things about AMSOIL and have no complaints thus far. My main motivations are (1) doing what's best for the engines balanced with (2) not having to crawl under my cars any more often than necessary. HELP!!!! I've got too much information (if that is possible). David McGregor, TX [ July 11, 2003, 11:08 AM: Message edited by: mrdctaylor ]
 
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47,786
Location
Everson WA - Pacific NW USA
Well you really answered your own question(s). An analysis is really the BEST way to give you the kind of information you need. I wouldn't sweat the filter brand. Change to a less costly one if you like and change a bit more often. I think with those intervals you'll be OK as long as the engines are mechanically sound (ie no coolant leakage) Especially with the full synthetic.
 
Messages
413
Location
Marietta, GA
As far as intervals, I went a year with Amsoil 5w-30 and the Amsoil SDF filter (changed at 6 months)on a 2k Maxima and 1994 Altima. The analysis said the oil looked like a 40 weight in both cars. Amsoil tends to thicken as it gets older. I am scaling back to 8-9 months, 9 months maximum. Try a 9 month interval, with a SDF filter change at 4.5 months. I personally use Bosch filter ($5.50 best bang for $$$) because the SDF applications for my vehicles are not to my liking; Maxima SDF13 is too small and Altima SDF84 came loose and was not the best filter in class (M1 is better for my car). That being said, the SDF line of filters is one of best on the market. Hope that helps.
 

mrdctaylor

Thread starter
Messages
816
Location
McGregor TX
I re-read my posting and part of it was a little misleading as to what I was asking. I wrote: "Would it be better to say, use Mobil 1/Napa Gold filter and change both vehicles at the maximum mileage recommended in the manual (7500 miles for both)?" What I REALLY meant was: Would it be better to use Mobil 1 OIL combined with a Napa Gold filter at 7500 mile intervals? Or would it be better to stick with AMSOIL at the 1 yr intervals? I see now that most people would read that as asking should I use a M1 or a Napa filter, which was not my intent. Thanks in advance!
 
Messages
413
Location
Marietta, GA
quote:
Originally posted by mrdctaylor: What I REALLY meant was: Would it be better to use Mobil 1 OIL combined with a Napa Gold filter at 7500 mile intervals? Or would it be better to stick with AMSOIL at the 1 yr intervals?
You could go 6 months/7,500 miles with Mobil 1 and an M1 filter. The Napa/Wix filter would last 3-4 months/5,000 miles; a filter change would be necessary during the cycle preferrably at the 3 month/half way mark. If you use Amsoil, 5w-30 works just fine. Mobil 1 is on the thin side and it burns off and you might have to add 1/4 to 1/2 quart (excluding a filter change) in a 6 month interval. Since you are in Texas, I would use the Mobil 10w-30. This information is based on my use of both oils. I started with Mobil 1 and switched to Amsoil for the longer drain interval. Even though your Toyota is not a 3.0 V6 with known sludging, I would not go over 6 months without doing a UOA at that point.
 

mrdctaylor

Thread starter
Messages
816
Location
McGregor TX
Really? Normal filters won't hold up 7500 miles? Its odd that my Toyota recommends 7500 mile intervals for normal conditions (as does my minivan). If I've got to change the filter sooner than that forget it...I might as well stay with AMSOIL. Does anyone out there do 1 year intervals on a Toyota 3.4L?
 
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