Help me choose: 1990 Honda Accord

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Sep 17, 2003
I am picking up a 1990 Honda Accord LX today with 160K on the clock. What would you all recommend? I have already picked up a WIX filter for it today and I'd like to stick with a dino, either "normal" or "high mileage". This one is coming off a used car lot and from being inspected twice by two different people, it doesn't seem to be leaking. I believe Honda recommends 5w30, but with this mileage would it be wise to move to 10w30? Any thoughts? Thanks!
I have had great luck with Castrol and Castrol High Mileage oil, in higher mileage engines. If there is a leak, which at this point doesn't seem to be the case, Valvoline MaxLife has done the best (and only) leak repairing of the high mileage oils for us. But the Castrol seems to be the best at awesome oil pressure, quiet engine operation and long term stability. There was one UOA on a Honda CRV with Castrol High Mileage 10/30 and nearly 10,000 miles on the OCI. It had done an exceptional job, in fact still having some active additive in it. Not a recommendation to run that long, but it sure worked well in that honda! 5/30 or 10/30? If you drive nicely and take care of the vehicle, 5W-30 should be just fine. If the car is using a lot of oil or it gets really hot, the 10W-30 is a good choice, too. If you use the Castrol HM, the 5W-30 does have a heavier 30wt, so staying with the 5/30 in that particular should be fine. There are others with more experience that may have better info, but that has been our experiences. Oh, and if you want to stick with regular oil, that should be just fine...the HM oils are even better. If you don't mind spending a little more, I would really recommend the HM oils. Good luck with your new vehicle!! Being a Honda, 160000 is still a youngster.
The older Accord engines have a history of running many miles, well past 200K, some past 400K. Our 87 Accord was at 165K when we sold it, sadly, but it was starting to rust in key areas. the engine was in great shape, used very little oil, maybe 6 oz. between changes, and MPG was excellent. If the engine is in good condition, based on our experience, I would be comfortable continuing to run dino 5W-30. You might consider an Auto-RX treatment to do a gentle cleaning of the engine (see next section of the board). Ongoing, adding some "Molabrew" (Shaeffers #132 and Lube Control (LC)) is one approach to keeping the engine clean, helping to reduce oxidation of the oil and improving the additive pack. We run dino Pennzoil in our Honda. Many people on this board also like Castrol GTX, Havoline, and Chevron Supreme in 5W-30. I strongly recommend keeping an eye on the transmission fluid, changing every 15-20K, using Honda ATF only. Transmissions from that generation of Accords have been reported to have problems with other brands of ATF. We never had a problem with ours, using Honda ATF. Good luck, many happy miles!
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