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Sep 4, 2002
I know someone that had a 1992 Buick with a 3.8 liter engine. She just got rid of the car with 461,000 miles on it. She had it since new. Oil and filter changes @ 3000 miles with Pennzoil 10W-30 dino oil. No engine work done during the entire time. Makes me wonder why I bother to use synthetic oil. Of course, most of these miles were highway miles.

90% of us on here are fanatical, thats a fact. If you change your oil every 3k, synthetic is not needed. The 3.8L V6 is one tough engine too.
Thats 154 oil changes (using 5 qts), 154 oil filters and about 768 qts of oil. Assuming about $25 average per oil changes, thats about $3850+.

Most all of that oil most likely could have easily gone 5000 miles minimum and that would = about 92 oil changes and filters, 461 qts of oil and about $2300.

To me she wasted $1500 and if you were using synthetic oil and increasing you drain intervals to 7500, 10,000 or beyond, think of the $$ savings.

Everyone ignores these comparisions.

If you going to change your oil every 3,000 miles and use synthetic, you are dumping good oil and money down the drain. Better off the stick with Supertech.

[ October 04, 2003, 11:50 AM: Message edited by: Mike ]
No doubt about it. Those early 90's (maybe even 1988-1989) GM 3.8's were one tough motor!! My brother-in-law had a 1989 buick park ave with the 3.8 that gave him just under 300Kmi without ever opening up the engine or transaxle!! Nothing but cheap dino. If finally rusted to the point he couldnt keep it together anymore.

Originally posted by labman:
It is hard to call anything a waste that gave 461K.

But it is a waste if they still would've gotten 461k out of it with 4k intervals or 5k intervals. Think of all the wasted time and money there!

One of the worst offenders I've come across lately is one fellow on the Corvette forum who admits to getting his oil changed every 1000 miles at the fast lube place! So he's really spending far too much money on oil changes!

You have to look at the bigger picture here, through oil analysis you can determine a safe oil change interval that isn't pushing the oil too far, but at the same time isn't at the point where you're taking the oil out far too early.

Originally posted by Mike:

Everyone ignores these comparisions.


the Real cost of Oil doesn't stop there, figure milage etceteras, yes youre 1,000,000,000,000% right, most don't ever even try to figure the real cost and always do ignore ANY real world figures. The only way to prove it to your own self is to do an acutal study, keep records....
The results may surprise this board.... Hummmm!
Don't worry about those Vette guys, they have too much time and money both.
Fast lube places??lol
Yep, thats where most of them go, then drive 6 blocks to the A+W.
I figured out the other day that I could cash in my railroad pension, sell one of my houses and buy 8-10 C5s.
But no, I'd rather build my own fast cars, and drive beater pick-ups.
Ya know what I'm driving right now? A 77 Chev PU 250 I-6 three on the tree I bought for $300.00 7 years ago. It suits me.
The dog likes to watch the road through the holes in the floor.
And I don't have to lock the truck downtown.
To start the thing I turn the key to ON, then touch two wires together that are taped to the dash.
Now to keep this ON TOPIC, it took a few oil changes in that old PU, before the oil stayed clean for more than 200 miles. Now I can go 4000 miles before my UOA, which is when the oil looks dark on the dip stick, between changes.
If I had bought a new truck 7 years ago at 4% financing, the cost of borrowing alone, would have exceeded the cost of 1000 mile oil changes for 60,000 miles, by a factor of about 10:1.
The person who drove their car 350,000 miles and spent $3,500.00 on oil changes is far ahead of the game IMO.

[ October 05, 2003, 03:16 PM: Message edited by: userfriendly ]
I have a 2001 GMC E.C. 4x4 5.3L that was new in Nov. 2000. I have only changed the oil 3 times since. Once when I got it home and switched to synthetic, then every November since.

Nov 2000 done
Nov 2001 done
Nov 2002 done
Nov 2003 pending

40,000 miles using 0W-40. No oil consumption

I have over 25 yrs of track record using synthetic oil and have been doing the same thing since.

Each synthetic oil change cost me about $45 x 3 = 129.60
At 3000 mile petro intervals $25 x 13 x $25 = $325.00
(figures are approximate but within few $ of actual).

Will I ever get 400,000 miles out of this truck. Hardly a chance, at 10,000 miles a year it will take me 36 yrs and I will be 92 yo. So for me to change oil at any less would be wasting my retirement $$.

All these in my fleet are on the once a year no matter the miles schedule
2002 Ponitac Tran Am
2001 GMC 4x4

1993 Lumina
1992 Chev Silverado 4x4.

[ October 06, 2003, 10:15 AM: Message edited by: Mike ]

Originally posted by Patman:
Originally posted by labman:
[qb] You have to look at the bigger picture here, through oil analysis you can determine a safe oil change interval that isn't pushing the oil too far, but at the same time isn't at the point where you're taking the oil out far too early.
This is true. However, after about two years on this Board I have yet to hear of anyone actually accomplishing this. What I do see is a consistent pattern of trying different oils, different weights in search of the holy grail and never establishing a trend with one oil and never stopping to say, hey this is it. It doesn't get any better.

I have used one oil prior to visiting this board and still use the same oil and weight because I haven't seen anything to alter my mind on what I use and I don't think I will live to see the full mileage of any vehicle I own regardless of the oil used.

[ October 06, 2003, 11:04 AM: Message edited by: Spector ]
It's not the end-all of consistant oil servicing, but my female friend used Mobil 1 (5w-30?) once-a-year in her turbo Audi 4cyl.
5 years and 60,000 miles, her dipstick and valve-cover are super clean. Consumption is zero. Her brother-in-law bought a similar car used, 5000 miles yearly and dealer Castrol GTX with SHORT commutes, his dipstick is severly corroded and pitted.
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