Mileage vs. Time

Messages
46
Location
KY
I have what is possibly an odd question pertaining to oil. Our climate controlled garage contains a 2008, 4.6L Mustang and a 2008, 5.4L F150 (crew cab). I use Motorcraft 5w-20 synthetic blend and the corresponding Motorcraft filter at 5,000 mile oil change intervals. I presume this oil change interval is acceptable as it is the interval for special operating conditions. We drive short trips of 16 to 45 miles one way and occasionally the truck pulls a light trailer, but not often. Currently these vehicles are not driven daily and have accumulated only 3,000 miles each in the last 14 months. Does the oil need changed due to time sitting in the oil pan or is it still OK till the 5,000 mile mark?
 
Messages
2,046
Location
Jupiter, Fl
I would be inclined to change annually in this usage. Probably not required since you are not doing exceptionally short trips. I have often wondered, if a car is sitting parked in a garage for days or weeks, does time stop for it? Other than the slow degradation of rubber and plastic parts?
 
Messages
19,528
Location
Lake Forest, CA
Think about this: 1 year oil change at a cost of $20-25 is not much to worry about. If you extend oil change interval to 2 years because of low mileage accumulate in a year, you are saving about $10-12 a year or $1 a month. Saving $1 a month is not enough for me to think if I should or should not change the oil.
 
Messages
3,694
Location
Chattanooga, TN
You drive over 10 miles once that engine is started so the oil does heat up. Other than trailing tower once in a while not severe conditions. I have similar situation and go 12-15 months between changes. A lot of people mention cheap insurance. So, also assume that have a 20 million liability umbrella on their possessions as this is also cheap ins. yea, but do you need 20 million? Same issue, do you need to change the oil every year with low miles and non severe conditions simply because it is cheap ins, probably not.
 
Messages
7,180
Location
CT
My rule of thumb is at least once a year, regardless of the mileage on cars that are not driven. I did the oil a few times on my Mercedes when it only had a few hundred miles on it. Unless the motor is in storage, ie pickled and not run the oil should be changed at least every 12 months. Even if the car was started simply to move it around.
 
Messages
3,496
Location
VA
My Marauder's oil was changed 11 months ago, now has just over a 1000 miles... At this rate, it'll be some time late in '12 before I change it again... No it doesn't get short tripped, generally runs at least 30 hard minutes when I take it out...
 
Messages
645
Location
US/UK
Originally Posted By: pburchett
I have what is possibly an odd question pertaining to oil. Our climate controlled garage contains a 2008, 4.6L Mustang and a 2008, 5.4L F150 (crew cab). I use Motorcraft 5w-20 synthetic blend and the corresponding Motorcraft filter at 5,000 mile oil change intervals. I presume this oil change interval is acceptable as it is the interval for special operating conditions. We drive short trips of 16 to 45 miles one way and occasionally the truck pulls a light trailer, but not often. Currently these vehicles are not driven daily and have accumulated only 3,000 miles each in the last 14 months. Does the oil need changed due to time sitting in the oil pan or is it still OK till the 5,000 mile mark?
My last oil change was 4.200 miles ago in January 2010. I change my oil at 5,000 mile intervals because that's what Ford recommend. Then again, car is always garaged, I don't do short trips and this environment is one of the major reasons I use oil/filter in my sig.
 
Messages
4,564
Location
NW Ohio
Bpurchett: In a great environment like you describe, the oil can't tell time. I go 18 months to three year intervals on a variety of cars, trucks (including an '05 F150), farm tractors and small engines. I slowly increased the intervals and verified by UOA... all good (you can see many of them by checking my posts). Unless the storage situation is poor, or the vehicles are short hopped, dumping oil by time is pretty much a waste of money and resources. There are caveats to that of course, including the two mentioned above, but the oxidation rate of oil in a reasonably well controlled environment is very slow. One to three years is very doable. There are UOAs here on 20 year old oil that was still usable I challenge all the people who use the old "cheap insurance" cliche need to find better arguments. Money and time is yours to waste. Recreational maintenance... I understand brutha, you have to fight it one day at a time. Legitimate factors that dictate a time limit, sure... it shows you thought about it. But on it's own, "Cheap Insurance" as justification just doesn't cut the mustardo.
 
Messages
23,782
Location
Dallas,Tx USA
I always do the 3/3000 thing. That`s what Nissan says to do and I want to possibly keep my Z forever,even when I eventually buy a new car. I`ll just garage it and drive it only on occasion. If I were to get a new primary vehicle,it would be a truck,either a Nissan or Toyota,and keep the Z as my "fun" car.
 
Messages
5,705
Location
WatUpDoc
In your app I'd probably do 1 year max as my limits, for comfort I'd change every 9 months and sample, then change based on my UOA results after seeing 2-3 samples; including one at 6 months without an oil change and another at 9 months to determine if I wanted to go the full year and leave it in or not.
 
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