Talk me out of changing....

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Mar 24, 2003
Niles, IL
...the oil in my 4.7L Toyota. I have 3K miles on the current oil, M1 10W-30 with M1 filter. The vehicle has 12K miles, and I had planned to go 6K on this oil before changing and doing an analysis. However, when I recently checked the oil it looked visually dirty. Since I have been changing my dino oil every 3K for the last 30 years, my natural reaction is to do an oil change now. But, from reading this site, I know I should be able to go with a longer drain interval. Is a dark colored oil a reason to change, or am I just an old dog trying to learn a new trick?
Just go 4500 miles then. If you get the itching for draining then do it at 4500. Then maybe something will come up and you will need to wait a week, alas 5000 miles, might as well change it. No need to change m1 before 5000 miles. [Smile]
Stick with your original plan, 6000 miles. Color is no indicator of oil condition, unless it is milky from water contamination. Doesn't Toyota recommend 7,500 mile intervals on conventional oil anyway? The 4.7 is not a known sludge motor.
I agree with Jimbo. Trust the oil, not its color. Given PAOs' resistance to oxidation and varnishing, it's doubtful your Toyota V8's really sludging up at all. I'd guess that the color is largely a result of blow-by, and it'll get darker just by virtue of the passage of more time. The dark color just indicates the detergent/dispersant additive's doing its job. But <i>do</i> take a sample and get an analysis when you finally change oil to compare the numbers with other UOAs to be sure. In the very unlikely event that the numbers <i>are</i> an indictment of poor oil performance, you can always go back to 3,000 mile intervals on a good quality mineral oil such as Pennzoil, Mobil DC, Chevron Supreme, Castrol, etc. I don't see the point of using a pricey synthetic and changing every 3,000 miles, though. To me, that only proves the owner has more dollars than sense.
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