Which Oil and Filter, and Why

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Originally Posted By: jk_636
Emotions and suppositions eh?
Well, if not, then what do you base your OCI/FCIs on--since it is clear they are far under utilized at 5-7K? Here is the data that I use.
 
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Originally Posted By: 2010_FX4
Originally Posted By: jk_636
What is this phrase, "over maintaining?" confused If having a strict maintenance schedule is "over maintaining" then I am guilty as charged, but I do not understand the negative connotation you place on preventative maintenance. I dont buy new vehicles every five years like many Americans. When I take delivery of a vehicle, I am going to keep it for the long haul. You say I am "over maintaining," but in reality, I am taking proactive measures to keep my vehicle running at optimum efficiency and prepare it for the long service life that lies ahead.
I, like you, bought my 2010 FX4 brand new for the long haul, however, the difference is that I am using hard core data to determine the maintenance window as opposed to (what you seem to suggest) as a "feel good seat of the pants" maintenance window (unless you have some data you have not shared). While UOAs do not show actual engine wear, they do show the wear metals and silicon levels generated in the oil. Take a look at all of the Pennzoil Ultra OCs (which were in the 5-7.5K range) and then look at the OCs which are 10K and above (including the conventional ones) and I think you will find the wear metals are lower per mile on the extended runs versus the shorter ones and in most cases there was still life left in the oil when it was changed. I started my FX4s life thinking that short OCIs with a premium synthetic would be the be-all, end-all to ensuring a long engine life, I have learned from a few veterans here, that in the end, as long as the fluids are not overused, the engine life will remain the same. Thus far, that has held true and I plan to see how long the engine in the FX4 will last doing the same thing I have been for the last 40K or so and that is using a synthetic for the amount of time/mileage as dictated by the data. As a side note, look at the silicon in the UOAs and compare to the age of the air filter, at 80K use on a Napa Gold, I am starting to see a slight uptick on the silicon so I will be changing it soon. While some may say based upon my intervals I am "under maintaining" my FX4, the data clearly shows otherwise. There is a difference between a strict maintenance schedule and simply maintaining a vehicle based upon emotions/supposition--and there is nothing wrong with doing that, but see it for what it is.
Great post. Also, thanks for including your UOA spread sheet in your later post. Good stuff!
 
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I thought the topic was providing advice on an oil/filter combo for a 3K mile OCI in an '05 Silverado with a 5.3 V8? I would recommend QSGB 10w-30 and Pronto filter.
 
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PYB and a Fram Ultra filter for 5k OCI's. PP, Amsoil, or Redline with Royal Purple filter for 10k OCI's.
 
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Any of one of the major oil brands of synthetic ( or even blend ) that meets the spec you need, on sale, throw in a quality filter, take it to the OLM, and live long and prosper. I generally take mine to around 5000 primarily because I like doing a grease job on my 2500 pickup at around that interval ( lots of gravel roads, off road, etc ), so whlle I am under there anyway, I just go ahead and drop the oil and change the filter.
 
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Originally Posted By: jk_636
It seems like many people dont know that it costs money to maintain a vehicle. We refer to it as "cost of doing business." wink $4000 over 21 years (252 months) = $15.87 per month. So now, how "expensive" is it to maintain your vehicle? I bet almost everyone here wastes more than $15 a month on nonsense. When you put the math to it, that argument really doesn't hold water. popcorn2
What do I get in spending $4000 more than I spent on oil and filter over 21 years for my Lexus LS400 with 370+k miles ? Another 21 years and 370k miles from the engine ? The engine is running great as of today, I don't think it runs any better with 3k/3mo OCI's. Spend more in maintenance doesn't always get better result(the engine under valve cover may looks nice and clean with 3k OCI, but I never open the valve cover so I don't know how good or bad my LS400 engine looks like), the only certainty result is lighter wallet.
 
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Originally Posted By: HTSS_TR
Originally Posted By: jk_636
It seems like many people dont know that it costs money to maintain a vehicle. We refer to it as "cost of doing business." wink $4000 over 21 years (252 months) = $15.87 per month. So now, how "expensive" is it to maintain your vehicle? I bet almost everyone here wastes more than $15 a month on nonsense. When you put the math to it, that argument really doesn't hold water. popcorn2
What do I get in spending $4000 more than I spent on oil and filter over 21 years for my Lexus LS400 with 370+k miles ? Another 21 years and 370k miles from the engine ? The engine is running great as of today, I don't think it runs any better with 3k/3mo OCI's. Spend more in maintenance doesn't always get better result(the engine under valve cover may looks nice and clean with 3k OCI, but I never open the valve cover so I don't know how good or bad my LS400 engine looks like), the only certainty result is lighter wallet.
The mathematical argument didn't pan out so now we are switching gears (no pun intended) eh? wink Yes, spending more in maintenance and using quality parts/products DOES equate to a longer service life and better operating efficiency. Unless your car gets attacked by a wildebeast, torched by an angry significant other or gets taken during the rapture. Those might be the only cases when "all that wasted money in maintenance" didnt help the vehicle all that much... grin
 

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Originally Posted By: jk_636
The mathematical argument didn't pan out so now we are switching gears (no pun intended) eh? wink Yes, spending more in maintenance and using quality parts/products DOES equate to a longer service life and better operating efficiency. Unless your car gets attacked by a wildebeast, torched by an angry significant other or gets taken during the rapture. Those might be the only cases when "all that wasted money in maintenance" didnt help the vehicle all that much... grin
So do you swap out balljoints when they reach a certain age or do you wait until they develop play? How about U-joints? Brake rotors? Pads? Do you swap them out at half their serviceable life "just in case"? Oil has a lifespan in service. This can be tracked via UOA. Changing a lubricant that is capable of 10,000 miles in a particular application out at 3,000 miles as "preventative maintenance" is the same as changing any other serviceable part early "just because". It may give you the warm and fuzzies but it is a waste of money and does not extend the life of the engine or vehicle. Of course the terms of a product being serviceable will vary depending on usage profile, power density, operating conditions....etc. This is what OLM's are setup to account for. However following a used oil analysis program to at least get a baseline allows you to determine how far you can safely push a particular oil in your application; how long it is safely serviceable for before degradation begins to happen and it starts to be unable to do its job. Inside that window, it is just like any other wear/service part on your vehicle that has not yet begun to fail. The same goes for air filters. This is why they make restriction gauges, to know when a change is necessary. Opening the intake tract every other oil change invites intake tract contamination and dirt ingestion. Unless you are swapping out your filters in a clean room and washing off the housing to get it surgically clean before removing the old filter, you are letting contamination in.
 
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Originally Posted By: OVERKILL
Originally Posted By: jk_636
The mathematical argument didn't pan out so now we are switching gears (no pun intended) eh? wink Yes, spending more in maintenance and using quality parts/products DOES equate to a longer service life and better operating efficiency. Unless your car gets attacked by a wildebeast, torched by an angry significant other or gets taken during the rapture. Those might be the only cases when "all that wasted money in maintenance" didnt help the vehicle all that much... grin
So do you swap out balljoints when they reach a certain age or do you wait until they develop play? How about U-joints? Brake rotors? Pads? Do you swap them out at half their serviceable life "just in case"? Oil has a lifespan in service. This can be tracked via UOA. Changing a lubricant that is capable of 10,000 miles in a particular application out at 3,000 miles as "preventative maintenance" is the same as changing any other serviceable part early "just because". It may give you the warm and fuzzies but it is a waste of money and does not extend the life of the engine or vehicle. Of course the terms of a product being serviceable will vary depending on usage profile, power density, operating conditions....etc. This is what OLM's are setup to account for. However following a used oil analysis program to at least get a baseline allows you to determine how far you can safely push a particular oil in your application; how long it is safely serviceable for before degradation begins to happen and it starts to be unable to do its job. Inside that window, it is just like any other wear/service part on your vehicle that has not yet begun to fail. The same goes for air filters. This is why they make restriction gauges, to know when a change is necessary. Opening the intake tract every other oil change invites intake tract contamination and dirt ingestion. Unless you are swapping out your filters in a clean room and washing off the housing to get it surgically clean before removing the old filter, you are letting contamination in.
Do I change out components (whether they are engine, suspension, chassis or otherwise) before they wear out as "preventative maintenance?" Absolutely. If something breaks (outside of an accident) it is most likely operator error, and a part that should have been replaced before hand. You shouldn't wait to have a fire in your house BEFORE buying an extinguisher. Oil life monitors and restriction gauges? Only one of my vehicles has an oil life monitor. And right now at a little over 3k miles it says that I have 67% life left (Using Royal Purple.) duh I dont put any stock into what that thing says. What about all that dust that I am letting in when I replace the air filter every 10k miles? Dont be silly, the amount of dust is negligable compared to the amount that filter is pulling from the air. As you said earlier, these things can be substantiated through the use of a UOA. And I have NEVER had a UOA show high levels of anything that could be attributed to airborne contaminants. Ever. coffee Hope that helps. Is my repair schedule a tad OCD...? I dare you to find a member here who isn't!! wink
 

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Originally Posted By: jk_636
Do I change out components (whether they are engine, suspension, chassis or otherwise) before they wear out as "preventative maintenance?" Absolutely. If something breaks (outside of an accident) it is most likely operator error, and a part that should have been replaced before hand. You shouldn't wait to have a fire in your house BEFORE buying an extinguisher.
The extinguisher isn't preventative maintenance though, it is a tool designed to deal with a specific issue, not a good analogy IMHO. Let's specifically talk about brake pads for example, do you replace them when they are half worn? If no, why not?
Originally Posted By: jk_636
Oil life monitors and restriction gauges? Only one of my vehicles has an oil life monitor. And right now at a little over 3k miles it says that I have 67% life left (Using Royal Purple.) duh I dont put any stock into what that thing says.
The OLM is of course calibrated to deal with the "spec" lubricant. If you are using a lubricant that is better than spec the only way to know how much further you can take it is through a Used Oil Analysis regiment. I don't follow my OLM either BTW. BMW is quite liberal with their OLM and my car fuel dilutes when short tripped (as discovered through UOA) so I don't take the lubricant much further than 10,000Km usually because of that. On a car with a less aggressive factory tune, I would posit the stock OCI, with a spec lubricant is quite satisfactory.
Originally Posted By: jk_636
What about all that dust that I am letting in when I replace the air filter every 10k miles? Dont be silly, the amount of dust is negligable compared to the amount that filter is pulling from the air. As you said earlier, these things can be substantiated through the use of a UOA. And I have NEVER had a UOA show high levels of anything that could be attributed to airborne contaminants. Ever. coffee
Of course it is negligible compared to the amount being removed from the filter, LOL smile The point is you are letting in more of it with too frequent changes, something a restriction gauge would allow you to properly monitor. You might be able to get three or four OCI's before the filter needs changing for example. Fewer openings of the airbox means less potential dirt ingress. Just think of the airborne contaminants wink It should give us all nightmares, mwa-hahahahha grin
Originally Posted By: jk_636
Hope that helps. Is my repair schedule a tad OCD...? I dare you to find a member here who isn't!! wink
We are all nuts, yes, no argument from me there. However, each of our approaches is a bit different and often there is method to one's madness. Hopefully the reasons I've outlined above make sense to you. I don't expect them to cause you to change your process, but perhaps it will allow you to better understand where others are coming from on these things cheers
 

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Recently sale oil from Havoline and NAPA syn. 5qts for $10 and $20 respectively. And a QS filter for $1.99. Why? Because I change it every 5k or so and $12 oil filters are overrated.
 
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Originally Posted By: SJohnson
Great post. Also, thanks for including your UOA spread sheet in your later post. Good stuff!
No worries; I am not sure why it did not post in the original.
 
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Originally Posted By: OVERKILL
So do you swap out balljoints when they reach a certain age or do you wait until they develop play? How about U-joints? Brake rotors? Pads? Do you swap them out at half their serviceable life "just in case"?
On some of my vehicles, yes!. I don't wait till the bull gear goes out on my Detroit Series 60 motor. The damage would be wallet busting. There is an average life of this item, so at that point, whether it needs it or not, it gets changed out. Likewise, I change out crankshaft dampers on a schedule basis, again, based on average estimated life and irregardless of whether it needs it or not. There are several other applications where I take a similar approach. An airline doesn't wait till a engine goes out on an airplane before changing out and sending in for rebuild. Just as my Detroit, there is an average service life and the aircraft engine gets changed out at that point, again, whether it needs it or not. So, I change my oil on a basis that fits what I feel is appropriate on my personal vehicles. I could give a rip if it will go longer or not. I have no interest in taking it right up to the edge of useable life. That would also entail numerous oil samples to determine what that useful iife actually is which would add cost and makes just changing it out when I prefer a cost effective proposition. Each motor is different and what might be printed on a marketing paper regarding an oil's useful life in that motor is not rock solid gospel in the real world.
 

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Originally Posted By: TiredTrucker
On some of my vehicles, yes!. I don't wait till the bull gear goes out on my Detroit Series 60 motor. The damage would be wallet busting. There is an average life of this item, so at that point, whether it needs it or not, it gets changed out.
And you are making my point. Certain components have an expected lifespan. Other components have a measurable lifespan like oil and brake pads/rotors.
Originally Posted By: TiredTrucker
Likewise, I change out crankshaft dampers on a schedule basis, again, based on average estimated life and regardless(sp) of whether it needs it or not. There are several other applications where I take a similar approach. An airline doesn't wait till a engine goes out on an airplane before changing out and sending in for rebuild. Just as my Detroit, there is an average service life and the aircraft engine gets changed out at that point, again, whether it needs it or not.
If an engine goes out on an airliner, people die. That's not quite the same as a tie-rod developing some play. Airplane components all have hour-based schedules attached to them based on real data regarding the anticipated usable life of a component and then factoring in a liberal amount of leeway so that failure should never happen. But, as I noted above, and you've stated, many components, particularly in industrial and large commercial settings have hour or mileage based intervals that are set to ensure that the component is changed out BEFORE it has a chance to fail.
Originally Posted By: TiredTrucker
So, I change my oil on a basis that fits what I feel is appropriate on my personal vehicles. I could give a rip if it will go longer or not.
But you must acknowledge that "what you feel" is not in any way the same as the intervals determined through extensive testing and statistics for the other examples you've cited earlier in this post.
Originally Posted By: TiredTrucker
I have no interest in taking it right up to the edge of useable life.
Nor do I. I keep it well within the safe range leaving a sufficient margin. But that still means I change my oil far less frequently than the individual I was responding to.
Originally Posted By: TiredTrucker
That would also entail numerous oil samples to determine what that useful iife actually is which would add cost and makes just changing it out when I prefer a cost effective proposition.
Yes, there is certainly a cost. But there is also a cost to an oil change. If you are changing your oil at say 3,000 miles and it can safely run 10,000 miles, doing a UOA or two to determine that fact and then giving yourself a margin and changing it at 8,000, you are still saving money in the end.
Originally Posted By: TiredTrucker
Each motor is different and what might be printed on a marketing paper regarding an oil's useful life in that motor is not rock solid gospel in the real world.
That's the point of doing oil analysis. So that for an individual application with a given lubricant you know what a safe interval is. That's why OLM's are generally conservative when compared to what we see on a UOA. They have to be setup in anticipation of the lowest quality oil still meeting the spec being used and a safety margin existing under that circumstance.
 
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Originally Posted By: jk_636
What is this phrase, "over maintaining?" confused
Throwing away perfectly good parts or fluids before they are anywhere NEAR depleted. Changing a modern synthetic oil at 3000 miles is the same as changing the water pump, alternator, and power steering pump at 30,000 miles. Does anyone do THAT?
Originally Posted By: jk_636
If having a strict maintenance schedule is "over maintaining" then I am guilty as charged, but I do not understand the negative connotation you place on preventative maintenance.
A strict schedule is a good thing, nobody says otherwise. But there's absolutely ZERO advantage to a 3k oil change interval with today's oils. 6000 miles is already conservative and safe, following the oil life monitor is conservative and safe. And more sensible.
Quote:
Only one of my vehicles has an oil life monitor. And right now at a little over 3k miles it says that I have 67% life left (Using Royal Purple.) duh I dont put any stock into what that thing says.
Why not? To "not put any stock" into what a monitoring system tells you is ridiculous! Do you also ignore your temp gauge, your oil pressure gauge, and your tire-pressure monitors? The OLM's algorithm can take driving cycles into account, and reduce the life faster if you do a lot of short-tripping, stretch it out longer if you do a lot of highway driving. Its calibrated to work with average oil products- if you use something "better" then you're only adding safety margin. In this case, the monitor is probably spot-on for a conventional or blend oil, and you've got even more life available with RP. Again, a 6000 mile interval would be just about perfect, and leave you with a good margin of useful oil life so that you could be 100% assured you're not doing any damage.
 
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Don't let the blind-believer, part-swapper jerk folks around. Probably does not even get to every handle a fleet, let alone his own wallet. Over-spending on maintenance is nearly as bad as neglect, worse if you actually have to handle a budget with that fleet (you might spend more in over-maintaining than you would with neglecting the vehicle). Doubt if he ever heard of life-cycle analysis. Sometimes it is hard to justify PM, but that is why you inspect and test. Otherwise you are tossing money into something that is not a problem. Yes, my transit vehicles can go through a set of brake pads and tires in 20K but not all of my vehicles need that service interval nor do all of my transit vehicles need that treatment. If I can get to 30K before replacement, that is 33% cost savings. Pull the vehicle and inspect... but if something is still in spec, then keep running it. If I can get to 40K, dang, I will do it. And if you doubt that inspection and then factual repair is beat by OCD part-swapping, many of my vehicles are older and have higher miles than a lot of the vehicles another agency has out on their auction list. Having a good "butt-OBD tool" works as well. I know that vehicle "179" will eat tires about 10% faster than it's twin mostly because there is a minor issue that we can't quite fix due to the driver hitting a UPS truck a few years back. That front-end just bounces a bit more. Go with what meets spec while it is in spec and do not sweat early or latter replacement. Even identical parts can wear faster/slower in the same or even a different vehicle. You can run 5000 or 7500 miles on a filter and felon-made recycled oil and the engine will last a lot longer than everything else on a vehicle.
 
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Originally Posted By: TiredTrucker
Originally Posted By: OVERKILL
So do you swap out balljoints when they reach a certain age or do you wait until they develop play? How about U-joints? Brake rotors? Pads? Do you swap them out at half their serviceable life "just in case"?
On some of my vehicles, yes!. I don't wait till the bull gear goes out on my Detroit Series 60 motor. The damage would be wallet busting. There is an average life of this item, so at that point, whether it needs it or not, it gets changed out. Likewise, I change out crankshaft dampers on a schedule basis, again, based on average estimated life and irregardless of whether it needs it or not. There are several other applications where I take a similar approach. An airline doesn't wait till a engine goes out on an airplane before changing out and sending in for rebuild. Just as my Detroit, there is an average service life and the aircraft engine gets changed out at that point, again, whether it needs it or not. So, I change my oil on a basis that fits what I feel is appropriate on my personal vehicles. I could give a rip if it will go longer or not. I have no interest in taking it right up to the edge of useable life. That would also entail numerous oil samples to determine what that useful iife actually is which would add cost and makes just changing it out when I prefer a cost effective proposition. Each motor is different and what might be printed on a marketing paper regarding an oil's useful life in that motor is not rock solid gospel in the real world.
I could not have said it better myself! approved
Originally Posted By: 440Magnum
Originally Posted By: jk_636
What is this phrase, "over maintaining?" confused
Throwing away perfectly good parts or fluids before they are anywhere NEAR depleted. Changing a modern synthetic oil at 3000 miles is the same as changing the water pump, alternator, and power steering pump at 30,000 miles. Does anyone do THAT?
Originally Posted By: jk_636
If having a strict maintenance schedule is "over maintaining" then I am guilty as charged, but I do not understand the negative connotation you place on preventative maintenance.
A strict schedule is a good thing, nobody says otherwise. But there's absolutely ZERO advantage to a 3k oil change interval with today's oils. 6000 miles is already conservative and safe, following the oil life monitor is conservative and safe. And more sensible.
Quote:
Only one of my vehicles has an oil life monitor. And right now at a little over 3k miles it says that I have 67% life left (Using Royal Purple.) duh I dont put any stock into what that thing says.
Why not? To "not put any stock" into what a monitoring system tells you is ridiculous! Do you also ignore your temp gauge, your oil pressure gauge, and your tire-pressure monitors? The OLM's algorithm can take driving cycles into account, and reduce the life faster if you do a lot of short-tripping, stretch it out longer if you do a lot of highway driving. Its calibrated to work with average oil products- if you use something "better" then you're only adding safety margin. In this case, the monitor is probably spot-on for a conventional or blend oil, and you've got even more life available with RP. Again, a 6000 mile interval would be just about perfect, and leave you with a good margin of useful oil life so that you could be 100% assured you're not doing any damage.
I think there has been a bit of a misconception regarding my fluid replacement schedule. I replace Dino at 3k, Syn-blends at a little past 3k, what I consider to be "Regular synthetics" (Like Mobil 1, PP etc.) at 5k (maybe a tad more based on driving routine) and what I consider to be "premium synthetics"(like Royal Purple) at 7k. I dont change out all oil at 3k...anymore at least. wink As for replacing parts, yes I do change out parts before they ever hit their "service life." I dont wait for things to break before I replace them. This goes for everything from pads and rotors to PCV valves, filters, shocks, etc. thumbsup As for the OLM, I know it is not accurate based on OLM readings and comparitive UOAs. It is not a "gauge just like any other" and to say so is ludicrous. It is a algorithmic computer based concept that may or may not have much accuracy to any specific operating conditions. So when I say that at a little past 3k miles the OLM says that my Royal Purple is at almost half its service life, after 80% highway driving and strong TBN readings at double those miles, I can safely assert that it is nonsense.
Originally Posted By: FutureDoc
Don't let the blind-believer, part-swapper jerk folks around. Probably does not even get to every handle a fleet, let alone his own wallet. Over-spending on maintenance is nearly as bad as neglect...
Blind believer and part swapper? I dont even handle my own wallet? Over spending is nearly as bad as neglect? That last one is my favorite. crackmeup By this point you have assuredly lost all credibility with those who have didactic reasoning abilities. Perosnal attacks and witty anecdotes dont hold any weight in technical discussion. Coffee
 
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Originally Posted By: jk_636
Blind believer and part swapper? I dont even handle my own wallet? Over spending is nearly as bad as neglect? That last one is my favorite. crackmeup
Yes, overspending is as bad as neglect. You don't throw a new transmission and engine at a taxi with a million km on it, and more than you'd try to run a million km without changing oil. All kinds of stuff has a useful service life, and there is a time to throw in the towel.
 
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Originally Posted By: Garak
Originally Posted By: jk_636
Blind believer and part swapper? I dont even handle my own wallet? Over spending is nearly as bad as neglect? That last one is my favorite. crackmeup
Yes, overspending is as bad as neglect. You don't throw a new transmission and engine at a taxi with a million km on it, and more than you'd try to run a million km without changing oil. All kinds of stuff has a useful service life, and there is a time to throw in the towel.
None of that adds up and furthermore none of it is applicable to this discussion. No one is expecting to go a million miles or chase good money to bad money. This is about preventative maintenance that keeps your vehicle(s) in service as long as possible.
 
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