Best of Deals Car Reviews Repair Shops Cars A-Z Radio Show

Engine oil change for break in period?

When should I do the first oil change on a new 6.0 liter gmc van? It has the computer which tells you when to change oil. Shouild I trust this for the initial oil change? Do you have a suggestion based on engine hours as the van engine is used to run a pto source which is significant.

I would change it at 1000 miles or 100 hours, then 5000 miles or 50 hours…But with today’s engine building technology, that first oil change is probably optional…

I agree. I like the idea of changing any new vehicle’s engine oil at about 1K even if the owners manual does not state doing so. Change the filter as well because that’s where the grit and metal debris is likely to be.

thanks- I should have stated I will not be using synthetic oil.

Leave it alone. More damage is done to engines by botched oil changes than any other cause. Don’t do anything early on the van, it has an oil filter. No problem? No repair.

The question you should REALLY be asking yourself is “what does my owner’s manual say?”

So I assume you never change your oil?

Not before it is time. No need to do unnecessary work.

Some manufacturers have used a special break-in oil, for example with added molybdenum. Honda was one who did this. I don’t know if they still do it.

If your car’s initial oil has any special break-in properties, changing it early will defeat the purpose.

What does your owner’s manual say about this? Your owner’s manual is the definitive source of information on this issue.

They say to follow the engine oil life sensor which monitors life of oil. It is hard to get used to technology!!

Engine manufacturing has improved across the board to such a degree that the break-in procedures we got used to are largely a thing of the past. If your owner’s manual mentions a break-in period, it wouldn’t hurt to change the oil once that period is over, but it probably isn’t necessary.

Those oil life sensors are only as good as your mechanic. The last time I had the oil changed on my RV with a Chevy chassis, the mechanic didn’t reset the system. Now the oil change indicator light is on prematurely, and I am P.O.ed about it. Now I will have to use a mileage interval, at least for now. As soon as the warranty expires, I will start changing the oil myself.

It is interesting that after buying an expensive car people tend to skimp on the cheapest replacement item … an oil change costs me $25 at the dealership and $50 with a routine inspection and tire rotation. The saving over the life of a car by changing the oil more frequently is very small compared to the costs of not doing it.