# Honda Accord Oil-life gauge "stuck" on 100% all the time?

The most often question on the planet seems to be “when should I change my oil” or “should I follow the car’s Oil-Life percent gauge”.

I understand that the Oil-Life Percentage Meter is NOT linear. (You can’t convert “miles” to “percent” just by assuming “30-60 miles” should be about each 1% of change.)

On a brand new Honda Accord, how many miles did you have when your gauge FIRST changed from 100% to 99%?
Or… how many miles did you have when the gauge when it changed to 0% for the first time?
(Both of those questions are for FIRST timers. Brand new cars.)

Should I be concerned if the gauge still says 100% after 250 miles? Still 100% after 500 miles? Still 100% after 1000 miles?
(I would assume the oil has to be (at least) 1% of the way through its lifespan, by x miles.)

The thing likely records the odometer reading and adds however many miles to it whenever an oil change is required. Maybe they’ll consider your driving style and speeds, etc, making it a bit smarter.
I’m sure it doesn’t have an atomic analyzer built in to calculate the oil’s iron content to determine that the oil is okay or tired. It is just a (smart?) counter so the scale can be anything they want for it to be.

In fact, if I was a car manufacturer and read one book on psychology, I’d make the scale logarithmic just to scare the living daylights out of people towards the end of the oil cycle so they’ll rush to my dealership and I can charge them for an oil change and a reset of the above counter (ie. it will drop from 75 to 25 percent in very little miles, faking urgency).

If I had that car, I wouldn’t trust that gadget and just keep track of my miles, the way we did it when dinosaurs roamed the planes. If that gadget is broken, it will fool you that you’ll never need your oil change.
If the book suggests every 5K, do it every 5K.

Depending on how you drive it can take a while. MOstly short drive cold motor trips will get you to your next oil change much sooner than all freeway driving which is much easier on the oil

I guess that we can correctly assume that you have more than 1000 miles on your new car. It seems to me that it should be down to at most 90% remaining, depending on how you drive your car. If it is exclusively highway miles, then your OLM might reach zero life remaining at 12,000 or more miles. What did the dealer say when you contacted him about it? If you haven’t contacted the dealer yet, wait until 4000 miles to do so. That way there is no way he could say your OLM is working correctly. Since this is a warranty item, I wouldn’t be upset about it at this time.

I think the issue is that it doesn’t count down by 1% increments but 10% ones. It’ll read 100% until you get to ~1000 miles then read 90% for the next 1000 miles or so. I’d have to look at the manual, but if it works like in my Fit, it only goes down by 1% from either 5 or 10%.

Malraux is 1/2 right… It does count down in 10% increments. How quickly depends on how you drive, its not set by mileage.

It is essentially a function of miles and stop and go. If you are at 1000 mile mark, pretty soon you will see it drop to 90%. It goes in 10% increments as mentioned until 10% and then 5%.

I’d have to check the service manual to believe it only calculates in 10% increments. Neither of my Acuras or GMs do that. It is by full percentage. Never noticed what the mileage was at 99% but somewhere around 100 miles. At 50% about 5000 miles. If it hasn’t moved in 1000 miles, take it back for warranty work. Something is not right. I have never let my cars get to 0% so have no idea what that would be.

I will only add that if you put too much reliance into that OLM widget there’s a fair chance that down the road at some point your engine is not going to be happy; as a number of others have discovered.

@bing right a GM counts every %, I would assume Acura was like Honda though. I sell Hondas so I know as fact they count down in 10% increments till they get to 20% then they count down in 5% increments.

The poster child for extended or lack of oil changes.

WOW…15k miles without ever having an oil change and she firmly believes that Nissan is at fault. She’s not taking one bit of responsibility for her actions and is dumbfounded why people were on her case for not changing the oil.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again:

Failure to accept responsibility for one’s own actions (or inactions) is at incredibly high levels nowadays.

I began to observe this phenomenon in a public high school environment about 15 years ago, with parents who could not accept that their child had done something wrong, or had flunked a class, or had some other type of failing. Since their child insisted that he/she had done nothing wrong, no amount of objective evidence could convince some of these parents that their child was at fault, rather than the teacher, or the principal, or the entire school system, or the entire State of NJ, or…

I don’t know about patterns of behavior in other countries, but–unfortunately–in the US we have a huge percentage of the population that just cannot ever seem to accept that they did something wrong.

@gsragtop Seems like a silly way to do it for Honda with computers and everything but I’m pretty sure our Acuras do it by individual %. Never really paid a lot of attention to it but will check now. In any event with 1000 mile on it, something is wrong.

“WOW…15k miles without ever having an oil change”

And even more amazing, almost 3 years without an oil change!

5000 miles a year likely didn’t involve much easy highway driving.

But what a testament to the quality of car engines! The thing ran 3 years and 15K miles on original oil … and it had not completely seized.

Curmudgeon mode here – Cars are too easy to operate and run these days. People expect them not to need maintenance. That’s why cars have things like oil use guages, and why the Maint Guides have to give interval-by-interval detailed instructions. (I.e., list of maint for 5,000 mi on odo, 10, 000 mi on odo, etc., rather than “Change oil every 5K miles. Empty dust bin when full.”)

We oughta go back to manual transmissions and steering, etc., to weed out the incompetents.

Curmudgeon mode off.

Honda counts down in 10% increments.

If you get to 3,000 miles, and the gauge still hasn’t moved at all, I’d worry. Until then, don’t worry.

Does this apply to this discussion?

Honda/Acura does 10% drops every xxxx miles. XXXX depends on your driving style and environemnt.

When the OLM hits 20% it then drops in increments of 5%.

With my mixed city and highway mine goes down to 0% in about 6800 miles. It does warn you to schedule service soon at 15%.