Synthetic Oil

I put full synthetic in my truck, every time i go get an oil change the lube place always puts the sticker in my window that says come back in 5,000 miles. Is that just so they can make more money or can i just come back in 7 or 12 thousand?

Personally I don’t like going over 5k miles and I use full synthetic in my truck. 12k miles??? I seriously doubt any synthetic oil will last that long. Probably OK at 7k miles. Do what you think is right. The sticker is just a reminder, you can ignore it if you want.

Thanks, Its just so expensive, do you know if there is any truth about the whole “once you switch to synthetic it is bad for your vehicle to got back” argument?

My personal experience indicates no truth at all. I run synthetic, semi-synthetic, or good old dino, depending on what good deals on oil I can buy. In general neither performance nor oil consumption rates have changed on any of my cars.

With close attention being given several vehicles in commercial service it became apparent that oil change intervals up to 8,000 miles was adequate with ‘dino’ oil. With dozens of vehicles involved ranging from Aerostar and Astro vans to F250s, E250s and G2500s all surpassed 300,000 miles and several surpassed 400,000 miles on the original engines running well with oil consumption of 1qt/1,500 miles or less. All the vehicles accumulated 350+ miles daily, mostly on secondary highways. Several vehicles were sold ‘as is’ to the drivers with mileage in excess of 400,000. And, FWIW, there was never a failure requiring a tow on any of the vehicles.

Your oil change interval is more a funtion of the climate and your driving style than what is in the oil. If you read your manual, you will find that cold starts, short trips, heavy loads, drivign fast in very hot weather are all extreme conditions, and require more frequent oil changes. Even with synthetic oil, you cannot stretch this interval much, 50% is max.

Commercial services normally don’t use synthetic oil for this reason; they pile on a lot of miles with the engine warm, and don’t need the special protection synthetic provides, such as extreme heat and extreme cold. So 8000 miles as a chage interval is OK for them since the service is not severe. Taxi firms do the same thing.

If the truck in question is not used in very hot, very cold, or extreme load service, synthetic oil is money wasted, and a good quality mineral (dino) oil will be OK. I would observe the manual’s interval for changing oil and filter.

There’s not truth what-so-ever. You can go back and forth between synthetic and regular and even mix them any way you want without ANY ILL-EFFECTS.

Check your owners manual on the recommended oil change interval. And in some cars synthetic oil is required…Especially turbos.

Let’s start at the beginning. The starting point is what the manufacturer recommends. That will be listed in your owner’s manual. It likely will list a standard number of miles. It also will list a time and likely a different number of miles for severe conditions (Many drivers meet the definition of severe.)

You start with what the manufacturer recommends. You use the one that your driving situations fit.

You also must use oil that meets the specifications listed in the owner’s manual.

These numbers have been determined with quite a few test and a lot of data. They are good numbers .

Synthetic oils will hold up better than standard oils. How well depends on a number of factors and each car is different. That is why you should stick with what the manufacturer recommends.

Now about that lube place. They don’t care a bit what car you have, they use the same sticker for everyone. They might truly believe that 5,000 miles is correct, they might be covering their ass, or maybe just maybe they are looking to see you and your money more often.

Now about where you get your oil changed. If you are going to one of those “Quick” oil change places (That is any quick oil change place, no matter what the name.) My recommendation is to find somewhere else, starting with your next oil change. We hear far too many horror stories about them. Some may be fine, but many pay the help little, demand fast changes and that results in a high percentage of errors. Too many live by selling you something you don’t need at inflated prices.

Find a good local mechanic and stick with them for your needs.

Don't go to the quick lube places, even for directions.

I second that. Either find a good mechanic and use him for every thing, or change the oil and filter yourself and then you know it is done right.
The quality of work at these quickie places is not worth risking your vehicle. I would not touch a quick oil change place with a 10 foot spear ( pole is too good for them).

Synthetic oil only costs 2 to 3 times what regular oil costs and doesn’t even come close to a full tank of gas. Wave goodbye to the extra money and drive happily with the knowledge that you are trying to help the car.

^^agreed. My company work van (E-150 w/ V6) gets a “dino” oil change abt once a month, which equals approx. 4,500 miles of intra-city-stop-go driving. --it’s gonna trip 300k on the odo this week, and it still runs like a top. Never any issues.

Now, when it comes to my own personal car, all I use is synthetic. I change it every 3k, even though I know it can go longer than that. But, seeing as how it is MY car, and it’s turbo chg’d,and I love it, I don’t mind spending the xtra cash.

You might “err on the safe side” and go w/synthetic. Even if a cost/benefit analysis were to prove that it’d be more expensive in long run to use synthetic oil and make engine last longer than it would to use petroleum based (dino) oil w/longer intervals- and I don’t think it would- but even if it did- the synthetic scenario (while more expensive in the long run in this HYPOTHETICAL situation) would be a trickle
of $$ as opposed to the overwhelming and demoralizing financial knockout punch of having to rebuild/replace engine unexpectedly.

Joe Meehan and fawadquazi are right- nix fast lube places. I repaired an oil leak on a car that had just been at a fast lube place and they had tried to put a 14mm oversize drain plug where proper plug was 9/16 "- not even metric! The worst- Some Ford 351 cid engines have 2 drain plugs. One only lets about a qt. out- the other- 4. A 351 T-Bird came in our shop w/ severe engine mechanical knocking noise. The

fast lube place had removed only the “1 qt.” plug, not even realizing there was another plug, so you can see that car ended up w/9 qts in crankcase. W/engine running, now there was still beaucoup oil in crankcase, which crankshaft now whipped into foam. (W/ correct amt of oil, crankshaft wouldn’t have contacted this oil w/engine running. Since oil pump is a liquid pump and foam is 99% air, minimal oil pressure

resulted- engine was ruined. An experienced tech would know about the 2 plugs. Moral: go to a real mechanic. Also if poss, get tech to fill new oil filter w/ oil before installation to nullify duration of zero oil presure as filter fills up. Might be impossible to do this though depending on orientation of filter. Good luck!

Ha thanks for en lighting me guys, I decided i am just going to change my own oil, the suspension on the F250 is high enough to easily get under and the oil filter is in a really great spot.

If your goal is to prolong the life of the oil, go back in 7 to 12,000 miles.
If your goal is to prolong the life of the car, go back in 5,000 miles.
Your choice.

Good point! I consider turbocharged cars to be on severe service since the turbo bearing gets very hot. Yes, I would use Mobil 1 or equivalent in a turbocharged engine.

The interval may be related to the life of the filter, not the life of the oil. Jiffy Lube recommends a 3000 mile interval for the filter they use, not the oil. Mobil 1 is guaranteed for 15,000 miles by the manufacturer. If you can find a filter that will last that long, you should be able to extend your oil change intervals. Synthetic oils were developed so that fleet owners could lower the operating cost. A clever fleet owner may know what oil filters last longest and could couple that with a synthetic oil to change the oil and filter half as often. In a large fleet, that can be a significant savings.

Jiffy Lube recommends a 3000 mile interval for the filter they use, not the oil.

If Jiffy Lube used the BEST filter in the world…they’d still recommend a 3k oil change.

Mobil 1 is guaranteed for 15,000 miles by the manufacturer.

I’d like to see someones daily commuter who’s oil was changed every 15k miles…after the car/truck has 300k miles on it…if it lasts that long. I surely wouldn’t try.

I agree Mike. Mobile doesn’t guarantee the life of the CAR for people who go 15,000 miles between changes. And, after all, it is the car that one desires to extend the life of…not the oil!

There is a Mobil 1 Extended Drain oil,the 15,000km is subject to a lot of fine print. This oil has more additives, so you can drive from LA to New York and back twice without changing the oil. For stop & go, cold starts and short trips, the 15,000 miles is fiction, unless you have an 10 quart oil sump.

5 k is a safe bet with synthetic. Could probably go longer (7.5k to 10k) if changing the filter every 2.5k or using a Mobil 1 or Amsoil EA oil filter. Be sure to check dip stick every 1k for low oil and dark color. If darker than normal, increase frequency of changes.