Crude based or synthetic oil ...

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I've been using crude based Castrol 5W-30 oil for my '94 Accord because that's what my Honda Service used while I was taking my car there. The Owner's Manual calls for various types of maintenance service at every
7,500 miles that includes oil change, of course. I've been also having oil change only at midway of these mainteance intervals. So basically I've been changing oil at every 3,750 miles.
Lately I've been wondering if I could save those "mid-term" oil changes if I switched to synthetic oil. I'd like to hear some expert opinion on that here and if the recommendation is yes, what type of synthetic oil would take me as well to 7,500 miles as the Castrol crude based takes me to 3,750 miles.
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How many miles on the Accord?
How many miles per year?
What part of the country do you live in?
What kind of driving do you do? Lots of city, lots of highway? An even mix?
--
Tegger

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On 02/29/2012 05:53 PM, Tegger wrote:

irrelevant.
hardly relevant unless it's really low.

unless it's alaska or nevada, that's hardly relevant either.

at 3750, that's irrelevant too.
try to look at the big picture - the guy's almost certainly a troll given that this topic has been beaten to death countless times before.
and you're not helping with your inconsistency between your recommendation to stick to the owners manual on any topic EXCEPT oil change intervals, where you go completely nutso and would have people superstitiously changing their oil every day if you could.
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On 2/29/2012 5:53 PM, Tegger wrote:

300,004 miles.

Now that I retired, only about 12,000.

Puget Sound.

About half suburban, half freeway.
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You surely fall under the "Regular" maintenance interval, which calls for an oil change every 6,000 miles or 12-months. The "Severe" interval calls for 3,000 miles or 6-months.
Personally, I'm not comfortable leaving oil in for a year on an engine with as many miles as yours. Have you considered changing your oil twice per year? That would give you a 6,000 mile / 6-month change interval, which seems reasonable to me.
However, you may also want to consider the possible beneficial effects of your previous frequent changes. Your attainment of 300K is likely partially due to those frequent changes. Older engines produce more blowby and load- up the oil with deposits more than newer engines. It is wise to /increase/ the frequency of oil changes with age. My Integra has just over 380,000 miles on it. I change my oil at about 3,500-4,000 miles.
--
Tegger

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On 03/01/2012 03:59 PM, Tegger wrote:
go get some oil analysis tegger - just like the professionals who manage machines with billions of dollars and lives at stake. go get some facts.
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On 3/1/2012 3:59 PM, Tegger wrote:

Actually for my car "regular" is every 7,500 miles and "severe" (what I adhere to) is half of that, 3,750 miles.

You didn't read my post very closely. I've been changing at every 3,750 miles and that happens more than twice a year.

Pretty much what I am doing.
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I read it very closely indeed, thank you.

My "not comfortable" statement referred to the 1-year interval for "Regular" service in the manual I have. I guess I should have put those two paragraphs together so it was more clear that they were directly related.
My proposal for you was to change from replacing your oil 3.2 times per year to 2 times per year. This would still be in keeping with the factory's recommendations for "Regular" service..
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On 03/02/2012 06:30 AM, Tegger wrote:

that's an encouraging departure from "You can never change your oil too often".
you need to get some facts under your belt on this topic tegger. you're happy to stick to the book on most things, but on oil changes, your mind is completely warped. spend the money on oil analysis like professional [aerospace, marine, military, railroad, haulage] engineers and fleet managers do. and learn not to let superstition rule your life.
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The downside of this strategy is that the cost of the oil analysis is a significant percentage of the cost of an actual oil change.
So, how often should you do an oil analysis?
Just taking the sample is not trivial (or free). And my experience is that the Post Office does not want to handle the samples via mail (even though the companies that do the analysis all say the Post Office SHOULD handle the samples).
For a while I would take a sample every other oil change (where I followed the actual vehicle manufacturer's oil change interval recommendation, not Jiffy Lube's). I never got back an analysis saying my oil was kaput. I finally decided not to do the analysis any more since I was clearly not exceeding the life of the oil given my driving parameters.
If I decided to go to greatly extended intervals, I'd take samples somewhere between the vehicle manufacturer's recommended interval and my target to narrow down what was safe.
For me it is just easier (and not much more expensive) to just go with the vehicle manufacturer's recommendations for change intervals and oil requirements. They appear to be very conservative. The Saturn Vue I owned had the GM oil life monitor system. It never recommended an oil change brefore 9500 miles and the sample I sent off after changes at this interval came back as "good." (in other words, the oil could have gone a lot further). My Sister never changed the oil in her old Civic before the odometer driven reminder turned red (7500 miles) and while the rest of the car was a rolling POS at 150,000 miles, the engine ran like new.
The excessive oil change habit is hard to break. It took me 25 years to break it, but from now on, it is the manufactuer's normal service schedule and recommended oil for me (if they say synthetic, then I'll use it, otherwise, I'll use what I consider the best quality conventional oil).
Ed
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On 03/05/2012 09:30 AM, C. E. White wrote:

so let's see. at about $25 for 5 quarts of synthetic and $25 per test at blackstone, if you're someone like tegger changing their oil 4 times a year on a 12k mile annual, you can change your oil, test it three times, and still be even. change it once and test it once, and you're $50 ahead. i don't think cost is the issue.

do it a couple of times to see what your numbers are. more if you're trying to maximize, but three should get you what you want - your own reliable change schedule based on your own typical usage.

eh??? all you do is stick the bottle under the oil stream next time you do a change. and if you're taking it to iffy lube, they'll do it for you.

how strange - my experience is that they definitely will. take the pre-printed blackstone letter with you if you're having a problem.

you and most of the rest of the nation.

most people are better focusing their angst on crappy oil filters - there is some real garbage out there. even oem. usa-made honda oem filters for instance almost always have defective anti-drainback valves after just a few thousand miles. even cheapo walmart [champion labs] filters do better than they do.
wix are the way to go for me.

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wrote:

I'm trying to reconcile "wants an oil analysis to know the facts" with "takes the car to Iffy Lube".
Can't do it...
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On 03/05/2012 05:43 PM, Elmo P. Shagnasty wrote:

lol!
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ONE actual oil change.
Spread across many oil changes and tens of thousands of miles, it's an insignificant cost.
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On 02/29/2012 05:22 PM, cameo wrote:

cT 0.99
both engine management systems and engine oils have moved on since the 1950's when the 3000 mile change was recommended. you need to too. use ordinary oil and go ahead and change it per the owners manual. if you want to use synthetic, you can exetend that period considerably.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/38636024@N00/4291579733
if you don't believe, pay for oil analysis and get the hard facts for yourself. [it's cheaper than paying for constant oil changes like you're doing now!]
oh, and most "synthetic" oil these days is mineral based. a little more refined maybe [they call it isomerization], but mineral based nevertheless. don't get suckered into the hype unless you know what you're doing. or paying for.
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wrote:

I can't get excited about synthetic...
With modern oils, the big issue is contamination. (The oil itself is still a wonderful lubricant come the end of a change cycle.)
Synthetics get contaminated just like any other oil.
If you care about the car, plan to keep it a long time and/or make a lot of short trips, change more often!
If not, take the change intervals out.
There are way to many variables to cover in a post here... but I'd stay with the mineral and save the money. Keep in mind that oil is cheaper than metal any day.
Erik
PS, Look at your manual again and see if it says something about severe, dusty conditions or some similar wordage... it probably does. Those recommendations more 'real world'.
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I do.
After about 180,000 miles with Mobil 1, I find it absolutely astounding that the head is still shiny-silver inside. No varnish. At all. Synthetics seem to produce far less varnish than mineral oils, and to be much better than mineral oils at keeping contaminants in suspension.
My head gasket failed after the first 200K, which were passed with Castrol GTX and an oil-change interval of not more than 3,000 miles. When I got the car back, the head had been totally cleaned of all the brown varnish which had previously been there. At that point I switched to Mobil 1, and have not looked back. I've owned the car since new, so I know exactly what's been done to it over the years.
I forgot to to answer the OP's question regarding synthetic oils. And my answer is, "The stuff is awesome! Use it, for sure!".
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On 3/1/12 8:58 PM, Tegger wrote:

Yeah, well some of us find that varnished finish on the engine's innards attractive. Reminds me of how nice the wooden hull, mast, and boom looked on my old 1950's vintage sailboat after I refinished them each year.
Hell, next thing you know, I may have a sign painter put a name and home port across the trunk of my Accord...
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wrote:

WHOA.... a while back, some said in another newsgroup that using synthetic on a older car (same engine not rebuilt) might produce some leakage since the stuff is thinner. Personally I'd go with what the manual states or more frequently and never look back. This oil analysis advice is un-necessary for most people.
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The idea that synthetic will cause oil leaks is ancielnt wisdom that no longer applies to the sort of synthetics you buy today. Once old (and possibly incorrect) old knowledge gets burned into the collective mind it seems impossible to eliminate. What might have been at least partially true for the original Amsoil and Mobil synthetics from 30 years ago, no longer applies.
I agree that if you are going to follow the vehicle manufacturer's oil change schedule, an oil analysis is not needed (unless you just want to know and / or overcome your fears that lead to ridiculously short oil change intervals). However, if you are looking to go to extended oil change intervals, then they are a good idea.
Ed
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