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Car Question for Gear Heads:
Posted by: New Guy
Date: December 17, 2011 07:41AM
Yesterday I had the oil changed on my Ford Exploder. Normally I change the oil myself but whenever I buy a car (bought it this month) I like to take it to Jiffy Lube in order to inspect the undercarriage for problems etc. The manager tried to sell me (I know, that's his job) "high mileage oil" for older cars with a lot of miles (160k) but opted to go with the basic stuff instead. Anyone here use it? Does it make a difference in any way?

On a side note I went to Pep Boyz and picked up an extra quart of oil. I think it was $5 and some change. So I thought to myself by the time I purchased 5 quarts of oil and an oil filter ($6) it's actually cheaper to go to Jiffy Lube, and quicker. Plus I get the benefit of them topping off all the fluids and inspecting the underside.

New Guy

Note: Feel free to add any synthetic oil stories.
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Re: Car Question for Gear Heads:
Posted by: Black
Date: December 17, 2011 08:11AM
(insert facepalm pic here)

Never ever ever let those guys at Jiffy Lube out of your sight. They will underfill, overfill, overtighten, undertighten, and basically treat your car like it's disposable unless you gt really really lucky to find one with a mechanic that actually cares. Plenty of exposés have revealed that they often don't actually do any of the things you think you're paying them for.

Do you not have the option of word of mouth for finding a cheaper "neighborhood" mechanic?




New forum user map 8/2015: [www.zeemaps.com]



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/17/2011 08:12AM by Black.
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Re: Car Question for Gear Heads:
Posted by: OWC Jamie
Date: December 17, 2011 08:40AM
Ditto. I go with a coworker (a girl) to get her oil changed frequently and the line of BS they throw at people is criminal. I know they're schooled in marketing their products but if a customer is there for an oil change and the say that's all I want done - don't tap-dance around trying to scare people.

Either do it yourself, or like Black said, find a local mechanic. I happen to have a lifelong friend that owns a Shell station with 3 bays and he does more in mechanic work than he sells gas. Why? Because he's the 2nd owner and the first one was a lifetime resident of the city and everyone knew they could trust him. My friend is continuing the tradition smiling smiley

If I had to think about it, in my town there's only 2 mechanics with sterling reputations. Everyone else I've heard horror stories about. Want to figure out who's on the naughty list? Go to a "Cruise night" at your local drive in and ask the gear heads. smiling smiley They'll never, ever, pull punches when talking about mechanics.



Good Luck!
Jamie Dresser
Other World Computing
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Re: Car Question for Gear Heads:
Posted by: Grateful11
Date: December 17, 2011 08:40AM
Well if you paid $5 for a quart of oil you could have went synthetic for a couple bucks more. We run Mobil 1 in my
wife's Prius and watch for the sales and usually get it for $6-6.50/quart and if you buy 5 quarts it usually comes with
a free filter that we get for either the Explorer or the Tahoe. We let the dealer change the oil in the Prius but We supply our
oil, they supply the filter and the labor and charge $19. We change the oil in the Tahoe and the Explorer ourselves.



Grateful11
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Re: Car Question for Gear Heads:
Posted by: New Guy
Date: December 17, 2011 08:42AM
"Never ever ever let those guys at Jiffy Lube out of your sight."

I agree with that. That's another reason I go down into the car bay and inspect not just my car, but the mechanic too. I always watch them through the window as well. I've had pretty good luck with this JL, I know all about the stories but this one isn't that bad. The manager didn't try to sell me anything except the high mileage oil as the vehicle (I knew going in) didn't need anything else.

As far as synthetic oil, one common problem I've had previously with it is it will "find" leaks. Any questionable seals (that haven't leaked previously) will begin to. I'm not downplaying synthetic, I think it's great, but my "bucket" doesn't require it (OEM). If it did I would use it.

On the mechanic level, I normally do things myself. I'm a fairly decent mechanic who enjoys tinkering with anything. I'm still looking for a reputable mechanic in my neighborhood for jobs that require more expertise than what I am able to do.

Thanks for the input,
New Guy



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 12/17/2011 08:53AM by New Guy.
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Re: Car Question for Gear Heads:
Posted by: dad@home
Date: December 17, 2011 09:13AM
High mileage oil simply is thicker (a higher weight) so instead of putting in 10w40 you might get 15w50. This is good because the thicker oil will leak less past high mileage seals and rings.

It's the same price as the lower weight oil....so tell them next time "no I don't want your extra cost "high mileage" oil. Instead put in a higher weight".

A word about synthetics. These are superior lubricants but are expensive. They are perfect to put in your brand new engine to help it last a million miles. Because they are such good lubricants they are sold in very low weights and because of that reduce friction and give you better gas mileage. But putting them in an old engine is a mistake. They are so thin they leak out all the seals and they slip past your rings and get burned up.

New engine...... use a synthetic

Old engine.... use cheap thick oil.

dad
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Re: Car Question for Gear Heads:
Posted by: New Guy
Date: December 17, 2011 09:44AM
dad@home is one wise dad.

Good input, thank you.

New Guy
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Re: Car Question for Gear Heads:
Posted by: davester
Date: December 17, 2011 10:03AM
High mileage oils (synthetic or not) are not "heavier" unless you specify a higher viscosity. However, they carry some additional additives that aren't in regular oil. They contain a burnoff inhibitor that supposedly reduces how much oil your engine is burning and a seal swelling agent that will help old cork and paper seals retain their integrity. If your engine is prone to leaking and burns oil I suppose they might help a little bit. If you're engine is not using a lot of oil then don't bother.

Early synthetic oils caused leaks because the swell-seal characteristics of the oils were not as effective as mineral oils. That was many years ago and is no longer valid.

To my mind, synthetic makes the most sense in all cars, and it pretty much pays for itself in less engine wear, better gas mileage and doubled oil change intervals (you can safely go to 10,000 mile intervals with synthetic oil because of its thermal breakdown characteristics). You still need to change the filter every 5,000 though.

Synthetic blends have nothing going for them except higher price as far as I can tell.



"In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion." (1987) -- Carl Sagan



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/17/2011 10:05AM by davester.
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Re: Car Question for Gear Heads:
Posted by: JPK
Date: December 17, 2011 11:05AM
I use Mobil 1 on all my vehicles. I am that way. It is one of the few things I regularly buy from wal-mart.

Any API certified oil changed on a regular basis 3k to 5k miles will do the job for 99% of people.

I agree with davester's strategy, about 10k synthetic (with 5k filter changes) but I still do filter & mobil 1 at 5k, because it goes to eleven.

I would further advise that anything that a quick stop oil change place recommends is probably for the benefit of their cash register not your car.

JPK
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Re: Car Question for Gear Heads:
Posted by: Racer X
Date: December 17, 2011 11:06AM
Quote
Black
(insert facepalm pic here)

Never ever ever let those guys at Jiffy Lube out of your sight. They will underfill, overfill, overtighten, undertighten, and basically treat your car like it's disposable unless you gt really really lucky to find one with a mechanic that actually cares. Plenty of exposés have revealed that they often don't actually do any of the things you think you're paying them for.

Do you not have the option of word of mouth for finding a cheaper "neighborhood" mechanic?

I resent that greatly. I managed a Jiffy Lube for 2 years. Its the quality, training and attitude of the employees at individual stores that give the industry a bad rep. You are generalizing far to much.

My store had the lowest number of problems with customers' cars in the entire region. Yeah, crap happens, but it can happen even when you fo it yourself. Sure, an old external oil pump mounted in the front timing cover can lose its prime during an oil change. But it would happen in your driveway just like it can happen in a bay at Jiffy Lube, or in the bay at the dealership. But it is difficult to get the point across to the owner that "Joe" in the lower bay at Jiffy Lube, or "Bob" adding oil from the top had ABSOLUTELY nothing to do with it.

My dad's engine got trashed because the Chrysler dealership left the radiator cap off his Town and Country minivan during a servicing. Car overheated violently in Arizona during the summer, and messed up the block.

ALL mechanics make mistakes, some more, some less.
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Re: Car Question for Gear Heads:
Posted by: olnacl
Date: December 17, 2011 11:10AM
While this doesn't apply to the OP, I switched to synthetic oil in the engine and transmission of my 1980 MGB which, with conventional oil, gave an annoying little clash while changing from 1st into 2nd gear. That issue went away almost immediately (and never returned) upon changing the trans oil to synthetic. Note: The MGB uses motor oil in the trans, not "gear oil." I've used synthetic oil in all my cars since then.
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Re: Car Question for Gear Heads:
Posted by: wurm
Date: December 17, 2011 12:10PM
Interesting timing. I just finished changing the oil in my '06 Forester. I used to bring it to the dealer for oil changes until the warranty ran out at 120k miles. Now I do it myself. Yeah, a 5 quart jug of oil and the filter came to $18.84 after tax, and there are service stations around that do $19.95 changes, so one wonders if it's worth it sometimes. But there is something about changing it yourself and knowing it's done right that gives me some peace of mind. And I can be done in about 20 minutes and can do it in my driveway, so there's no "waiting" involved.

All that said, the next time it's due for a change it might be 20 degrees outside with a foot of snow on the ground, so I may just go back to the dealer for that one. ;)
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Re: Car Question for Gear Heads:
Posted by: jdc
Date: December 17, 2011 11:29PM
just dont fall for the 'every 3,000 miles' thing.

most cars made in the last 10 years can easily go 7500.





Edited 999 time(s). Last edit at 12:08PM by jdc.
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Re: Car Question for Gear Heads:
Posted by: davester
Date: December 18, 2011 12:08AM
Quote
jdc
just dont fall for the 'every 3,000 miles' thing.

most cars made in the last 10 years can easily go 7500.

True, but it's got little to do with the cars. Oil change intervals are based on the breakdown characteristics of the oil, which have improved drastically since the middle of the last century when 3,000 miles was all you could expect.



"In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion." (1987) -- Carl Sagan
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