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#4603275 - 12/14/17 09:02 AM OCI question
laughingbadger Offline

Registered: 03/20/17
Posts: 7
Loc: Oregon
Hey all, hope all is well.
Anyway, my question is this; I drive a new 4cyl truck (2016 frontier), very short distances, very spirited driving and i also use it for short trips around town for work. I have been doing research and lurk a lot around here, but i cant seem to find a good OCI. Like should i run a good conventional only 3.5k or 3 months, or a good syn blend/synthetic for 10k or 1 year. It seems whomever i speak too (parts store clerks, my mechanic friends, even lurking on here) it seems to yield a different answer. I know opinions are like.... well you know, but i dont want to risk blowing my new truck up by trying to get it too X amount of miles even if that takes me longer then the Time allotment. I contacted Nissan, the answer was "conventional to 5k, or syn to 10k, does not matter about
driving style, or brand or spec" I also live in Oregon, it gets to freezing temps, maybe a little below, but nothing radical.

So is will today's advanced synthetics hold up to short, cold, hard trips? Should i only run cheap stuff and change often? And if you dont meet your mileage, should you still change your oil based on time?

Thank you very much for your time Oil gurus.
2016 Nissan Frontier 2.5
2002 Buick Century 3.6

#4603282 - 12/14/17 09:09 AM Re: OCI question [Re: laughingbadger]
kschachn Online   content

Registered: 12/26/05
Posts: 9380
Loc: Upper Midwest
The first place you start is with your owner's manual. What does it say for OCI?
1994 BMW 530i, 227K
1996 Honda Accord, 262K
1999 Toyota Sienna, 394K
2000 Toyota ECHO, 267K

#4603284 - 12/14/17 09:10 AM Re: OCI question [Re: laughingbadger]
WobblyElvis Offline

Registered: 09/23/14
Posts: 1342
Loc: Toronto Canada
Cold starts, short trips contaminates the oil quickly. Frequent changes are called for. I would change often with less expensive oil.

#4603295 - 12/14/17 09:19 AM Re: OCI question [Re: kschachn]
laughingbadger Offline

Registered: 03/20/17
Posts: 7
Loc: Oregon
Just to use Xw-30, nothing about synthetic or conventional. and as for mileage it says 5k normal, and 3.5k severe. If i change it more often should i go by the miles or months.
2016 Nissan Frontier 2.5
2002 Buick Century 3.6

#4603297 - 12/14/17 09:20 AM Re: OCI question [Re: laughingbadger]
fenixguy Offline

Registered: 02/08/17
Posts: 307
Loc: NC
I would (and do) use a synthetic and change every 5,000. I do some short trips, a lot of cold starts, some towing, and quite a bit of highway miles. I'm surprised Nissan told you that because the owners maintenance guide says 5,000 miles for the Frontier no matter what. There's no severe/normal schedule for oil changes listed. Did a dealer tell you that?

All that being said, you'd be absolutely fine running a conventional for 5,000. If you wanted to run a synthetic for 10k, you'd probably be okay but to be sure a used oil analysis would be beneficial. However, it costs less to change the oil than to get an analysis so I just change at 5k and don't worry about it.
'16 Frontier SV 4x4-PP/Nissan OEM
'08 CR-V EX AWD-Valvoline Syn MaxLife/Fram TG
'01 Civic EX-Valvoline Syn MaxLife/Fram UG
'00 Civic LX-PYB/Fram UG

#4603302 - 12/14/17 09:24 AM Re: OCI question [Re: fenixguy]
laughingbadger Offline

Registered: 03/20/17
Posts: 7
Loc: Oregon
let me root my book out of my glove box and triple check. But yeah im reciting what the head dealer mechanic and a phone call to Nissan informed me. And sweet thanks for the info, 5k seems like a good number, was just overly worried my driving would destroy the "time table" in which i should reach it. dont want to take 1 year to get 5k of hard driving and find out im doing it wrong ya know?
2016 Nissan Frontier 2.5
2002 Buick Century 3.6

#4603356 - 12/14/17 10:21 AM Re: OCI question [Re: laughingbadger]
otis24 Offline

Registered: 10/30/05
Posts: 1656
Loc: South Dakota
Does your vehicle have an oil life monitor? If so, I would follow that. I would also use synthetic as an extra measure of protection based on your driving style. The oil life monitor is based on conventional.
1991 Chevrolet K1500 (4.3, 4x4, 86k miles)

2016 Dodge Grand Caravan
(3.6 V6) 46500 miles

#4603422 - 12/14/17 11:20 AM Re: OCI question [Re: laughingbadger]
RichardS Offline

Registered: 01/14/17
Posts: 616
Loc: Melbourne, Florida
Cheapest conventional SN on sale with a filter combo, and 3.5-5k. Shorter interval in the cold.

Don't analyze it to death, or your indecision will become final.
2008 Dodge Caliber SE 2.0 117k
4qt Imeditsu 0w-20, 1/2qt Mobil SS 5w-20 Fram HM

2003 Buick Century 107k
4.5q Havoline 5w-30 HM Fram XG

#4603431 - 12/14/17 11:24 AM Re: OCI question [Re: laughingbadger]
THafeez Offline

Registered: 08/15/16
Posts: 651
Loc: New Jersey
5k or 6 months whichever comes first. I usually go between 5-7k and 6-8 months for my car. For synthetic in a clean engine it's a piece of cake. Conventional is stretching it, but it still can handle it without messing anything up. In an older engine I'd get a UOA. Blackstone said that 7-8k for my car is fine so that's what I do.
2004 Toyota Solara SE 2.4 2AZFE
175,000 miles
Valvoline Synpower Maxlife 5W30
Royal Purple 20-400 oversize

#4603458 - 12/14/17 11:46 AM Re: OCI question [Re: otis24]
laughingbadger Offline

Registered: 03/20/17
Posts: 7
Loc: Oregon
negative. Super basic truck. manual everything.
2016 Nissan Frontier 2.5
2002 Buick Century 3.6

#4603469 - 12/14/17 11:58 AM Re: OCI question [Re: laughingbadger]
JustN89 Offline

Registered: 06/27/17
Posts: 459
Loc: DFW
From what you described, that's very much "severe" service. Spirited driving in short distances equals a tough time for any engine. I would run conventional to 3k miles, or (preferably) a synthetic out to 5k. My strategy would be to use QSUD 5W-30 (can be had for around $19 for 5 qt jug) and then do a UOA at 5k miles. This will give you some insight as to how the oil is holding up and how much further it can go.

#4603472 - 12/14/17 12:00 PM Re: OCI question [Re: laughingbadger]
i_hate_autofraud Offline

Registered: 05/19/16
Posts: 704
Loc: Canada

After doing lots of UOA on various cars in the garage with severe duty use and just hiway miles
the oil is far more durable then claimed by manufacturers that want to scare pple into more
frequent oil filter changes, (= $$$)

That said, check your oil dipstick for water, gunk, milky films, etc, that tells you your oil is dirty for
real. In all late model engines, blow-by is way less then 30 yrs ago and PCV ventilation of engines
is more aggressive, keeping oil cleaner longer.

Since you likely have a warranty on your 2016 truck, follow the OLM and manual, oil and lube system
far less likely to blow an engine, reving and abuse can.

If the OLM says you went over the change interval without resetting the OLM, it will store
a dealer accessible code you can't clear, so change the oil on time and reset the OLM.

After warranty you can go further with no harm or warranty denial. I now go 10K miles on synthetic
and the UOA shows a oil life TBN of 2.0 to 3.5, no problem with wear metals 50% lower then before since
I also use a pair of FilterMags plus other mags per PDF below. My oil stays visibly cleaner for months!
Wish I thought of it decades ago!


#4603491 - 12/14/17 12:25 PM Re: OCI question [Re: laughingbadger]
PimTac Online   content

Registered: 03/04/17
Posts: 4228
Loc: Soviet State of Washington
I would go with 5000 mile oil changes. Itís a easy number to keep track of. You didnít mention if you are in Portland or elsewhere but I know Portland is a tough stop and go environment with lots of hills. If you are elsewhere then consider the climate in your area. Oregon has a widely varied climate.

As for oil, any major brand that meets the specs in the owners manual will do. You donít need the top level Synthetic like EP or Ultra. Castrol black bottle Edge , Pennzoil Platinum, Valvoline AS, Mobil1 AFE or even straight M1 will do fine. Even a blend will work if that helps your budget. Castrol Magnatec and Pennzoil Gold are highly favored here.
2017 Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring

Valvoline Advanced Synthetic 0w20
Mobil 1 M108A EP filter

#4603550 - 12/14/17 02:03 PM Re: OCI question [Re: kschachn]
Panzerman Offline

Registered: 12/16/06
Posts: 4203
Loc: Port Orange, Florida
Originally Posted By: kschachn
The first place you start is with your owner's manual. What does it say for OCI?

Wouldn't the world be a boring place if we just read the owners manual and never ventured out of the box.
With all the back spec, different oil weights for different continents I would think you may realize you may give the car makers more credit than they deserve on the manual writing.

2006 Dodge Ram 2500 Hemi 4x4
2016 Dodge Challenger Scat Pack

#4603575 - 12/14/17 02:41 PM Re: OCI question [Re: laughingbadger]
Duffyjr Offline

Registered: 01/13/16
Posts: 504
Loc: Nebraska
Originally Posted By: laughingbadger
...very short distances, very spirited driving and i also use it for short trips around town for work.

5000 miles seems like a lot to me with these habits. With this type of use I wouldn't go any longer than six months on any oil.
89 GMC Sierra T5 10w30/Wix
08 Lucerne Mobil 5000 5w30
99 LeSabre QSGB 10w30/TG
18 Toro Super Recycler T5 10w30

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