View Full Version : ? about Synthetic oils

12/15/2003, 12:16 PM
What kind?

And how often should you change synthetic oil?

12/15/2003, 12:20 PM

I have it in the VX, my Jeep, and my wife's Jetta... next up is my motorcycle (Yamaha R1)

Amsoil says 12,500 or 6 months filter change and 25,000 or one year full oil change with and Amsoil filter.

7,500/6 months filter change and 15,000/one year full oil change with Hastings or comparable filter.

After I sell my Jeep and have some money, I will be changing all the fluids in my VX over to Amsoil synthetic.


12/15/2003, 12:24 PM
Originally posted by jeffkics
What kind?

And how often should you change synthetic oil?

What kind, what? What kind should you use? Well, everyone seems to have an opinion about it, about them trusting one over another, and so on... I have used Mobil 1 and lately changed to AMSoil, just so I knew I was putting "the best" and definitely one of the most expensive synthetic motor oils in my VX. You can read that they have certification ratings for specific things and tests have shown that it performs better than other oils and the such, but I have never heard anything bad about any synthetic motor oil.

For the price, I would either go with Mobil 1 or, if you want to pay for what may be peace of mind, AMSoil. Price difference is going to be around $2 - $8 more (depending on which model you get) for AMSoil... about I said.

As for how often you should change it... I would still do between 3k to 5k. Again, you'll get different messages on this, but for my own peace of mind, I wouldn't want to push it.

12/15/2003, 12:39 PM
See this is what gets me, one person will say, change the oil every 25,000 miles while another will say stick with 3,000?

12/15/2003, 01:00 PM
:freek: EVERY 25,000 miles. OMG don't listen to that advise!!

Stick with 3,000 miles or close to it. Doesn't have to be exact.

12/15/2003, 01:23 PM
VX_PA, If you're using Amsoil, please read the literature on drain intervals that they provide. http://www.amsoil.com/lit/g1490.pdf

I have been using Amsoil for awhile now and I have noticed nothing but good results from it. If you read the literature from Amsoil, they encourage you to follow the extended drain intervals... it is one of the main benefits to using synthetic.

To each his own, but I am using Amsoil just like Amsoil says to use it and I am having great results.

Lots of good info here too: http://www.amsoil.com/lit/g52.pdf


12/15/2003, 01:26 PM
Originally posted by jeffkics
See this is what gets me, one person will say, change the oil every 25,000 miles while another will say stick with 3,000?

I'm not telling you to do anything. I'm just stating that, personally, I would rather OVER change my oil than UNDER change it. I would rather feel confident that I'm cycling clean oil through my engine than worrying whether 10k miles is leaving me with pretty dirty oil or worse... a few quarts shy of full (some Isuzu engines burn a bit)!!

12/15/2003, 01:33 PM
Originally posted by joe-yamma
VX_PA, If you're using Amsoil, please read the literature on drain intervals that they provide. http://www.amsoil.com/lit/g1490.pdf


That's pretty impressive.

12/15/2003, 01:33 PM
With all due repsect to you guys...
I am just re-stating what Amsoil has on it's website.
Everyone has a different way of doing things and you guys are certainly entiteld to your opinions, but I just think you're missing one of the main benefits of full syn.
No doubt you guys are definitely not hurting your engines! ;)

Here's another good point for using Amsoil http://www.amsoil.com/amsoilfacts.htm

Just to clarify: With Amsoi, they tell you to change the filter at six months (and of course top off whatever oil is lost during the filter change) and then do a full drain and oil and filter change at one year.

This is the process that I am following, and it is working for me. I have Amsoil and filter on the work bench ready to go into my motorcycle too...(Yamaha R1 which is my baby and I would not do anything that would hurt her :D ).


12/15/2003, 01:42 PM
Be careful with using the recommended intervals on your bike. They state that their own chart doesn't include ATV's or Motorcycles. I defenitely over change the oil in my bike because I ride hard. I have a GSX-R 750 SHRAD with tons of modifications and I have a hard time staying on two wheels.;)

Also, even with synthetic oil, I wouldn't drive my VX more than 7,500 miles. Cleaner is better no matter what. Unfortunitely the VX motor isn't the most durable (I know because I'm on my second engine) so I will definetely over change the oil. Anything to save $5,000 as that's what a new engine costs.

12/15/2003, 03:06 PM

I see what you're saying... motorcycles are definitely a good testing ground for oils and such... the conditions and stresses placed on motorcycle engines are unreal. Aluminum cases, high temps, wet clutches...

I will keep a close eye on the R1 with the Amsoil... I can usually tell when the oil needs changed on the R1 before the mileage is even up.


12/15/2003, 05:24 PM
In addition to lubrication one of the other things oil does for your engine is trap and suspend contaminants. So no matter how long the oil may retain its lubricity, it's not self-cleaning. If you go more than 3 or 5 thousand miles between changes, well, you pretty much might as well just use whatever's cheapest.

Plain and simple: CHANGE IT!

Now, Mobil-1 and Amsoil are the two only true sythetics to the best of my knowledge. I had a bike that came with Amsoil in it and switched over to Mobil-1, which I've used in all my vehicles since shortly after it came out. Why am I a big fan? Well, Mobil-1 was certified for aviation use. Amsoil didn't. That carries weight in my book, but I'm sure the products are close if not comparable.

There's my $.02

12/15/2003, 08:17 PM
I recently changed to Mobile 1 on Joe's recommendation (and I've always been a proponent of real oils rather than synthetic). I think the arguement that swayed me was "what's it worth to you" and I realized that spending the greater amount on 6 quarts of synth every 3-4k miles wasn't much more than what I was spending on regular oil... so why not?

-- John

Raque Thomas
12/15/2003, 08:35 PM
You know, I've been pondering this issue hard - if I'm changing my oil every 3,000 miles - I'm thinking that a regular oil is going to do just as well as one of the synthetics. My last OC cost $60 at Valvoline Instant Oil Change, since I didn't bring the oil with me - that's what made me start thinking. If I'm changing that often - I can't justify the extra expense. It's easy to fool yourself on the total cost of an oil change if you buy the oil and then pay separately for the change. Of course, an oil change is cheap compared to the cost of an engine - but are we "overcompensating"?

OK - some of you are saying "DUDE - what's an engine worth??" But at 3,000 mile intervals, I'm thinking a good quality regular oil would be just as effective as a synthetic. I either need to extend my service intervals or use regular oil. My gut tells me that extending the intervals only allows more contaminents in the oil, and defeats the purpose of having a synthetic.

Somebody please give me some INFORMED advice!!

12/15/2003, 08:55 PM
I have to agree with Raque. Synthetic flows better sure, but as far as extended oil chnages, even if you spin on a new filter, you are still circulating oil contaminated with fuel and combustion gases. My family has had engines hit 175k to 195k(and still going) with real oil. The most I have hit is 165k...and on a Chrysler yet before I traded it in. Change the oil at 3k intervals and save yourself the $$$.

After that I have to admit, I am running a synthetic in my diffs simply because they are not effected by a combustion process.

12/15/2003, 09:24 PM
Y'all make some good points about regular oils and regular changing routines, that's just good practice. Where a true synthetic shines though is in its properties. The lubricity is far more consistent due to uniform size of the molecules, which are also less affected by temperature. You get better flow, less gunking and no build-up. If you switch a high mileage engine over to synthetics you should change the oil and filter at about 1000 miles as it will often cause the sludge and build-up left by regular oils to break free, potentially clogging the filter and/or oil galleries.

There is also the friction reducing properties that is an added benfit of the synthetic structure. After a complete switch to Mobil-1 I usually notice about a 2 - 3 MPG increase in economy in most vehicles. It made a big difference with the V-10 in my '01 F-250.

If you want a clean, well lubricated engine with the benefit of economy and longevity then synthetics are the way to go. If you're driving a flat-head V8 with loose tolerances or some other older vehicle, then don't worry about it. But with modern engineered drivetrains getting the most available power from tighter tolerances and pushing thermal boundaries, then the choice becomes much clearer.

You can watch this thread go on and on, back and forth, but if you want the real answer look in the real world. Mobil-1 has a product line that is very diverse: Racing, Aviation, Agriculture, Industrial etc. Pure synthetic lubricants meeting and exceeding the demands of some of the harshest and extreme environments people and equipment can operate in. Those are facts, happening everyday wherever you care to open your eyes and look.

12/16/2003, 05:19 AM
This all boils down to my original advise:


Keep in mind that our VX engine is alot closer to a motorcycle engine than you think. It's all aluminum. Keep things smooth with clean oil.

12/16/2003, 05:58 AM
Don't forget about ROYAL PURPLE being another highly touted synthetic also.

12/16/2003, 06:08 AM
...Contaminants :yes: Change your oil and change it often is the key. Synthetics hold up better to stress and resist breakdown, but in the case of the VX, unless you have some major engine modifications, like SC, etc... Synthetics buy you peace of mind more than anything else. Change your oil every 3000 miles and your engine will thank you, use synthetic if you can afford it for added peace of mind and change it just as often. My 2cents :naughty:

12/16/2003, 08:59 AM
I agree that changing the oil more often is better.

Where I disagree is where you guys run synthetic and change it every 3,000 miles. I really think that this is not necessary.

Again, I agree that this is not going to hurt our engine. I guess this is being on the safe safe safe side. I just think that it is overkill and I know that I can't afford to run Amsoil and change at 3,000 miles.

If you guys read some of Amsoil's website, maybe you'll change your opinion a little. (maybe not ;) )
Either way, good points made by all.. I guess it just goes to show how much we all love our VX's and what nothing but the best for them! :D


12/16/2003, 10:47 AM
I wrote AMSOIL an email about what they recommend for the 3.5L this is what they said:

In response to your inquiry, we recommend the use of our AMSOIL Series 2000 0W30 Severe Service Motor oil (product code TSO). This premium motor oil protects better in high temperatures than do the higher viscosity conventional and synthetic oils. Series 2000 retains excellent fluidity in extremely low temperatures, so it flows quickly and reliably to allow easy starting and immediate lubrication protection. This product may be used year round and is not affected by high ambient temperatures. The service life on Series 2000 is 35,000 miles or one year, whichever comes first. A complete description of this product can be found in the "PRODUCT INFORMATION" section of our website.

35,000 miles hahaha OMFG

12/16/2003, 11:22 AM
Email them back and ask if they will cover the cost to replace your engine due to contaminates mixing with thier product. If they will pay for any repairs and labor involved, only then would I use their recommended change intervals. Good luck getting them to sign that in writing. Let us know what they tell you.

12/16/2003, 11:23 AM
35,000 seemed a bit long to me too.

Here is what the emailed me when I asked about fluids for the VX:

"We recommend the use of our AMSOIL Synthetic 5W30 (ASL) or our AMSOIL Series 2000 Synthetic 0W30 Motor Oil (TSO). The automatic transmission can use our AMSOIL Synthetic Universal Automatic Transmission Fluid (ATF), and the differentials use our AMSOIL Series 2000 Synthetic 75W90 Gear Lube (TGR).
Here is a link to our AMSOIL Filter Finder tool, which will display all available filters for your needs. Simply fill in the vehicle information."


12/16/2003, 11:24 AM
Originally posted by VX_PA
Email them back and ask if they will cover the cost to replace your engine due to contaminates mixing with thier product. If they will pay for any repairs and labor involved, only then would I use their recommended change intervals. Good luck getting them to sign that in writing. Let us know what they tell you.

Good idea... I'd like to know that too (since I'm using their intervals)

I'd like to see what they have to say about contaminates in general.

12/16/2003, 11:34 AM
Originally posted by VX_PA
Email them back and ask if they will cover the cost to replace your engine due to contaminates mixing with thier product. If they will pay for any repairs and labor involved, only then would I use their recommended change intervals. Good luck getting them to sign that in writing. Let us know what they tell you.


Written on their site is 35,000 miles for light truck and car applications. Filter needs to be changed every 6 months, and oil topped off at that time.



12/16/2003, 11:52 AM
Read their warranty policy very carefully. It contains alot of loopholes for them to deny a claim. The way it is written you'd have a hard time collecting anything from them if your engine fails. They will most likely claim that failure is caused by something other than their product.

I will still continue to change my oil every 3,000 miles. Better safe than sorry.

12/16/2003, 04:26 PM
I have used Mobil 1 in everything since it came out and change every 5K. I have seen people go 25k with it and have seen it come out like a regular change and have seen it come out in chunks.
vaporgenie (http://vaporizers.net/vapor-genie)

12/16/2003, 07:38 PM
Americans tend to have a hang-up about 3K oil changes. Modern engine technology has gone way beyond the 3K number. But for some reason, the American market doesn't want to believe it. Many, otherwise identical, cars come with a 3K oil change recommendation in the USA, but 6-10K schedules in Europe and the Far East. Has anyone checked what the oil change interval is for Japanese VXs?

12/16/2003, 07:49 PM
That would be interesting... I bet it's more than 3,000 miles.

I was checking out Mobil1's website... Man, they don;t give you much info on there do they?

12/17/2003, 06:35 AM
Many years ago (before VX) I had a conversation with pro race driver. I asked him what oil he use in his day-to-day drive. He used plain regular motor oil but he changed it more often then recomended by manufacturer.
When it was time for me to make my first oil change on VX (at 2.000 miles) I had a dilemma of more expencive synthetic oil vs. more frequent changes. I've chose synthetic blend (Quaker State 4X4 synthetic blend) as it was much cheaper then Mobile. I change it every 2.500 and pretty happy. I guess my VX can not complain as it is getting clean oil more often.

Lets face it - in US if we were to go to junk yard many cars would have running engines and I bet vast majority had never seen Mobile synthetic. The point is that usually engine outlast the lifespan of a car even on regular oil.

12/17/2003, 06:58 PM
I went through this same ordeal... synth vs. cheapo...

Long story short, AMSOIL. every 7500 or when I get bored - whichever comes first.

The whole point of using an oil that you only change "every 35000 miles" is that when someone else buys 3 or 4 qts of oil, you bought one. Sounds like the extra cost is justified to me...

In this world of the 3k mile oil change, only one entity emerges on top - Jiffy Lube. Think business would be as good if the song was "Every 35,000 miles, just bring it in to Jiffy Lube..."? Don't think so.

Think about it...

12/17/2003, 09:21 PM
Well, I really think, a long time ago, you really PROBABLY needed to change your oil every 3k miles or so... I'm sure that's how it started, as engines didn't last as long as they do know. That being said, you don't have much of a choice going in to JIffy Lube, unless you bring your own oil.

Now, those of us who know how to change oil and don't trust the Jiffy Lubes of the world can decide... and some of us do feel better knowing the oil is newer, sooner. That being said, my opinion stays at changing more often than not, no matter what I use. Now, THAT being said, I think I will go back to Mobil 1.

12/18/2003, 05:27 AM
No matter what kind of oil you use, your filter will start losing efficiency within a week of normal driving. Why? Because it's doing its job FILTERING contaminants. And it can only filter so much! Modern engines have much tighter tolerances and you're just hurting yourself by exposing your mill to whatever grit, metals and soot is in there for longer than necessary.

All you over 3000 mile changers, at least change your filter at 3000 miles if you believe in your oil so much. All the oil does with those contaminants is SUSPEND them. They don't miraculously change to some magic inert material, they don't go away if the filter can't take anymore. When the oil reaches saturation it begins to sludge and does more harm than good, losing its ability to flow and dissipate heat effectively.

I spend about $30 at each oil change using Mobil-1 and a Mobil-1 Synthetic filter. I have a quart left over so it's like a "free" oil change on the sixth service. It takes me 30 minutes to do the job and any auto parts place takes the used oil. I drove 21,400 miles this past year which means I spent $210 on using the best possible materials to maintain my beloved VX. $210. Can you afford $210 a YEAR to keep your VehiCROSS in tip-top shape? If you can't, you need to look at giving your VX a better home.

12/18/2003, 06:53 AM
OK so I wrote AMSOIL back with this:
Thank you for your information. However, you can understand my concern when I say that I have never heard of an oil that you are able to run for a year without changing. I am one of those people who change my oil every 3000 miles, and to hear that I won't have to change this oil for 35,000 just throws every concept of whats good for my car right out the window. I am having a hard time with this, if it is indeed true, then this is the greatest thing I have ever heard of. Can you actually guarentee that this will not harm my engine if I let it go 20,000 let alone 35,000 miles? Is it simply that amazing? I'm sure that I am not the first to ask this. I hope you can see my concern. Any more information pertaining to this would be greatly apprieciated.

This is what that replied:
From: AMSOIL Technical Services Department

Thanks for taking the time to contact AMSOIL with your concerns.
In response to your inquiry, yes this can be a difficult concept when we've all been taught that the more you change the oil the better. Extended drain interval questions are covered in depth in the FAQ section http://amsoil.com/frequent.htm#extendeddrain of our website. You can also access our AMSOIL warranty http://www.amsoil.com/warranty.htm . For those that don't feel good about extremely long service intervals, we also offer our shorter life XL7500 series oils. The are rated for 7500 miles or six months, whichever comes first.

Thank you again for the opportunity to respond to your concerns. As always, please feel free to contact us again if we can be of further assistance.

Thank you,
Jim Van
AMSOIL Technical Services

12/18/2003, 05:12 PM
ScubaSteve - I agree 100% with you man... I think you're using a very common sense approach to the situation as am I.

Joe_Black - What you are doing is great for you. I think you're going a little overboard, but hey that's up to you... and you are giving your VX the best of both worlds.

jeffkics - So has this thread answered any of your questions? ;) I think it's good that we're all doing different things and having good luck with it... and I think it rocks to have a cool forum like this for us to discuss this stuff!!!


12/19/2003, 05:32 AM

This is a pretty amazing site.
They just got done testing Mobil1 in a 2002 V8 Camaro with an oil analysis every 1000 miles. They left the oil in it until it needed to be changed according to these tests. They did a filter change at 12,000 miles, and finally ended the test at 18,000 miles. All the results are posted.

They are now in the process of testing AMSOIL and will do the same and see how long it lasts.

Looks like the 3000 mile oil change may be a thing of the past.

12/19/2003, 08:15 AM
Very Interesting. I just read the entire test. Based upon their results, the point that came across the most was making sure you top off the oil on a consistent basis. Seems the slight addition of used oil "refreshes" the synth and makes it last longer. That and the replacement oil filter really prolonged the life of the mobile 1.

The other point I got from this was that synth really lasts much longer than the traditional 3k. Sounds like we can go 5k 0r 6k easily and not think too much about it (provided the motor is topped-off). The report suggest that 10k would not be out of the question.

I'm actually more interested at this point in a comparison with real oil than in another synth. Wish this could be sped up somehow.

-- Best, John

12/19/2003, 10:39 AM
Sorry I should also specify that where as I change my oil around every 7500, I also use Amsoil's REALLY BIG oil filter - forgot the part number...

12/19/2003, 12:11 PM
Per cross reference with the larger K&N, I believe it is the AMSoil SDF-36

12/20/2003, 05:32 PM
I know this thread was almost dead ;) , but I saw this today and I thought it was very relevant to this disccussion... I think it addresses the "I use Mobil 1 and change oil every 3000 miles" crowd.



12/20/2003, 05:36 PM
Originally posted by ScubaSteve
In this world of the 3k mile oil change, only one entity emerges on top - Jiffy Lube. Think business would be as good if the song was "Every 35,000 miles, just bring it in to Jiffy Lube..."? Don't think so.Think about it...

Hey ScubaSteve - I remembered you talking about Jiffy Lube, etc and drain intervals... Check out this brochure from Amsoil about businesses using Amsoil and extended drain intervals. :confused:



12/20/2003, 05:39 PM
I found a vbunch of Amsoil's info brochures on their website. Here's a cool one about 4wd's. Not a lot of new info, but I thought it was kinda cool anyway.


VX crazy
12/20/2003, 06:21 PM
Ahhh, I can translate, 7500 miles OR 6 mo, whichever comes first! Obviously your not going to drive 6 mo unlimited miles! And to go that long and be covered you need to send a sample for them to test. I go 5000 betweeen oil changes with Royal Purple.