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Synthetic Oil Issue:


Lexusfreak
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Hi everyone,

I just wanted to toss this out to everyone as I think this should generate some intresting feedback...

I went to my Lexus dealer today to pick up some maintenance items & some Lexus gear. I got into a conversation with one of the "salesmen" there about maintaining the ES. He asked me how many kilometers I had on my car.......73,000kms (43,000 miles) and he said that because of the milage on the car he would NOT recommend that I start using synthetic oil (Mobil 1 5W 30) and that I stick with using conventional oil simply because if I go to synthetic, there is a big risk that I will start having serious oil leaks as the more refined "thinner" oil will seep through the seals & gaskets creating big problems for me. Now I have all service records with this car & nothing but 5W 30 has been used for oil changes (conventional) & I have used synthetic oil in many cars with a lot higher milage than what is on my ES...without any sort of oil leakes whatsoever.

Personally I think he has no clue as to what he is talking about....also the car has a Lexus extended warranty so if anything should happen & I have all service up to date, they will have to fix any problems I may have. Any thoughts & opinions on this anybody? Again, this guy was a salesmen, not an S.A.E. expert & according to him, he's seen this problem quite a bit on diffferent Lexus vehicles. :unsure:

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Well I agree with him, switching to synthetic oil can cause leakage when the vehicle has high mileage, but I wouldn't consider 43,000 miles high, and this is more of a problem with engines with lower tolerances than a Lexus...

I wouldn't worry about it, and always take anything a salesman says with a grain of salt. A lot of them just like to hear themselves talk, and just because they sound like they know what they're talking about doesn't mean they do.

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Thanks SW! :D I appreciate your honest opinion.....That's pretty much how I felt as well......I didn't think 43,000 miles is that much either so I don't think I should have any problems switching to synthetic.

:cheers:

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I switched to synthetic at 45k. No problems. Glad I did as I don't need to change it out until sometime in spring due to the extended OCI.

If you are going to change out every 3k, then it probably makes more sence to stick with a good Dino.

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.

The ultimate authorities are the Lexus/Toyota engineers. They designed a dino oil just for Toyotas http://www.saber.net/~monarch/lexoilc.jpg You can get it at any Toyota dealer for $1.40 - $2.00 a quart. Toyota also offers a synthetic oil, but only for sale in Canada since the engine wear benefits of synthetics are largely limited to cold climates. In any case, the Lexus/Toyota engineers say switching to synthetic is OK as long as you stick with it and do not switch back to dino oil.

The bottom line is: If you don't want to take any risks, stick with dino oil and use genuine Toyota dino oil if practical. If you don't mind taking a small risk of future oil leaks, switch to synthetic and stick with it for the life of the engine.

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~One mans opinion / observation~

For all interested parties, this is an excellent technical website on oil and oil analysis. The site has a huge database of user submitted oil analysis data as well. There are tons of strange little facts I have learned from this site. Such as:

Changing your oil to early/often is worse than letting it go to the recommended interval as oils see an increase in viscosity and protective properties after some use.

And as we all knew already, the 3000-mile oil change rule is a Jiffy Lube and Oil Company ploy to part us from our money. The data from the oil analysis database backs this up, even with dino oil.

Have fun reading; I spent 2 hours when I found it.

http://theoildrop.server101.com/cgi...;DaysPrune=1000

~Hope this helps~

Experience unshared; is knowledge wasted…/

justadumbarchitect * so i question everything*

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TOG! Great to see you here! Its GoodnClean from the Autopia forums ;)

monarch- First of all, I doubt that the Toyota oil is anything special, its common practice simply to get bulk oil and label it, there's absolutely no reason to use the Toyota oil over a high quality oil, dino or synthetic. Thats like saying you should only let a Lexus dealer put gas in your car because their gas is specifically designed for the car.

My feeling of it is, especially on the ES where the oil sludging is a problem, why not use a good synthetic? Its really not that much more expensive in the grand scheme of things, and if it makes you feel better? Hell, maybe it'll even do some good.

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synthetic is amazing in hot and cold

they should sell it in the states as well as in canada

i have and will always use synthetic for it additional wear reduction

no leaks ever in any car

if it gets one it is because you already had one that the regualr oil plugged up

the engine is designed for basic dino but the physical properties of synthetic is much better as all it is ,is the same dyno oil but a synthetic filtering process to remove the waxes and purify the oil

it isn't like synthetic is from a tree or something just the same oil but without impurities

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synthetic all the way, especially if you are in any area that goes below freezing for extended periods of time. It has been less than 25°F for over a month now. You bet I've got synthetic in the crankcase.

The bit about once your go synthetic you can never go back to dino is a load of hogwash. Simply a false statement started by the manufacturers of synthetic because it costs more and they will stand to make more money.

Lexusfreak, just do it already. :chairshot:

If you develop a leak, then just drain out the synthetic and immedaitely go back to regular dino. Be prepared and don't get scared. When you replace the oil filter, you will see oil drops for about a week. The oil filter placement is extremely poor and predisposes the 1MZ-FE to oil drops and drips that take a couple days to subside.

steviej

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Thanks to all for your responses! especially steviej, skp & sw! I appreciate your honesty.....I will go for it as a matter of fact :D The oil filter location I totally understand.......however, if I put the car up on ramps at the front end, won't that drain most of the oil from the filter back down in the crankcase when the oil is draining? or does the toyota filters have a valve that closes? Just courious is all...

I agree with skp as well.......Like I mentioned at the beginning of this thread, I have used synthetic in the past with my other vehicles with a lot higher milage & never experanced an oil leak at all.......I hope I have the same luck with my Lexus and because of the build quality of the car, I see no reason why I shouldn't have......not to mention oil leaks are covered (gaskets and the like) untill 120,000 miles & mentions nothing about not being able to switch to synthetics from conventional oil. Thanks again everybody!

:cheers:

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Alan, how long ago was 60,000 miles or better yet how many miles do you drive in between actual oil changes?

When you change just the oil filter, do you lose much oil (~ a cup full)? If you lose any, do you add the same amount of new back it or just run with what little is lost until the actual oil change?

steviej

PS, Please refrain from typing in all caps as it is considered rude by most forums. We have asked other members to try to remember this, so it is only fair that I remind you, too. Thanks.

Edited by steviej
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