6+ Month OCI & Oil life meter

Discussion in 'Chevy Silverado Forum (GMC Sierra)' started by Bowtied, Nov 21, 2013.

  1. Bowtied

    Bowtied Epic Member 5+ Years 500 Posts

    After reading many oil analyses online i've found that most oils seem to break down and lose their wear inhibiting additives around the 6 month mark, I have what i believe to be the simple mileage counter style oil life meter in my truck but it rarely ever (if at all) asks me to change it before i do my oil change.

    Compounding this with some newly discovered information about DEXOS approved oils (which i dont think im using currently) and im thoroughly torn about when to change my oil, in the summer months i may only drive 1.5-3k miles from June to December (but end up changing it twice due to higher mileage driving from december-june), and the oil's additive package has likely broken down by then, should it be changed anyways if a)low mileage driven and b)no oil change read out from the trucks computer is shown?

    Thanks for any help and I hope this is not confusing. essentially should I change the oil even if the driver information center is not telling me to I am only 50% sure my vehicle is calculating this based on mileage only (From what i've read, 2004 silverado 5.3) but what i've been reading regarding oil analyses has been showing with evidence that after 6 months your oil has broken down and is not doing much more than lubricating the engine from friction and not really doing its job as a wear inhibitor with the additives.
  2. RayVoy

    RayVoy Epic Member 5+ Years 5000 Posts

    It sounds like you don't drive it enough to bring on the light between the changes that you feel comfortable with. If you reset at each oil change then the light will probably never come on.

    I don't know about the additives breaking down within a 6 month period. I do know, GM feels comfortable telling us to change when the oil light comes on, or, once a year. Which ever occurs first.

    Personally, I use synthetic and follow GM's advise.
  3. j cat

    j cat Epic Member 5+ Years 1000 Posts

    when you say oil what type of oil ?

    synthetic oil is more stable than the non synthetics. I doubt that synthetic breaks down at the 6 month mark. typical non synthetic absorbs water/condensation then the acid is created along with sludge/carbon deposits.. also synthetic absorbs more heat than non synthetics helping keep the oil temp lower.

    with these engines I do not recommend any non synthetic oil. I have been using the mobil 1 now dexos approved and this is a good GM spec improvement. my engine is very quiet now on a cold start in the cold weather for the first few seconds ...
  4. Bowtied

    Bowtied Epic Member 5+ Years 500 Posts

    Sorry JCat i meant non-synthetic "dino" oil, i've been using whatevers on special at the local autozone type stores for about 2 years now Pennzoil, Valvoline, even the "green" valvoline was used once, now that im aware of the dexos approval i'll likely be buying the AC Delco 5w-30 non-synthetic (as i dont drive enough and change too often to warrant switching to full syn or semi-syn) I read that AC Delco's oil isnt dexos certified but if its GM's generic brand, it seems like a safe bet
  5. j cat

    j cat Epic Member 5+ Years 1000 Posts

    since you do low miles the synthetic is the perfect oil to use. you can go one year with low mileage and change your oil. you will have no issues at all with this interval.

    now with regular non synthetic they recommend the oil be changed every 3 months or 4 ,000 miles.

    my 1996 IMPALA has 74,000miles on it . I replace the oil every year. oil looks like new at every change.

    I do about 2000 miles every year now. no sludge etc..
  6. summitwhite11

    summitwhite11 Active Member 2 Years 500 Posts

    My service manager is both that and a friend, he suggest oil and tire rotation every 5k miles, I choose to use what GM suggest for my motor based on factory test and specs. I am amazed at how much people differ on this subject, and people always have, myself, I am from old school, every 3 k miles no and, if or but's. todays clean managed motors and better refined lubricants can go longer and come out in better condition than the old days of 3 k changes. I am posting a link for a good read on motor oils with statements from scientist, engineers and such from GM, and other oil manufacturing, processing companies, its a good read with some great facts and myth busting. seperating facts from fiction.

  7. j cat

    j cat Epic Member 5+ Years 1000 Posts

    having this engine for 13 plus years the synthetic is the best. I believe when they started to use AL for the engine parts the higher temps effect the non synthetic oils in a bad way. then we have to deal with alcohol fuel which is water , this with non synthetic also create damage if the oil is not replaced often with non synthetics.

    most use synthetic oil with these engines and have few problems. with the AFM well thats another issue that I do not have to deal with . If I did have afm I would be using the GM approved oil for sure.

    these mag reports on oil changes etc are not considering that these are trucks. vehicles used to tow/haul/operate on off road dirt /dust conditions. totally different than a toyota camry or impala type car.
  8. summitwhite11

    summitwhite11 Active Member 2 Years 500 Posts

    I tend to stay with GM and what the service manager advises, as I can only think, based on what I have read here, that at some point I will have some issues with my 5.3 related to oil and AFM. If I do not have any issues, all the better, I think all the report was saying is that all oil exceeds the basic requirements, the basic difference was price and how they market the various products, Trucks, oils and towing big loads have been around for a hundred years, its more about how you take care of it then what you put into it. and yes, synthetics are far better oils.I run synthetic in all of my other vehicles. excellent ideas always on this subject, and I am pretty sure santa is bringing me a little plug n play device to assist me with the AFM issue. Thanks for your input j cat and I do agree with you.
  9. j cat

    j cat Epic Member 5+ Years 1000 Posts

    I had vehicles in the past that ran great on regular engine oils. never had a problem but not trucks.Also during that time alcohol was not used in the fuel. this is the problem now , today. Then the cast iron is more forgiving than AL.. the heads do radiate more heat to the oil but you can more power out of an AL head vs a cast iron one.

    my testing with my GM 5.3L is quieter/more MPG/faster cold starts @temps below 20 deg F. with the synthetics. It is true my 2000 engine came from factory with regular oil . thing is the engine operates better now then when new with the non synthetic.
  10. Bowtied

    Bowtied Epic Member 5+ Years 500 Posts

    just out of curiosity jcat what type and viscosity oil are you using in Summer/Winter or all year round?

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