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GRAND BLANC, Mich., March 30 /PRNewswire/ -- How frequently should drivers change their engine oil? Most technicians will say 3,000 miles while others say 5,000 or 7,000. But ask Mr. Goodwrench and he'll offer a simple solution -- let your vehicle tell you when -- that could protect your wallet and the environment from unnecessary oil changes. GM's patented Oil Life System (GMOLS) can double or even triple the time between oil changes when compared to the common 3,000-mile recommendation simply by evaluating driving conditions.

"This car care season, most owners of 2004 GM vehicles won't have to worry about deciding when to change their engine oil because leading-edge technology will determine the right time for them," said Peter Lord, executive director, GM Service Operations. "Simply visit your GM Goodwrench dealership for an oil change service when the vehicle signals and you won't have to worry about how many miles you have driven. This alone could save consumers significantly on the number of oil changes they purchase over the life of the vehicle."

GMOLS is on about 95 percent of the vehicles that GM produces today and on a wide variety of models since the mid-1990s. There are roughly 20 million vehicles on the road today equipped with GMOLS. The system itself uses an algorithm that tracks engine revolutions and temperature and predicts oil life based on these parameters and driver use.

GM's New Simplified Maintenance Schedules Challenge Industry Assumptions

GMOLS technology allows GM and GM Goodwrench dealerships to offer all new Simplified Maintenance Schedules on most 2004 vehicles to simplify maintenance for GM customers and to build long-lasting customer relationships. The new schedules are a departure from the typical industry approach of basing maintenance intervals on mileage. Instead of a complicated list of different services to be performed at different mileage intervals, GM's new Simplified Maintenance Schedules are based on the change oil light/message.

Full Story HERE
 

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I have a 2004 GM vehicle, and though I've read the above recommendations in the owner's manual, and though the manual explains that it's perfectly reasonable to make the move to regular oil changes every 7,500 miles from the traditional 3,000 miles, I cannot bring myself to trust a computer to tell me when to change my oil. I have reluctantly made the move to change my oil every 4,000 miles from every 3,000 miles without much event, so perhaps I may move to every 5,000 oil changes the next time around.

I'm glad that this article was posted; I was wondering if the more informed GMI members had any thoughts on the topic. I'm all for saving money (and the environment) with less frequent auto maintenance, but not at the cost of the longterm reliability of my very reliable car.
 

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I too have a newer GM vehical which recommends changing the oil when the vehical tells me to, which could be up to a year. But try as I might I could not swallow this advice and promptly changed my oil at 3,000 miles. Old habits die slow I guess.
 

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Here's a question regarding the GMOLS system. My mom is driving an '03 Seville STS, and there isn't an option to program the system to "tell" it that you are using Synthetic oil, therefore, prompts telling you when to change your oil may not be accurate.

When will GM start using synthetic oil as an OEM part?
 

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Synthetic oil doesn't breakdown as fast as conventional oil, but it still gets dirty. You still need to do fairly regular changes.
 

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i just change the filter every 4000 miles and change the oil by the GM oil minder. i always change once a year no matter what the oil minder says and that is before winter storage of my corvettes.
 

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It started as a very good thing but then GM told us (dealers in Canada) there must be a semi-annual inspection, but still change oil by the Oil Life Monitior. The customer MUST also use GP3 oil which has a 20% longer life span, if normal oil is used then the monitior is useless.

I thought this made things even more confusing than oil changes every 5000kms.
 

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My GM car, a 00 Saab 9-3 has done about 110K miles using the onboard computer as a guidance for oil change.
My oil changes were done on average every 20K km or 13K miles.
The engine is very clean, doesn't burn oil at all and still feel like a brand new engine. Naturally, as per Saab recommendations, only full synthetic oil was used (Mobil 1 0W-40)
It find quite amusing that in the US you're supposed to change your oil so often !!
Most German brands also use a reminder for oil changes.
My previous car, a BMW 318, had also a oil change reminder, but was burning quite a bit of oil when I sold it (about 90Kmiles)
I actually believe that BMW was the first manufacturer to use an onboard computer as an oil change reminder ( in the eigthies ?)
 

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Originally posted by Saab_Belgium@Mar 31 2004, 03:17 PM
The engine is very clean, doesn't burn oil at all and still feel like a brand new engine. Naturally, as per Saab recommendations, only full synthetic oil was used (Mobil 1 0W-40)
It find quite amusing that in the US you're supposed to change your oil so often !!
I have an '03 9-3, and the dealer says 15,000 before an oil change. It runs on full synthetic Mobil 1 too. But I kept checking it and around 9,000 it needed to be changed. The computer never told me it needed to be changed and it has an oil life monitor.
One thing i have noticed with all GM service departments is that they seldomly reset the Oil Life monitor after a change, you have to remind them.
 

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Saabking,

How do you know the oil needed to be changed ?
Was an oil analysis done ?
Maybe you meant that the level was too low but the oil life monitor doesn't not measure the oil level I believe.
I think oil level checking has to be done on a regular basis even with an oil life monitor.
In my car, if i drive many short trips in the winter, the oil level can get close to the min.level on the dipstick but that's after several thousand miles, quite often by that time service is due.
Lately, I've rented some Renault which had an oil level monitor on the dashboard.
I tought that was a good idea until I noticed the rental car company sticker "do no trust the oil level monitor, check the dipstick" LOL
 

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I change mine every 5k. My previous vehicle went 256k before I sold it and ran fine on this schedule and is still running today from what my cousin tells me.

I'll keep this schedule myself, dont trust a computer to tell me when to change, old habits do die hard.
 

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My wife drives a 99 Grand Am that has the monitoring system. We have always used the system, changing the oil only when the indicator comes on. It has only 65,000 miles, but we've had no problems and no oil loss at all.
 
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