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Tom and Ray Magliozzi fielded a question from a guy worried about how often to change his oil. There are two camps: "Change it every 3k" and "Follow the manufacturer's manual". The former group seems convinced that the manufacturer's try to increase the distance between oil changes to make their cars look better in terms of maintenance, and to appear to be cheaper to operate.
Dealers, on the other hand (according to the second school of thought) try to get you to change oil more often, like every 3k or so, in order to increase their profits even though it isn't really necessary.
Tom and Ray weighed in on this: According to the boys in Boston, newer engines and oils are quite able to take 5000 miles between changes, and even longer under normal use.
I've been reading some serious discussions on other chatlines about how often to change oil on our Prii. Most of us, myself included, are used to older cars where you had to change oil often, and are in some disbelief that these cars are so wonderfully crafted and that materials, oils and engines are so much more efficient that we can actually believe the manuals.
I'm ready to believe the manual. After 3800 miles, my oil isn't even dark. Any thoughts from you all? Mechanics and dealers?
Bob
 

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I don't know anything about cars, but I'm ready to believe the manual also. I probably would not trust an American auto maker, because of their bad record, but I trust Toyota. Following the manual protects my warranty, and I intend to keep my Prius only until the next major model revision, which I expect to be another great leap forward in technology, effeciency, and features. (I'm hoping for a gridable 50 or 100-mile EV range.)
 

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While on a trip my Maint. Required light came on at 4800 miles. Stopped at a Santa Rosa, Cal. dealership. They changed the oil, adjusted tire pressure & performed computer check. Took a little over an hour & was less than $50. NOT BAD. I would run the oil for the 5,000 miles. Does anyone know about synthenic oils??
 
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