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Am about to do the first oil change on my 04 Prius. Since I usually do my own oil changes, and am partial to Fram filters, I was wondering if anyone knows which number Fram filter is proper for the 04 Prius.
 

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Filter 4967.

From Fram's Website:

SURE DRAIN: SD3
ExtraGuard: PH4967
ToughGuard: TG4967
DoubleGuard: DG4967
X2: XG4967

For the various 'series' of filters. So pretty much, you want filter nuumber 4967, with the prefix denoting the series.[/url]
 

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Oil Filters

I used to swear by Fram filters, until I attended a Toyota Owners Orientation class held by our Toyota Dealer. They had several of the major brand oil filters cross-sectioned so you could see the insides. After you see the Fram filter and a stock Toyota oil filter, I think you will prefer Toyota's original equipment filter. Ask your dealer's service or parts desk personnel to show you the filters; I think that most dealers have the demo parts.

Also, just a comment, but your car will last longer if you take the money you save by using regular motor oil instead of synthetic, and change your oil more often. I don't advocate wasting money or crude by changing oil too frequently, but I'll bet that after you spend over $5 a quart on a synthetic oil change, you probably try to stretch the oil change intervals -- not good, even with synthetics. The manufacturer may advertise that it holds up better to adverse driving conditions, but the Prius engine isn't subject to the same driver abuses (like over-reving) or heavy towing that other vehicles are, so the worst thing that the ICE faces is probably contamination from dirt and water in the crankcase. And, synthetics won't help there. The only thing you can do is change the oil.
 

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When I went for the first oil change they asked me if I wanted the original Toyota filer or the Fram replacement--I chose Fram and saved $5. Unless I see proof that the Fram filter can or will damage the engine I'll continue saving those $5.

I feel that the 5000 mile interval between oil changes is fine using either regular or synthetic oil. I'm sticking to the manual's recommendation on this one.
 

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I trust Toyota. They make the best car in the world (the Prius, of course) so why would I not trust their filters? I also trust their oil change recommendations: 5,000 miles or 6 months, and dino oil.

I've read speculations about getting better mileage with synthetic, and I'd use it if I had evidence that this was the case, regardless of cost, just for the bragging rights. But I've seen no hard evidence. Just speculation and anecdote.
 

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Daniel said:
I've read speculations about getting better mileage with synthetic, and I'd use it if I had evidence that this was the case, regardless of cost, just for the bragging rights. But I've seen no hard evidence. Just speculation and anecdote.
My anecdotes don't include much better performance than people using regular oil. I only saw 50MPG at 70MPH after using Amsoil, but non-synthetic people see it too.

I still like to think the sludge buildup will be less. Unless someone has an anecdote about sludge helping an old car work better or something, that'll do...
 

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Re: Oil Filters

Phoenix said:
so the worst thing that the ICE faces is probably contamination from dirt and water in the crankcase. And, synthetics won't help there. The only thing you can do is change the oil.
What about cold-weather starting?

rob
 

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From what I have learned about engine oils both in personal experience, (I took car mechanic training in high school. Not your basic auto shop, either, but in-depth stuff that qualifies you for ASE certification,) and from others (including a former Ford engineer who designed car engines, a couple chemists, and a few mechanics,) the only major benefit that synthetic oil really provides is that it lasts longer. Meaning you can go more than 3000 miles between oil changes in a normal car. Which is ironic, since people who tend to use synthetic oil are the kind who change every 3000 miles on the dot.

Also note that most car manufacturers do *NOT* recommend to change your oil every 3000 miles no matter what. They recommend that only under the harshest conditions (extreme heat or cold, highly dusty environments, or harsh driving conditions such as constant starting and stopping, like a taxi driver.) For example, my Hyundai says in 'normal driving conditions', you only need to change it every 7500 miles. 3000 miles is a marketing tactic used by oil companies and oil change shops.

That said, with my Hyundai, I usually let it go 5000 miles. With my Ford Explorer, I usually go 6000 miles (Ford's 'normal driving conditions' number.) With the Prius, I will probably do 5000, since that's the only number Toyota gives. (Also, letting oil just sit unused is also bad, hence the '3000 miles OR 3 months' phrase commonly thrown around. So if you don't drive very much, a limit of 6 months is good.)
 

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Note that in the US, the 2001-2003 Prius has a regular-duty maintenance service (oil/filter change AND tire rotation) at every 7500 miles OR 6 months, while the 2004 Prius' similar schedule is every 5000 miles OR 6 months.

Outside of the US, the oil change interval is longer (10,000 miles in the UK, for example, on the same car)
 

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04 oil filter

Is it true that the 04 Prius uses the same oil filter as the 03-05 Matrix? Can anyone give me the actual Toyota filter number? Thanks.
 

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Here is a link to someone who has more time on their hands than I think most. It is an in-depth study of oil filters. He says Fram is the worst you can get.
I use Purolator Pure 1.

http://minimopar.knizefamily.net/oilfilterstudy.html

I am amazed at how some people can spend almost 30K on a nice car and worry about saving $10 on an oil change every few months. The car only takes 3 quarts of oil. As much as the Prius starts and stops the engine, I would think having a synthetic lubricant which has much better shear characteristics would be better plus it is not oil and it is made in the USA.
 

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rpm said:
What about cold-weather starting?
and

SLowen said:
... As much as the Prius starts and stops the engine, I would think having a synthetic lubricant which has much better shear characteristics would be better plus it is not oil and it is made in the USA.
Toyota says you don't need synthetic oil. And they know their engine. The starting method in the Prius is unlike any other car, and so greatly reduces stress that special oil is not needed. Witness the Classic, which is starting to demonstrate some very high-mileage examples. It uses the powerful MG1 and the big HV traction battery to spin the engine up to 1,000 rpm before giving it fuel and spark. Other cars use a little starter motor and 12-v. battery barely able to turn the engine over, and pump in fuel until it catches.

Listen to the agony of a conventional car starting the next time you are in a supermarket parking lot. You can sometimes tell when your Prius engine starts, but just barely.

Of course, you can certainly use synthetic for political reasons. Some kinds of synthetic are not derived from petroleum (other kinds are). Let's see: if you use 4 quarts (rounding off for ease of estimation) of oil every 5000 miles, and you get 45 mpg (a low figure to maximize the argument for switching to synthetic) then you burn about 111 gallons of gas between oil changes and motor oil is 0.9 of one percent of your petroleum consumption. Using an alcohol/ester-based synthetic motor oil would cut your petroleum consumption by 0.9 of one percent.

Here's why I don't switch: Toyota says, and many folks believe (though there is controversy) that if you begin using synthetic you must stay with synthetic. I'm going to sell my Prius as soon as the next major model revision comes out, probably in 5 or 6 years, and some used car buyers won't want a car they feel they must use synthetic in. Of course, trade-in won't be an issue if you plan on keeping your car until it dies, but this car is going to last so long that it's going to be utterly obsolete before it quits running.
 

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5000 mile oil changes

Oil will only "hold" a certain amount of contaminates produced by the ICE. In addition, blow-by gasses that bypass the piston rings mix with the moisture that the oil absorbs from the air and will produce sulphuric acid. This is one reason all manufacturers say driving short distances is so hard on the engine. When a car is driven to operating temperature and beyond, the moisture in the oil is evaporated and production of sulphuric is greatly reduced. The second reason is, water in the oil is not a lubricant. Toyota recommends to change the oil every 5,000 miles or 6 months. Even if you don't drive the car for 6 months, the oil should be changed. That's due to the absorbtion of moisture into the oil.

These new vehicles are much more efficient and have far fewer problems with the ICE due to alloys used, much closer tolerances, etc.

I also do my own maintenance and I'm one of those people who change their oil at 3,000 miles (on the dot).

It's my thought that any type of good oil and filter can hold up for 5,000 miles or 6 months in these newer vehicles. BUT, for around $15.00 (my cost of oil and filter) it's worth my piece of mind to know I don't have to even consider there being any problem.
 
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