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Discussion Starter #1
I've got a ways to go before my first service, but I'm already contemplating taking synthetic oil (Mobil 1 5w30) and having the dealer use that instead of conventional oil. With such long service intervals it seems like a reasonable thing to me. Any opinions or experience from folks who have been down the road a bit longer?

Thanks,

Steve
2002 Brilliant Blue 1200mi
 
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Discussion Starter #2
Steve,
The color of my oil (as seen on the dipstick) just before the first oil change has been described as Aunt Jemima Lite. As much as I believe in Moble 1's superior qualities, I plan on sticking to Toyota 5w30 for the first six changes. After that who knows ;-) BTW 7,500mi is not that unusual these days. I've a 20 year history with the slick stuff. When I started using it it came in silver and black metal cans. Have you used Moble 1 in the past?

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at around 4500 I put Mobil 1 0w30w. At the Central Texas Prius group meeting people told me that the dealer here only has 10w30 and that is it... plan on bringing my own oil in at the 7500 checkup...

I am not real sure but think the 0w30 helped (sure won't hurt).... sure helped me sleep better at night.. maybe at the 35000 mark will get the oil analysed to see what is going on, and report back to this group...

later
 
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I'm currently using Mobil 1 10w30 in my 2000 Volvo XC. With the turbocharger I felt the extra protection was a good idea, especially with a 7500 mile service interval. It seems to have helped slightly with the fuel efficiency too.

I agree that so far the Prius engine seems to be very easy on oil from a contamination point of view. We'll see how it looks in a couple of years.
 
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Discussion Starter #6
Has anyone here used or researched 0w30? Any negatives?

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Discussion Starter #7
Just found the site for Mobile 1. <http://www.mobil1.com/index.jsp>
Among the many FAQs I did find the Q&A below. Couldnt really find what I was looking for which is this. What criteria would you use to decide whether to use 0w30, 5w30, or 15w30? I live in Minnesota, and the coldest temp. that Ive ever experienced was -29F. In other words why would I pick anything other than 0w30?

Q. What about cold-weather performance?
A. Mobil 1 Tri-Synthetic is capable of pumping at -62 F due to the nature of the synthetic base stock. Mobil 1 flows quickly to moving parts at temperatures as low as:
-62 F for 0W-30
-58 F for 5W-30
-49 F for 10W-30
-38 F for 15W-50
And Mobil 1 0W-30 flows up to seven times faster than conventional oil at extremely low temperatures.
Low-temperature performance is a major advantage of Mobil 1 vs. conventional motor oils.

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Steve Ward
I drove a Plymouth/Acclaim 225,000 miles(I know that is not a Prius but still) using moble 1, 10-50, and I plan to have the dealer put Moble 1, 5 - 30 in my Prius at the next oul change which will be at 15,000. The ICE needs time for all the parts seat. Hope this helps
Sam High
2002 Bright White
 
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Just had my first service (6 Months) this past Monday. Approx Milage 5,600. Had the dealer put in Mobil 1 5-W30 and switched tires front to back. ( I supplied the Oil which I purchased at Walmart.) No other problems with car. Just put the car in the garage and got 590 miles on the tank and two bars still showing (Wow!!! This looks terrific) Previous record was 546 miles with last bar just starting to flash!

Regards,
Don Good
 
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Our society has commodified ideas in order to sell them and we buy not understanding it is not that easy.Mobil 1 is selling an abstract idea called protection but there is more to motor oil than its petroleum base.People buy golf clubs to be a better player which is accomplished by practice not waving a credit card.The fuel pump sends gas to fuel injectors at a higher pressure than required so bypass valve sends excess back to tank constantly.The fuel filter keeps injectors clear so there will be clean combustion preserving oil quality.The money spent on expensive oil would be better spent on more frequent fuel filter changes.Automobiles in our society are more than transportation appliances they are status symbols for roadway competition requiring status oil we can brag about.
 
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Discussion Starter #11
While I'll agree that people often put expensive synthetic oils in
their car for the wrong reasons, not all oil is alike.

In particular, the viscosity properties of oil are important to fuel
efficiency, and it's not easy to get a natural petroleum oil to have
low viscosity while retaining other desireable properties. It's not
necessary to have a pure synthetic oil to achieve good 5W30
viscosity which works well in the prius.

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My brother & I owned a franchise that ran approximately 125 vehicles, including Toyotas, up and down the state of Calif. Of those franchises about half ran company leased vehicles in which we spec'd Mobil 1 oil. Those vehicles averaged about 40% more life than the conventionally oiled vehicles in our fleet.

Interestingly, it was our Toyota trucks that seemed to benefit the most from synthetic oil. Our trucks were very heavily loaded with bed- mounted equipment. An average Toyota truck with conventional oil would last approximately 110,000 miles in our fleet before needing an overhaul. A Toyota Truck using Mobil 1 averaged 176,000 before needing an overhaul. The Toyotas got about 60% more life from synthetic oil.

One other thing; when it was time for an overhaul the synthetically oiled engines were significantly cleaner inside.

I felt it was worth every penny extra we paid to have those vehilcles up, going and lasting longer.

I use Mobil 1 Fully Synthetic 0W-30 in my Prius for very good reasons and not so I can brag and flaunt some purported funky status.

Wayne
Pittsburg, TX
 
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I was tired from a long trip when I got back last night and put the car in the garage! The mileage was correct at 590, but message should have been 3 bars, when I came home and put car in garage. Well, to make a long story short, we decided to take a nice drive from Ephrata to New Hope Pa, since the weather was beautiful when we left around 10:00 AM. We decided to take the cheapest route which involved US322 to US30 (Downingtown) & US 202 thru King of Prussia, Norristown & Doylestown, to New Hope. When I backed the car out of the cool garage (65'F) the guess gauge dropped one notch to 4 bars. The outside temp was already up to 80'F and soonafter rose to 84 to 86 where it remained till we got home around 7:00PM. The beginning mileage was 414 on the tank and I drove all the way to New Hope (87 miles) still at 4 bars. When we returned to the car, it dropped to three bars as soon as I turned on the iignition. It was not only hot, but the traffic thru Norristown was a nightmare. I had the AC on Auto at 78 to try to keep it running at a minimum. Took 1 1/2 hours to go the 29 miles from Exton to Montgomeryville. The trip home was a lot faster. The mileage bars were showing mostly anywhere from 25 to 100, depending on the a/c cycling. Accum. milage for trip was around 56 MPG on the monitor. When we got home I pulled into the cool garage and gauge was still at 3 bars when we retired for the night. Milage at 590 - 414 or 176 for the trip.

When I turned the Ignition on this AM, it immediately dropped to three bars. I drove to store and it dropped to 2 bars at 596, dropped to 1 bar at 602, and starrted flashing & got message at 608 when I put car back in garage. Outside temp today only about 70 degrees. It's hard to believe that I spent at least 5 hours in the car in the heat yesterday, with the A/C on, and a lot of gridlocked bumper to bumper driviing
and made it home without stopping for gas. Well, when I take car for gas tomorrow or Monday, I'll report again. How this bladder in the tank & guess gauge works has me really confused, but it is obvious the chang in Temperature has a major effect. Well, I am tempted to take the gas can along when I go to fill up (Just in Case)

regards,
Don Good
 

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FYI
Exxonmobil has thwarted international efforts to reduce green house gasses. Exxonmobil has used their influence with the Bush administration to convince the president to pull out of an international summit to reduce green house gases. Beacause of this, there is a boycott of Exxonmobil products by environmentalists all over the world. If you are one of them, join in. BOYCOTT EXXONMOBIL
 

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Not sure what the last post has to do with synthetic oil in a Prius. Sounds like a cheap shot at the Bush administration to me. :evil:
 

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I've used Mobil 1 for the last 15 years in all my cars and believe it to be an excellent choice. It saves fuel, reduces wear. Had a 1994 Dodge Dakota 4-cyl. pickup that I drove for 125,000mi. Pulled the valve cover before I traded it and the engine looked like brand new. One post here mentioned that Mobil 1 seemed to benefit their Toyota engines more than others. That may be because the internal tolerances in Toyota engines are much tighter than others, hence the potential for some wear is higher. For great discussions on everything about oil, go to http://www.bobistheoilguy.com. Note - Plan to run Mobil 1 in my Prius after I reach 1000 miles on the dino break in oil.
 

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Synthetic oil, and a Maintenance (tire) story

Hi, Jerry:

I've been using Castrol Syntec 5W-30 in my '02 Silver for the last several thousand miles. Car seems to love it. The '04 has the same ICE so I would say "go for it."

Just had my car in for the 22.5K maintenance. I presented the service writer with a checklist of the items required (as listed in the service booklet). I supplied 3.5 qts. of the Syntec, knowing they had overfilled it the last time (that's when I installed a Fumoto oil drain valve, which will be very handy when the "free" service runs out and I start doing my own changes).

The only "issue" I had with the service people was the tire air pressure. I'm running Bridgestone B420s @ 44 psi, but they were determined to disregard my instructions and only put in 35 psi---I doubt they even noticed I wasn't running the Potenzas until I raised the pressure issue. Fortunately they had already passed the car for its annual state inspection, or I wonder if they would have tried to toss some BS at me about "wrong tires."

(While in the waiting room I heard the service writer tell two Prius owners that there was "only one kind of tire for your car." [and of course only we have it, and at this terribly inflated price, etc., etc.] Both of those folks had let their tires wear down to the cords, so they had no options at that point but to plunge for the expensive dealer Potenzas. Lesson learned?: don't ever show up at the dealer with worn tires!)

After some tense but controlled moments, the service manager said she wasn't "going to get in a p*ssing contest" with me over the tire pressure; this was after I had produced my portable inflator from the trunk, and offered her three options: I will inflate the tires here, or you will inflate them as directed, or I will drive to the nearby tire store where I bought them and they can do it. I guess she didn't relish the sight of a customer inflating his own tires on the company lot, so she relented and filled them herself. Oh yes, I didn't neglect to point out that underinflated tires just might pose a liability issue for her company, and I didn't want that ;-}

So all in all, a mixed experience. Can't wait until I'm beyond the clutches of the dealer service dept.

P.S. Any word from H'burg?

Henry
 

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I'm somewhat distressed by your tire pressure comments... these cars can only be serviced by Toyota dealerships. My local auto service provider is a smart guy, but not smart enough to work on a Prius. This means you'd better trust the dealer. While most dealers are trustworthy (at least I hope they are), your experience tells me it's hughly important that Prius owners better find a dealership they can trust.

Looking at many of the posts on this board, I get the feeling that some Toyota dealers don't really like these cars. They present some maintenance challenges and require a lot of training to maintain. One thread described a three week wait for a 12 volt battery. Dealers probably make almost as much on sale of a $14,000 Corolla as on a Prius, with a lot fewer problems after the sale.

I'd love to buy a new Prius (in a year or two) but the nearest Toyota dealership is 40 miles away. How can I find out whether the "local" dealership is the best place to buy this car?
 

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I am lucky to have 2 dealers within a 30 mile trip from my house. I chose the one that is a little bit farther away because they stressed that they are experienced at servicing the Prius and their reputation is excellent. We bought my wife's 2003 Corolla LE there but have never had it back to the dealer - not a thing has gone wrong in 14 months and I do my own oil changes.
 

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Unfortunately, Jerry, it's a l-o-o-o-n-g drive from Allentown to Erie, or I'd be happy to try your dealers' service departments! (By the way, I read your post on the other forum. Tough luck on the grant; I don't know how I got lucky with mine, but believe me it *was* dumb luck to inquire at just the right time.)

For Wildman: yes, I realize (sniff!) I am stuck with Toyota dealers for the long haul. Fortunately there are several in my region to choose from, and if I have another experience like today's I will be trying them. And yes, trust is very important, but let me add that customer preparation is also essential. Do your research, read the Prius sites (here and Yahoo!), show yourself to be an informed consumer who can stick by his/her guns when your information is right, and you might even end up educating the service department, if they're teachable (there's the rub!).
 
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