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2015 Malibu LTZ 2.5 L
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Sorry to post what must be the 100th question on this topic, but I've searched for a thread on this forum and wasn't able to load the pages that came up in the search for some reason. I bought the car with 96K on it recently and is coming up on 100K, what are the things I should do? Also, I have changed the oil (should I use a synthetic blend or full synthetic going forward?) and changed the trans fluid (changed it, ran it, changed it again).
 

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2016 Malibu 1LT 1.5T/6-speed 6T40
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You want to use dexos1 gen3 oil which is mostly full synthetics.

The transmission fluid was good maintenance. You should also do the coolant system, which should be done every 5 years. At 100,000 you are also due for spark plugs. Brake fluid is also due - your gen specifies every 3 years or 45,000 miles even on the normal schedule. That later became every 5 years so either way is due. Engine air filter is every 45,000 so that is due at 90k if not done already.

The user manual lists the necessities on the service schedules in section 11-3. I prefer to use the severe schedule as most usage in the USA fits the criteria.
 

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2016 Malibu 1LT 1.5T/6-speed 6T40
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I doubt there is any gen1 left on the market... in fact I think that would be illegally sold at this point. I'll try and explain:

GM has a standard called dexos for oil that originated about a decade ago. There is dexos1, dexos2, and dexosD. Products that are dexos1 is the oil you want. It is currently on the 3rd generation known as dexos1 Gen 3.

The original dexos1 expanded on the existing API standard. The original dexos1 was generally at least a synthetic blend.

Around 2017 dexos1 Gen 2 was released that tightened the requirements further meaning it was now mostly Full Synthetic that met the requirements. There were still a couple blends that met the Gen 2 standard.

About a year ago GM released dexos1 Gen 3 which further tightened the requirements.

There are still dexos1 Gen 2 products on shelves as existing stock is able to be sold until April 1 2023 or something like that. Gen 2 is still fine if that is on shelves where you are.

You are looking for products with these logos:
Font Automotive tire Automotive exterior Art Logo


Font Automotive exterior Building Window Grass
 

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I think Walmart SuperTech full synth. is Gen 2. I have no hesitation using that oil, have used it in my fleet in my signature line.
 

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2016 Malibu 1LT 1.5T/6-speed 6T40
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Super Tech at Walmart also recently got a Gen 3 license in 5W30 and 0W20. I can't remember what GM specifies for the 2.5. I'd probably use 5W30 if it were mine but that would be off label and at your own (pfft)risk. I just tried downloading the manual but got an error. I think the 2.5 officially is 5W20 or 0W20? I dunno. What do you use @repairman54?
 

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2016 Malibu 1LT 1.5T/6-speed 6T40
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Yup. Pretty easy to find the stuff now. My local Meijer and Walmart still have a bit of the Gen 2 stuff on the shelves but most is Gen 3 now if it is 5W30 and 0W20.
 

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Super Tech at Walmart also recently got a Gen 3 license in 5W30 and 0W20. I can't remember what GM specifies for the 2.5. I'd probably use 5W30 if it were mine but that would be off label and at your own (pfft)risk. I just tried downloading the manual but got an error. I think the 2.5 officially is 5W20 or 0W20? I dunno. What do you use @repairman54?
I've been using Costco Kirkland oil lately. Same stuff as WM ST oil, made by Warren for both of them. Using 5-30w full synth. It's a buck or two cheaper right now for a 2-jug box. It's a matter of price as I'm maintaining 4 vehicles, all which can use 5-30w.
Kirkland shows Gen 2 on the jug.
 

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The oil cap on the 2.5 engine says 5w20, and the manual says you can use 0w20. I'm running mobil1 0w20 dexos1 Gen 3, as I don't believe there is a 5w20 dexos1 Gen 3 oil on market, only dexos 2. Not that I could find in my local stores anyway.
 

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The 5-20w rating is for saving a tenth of a gallon mpg for corporate fuel economy ratings. Had older Sables and watched the same motors go from 30w to the 20w rating in later years just for the mpg issue. No real-life improvement in fuel economy either.
Zero issues with 5-30w. I do not like using 0 oils in summer heat and never have in multiple vehicles taken to 200k miles that have that designation just for the sake of meeting Govt. standards. I do use 0w oils in my engines that see winter subzero temps like snowmobiles and generators though.
My 8000 rpm snowmobiles use a 0-40w synth. oils. 1.2-liter, 135 hp motors that normally operate at 5000 rpm.
 

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2014 Malibu has had 0W-20 since 2015 at Chevy store service.

My Chevy store has serviced the 2014 since it needed it in summer 2014. The first 1 or 2 oil changes put in 5W-20 and then they switched to 0W-20. I believe the 5W-20 of the time was a blend and I suspect the 0W-20 was closer to full synthetic if not synthetic. The earlier oil changes may have been Mobile 1 product that met Dexos requirement of the time. Since sometime after that the changes have said Dexos with no mention of brand.
 

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One last input on this from me ----- at 100K miles should I run 0W20 instead of the 5W20 I'm using now?
No . As the miles pile on and normal wear in the engine ''loosens up'' clearances you want a heavier oil like the 5-20w not the thinner 0-20w in it.
Even 5-30w would be perfectly fine in an older engine.
 
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