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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Since I'm not planning on doing the oil change I didn't post this in the do-it-yourself section however I do have a question and observation about the oil change interval on our new 09 2.4 Malibu. First my observation - in 2005 we purchased a 2006 Pontiac Torrent which had the 3.5L V6 engine. It had an oil life monitoring system but it did not display the oil life as a percentage the way the Bu does. It simply displayed a message when it was time to change the oil. The dealership would also send us emails to setup oil change appointments. Now I don't recall the exact interval, however it seemed we were in there about every 3 to 4 months for oil changes and other maintinance things. I should also mention that we put about 2000km/1200miles per month and the vehicle. When we bought the Malibu we asked about when the first oil change would be, they said to bring it in when the oil life is down to 10%, or when the OnStar email suggests it. Well we got the car in mid September, it now has 4400 kms on it, the oil life is at 80%. Unless the oil life is non-linear we will be looking at May or June for our first oil change which I think is wwwway too long. I have 2 free oil changes from the dealer and I'm thinking about just taking it in during the next couple of weeks for it's first change. After that I think I'll do it every 7 to 10,000 km. I mentioned our Torrent because it seems to have a more conventinal change interval, I know it is a different engine but one would think the change intervals would be similar. Don't mean start another oil thread but are others finding the oil change interval a little on the long side? Thanks.
 

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Seems unusual to me - but I'm old and old school. My feeling is that the 1st oil change should be at 500 miles to catch the break-in junk (if any). Then change at every 3,000 miles. Unless the owners manual says otherwise (I'd love to be corrected) this would be best through the life of the warranty.

That being said I've run good synthetic for up to 25,000 miles in newer engines without problems, just change filters regularly.

It would be interesting to find out EXACTLY how this oil life thing works as all the newer GM cars I fool with come up with widely varying intervals...
 

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The oil life monitor takes into account a number of variables including engine temperature, operating time, etc. 80% isn't too high for a car that has 2600 miles on it. As you get more cold starts the life will drop more quickly. I have been using the OLM on several GM vehicles for years now. Other than accounting for a dusty environment it does a very good job. I had the oil in my 2003 Corvette analyzed after 8 months of usage including ~ 1000 track miles where the oil temp was over 265 degrees most of the time. The analysis showed there was nothing wrong with the oil and no need to change it. The Vette's OLM showed 50% life left at the time.

We purchased our 2.4 Bu in July and it has 2951 miles on it now. The OLM indicates 69%. I plan on changing the oil some time next year when it gets down to 10% or less.

Bill
 
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