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Old 09-25-2017, 04:14 PM   #1
jacek_p
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2003 ION-2 Sedan
Default oil consumption vs 15W40 oil

I got the 03 ion for my son used with 135000 miles and changed oil due to unknown history (oil looked clean). i followed the oil change light since. the first OCI was 5,500 miles, mostly city with consumption of about 1qt (5W30 synthetic G-oil). next OCI was almost 7000 miles, mixed city/hwy with consumption of about 2 qts (5W30 regular Halvoline). seeing that oil consumption, i switched to 15W40, but there is already a consumption of about 4 qts in about 6000 miles (no oil change light yet). Looks much worse, but he drives mostly on hwy now.

clearly 15W40 is not helping. I guess i can try kreen piston soak/flush next. Anything else to try? Should I go back to thinner oils?

...
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Old 09-25-2017, 05:42 PM   #2
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Default Re: oil consumption vs 15W40 oil

If you wander over to the the S-series forums for oil debates related to engine oil consumption and the various methods used in attempts to lower consumption, you'll likely fall asleep from endless discussions with little proven facts that are wholly personal and do not fit everyone since we all drive a little differently, use different oils and filters as well as vary oil change intervals. In other words, there are no right or wrong ways other than sticking to either OCI reminders or personal change intervals. Based on your info, it may be better to stay with synthetic oil as it seems the engine uses less oil compared to regular oil. Personally, I use a modified OCI in my V6 L300 by leaving synthetic oil in for twice the OCI indicator (5k-7.5k miles) before replacing it and replacing the oil filter every OCI. With nearly 100k miles, I have zero oil consumption. My oil change method works for me and is not a recommendation. Its up to each owner to learn about their engine's oil usage and try what works best.

If you want to become more informed, try bobistheoilguy forums. Once oil change intervals are modified, each owner becomes the Beta tester and reaps the rewards or suffers mistakes.

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Old 09-25-2017, 07:04 PM   #3
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Default Re: oil consumption vs 15W40 oil

1 Qt every 5K is about right. ALL manufacturers have increased clearances in an effort to reduce friction and increase mileage. The down fall of wider piston to cylinder wall clearances is oil consumption. Another cause is the rings may be building up carbon and starting to fuse themselves into the piston grooves. This adds more clearance.
Also the valve guide seals or valve guides might be worn. Pull the head and repair. Fused piston rings = inframe rebuild, involves replacing the piston rings, maybe pistons, head gasket and refresh the head.

The 2.2 2.4 engines don't have a PCV valve instead they are vented internally the PCV system tends to clog up and vents oil and water vapor out the fresh air breather intake into to the intake plenum. Pull the hose off the valve cover if you have oil vaper try the following.
First you remove the valve cover thoroughly clean inside the baffles, next remove the intake manifold there is a small hole in the middle that matches the location in the head if its clogged clear it out. you will also need to clear the PCV passages in the intake, valve cover, and head with small wire brushes, compressed air, brake cleaner,elbow grease, and patience.

I don't believe in the mechanic in a bottle but, as long as you are not burning enough oil to produce noticeable exhaust smoke, you do a a compression (check test both hot and cold on all cylinders) and it comes out in normal range, you could try running a quart of transmission fluid next time the oil is low, this might help clean the rings. Dextron III or DEX/MERC is fine. Drive it for a week or so like normal, just prior to changing the oil drive it like you stole it multiple at least 5 or 6 wide open throttle cycles and change the oil while its still warm but a safe temperature hotter is better. Refill with 5/30 change the filter.

Transmission fluid wont hurt your vehicle, I have run it full strength on several occasions for extended periods without an issue.

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Old 09-26-2017, 03:46 PM   #4
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Default Re: oil consumption vs 15W40 oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by fdryer View Post
If you want to become more informed, try bobistheoilguy forums.
yeah, i did that. their consensus (as much as you can get one in a forum) was to try chemtool B12 piston soak and go back to synthetic 5W30.

but i failed to mention that I did a kreen piston soak before the first oil change and engine was very clean when i removed valve cover a year later.

also, the lower consumption with initial oil was probably due to mostly city driving back then vs hwy driving now.

a few people mentioned checking the PCV system and I'll try to do it too. Too bad there is no replaceable PCV valve like other cars.

...
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Old 10-31-2017, 12:26 PM   #5
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Default Re: oil consumption vs 15W40 oil

here is an update in case anyone cares: http://www.saturnfans.com/forums/sho...=1#post2258204

...
fixed/replaced so far: side mirror, window trims x4, trunk floor, radiator bushing, alternator, starter, LCA x2, sway bar bushings x2, end links x2, timing chain tensioner, O2 sensor.

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Old 10-31-2017, 01:55 PM   #6
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Default Re: oil consumption vs 15W40 oil

Some drivers need some sort of reminder to check fluids as part of ownership while others are mindful of it. Since it's been proven multitasking doesn't work, using time tested methods seem to work without reinventing the wheel (personal habits) as some gen X and Y think they can control things better. Older and wiser seem to win out against younger and thoughtless.

I have no pcv valve in my L300 and closing in on 100k miles without oil consumption issues using M1 5w30. Personally, doing away with pcv valves gets rid of an outdated way to feed crankcase gases back to the intake when simply designing in channels and porting accomplishes the same end. Presuming regular maintenance is performed to ensure long term reliability of engines and cars driven within design limits, oil consumption should not occur. Once maintenance is ignored and experiments are performed, each car becomes the beta tester for good or bad results. Despite some anecdotal evidence of some S-series cars changing pcv valves for a different type, this doesn't prove a better solution except to that specific engine since it's already an oil burner. A band aid to long term issues occurring before a pcv valve mod. My example of extended oil changes using synthetic oil is only one example of zero oil issues with an engine not using a pcv valve and seems to prove the merits of using syn oil for extended oil use. My beta test. This is not a proclamation for everyone to follow but serves as an example of what can be done with many variables.

If Ions take longer for oil to drain back before checking the dipstick, modifying routine oil checks seems to be one way to address it by determining the easiest time of day before starting up. Of course some people think car maintenance isn't a priority and they're most likely to have issues. Perhaps busy means a car doesn't deserve some TLC besides filling up the tank.......

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Old 10-31-2017, 03:53 PM   #7
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Default Re: oil consumption vs 15W40 oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by jacek_p View Post
I got the 03 ion for my son used with 135000 miles and changed oil due to unknown history (oil looked clean). i followed the oil change light since. the first OCI was 5,500 miles, mostly city with consumption of about 1qt (5W30 synthetic G-oil). next OCI was almost 7000 miles, mixed city/hwy with consumption of about 2 qts (5W30 regular Halvoline). seeing that oil consumption, i switched to 15W40, but there is already a consumption of about 4 qts in about 6000 miles (no oil change light yet). Looks much worse, but he drives mostly on hwy now.

clearly 15W40 is not helping. I guess i can try kreen piston soak/flush next. Anything else to try? Should I go back to thinner oils?
Frankly, your guess is as good as anyone's in this situation therefore I will refrain from making a suggestion. However, I will admit that I'm not a particular fan of following the OLM to decide when to change oil. Depending on the season of the year and certain driving conditions one should be following a specific mileage interval instead of waiting for the OLM to advise of an impending oil change.

In any case, this level of oil consumption is problematic. The question is, what parts have weakened internally to result in this significant increase of oil consumption? Answering that question would likely require a laborious, time consuming, and expensive task. (I would be very happy for you if I was wrong about that!)

...
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