Q: Oil change interval - synthetic

asked by on December 13, 2016

How long does a standard synthetic oil change last. Dealership said every 5k miles but my friend's 2013 lexus IS goes 10k miles on the same oil at the lexus dealership. Is the dealer trying to rip me off?
My car has an automatic transmission.

I’ll answer your last question first. Yes, your dealership is ripping you off, if not in the context of your inquiry about oil changes, certainly in some other aspect of repair or maintenance. I guess I haven’t forgotten the question I got the other day from a fellow who was charged close to $400 by, I think it was a "shop", maybe not a dealer, to put in a new camshaft position sensor. I looked up the RETAIL value of the sensor in his application and it was maybe $30 or $40 and the shop (book) labor time was an hour. I did the math and wrote back that the charges presented to him were "economically irrational" (the technical term for "ripped off").

Oil change intervals are not determined by "type", brand, or quality of oil. All intervals are instead specified by the manufacturers of these vehicles and/or are monitored and reported to the vehicle owner via various oil change or maintenance reminder warning lights. On the 2015 Camry that you own, if you use mineral oil, you should change the oil and filter every 5,000 miles. If, however, you are using 100% synthetic oil, the interval is 10,000 miles. Obviously, if you have your oil/filter changes performed by a certified mechanic from YourMechanic, at your home for instance, it is less expensive. Also, there is less risk of the mechanic failing to fill the engine with oil or failing to replace the valve cover cap, because YourMechanic is offering personalized service as opposed to performing oil changes on a literal mass production basis. I’ve lost track of the number of cases I’ve heard of over the years where a consumer leaves a "quick" oil change facility without an oil fill cap on the valve cover only to later find oil spraying out all over the place. It was quick, though! Hope we can assist you and let us know if you have additional questions or concerns.

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