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    Thread: Recommended oil change 1.8T 2003 Passat

    1. Junior Member
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      09-29-2006 09:15 AM #1
      Should oil changes be done at every 8,000 km's or 5,000 km,s?

    2. 09-29-2006 09:26 AM #2
      according to VW, 5000 miles. which is about 8000 km. i would take that as a maximum.

    3. Junior Member
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      09-29-2006 09:31 AM #3
      Thank you

    4. 09-29-2006 09:37 AM #4
      For a 1.8T, 5K is way too long - especially if driving in the city and geographic regions with extreme temperatures (Northeast, for example).

      To be safe, and what I do, is to change the oil, with VW approved synthetic, at a 3 month/3K interval.


    5. 09-29-2006 09:49 AM #5
      Quote, originally posted by shadowblue »
      For a 1.8T, 5K is way too long - especially if driving in the city and geographic regions with extreme temperatures (Northeast, for example).

      To be safe, and what I do, is to change the oil, with VW approved synthetic, at a 3 month/3K interval.

      shadowblue, you should consider doing an oil analysis, when I ran them in the past 5k was ok for me (M1 0W-40). your method is ok but you could save a bit of $$ (and oil) by sticking to the 5k, or 4k if you want to be conservative. An analysis is inexpensive if you want to test based on your driving conditions.


    6. 09-29-2006 10:17 AM #6
      For me, it's every 6 months or 4,250 miles (6,800 km) or 200 gallons (757 litres) of fuel burned, which ever comes first. Mobil 1 0w-40 in the sump.

    7. 09-29-2006 02:52 PM #7
      For mostly-city driving, I have our 1.8T on a 6 month or 3k mi = 5k km OCI, which is conveniently about the same thing, since we currently accumulate about 6k mi = 10k km per year. I have my Blackstone Labs kit ready for a UOA at the next oil change, to see whether this is indeed overkill with Mobil 1 0W-40 and the Purolator L40316 mega-filter.

      By the way, after the first 10k mi / 16k km, the 2006 2.0T's recommended OCI rises to 10k mi / 16k km.


      Modified by John_E at 11:54 AM 9-29-2006


    8. 09-29-2006 03:18 PM #8
      Quote, originally posted by John_E »
      For mostly-city driving, I have our 1.8T on a 6 month or 3k mi = 5k km OCI, which is conveniently about the same thing, since we currently accumulate about 6k mi = 10k km per year. I have my Blackstone Labs kit ready for a UOA at the next oil change, to see whether this is indeed overkill with Mobil 1 0W-40 and the Purolator L40316 mega-filter.

      By the way, after the first 10k mi / 16k km, the 2006 2.0T's recommended OCI rises to 10k mi / 16k km.


      Modified by John_E at 11:54 AM 9-29-2006

      John, I'll be interested in hearing your UOA results. I think I'm in the same situation as you are, driving-wise, but I've stretched it out to my 4,250 miles. Plus, I'm using the diesel filter from my dealer.

      BTW, do you know the volume of oil that the 2.0T takes? Is it much more than the 1.8T? Or have they tamed some of the characteristics that degraded the oil in the 1.8T?

      I'd also be curious how the owner's manual reads on the 2.0T models...have they addressed the need to be a mystic to discern what oil is required and have they addressed a severe usage maintenance schedule?


    9. 09-29-2006 05:05 PM #9
      Quote, originally posted by shadowblue »

      To be safe, and what I do, is to change the oil, with VW approved synthetic, at a 3 month/3K interval.

      Thats what I do. Did it in my corrado, my old 1.8T Jetta, and my S4. I do it in my sister's 1.8T jetta. I guess I'm just old school. What I really don't understand is all the new models going 10k mileage intervals.


    10. 09-29-2006 09:06 PM #10
      i waited 4,000 and used synthetic blend.

    11. 10-01-2006 12:16 AM #11
      Quote, originally posted by scpassat03 »
      i waited 4,000 and used synthetic blend.

      Why a synth blend? Are there any that are 502 approved?


    12. 10-02-2006 09:46 AM #12
      Quote, originally posted by hang_tin »

      Why a synth blend? Are there any that are 502 approved?

      Not last time I checked.


    13. 10-02-2006 10:29 AM #13
      Quote, originally posted by CorradoG60 »

      Thats what I do. Did it in my corrado, my old 1.8T Jetta, and my S4. I do it in my sister's 1.8T jetta. I guess I'm just old school. What I really don't understand is all the new models going 10k mileage intervals.

      We're both old school, I guess.


    14. 10-02-2006 10:32 AM #14
      the 2.0T takes 4.4 qts, and has a 7.6 qt cooling system capacity.

      A 1.8T Passat with the big filter is about 4.2 qts, the early 1.8T with small filter was just 3.9 qts.


      Quote, originally posted by Altair 4 »

      John, I'll be interested in hearing your UOA results. I think I'm in the same situation as you are, driving-wise, but I've stretched it out to my 4,250 miles. Plus, I'm using the diesel filter from my dealer.

      BTW, do you know the volume of oil that the 2.0T takes? Is it much more than the 1.8T? Or have they tamed some of the characteristics that degraded the oil in the 1.8T?

      I'd also be curious how the owner's manual reads on the 2.0T models...have they addressed the need to be a mystic to discern what oil is required and have they addressed a severe usage maintenance schedule?


    15. 10-02-2006 07:46 PM #15
      Quote, originally posted by scotty_passat »
      the 2.0T takes 4.4 qts, and has a 7.6 qt cooling system capacity.

      2.0T (bpy) takes 6.3 qts. Cooling system capacity is 8.5 qts for passat, gti, jetta. Regular 2.0 (aeg, bbw, bev, avh.....)which they don't make anymore is 4.4qts


    16. 10-07-2006 11:13 AM #16
      Here in the UK, the standard service interval is 10000miles/12 months or up to double that for extended servicing using long-life oil. There are no significant issues with oil sludging here or in Europe. Why are the US service intervals so different??

    17. Member
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      10-07-2006 10:25 PM #17
      That is totally insane.

      Quote, originally posted by shadowblue »
      For a 1.8T, 5K is way too long - especially if driving in the city and geographic regions with extreme temperatures (Northeast, for example).

      To be safe, and what I do, is to change the oil, with VW approved synthetic, at a 3 month/3K interval.


    18. 10-08-2006 05:21 PM #18
      US oil change intervals are so short because MOST Amercan drivers go for the cheapest oil changes that they can and think that synthetic oil is overkill or snake-oil. Also, American drivers have been conditioned to change their oil at 3 month or 3,000 mile intervals (probably good since nobody is using synthetic oil). Most Americans freak out when they hear about Mercedes or Porsche and their 10K mile changes done at the dealerships.

      The 1.8T engine is designed to use synthetic only (small oil capacity, turbo, etc.), but when I bought my car (in 2004), the dealer was selling "special" oil for the turbo that wasn't even a synthetic blend (100% dinosaur)! I'm willing to bet that the "1.8T sludge problem" was non-existant in Europe. Who the hell would even THINK of using non-synthetic oil in a turbo engine?


    19. 10-08-2006 07:26 PM #19
      I change it every 5000 miles using Amsoil oil and filters. Last week I got a oil pressure light. The light comes on only if the car is in gear. At idle it won't come on.

      The dealer said it is the oil pump. He wanted to see the records for the oil changes which if forwarded to him. He now wants more proof of oil changes even though I documented the changes as per VW requirements. I'm still waiting to hear back from them on the warrenty issue. It seems to me VW is trying to get out of paying for the repair.

      I'm getting to the point of never considering a VW again at this rate.


    20. 10-08-2006 08:06 PM #20
      There's a VW tech on PW that had written on a forum there that performing your own oil change would invalid the "Sludge" warranty.

      I'm guessing that your original warranty is still intact, though. How many miles on your vehicle? I assume you performed the oil changes yourself? What was the nature of the documentation that you provided to your dealer? Receipts of purchases, installation dates?

      You might get a chance to see how well Amsoil stands behind their warranty. Good luck to ya.


      Modified by Altair 4 at 8:29 PM 10-8-2006


    21. 10-08-2006 09:50 PM #21
      Quote, originally posted by rscalzo »
      I change it every 5000 miles using Amsoil oil and filters. ... The dealer said it is the oil pump.
      Please keep us posted. There are lots of folks who started with dino oil, then switched to synthetic, and ended up with blocked oil pumps, because coke had already built up in their turbos and gradually found its way to the pump's inlet screen. If your engine was on synthetic oil from Day One, then your experience is pretty scary. How is your PCV system? Problems there can cause traditional oil sludging, even with synthetic oil, and I suspect sludge turns readily into coke when baked in the turbo.

      Quote, originally posted by rscalzo »
      I'm getting to the point of never considering a VW again at this rate.
      You evidently have lots of company. I am on the fence, myself. Everything depends on my ownership experience over the next 5 to 10 years.

    22. 10-08-2006 09:55 PM #22
      I should start a poll. The current Mobil 1 0W-40 oil has been in there for 2500 mostly city miles and almost 7 months. I am thinking of going a few hundred more miles before changing, and I do have my Blackstone Labs UOA kit ready to go. I use the Purolator L40316 monster filter, and the oil still LOOKS very clean this time around.

    23. 10-08-2006 10:40 PM #23
      I had the oil changes done locally at a mechanic who is a Amsoil dealer. I provided bills from every oil change to the dealer. The only time dino oil was ever used in the vehicle was when the VW dealer changed the oil.

      The car has 41k on it.


    24. 10-08-2006 11:59 PM #24
      Quote, originally posted by rscalzo »
      I had the oil changes done locally at a mechanic who is a Amsoil dealer. I provided bills from every oil change to the dealer. The only time dino oil was ever used in the vehicle was when the VW dealer changed the oil.

      The car has 41k on it.

      Damn. Sludge / coke at 41K with synthetic oil? You have my sympathies. I'm pushing 60K, all on dino; so far, so good. I'm in the ARX rinse phase now and will be putting in German Castrol in a couple of weeks. I sure hope the ARX has dissolved any coke...


    25. Member nm+'s Avatar
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      10-09-2006 12:18 AM #25
      Quote, originally posted by rscalzo »
      I had the oil changes done locally at a mechanic who is a Amsoil dealer. I provided bills from every oil change to the dealer. The only time dino oil was ever used in the vehicle was when the VW dealer changed the oil.

      The car has 41k on it.


      Damn, did you do turbo cool downs or anything?
      Quote Originally Posted by Ducky TSX
      The Car Lounge likes to compare apples to llamas

    26. 10-09-2006 06:50 AM #26
      Whoa. Based on the info here and on the other thread, you've done 9 changes in 41,000 miles. 7 on synth, 2 on dino (from the dealer - ). That averages out to 4,555 miles per change.

      That's just a couple of hundred miles more than I'm doing, although I've never had dino oil in my engine. Man, this whole thread is making me very uncomfortable.

      As John E requested, please keep us updated on how this develops!

      PS: How would you describe your driving environment? All city, mostly city? Thanks.


    27. Member mriedel's Avatar
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      10-09-2006 09:11 AM #27
      If you use synth, there is no reason to change oil more than 5,000 miles unless you are doing harsh driving. The synth can easily stand up to 5,000 miles of use without significant break down.

      Oil change intervals are much shorter even though oil quality has improved greatly over the past 20+ years. It's a matter of balance and being realitstic. A high quality dino oil works fine, even in turbos. The question is, is the car being maintained and the oil changed on a reasonable basis given the driving conditions?

      That said, we all know syth is better. However, when synth first came out, it was not accepted as being as good as the high quality dino's. This was hotly debated for a long time here on the vortex.

      I personally ran castrol GTX in my 99.5 passat for nearly 4 years - APR stage I, the whole time. I also changed the oil religously and the car was driven almost exclusively in the country. I think that plays a far greater role than most people appreciate. After the synth notice came out, I did the Auto RX and had the car checked for sludge. Nothing. Then switched to synth.


    28. 10-09-2006 01:51 PM #28
      I just got a call from the VW dealer. VW will cover the entire repair except for $47.00 for the oil change. It took two days for VW to decide and I have to credit my local dealer, Seacoast VW in Greenland, NH for going the extra mile in getting this done.

      As much as I bought into the hype about extended oil changes, in the 1.8 I'm dropping down to every 4k to be on the safe side.

      I don't know what would have been done if the oil changes were done at home without documentation. I'm guessing you would be out of luck.


      Modified by rscalzo at 4:24 PM 10-9-2006


      Modified by rscalzo at 4:25 PM 10-9-2006


    29. 10-09-2006 02:33 PM #29
      That's very good news! I'm glad to hear they stepped up to the plate to handle your pil pump problem.

    30. 10-09-2006 02:35 PM #30
      Quote, originally posted by rscalzo »

      As much as I bought into the hype about extended oil changes, in the 1.8 I'm dropping down to every 4k to be on the safe side.

      As noted in one of my earlier posts, that's the reason why I stick with a 3 month/3K OCI.


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      10-09-2006 03:13 PM #31
      The recommended interval is 5K. I wait 6 to 7Kmiles for mine because I do mostly freeway driving. At 5K, my oil still looks goldish. I stopped buying synth myself and I just use instead my indy's LubroMoly 5W-40. A very important part of avoiding problems is to always cool down the turbo a little bit.

    32. Member
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      10-09-2006 03:18 PM #32
      Quote, originally posted by mriedel »
      I also changed the oil religously and the car was driven almost exclusively in the country. I think that plays a far greater role than most people appreciate.

      Indeed. We can think of it this way. For a given amount of miles, a highway driven engine has probably turned half as many times as a city driven engine. In addition, the highway driven har has also seen lower temperature both because of lighter engine load and better cooling conditions. Driving distance after each start also plays a role (does the oil ever get warm enough to vaporize all the water ?).


    33. 10-09-2006 09:47 PM #33
      Quote, originally posted by av_audi »
      Indeed. We can think of it this way. For a given amount of miles, a highway driven engine has probably turned half as many times as a city driven engine. In addition, the highway driven har has also seen lower temperature both because of lighter engine load and better cooling conditions. Driving distance after each start also plays a role (does the oil ever get warm enough to vaporize all the water ?).

      I've been thinking about this lately, that is the whole city vs. highway thing and its effect on oil life. (Do I need a life, or what?) Don't other vehicles, like airplanes, base their maintenance schedules by the number of hours the motor has been in use? I was thinking that it was too bad that I didn't have some way to keep track of this in the Passat when, duh, I remembered the "trip computer" or whatever it is called has just this feature.

      So I'm kind of keeping an eye on this now. With about 1,500 miles since my last oil change I have a little over 41 hours on the engine. I'll be changing the oil at the 2K interval since I'm currently in the ARX rinse phase. I think this is something I'll start to record in my auto maintenance spreadsheet. Over time, it will be interesting to see how many hours I've accumulated at various 5K OCI's. Not saying it'll be useful, mind you, but you never know.


    34. Senior Member
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      10-10-2006 12:38 AM #34
      Quote, originally posted by hang_tin »
      I've been thinking about this lately, that is the whole city vs. highway thing and its effect on oil life. (Do I need a life, or what?) Don't other vehicles, like airplanes, base their maintenance schedules by the number of hours the motor has been in use? I was thinking that it was too bad that I didn't have some way to keep track of this in the Passat when, duh, I remembered the "trip computer" or whatever it is called has just this feature.

      So I'm kind of keeping an eye on this now. With about 1,500 miles since my last oil change I have a little over 41 hours on the engine. I'll be changing the oil at the 2K interval since I'm currently in the ARX rinse phase. I think this is something I'll start to record in my auto maintenance spreadsheet. Over time, it will be interesting to see how many hours I've accumulated at various 5K OCI's. Not saying it'll be useful, mind you, but you never know.

      What might be more useful is if people who send in oil for oil analyses also note the number of hours (as well as the number of miles) since the oil was put in.

      5000 miles over 500 hours might produce a different used oil analysis than 5000 miles over 100 hours.


      Modified by tjl at 9:41 PM 10-9-2006


    35. 10-10-2006 01:28 AM #35
      The car is my wife's so I know she doesn't do a cool down. She drives it about ten miles to and from work, mostly on lightly traveled back roads. Very little stopping until the last mile or so.

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