Last post on Nov 27, 2013 at 1:06 PM
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#19317 of 19336 Oil Consumption
Oct 01, 2013 (4:27 pm)
I bought my first Subaru in July 2012. It is a 2012 Forester Premium 5-speed manual. In the 15K miles I've driven so far, I've generally been happy with the vehicle due to the great traction in snow and fuel mileage higher than advertised. It gets 31 - 32 MPG on long trips and 28 MPG on my suburban commute. One thing I've been less than thrilled about is oil consumption. It uses around 1 quart for every 3K to 4K miles driven. My previous vehicle, a 2005 Toyota Matrix, never used oil in the 91,000 miles I drove it, and my other 2 current vehicles: a 2000 Honda Odyssey with 170K and a 2010 Toyota RAV4 with 43K don't use any oil either.
My questions for those with more experience with Subarus: is this oil consumption typical of the boxer engine and is this oil consumption something I should be concerned about?
#19318 of 19336 Re: Advice on a Trip to Dealer? [girlcarbuilder]
Oct 01, 2013 (5:52 pm)
When I took my car in they charge the a/c system ($118) and then told me my compressor was shot. They quoted $900+ to replace compressor. I can't afford that but I really don't want to go without air next summer. The a/c is fine for the first 15 minutes but then loses its ability to cool. Does that sound like a compressor. If so Can I buy a rebuilt one and dIY?
#19319 of 19336 Re: Oil Consumption [jcfromva]
Oct 02, 2013 (12:00 pm)
I think that's not exactly common (our 2009 does not burn oil), but falls within the industry standard tolerance for oil consumption. A quart every 1000 miles is considered acceptable.
I think we used to change oil every 3k miles and probably never noticed. With a longer interval more common nowadays, we might.
Are you doing changes every 3750, 5000, or 7500 miles, or what?
#19320 of 19336 Re: Advice on a Trip to Dealer? [stackman1]
Oct 02, 2013 (1:30 pm)
I would have to have a set of gauges on it to see what is really happening. But if your a/c has been working fine prior to the last trip to the dealer I can only wonder if someone contaminated it with some moisture intentionally. With too much moisture in the lines you will have ice slowly build up at the refrigerant control to the point that it will eventually block the flow. That will at that point shut down the system, hopefully. High side pressure will go up and should cause the high pressure switch to shut down. Low side will go down more than normal. If this is what is going on, then there will be a lack of lubrication to the compressor which will cause it to self destruct eventually.
I should add that this all assumes there is a correct charge amount on the system. If the charge is marginal it will begin to cycle on/off, but not a total shutdown.
Personally, around 200k miles or so, I like to pull the system down, pull a vacuum on it and a new filter dryer on it. There is some moisture invasion over time which is another reason I like to dry out an older system. Lot of the newer stuff is integrated in different ways. The new Toyota Yaris's we have, have that filter system inside the condenser now. Unless you have refrigeration experience, best left to a good pro with a specialized shop that does a/c work exclusively.
Rebuilt compressor......I do not care for them. I do know that Tri-State refrigeration in Louisiana has a rebuilder he swears by for Subie compressors. Otherwise I prefer new. They specialize in semi-trucks and may have a branch near you.
#19321 of 19336 Re: Oil Consumption [ateixeira]
Oct 02, 2013 (5:34 pm)
I have it changed at the dealer about every 5K to 6K based on the time interval of 6 months, even though I could go up to 7.5K if I drove it more frequently. Subaru specifies synthetic 0W-20, which seems very thin, but it should help lubrication and fuel economy.
#19322 of 19336 Re: Oil Consumption [ateixeira]
Oct 02, 2013 (6:17 pm)
That's a non-issue IMO, as ateixeira notes (1 qt./1k = generally acceptable tolerance)... my '09 burns little or nothing between 5k oil change intervals using synthetic but a quart every 3-4k is not a concern IMO.
#19323 of 19336 Re: Oil Consumption [jcfromva]
Oct 03, 2013 (8:58 am)
0w-20 is thin, seems to be a new strategy to eek out every last MPG in the EPA ratings.
#19324 of 19336 Re: Advice on a Trip to Dealer? [girlcarbuilder]
Oct 03, 2013 (9:30 am)
About two months ago the a/c started behaving as follows. Turn it on and it worked fine for 10-15 minutes. I thought it needed to be charged with Freon so I took it to dealer. They charged it, charged me $118 and told me the compressor was broken. That is the way it continues to operate.
As a layman - it would seem that everything is fine but then something shuts down/fails. Does it make sense that it is indeed the compressor?
#19325 of 19336 Re: Oil Consumption [jcfromva]
Oct 03, 2013 (9:51 am)
My 2010 Forester doesn't use any oil (normally!) for all practical purposes, over the ~12K mile OCI I run it. In the absence of any other issues, it will still be a little above the "fill" mark on the dipstick when I do the oil change after that many miles. But, mine is the EJ25, not the FB25, so your thinner oil may make the difference (I use 0w-30 as compared to your 20-weight).
I wouldn't worry about that consumption level unless it has changed over time. If the car didn't use any for 30K, then suddenly started using a quart every 3K, that would be worth inspecting.
#19326 of 19336 Re: Oil Consumption [fendertweed]
Oct 03, 2013 (2:19 pm)
Not anymore! 1K/quart is old school, but acceptable if you are driving something much older!
If you have that rate going on, you most likely have a leak! If no leak then someone put a heavier weight in and the engine wore out to that point for that weight! Highly recommended to stick to OEM recommendations! Even to this date, what the maker says is close to the deity speaking.
All of the newer Toyota's here are not using any oil between oil changes. Stick to what Subaru says to use. Tolerances in these newer engines are much tighter than years ago. Stick to synthetic oil also, because that light of a weight oil in mineral type will break down from the heat quicker.
I will also ad that Toyota has a portion of ownership in Subaru now!