If the cost was the same, would you still change your own oil? - Nissan Versa Forums
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post #1 of 24 Old 07-31-2018, 07:09 PM Thread Starter
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If the cost was the same, would you still change your own oil?

So I've had my 2016 Versa S for about 2 1/2 years now, and I finally used up my 4 free oil changes. I am usually one to do this myself, so it felt odd having a dealership do it.... but it was free ... and they wash it too... so why not? So this spring I do my first one on the car, using mobil-1 and a wix oil filter. The crush gasket on the drain plug caught me by surprise, I'm not used to those. It looked fine, so I re-used it. A buddy of mine used to work for nissan and gave me a bunch of them, so I'm set if I need to replace them in the future. I was happy to see that the dealer didn't over-tighten the drain plug or filter when I took them off, so that was nice, and now, onto my point/question:

My dealer charges $40 for an oil change and multi-point inspection. That's pretty close to the cost of the oil and filter at the parts store. Yes I realize, that the dealer is using the cheapest oil they can buy, but does the car really care? I know that's sounds odd but, it's meant as an honest question. The car this replaced was a 2005 dodge neon. It gave us a good 10 years, so I'm not dogging it. That one got mobil-1 and wix filters all it's life and no oil related issue's at all (head gasket was what got me), which does beg the question, of if it was good money spent? or overkill?

So yeah, I feel stupid even asking, but it's been bugging me. I'll be doing oil changes every 5K, regardless of oil-type. Manual says change it every 5K, so I'm assuming that's with what the dealer uses, not comfortable going longer than that... mobil-1 or otherwise.

Sitting at 29K currently and will be doing the next one (myself) soon, but the one after that will be done in the cold, so yeah, as I get older I like crawling under cars less and less. That said I do always at least look under there from time to time, as It's good to keep tabs on things.

Oh and one of the other big reasons I asked this odd question, was because I thought I'd see at least a small gas mileage increase switching to Mobil-1... but nope... nada..

Thanks for reading my little novel.

2016 Versa S sedan 5M
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post #2 of 24 Old 07-31-2018, 10:32 PM
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I usually change my own oil, usually use synthetic....I decided to let the dealer change the oil on the Versa because:

He can't claim I did anything wrong if there is a warranty issue
He does keep up with any recalls while doing the oil change.
Cost is so close that It really isn't worth it.
I will not be keeping this car one mile past the warranty.
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post #3 of 24 Old 07-31-2018, 11:11 PM
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My car came with free oil changes and I pay them 25 bucks to rotate the tires while they are at it.

Otherwise I buy oil on sale and multipack of filters and do it myself. I usually buy 6 packs of honda filters when I had one and shop around for oil sales and chk the auto dept of walmart. Then I need 0w20 and that was hard to find the green eco oil.
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post #4 of 24 Old 08-01-2018, 02:20 AM
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I drop my vehicles to a shop. As I've gotten older, my time has become way more valuable to me
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post #5 of 24 Old 08-01-2018, 04:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andymac0035 View Post
My dealer charges $40 for an oil change and multi-point inspection. That's pretty close to the cost of the oil and filter at the parts store.
Well, it is not close to the cost of the oil and filter at the parts store - if you plan ahead.

My 1.6 Versa takes 3 qt of oil to fill to the "Full" mark. I buy full synthetic oil on sale for about $3/qt. It is usually a generic oil like Super Tech, Napa, etc. Sometimes a brand name. I buy oil filters also on sale, it costs about $3 - 3.50. If oil is changed every 5k miles, you can use the cheapest filter.

So the total cost with tax is under $15.

Most sales are around Thanksgiving, but sometimes it is during the year. You have to watch.

Another point is that in my experience dealerships overfill engine oil, because they follow the listed oil capacity (which is for a reference only, and mostly overstated), and not the dipstick. This is not good for the engine. So if you want to have it done right, do it yourself.

The Versa is probably the easiest car to change engine oil, basically a piece of cake. Just run it on the ramps. Most auto parts stores will take your used oil.

Last edited by SlickVersa; 08-01-2018 at 04:43 AM.
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post #6 of 24 Old 08-01-2018, 12:13 PM
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As another member stated, if your still within the warranty period, I would always have the dealership do the oil changes. My 2009 versa sedan was still under the powertrain warranty when the engine developed a piston slap. All my work was done by the dealership, and the engine was replaced with no questions asked. They could pull up all the records on their computer and there was no way they could say that the proper maintenance wasn't done. When you take it to an independent licensed shop, keep all your records. If you do the oil changes yourself or you use a shade tree mechanic, the dealer can always say that you screwed something up, or you didn't use the proper oil.
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post #7 of 24 Old 08-02-2018, 02:45 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the replies. I do indeed keep records, so I have the oil+filter receipts with the mileage written on them. I do appreciate the input on catching sales and such, but I have this thing about buying quality filters and oil, I just can't do a cheap filter (the nissan one seemed good BTW), oils I know are often made by only a few places and relabeled but I guess it felt better at the time buying mobil-1. My dealer also does sales on their service so I suppose I can watch for those. I can say that I've checked the oil levels right along, and they have yet to over-fill it so that's pretty good I think. Only thing I ever questioned them on was the time they said I should consider a new belt as they saw 3 cracks on the current one. They did not offer to warranty it though (20K) so I passed, as I thought it looked fine. That was what kinda' led to me doing my own maintenance, as it kind of rubbed me the wrong way. I do know however, that from a liability standpoint, they had to ask me if I wanted to change it, so I guess I will cut them a little slack. I might just have them do the next oil change and be done with it. I do like the satisfaction of doing it myself, and convenience of not having to make an appointment, then sit and wait.... but it is nice having a car wash included and all the stuff under there checked on a lift.

2016 Versa S sedan 5M
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post #8 of 24 Old 08-02-2018, 10:52 PM
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I dont know about you guys, but Im finding the nissan dealer is expensive vs the honda and toyota I owned. Ive let the honda dealer do stuff I could as it wasnt that expensive and free me up to do other things.

The warranty thing may seem nice, but trust me. As soon as a problem pops up they will worm and wiggle out of that and try to pin it on you for the failure of the engine. I knew a guy who was anal like that and had engine problems. They claimed since it was a stick shift he missed a shift, over rev and that caused engine damage.

Under the moss act they have to prove your mod, maintenance, etc caused the failure.

Me, I had a dome light that did not work. Tried an led bulb it did not work either. They claimed they checked it and left it hanging down from the roof. They said they can prove it has power to the connector, but I voided the warranty on the fixture cause I put an led bulb in it. I fooled with it and got another led bulb and it worked.
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post #9 of 24 Old 08-03-2018, 05:26 AM
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Nissan bulb connectors are among the sh-ttiest on the planet and barely hold bulbs even new. You can easily rebend the bulb connectors to hold the bulb to work again and in a couple places I've used thin cardboard as a shim to tighten the bulb up-problem gone forever. Not rocket science at all but if people just want to stay dull to not think at all then utterly simple things will stay broken...........it is only expected that different bulb bases will tend to bend the contacts looser.............

I'm using a much bigger than OEM oil filter on my 1.8, the engine now needs right at 5 quarts in it to hit stick level.
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post #10 of 24 Old 08-07-2018, 08:30 PM
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Yes I would still change my oil myself. Nissan USA is providing me with free oil changes for 3 years because the dealer lost my hubcap and tried to sell me a new one "at cost", which is what the dealer paid for it, not the retail price, but, still, the dealer should've replaced it for free. Even though the oil changes are "free", there's the hassle of taking the car to the dealer, listening to the dealer's upselling attempts, and the overall shoddy job that the dealer does on these oil changes.

After my most recent oil change at the dealer, I noticed that the cabin air filter cover was not installed correctly, causing the filter to stick out of the compartment. These "multi-point inspections" that the dealers provide for "free" actually do more harm than good since the dealer technicians don't even know how to put the parts back correctly. I've also heard stories about the dealer changing only the oil and not the oil filter. That's pretty messed up. I guess it's my fault for trusting the dealer.

2014 Versa Note S Plus, Metallic Blue Paint
Built in July 2013. Bought on September 28, 2013.
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