Additionally, recent car models require a blend of synthetic or full synthetic, low-viscosity oils that minimize friction and improve fuel economy. For a new car owner, this 3,000 miles/oil change "blanket statement" is a little confusing.
Two years ago, an engineer shared some solid gems on Reddit that offer more clarity on oil life. It involves a little bit of math and sound scientific reasoning. The post got an overwhelming approval rate from car enthusiasts and still acts as a reference point today.
According to the engineer, his colleague reviewed thousands of oil analysis data over his career and developed a simple formula: Oil life in distance = engine oil capacity x 200 x fuel economy. In this rule of thumb, fuel burn is 200X oil capacity.
The main idea is to calculate the fuel volume used in one oil service and then convert it to distance using your vehicle's fuel efficiency (Oil life in distance = engine oil capacity x 200 x fuel economy).
If your oil capacity is 5 liters, multiply that by 200. The result is 1,000 liters. Considering your average consumption is 8L/100 km, divide 1000 liters by 8 liters, then multiply by 100 km. Your oil life is 12,500 km.
Oil capacity = 5L
Average fuel economy (for example, is 8L per 100km)
5L x 200 = 1000L
1000L divided by 8L = 125
125 x 100km = 12,500 km
Oil capacity = 5 quarts
5 quarts X 200 = 1,000 quarts
Conversion to gallons: (1 quart = 0.25 gallons)
1,000 X 0.25 = 250 gallons
250 gallons of fuel consumption X 20 mpg = 5,000 miles
The formula, while complicated, seems relatable. Most commenters agreed with the values. The post has over 1,200 upvotes, 11 approval badges, and more than 500 comments. What's the oil life of your vehicle based on this RoT? Are they relatable? Share them in the comment section. We'd be happy to discuss this further.