Off Topic Question - Oil Weight - Mustang Evolution

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Old 09-08-2011, 07:26 AM   #1
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Off Topic Question - Oil Weight

Hey guys, this is a question about my wife's 1999 Ford Contour Sport. Over Labor Day weekend, we drove back to our hometown so I could donate my old Honda Accord to a guy from our old church who really needed a car. Now that I have the Stang, I was figuring that someone else could (and maybe appreciate) that old beater.

Well, the Mrs took her car to the local Ford dealership for an oil change that Saturday, and after about 150 miles into our return trip, her oil light came on. This was just as we were coming into Birmingham, AL with all the nasty weather. We pulled over, checked the dipstick, and the level looked good. So we kept driving since my wife says sometimes the light will come on and go off on its own.

We keep driving until I start to hear this squeak/squeal, almost like a belt slipping, and then the check engine light starts flashing. We pull over, and the engine is visibly shaking. Not sure if it's bad gas, we put some additive in and try to crank it. The starter turns over, but it sounds like it can't get compression. Finally, we get it cranked again, but it's idling rough as hell so we decide to get it towed to a shop the next morning.

My wife looks at her receipt for the oil change, and she sees that they used 5w20. The entire time she's owned the car, she has always had 10w30 put in. And this dealership has changed her oil countless times!

Is it legitimate for me to claim that changing the weight of her oil could be responsible for this? It sounds like a rod is knocking, and I just find it too coincidental that this happens just as soon as a thinner oil is introduced. To be fair, though, her car does have 135,000 miles on it.
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Old 09-08-2011, 08:35 AM   #2
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Re: Off Topic Question - Oil Weight

what was the factory oil spec'ed at? 5w20 is a normal oil for most newer Fords~
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Old 09-08-2011, 09:00 AM   #3
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Re: Off Topic Question - Oil Weight

On page 165:

http://www.motorcraftservice.com/pub.../99cntog1e.pdf

It says to use 5w-30. Since it is an older engine, I would imagine that it is especially important not to thin out the oil by going from 30 to 20. It had also had a problem for the longest time where it would burn oil; so, I would think the extra viscosity was needed there as well, no?
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Old 09-09-2011, 03:13 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by illestdomer2005
On page 165:

http://www.motorcraftservice.com/pub.../99cntog1e.pdf

It says to use 5w-30. Since it is an older engine, I would imagine that it is especially important not to thin out the oil by going from 30 to 20. It had also had a problem for the longest time where it would burn oil; so, I would think the extra viscosity was needed there as well, no?
Did they tighten the filter on enough...I had a similar issue come up and that was deemed the cause of it
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Old 09-09-2011, 03:52 AM   #5
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Re: Off Topic Question - Oil Weight

Sounds like a probable coincidence, not the oil. Obviously the owners manual states the proper weight. lifting the hood should state proper oil weight also.
Ever consider that the nasty weather and moisture had a part in it, maybe?
Just my guess.
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Old 09-09-2011, 10:23 AM   #6
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Re: Off Topic Question - Oil Weight

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Originally Posted by Blackheart4355 View Post
Did they tighten the filter on enough...I had a similar issue come up and that was deemed the cause of it
No idea. That was one of the things we wondered though. Hopefully the dealership in B'ham can attribute cause to the other dealership OR tell me there's a relatively inexpensive fix.

I thought about getting the engine rebuilt since my wife JUST paid to replace the A/C compressor, but I know that would cost more than the value of the car.
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Old 09-09-2011, 10:25 AM   #7
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Re: Off Topic Question - Oil Weight

which bham dealer did you take it to (dont say town and country please)
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Old 09-09-2011, 10:26 AM   #8
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Re: Off Topic Question - Oil Weight

Quote:
Originally Posted by robb15033 View Post
Sounds like a probable coincidence, not the oil. Obviously the owners manual states the proper weight. lifting the hood should state proper oil weight also.
Ever consider that the nasty weather and moisture had a part in it, maybe?
Just my guess.
It very well could be the cause, I suppose. The part that really gets me though is the order of

1. Oil light comes on
2. Engine light starts flashing

If it were a week or two after the oil change, I would just pin it on old age. But the engine only has 135,000 miles. I know it's got some distance, but there are lot more that run for a lot longer. The timing has me hoping it was something other than coincidence.

---------- Post added at 03:26 PM ---------- Previous post was at 03:25 PM ----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by SpectorV View Post
which bham dealer did you take it to (dont say town and country please)
Haha, Long-Lewis in Hoover. My wife's parents have a relationship with their Corinth, MS dealership; so, it was them or Jim Skinner (?) Ford.

Is Town and Country bad?
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Ext Mods: Lower chrome billet grille, Tint
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