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Discussion Starter #1
I know this subject has been debated over and over...but i was at my dealer yesterday getting some work done on my '00 TL (squeaky seats) and had a heated discussion with the service mgr at Pohanka Acura in VA. I asked him a simple question..."what type of oil are you using in the MDX oil changes" he replied 5W-20. I asked the question about the "misprint" in the owners manual for the '02. He even showed me the Service Bulletin from March '02 that stated that the 5W-20 was incorrect. But then he added that Honda is still recommeding (in the DC area, because of the type of gasoline that is availible) that these dealers use 5W-20 for ALL MDX models. He then rambled on about something to do with maintaining the MDx's ULEV requirements.
So..here we are again WTF. Is this story about different types of oil for different parts of the U.S.??????
Can we put this to bed...not that it makes a whole heck of alot of diff in performance, but its annoying that all of the documentation states 5W-30 but Honda is still recommending 5W-20.
 

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5W-20

Dude...5W-20 is definitely incorrect. 20 is TOO thing for a VTEC engine. With high revving engines today...the minimum is 30 viscosity and 5 weight. That is what these numbers denotes. I hate to admit it...but Japanese and foreign auto makers ten to make typos when translation from their language to ours...I notice this in other Honda vehicles also...HAHAHA:2:

but you will be safe using 5W(eight)- 30Viscosity
 

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craig02,
I just returned from Pohanka to purchase some touchup paint ($5.00). I had asked that same question when I bought my X from Pohanka and got the same answer. Also, they use Sunoco oil!!!
I told them I planned to use use Mobil 1 and they said OK but want me to use their oil for the first change.

When I get closer to the first oil change I plan to call every Acura dealer in the DC area about their oil recommendation. Results should be interesting.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
thanks for the input. I called Radley and Pohanka today got pretty much the same answer. Honda is supplying the dealers with 5w-20 in the DC area because of the type of fuel that we have availible (RFG). They said 20 and 30 are almost identical as far as the MDX is concerned but they do use 20 for ALL MDX oil changes now.
I think there are as many opinions on this as there are MDX's on the road.
either one is probably oK i would imagine, i am going with 5-30 at the next change.
 

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In 2002 Honda recommends 5W30 for the 3.5 VTEC engine, but in 2003 they recommend 5W20 for the very same engine. So what has changed? Nothing in the engine. Honda and Ford are both moving to 5W20 oils to meet CAFE fleet fuel economy standards. The 5W20 oils provide slightly better fuel economy (measured in tenths of an mpg). The 5W30 provides slightly better protection (again, very small differences here). Given that I will be running Mobil 1 and they don't yet make a 5W20, I'll be running 5W30. After all, if given the choice between marginally better fuel economy and marginally better protection, I'll choose the protection every time.

Chris
 

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xyzzy, where did you get the '03 info? Other than CAFE, there's no reasonable reason for using 5W-20, and I can't believe that it would affect CAFE by more than 1/2 mpg.

For those who are confused between viscosity and weight, here's the scoop on dual-numbered oils: The first number is the "weight" when cold -- 5 is different than 5W (W for Winter), but since plain ol' 5 isn't used anymore, 5W is what we all see. The second number is the "weight" when hot. "Weight" is an old term indicative of whether an oil is "light" (easy to stir) or "heavy" (harder to stir) at a given temperature -- it has nothing to do with "pounds per quart." As the numbers get higher, the oil gets thicker or more viscous. Thus, a 5W-30 oil has the viscosity range (within industry-standard limits) when cold of a single-weight 5W oil, and the viscosity range when hot of a single-weight 30 oil. As for me (who was born and raised in the heart of the Pennsylvania oil fields), I want that 30 when the engine is hot, because it has a stronger film and will protect better than 20.
 

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5w20

5w20 I agree will allow better fule economy simple because the viscosity is thinner than that of the 30. However, Vtec are high rev engines so you will experience quicker wear/tear on your pistons, rods and rings.

That is why in my opinion 30 is better. you can go longer in oil changes whereas if you use 20 you will have to DEFINITELY change every 3K miles because of molecular break downs of the viscosity.

Damn...I feel like am in synthetic chemistry again!:rolleyes:
 

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Frostyra,

Honda and Ford moving to 5W20 has been mentioned in some reviews and is being confirmed as '03 models are released. From Honda you don't have to look any further than the Acura TL and the Honda Pilot (the only '03s I have seen so far). Both owners manuals list 5W20. While I haven't read any specific document stating that the 2003 MDX will list 5W20, I think it's a pretty safe bet, especially considering that the Pilot uses the same engine as the MDX. Also, when I first got my Pilot, I noticed the 5W20 recommendation on the cap and asked the service manager about it. This was honestly the first thing I had heard about that specific grade. His reply was that "all" of the 2003s will be using it. Again, I've only seen two 2003 models from Honda and both are using 5W20.

Fireblade,

I agree that 5W30 offers (marginally) better protection and will be using 5W30 Mobil 1 as stated in my earlier message. However, I don't think anyone should be concerned or take any special precautions with the 5W20. Remember, this is what Honda is recommending and have based the maintenance schedules around this recommendation. My decision to use 5W30 has more to do with the fact that Mobil doesn't make a 5W20 synthetic yet. I did call their toll free line and was told that they plan to have it available by year end, but that was just the word from one of their phone Q&A staff.

It's also important to note that 5W20 is the ONLY oil recommended in the '03 manuals. I'm used to seeing the primary recommendation followed by a small bar chard with different grades layed over a grid of different temperatures showing where that specific grade is effective (you know the one). The Pilot manual Only shows the 5W20.

Chris
 

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Had my first oil change this week.

The answer I was given

5W20 on future oil changes, not the first one.
:eek:
 

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ByeByeChrysler said:
Had my first oil change this week.

The answer I was given

5W20 on future oil changes, not the first one.
:eek:
Wow. That info is just flat out wrong. I would be leary of a service department spewing bad info like this. Not that something else isn't find (5W30 is obviously), but if they state this as an "official" answer, they are incorrect.

Chris
 
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