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I am accustomed to cars that recommend oil changes based on time or mileage. For example, every 4 months or 4,000 miles, whichever comes first. I just got my 22 Civic today and I see that it has a maintenance reminder function on the dash, which purports to advise when to get an oil change. For those of you who are more knowledgeable than I am (which I suspect is nearly all of you -- I am not much of a car guy), do you recommend relying on this maintenance reminder to tell me when to get an oil change, or just doing it every X months or X thousand miles, regardless of what his maintenance reminder thing says?

Also,,is there any normal service I would need on the new car before the first oil change?

Thanks.
 

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I will not go off of the maintenance reminder. I am a 5000 miles oil change guy. IMO 6-10 thousand miles between oil changes is just to far.

Honda has an A or B service with oil changes according to your car as well. Most of the time it’s just a visual inspection on various parts but sometimes it could be coolant flush, brake fluid change, air filter or cabin filter change as well as oil.

I don’t think the is a C service but I could be wrong.

You will get a variety of opinions on this topic.
 

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Check your oil often. It being too dark and/or low indicates it needs either a top off or change. Never hurts to change it more often to at least get that hard working oil filter swapped out for a fresh one. Twice a year sounds right.
 

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Had a 2008 honda element with the maintenance minder and always followed it. It usually got to 15% oil life around 5000-5500 miles. Had the car 11 years, never a problem. So I'm going to use the maintenance minder on my new civic sport and see what interval it gets.
 

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I have around 2300 miles and it’s down to 70%. My driving habits will not change so if I let it go down to or close to 0% I will have around 7000 miles or a little more.
 

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Do any of you have experience with free oil change programs provided by the dealership? I was offered one as part of negotiating and while I know it'll differ per dealership, I wonder if they'll only honor it if the dashboard says I need to replace the oil.
 

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Do any of you have experience with free oil change programs provided by the dealership? I was offered one as part of negotiating and while I know it'll differ per dealership, I wonder if they'll only honor it if the dashboard says I need to replace the oil.
Yeah that’s part of my issue. I get 2 free ones but they do go off of the car. I probably will not do them.
 

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I will not go off of the maintenance reminder. I am a 5000 miles oil change guy. IMO 6-10 thousand miles between oil changes is just to far.

Honda has an A or B service with oil changes according to your car as well. Most of the time it’s just a visual inspection on various parts but sometimes it could be coolant flush, brake fluid change, air filter or cabin filter change as well as oil.

I don’t think the is a C service but I could be wrong.

You will get a variety of opinions on this topic.
Even on synthetic? The new civics use 0W-20 which is a synthetic, should be good for at least 7 without any issues
 

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Let's start with the basic question: why should you EVER change your oil?

The answer is because the oil is there to protect your engine's moving parts from heat and friction. It has lubricating and cooling functions, and does this job less well over time and stress.

So, when is it "time" to change the oil? When the oil approaches being no longer able to do that job effectively. Note that this is about the QUALITY and not QUANTITY of oil; if your engine burns oil, or leaks it, you may have to add more oil before the oil needs changing, or you may get out just about exactly the same volume of oil out of your engine as you last put into it when you change it. Doesn't factor into this discussion.

The "maintenance minder" in modern cars - the 2022 Civic in particular - is not just some kind of timer based on miles driven in combo with time elapsed since the last oil change. It is based on exactly how you used your car, and in what conditions.

This is a good thing, because the whole "service schedule" thing in the owner's manual in the past was based on miles driven and/or number of months since the last change - "6 months/5,000 miles" or for "severe conditions", "after 3 months/3,000 miles". Time/mileage based oil change schedules were never a good idea; only the best possible guideline given the lack of monitoring technology. Those guidelines could not possibly know HOW you drove your car. And by describing "severe conditions" as needing more frequent maintenance with vague terms like "frequent stop and go trips" or "dusty or dirty conditions", almost everyone could say "yeah that sounds like me, better not risk it" and end up getting too-frequent oil changes.

So what, you may ask? Why not just go with the absolutely most conservative (frequent) "schedule" for changing oil, to avoid any possible problems with using oil past its optimal performance?

For an extreme example, NASCAR racers change the oil in their car engines multiple times per event. Why not do the same, other than cost (money)? Because you're not driving at those speeds and conditions for as long a time on public roads (I sure hope not)! And oil and filters are fairly cheap, it only takes like 15-30 minutes to do yourself, so, why not just do it every three months?

But there is indeed a downside to changing your oil unnecessarily in addition to the cost of oil/filters: a fairly high environmental cost. There's a reason you can't (shouldn't) just dump your old oil into the trash, it has to be properly disposed of - treated and recycled and all that. Because it's a contaminant, a pollutant. If that stuff gets into ground water, it's poison.

The maintenance minder on the computer constantly takes into account the RPM you drive at, and how long you held that RPM, the engine temperature at the time, etc., to do a CONSERVATIVE estimate on the "life remaining" on your oil. When it gets to 15% you should change it as soon as reasonably possible, but that doesn't mean getting to 0% is going to make your engine break down; just like the "fuel empty" light on your dash, "0% engine life" means you still have probably 15% "for real" before any significant ill effect would be seen.

There is no good effect to changing your oil at 3,000 or 5,000 miles "just to feel like I'm treating the car well" if the minder says you have way more than 15% life left. (Sure, if it's down to like 25% and you're about to go on a long trip, go for it.) You're only adding more waste oil to the world that you could have held back on.

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Oh, one more thing: "they" used to say you should change the oil at least once a year because oil that just sits in the crankcase of a parked car will quietly degrade, so that year-plus old oil was fundamentally untrustworthy. I think, THINK, that this is far less true with modern synthetic oils, and that the "maintenance minder" does incorporate time elapsed (in the crankcase) as well in its formula.

But that's the exception I would make myself to the "follow the maintenance minder" thing - if I hadn't driven the car very much and it'd been 18+ months the last time I changed the oil, despite it only having been driven 2 or 3 thousand miles or something if the minder said it was still at 90% life. But if I noticed the minder percentage dropping despite such little usage, indicating it was factoring in time spent parked in the degradation formula, I'd trust it unless I'd filled it last time with some crappy oil I didn't really trust the quality of.
 
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