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I just picked up my STi this weekend and I'd like to know what mileage I need have on it before its broken in. I have heard 1000 up to 5000. Just getting alittle anxious about really driving the STi. Also I have a ton of Mobil 1 5w30 and would not want it to go to waste, anyone using it in their STi or know if it is a recommended oil to use?
 

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This is a long talked about debate which many people have different opinions and views. From number of miles until the car is considered broken in, to what milage to change from normal mortor oil to synthetic.

In the end it doesn't matter that much as long as its gradual.

Most people put 1000 miles on the car and consider it broken in. You should set increments like every 250 miles and start to rev the car up a bit more up the rpm scale. Say under 4000 until you hit 250 miles, then up to 5000 for 250 miles, then 6000....etc.... This has you gradually breaking in the car. Now, I've been told these engines come broken in off the factory line, so who knows... again its all speculation and you will get a different opinion depending on who you talk to.

I myself did 1000 miles, with the gradual thing mentioned above.

Regarding the oil. Again another debate of normal vs synthetic and when to change. Most people recommend the change at 3000 or 5000 over to synthetic. Until then your m1 5w30 will work fine. In fact thats what I have been using as i'm not at 5000 yet when I plan to switch mine over.
 

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The reason using non-syn oil during break-in is because the mechanical parts in new engine may not be smooth yet. Non-syn oil can smoothen them.
 

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jdanny said:
The reason using non-syn oil during break-in is because the mechanical parts in new engine may not be smooth yet. Non-syn oil can smoothen them.
That's one of them, the second is the regular or "real" oil can help fill in small cracks or holes may be there, when synt will not.
 

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Not during break in, that is down the road. People who have run regular oil for 80k miles and then decide to switch over to synth oil find all the little holes and stuff get cleaned out and then leak when switching over late in a engine's life. I would hope a new engine does not have holes or small cracks. In fact if it did it would be all the more reason to run synth so you find out sooner rather than later while still under warranty. The main thing is you want some friction when breakin in an engine so things wear in right, synth lubricates too good to be used right away... so some say. Me personally I waited till 6k before I ran synthetic oil.

And people, when it comes to miles and how to break in your new STi, READ THE OWNER'S MANUAL. When I first got my STi and wasn't driving it I was reading the onwer's manual. Read it from cover to cover in the first couple days.
 

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Cool Software for the Site

First, I am not yelling, using BOLD to get your attention :)

READ the MANUAL - specailly the WARRANTY book which is easy to read. If you follow the factory requirements you are covered by the warranty, which is VERY IMPORTANT.

Just use regular oil, the engine is designed to allow regular oil to flow and cool properly. The heads have specially designed channels to keep the oil flowing properly even in high speed conditions. Change the oil every 3-months/3,750-miles and follow the maintenance guidelines. A small investment now is better than major costs later (ie do not cut corners).

As far as break in do NOT GO OVER 4,000 RPM for the first 1,000 miles. You can hit 4,000 rpm, just back off and do NOT SUSTAIN it. After 1,000 miles then do any type of phased in method you want, just do NOT do this before 1,000 miles.

Set the REV LIMITER for 3,800 rpm, including the audible, and you are covered. Again, do not cut corners.
 

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I knew it! Sooner or later someone would post a link to that ONE site that always gets linked to when this topic comes up. :roll: Doesn't anyone have any OTHER sites or data to back up the hard break in philosophy. That site is aimed at bike engines, you very rarely see the miles put on a bike that you do a car.
 

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Well, i was born and raised in Sac...

There are so many different opinions on the break-in and synth vs. conventional oil debates.......I have no idea which is correct.
Some cars are dellivered from the factory with synthetic oil while others say not to use it during break in. I have heard some people say NEVER to use synthetic oil, its all hype. I don't think anyone really knows. I know that synth oil doesn't bind up in cold weather like conventional oil. I also know that I ran a GTA (LT1) on Syntec and spun a bearing......was it the oil or the way I was driving? I'll never know......when we opened up the crankcase, everything *looked* ok....hmmm.
As far as break in.....some people argue that it is necessary to take it easy for the first few hundred, 1000 or more miles in order to "seat" the rings.....some people will argue that you should "break it in hard". Would a car manufacturer give you a 3yr/36000 mi warranty and then "trust" the owner to follow the break-in procedure if something REALLY bad was going to happen if you didn't? I don't know the answer, but I think its a great question and something to think about.
 

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Consider this. SYnthetic oil is thicker, so will flow slower. Subaru did a lot to make sure the oil flows under all conditions, so using thicker oil will cause problems. When it is cold let the engine idle and heat up, you are fine. If you live in a climate where oil can freeze thwn you know what to do about that anways :)
 

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bc said:
Consider this. SYnthetic oil is thicker, so will flow slower. Subaru did a lot to make sure the oil flows under all conditions, so using thicker oil will cause problems. When it is cold let the engine idle and heat up, you are fine. If you live in a climate where oil can freeze thwn you know what to do about that anways :)
If its 5w-30 its 5w-30......whether its synth or conventional should not make a difference. What basis do you have for the claim that synthetic oil is thicker?
 

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Yeah where did you hear that from???

I can tell you one thing, since I switched over to synthetic at the 6k mile mark I am consistently getting 50 more miles per tank of gas. Don't know if it's the oil but it started right after I switched and has happened on every tank since.
 

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bc said:
Consider this. SYnthetic oil is thicker, so will flow slower. Subaru did a lot to make sure the oil flows under all conditions, so using thicker oil will cause problems. When it is cold let the engine idle and heat up, you are fine. If you live in a climate where oil can freeze thwn you know what to do about that anways :)
This is not correct. 5w30 is 5w30 regardless of synthetic vs. dino.

-st
 

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To wait or not to wait?

Hello guys and gals. This seems to be a hot and controversial topic both here and vwvortex.com...

After reading this link about break in methods, i feel sorry for the +1000 mile 1st oil changers and redliners....

This guys information seems backed up, and when you think about it ring seals would be better after using this method...

http://www.mototuneusa.com/break_in_secrets.htm

I know the next new car i buy i'm going to use this method.
 

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I agree with this article fully except that I disagree with the use of synthetics during the breaking period. I see no reason why you should change to conventional oil; I believe he stated synthetics arrest the engine causing exactly what to happen…

His best points I believe are the following…

-Proper ring seals with occur during the first 20miles of an engines life.
-Flushing/Changing the oil ASAP (20-50miles) after his method of break in is used, avoiding anything over 100 miles...
-The downward pressure of hard revs (under load) will properly seat the rings and create a uniform wear pattern on the cylinder walls increasing compression/longevity
-All four stroke engines adhere to the same basic principles regardless of vehicle type

Considering that the factory oil fills for the following cars are synthetic… (I stole this from the mobile 1 website) I would see no reason why synthetic can be used during the entire life of the engine including breakin…
Entire Porsche lineup
Mercedes AMG models
Corvette Z06

On another note, I’ve found that Amsoil Synthetic seems to be popular among racers and out performs Mobile 1 in a bunch of nifty looking bar charts and pie graphs…

Does anyone have first hand information about Amsoil or know of people that use it?

I don’t want my post to stray off topic to much, but I think the use of synthetics during the break-in is essential and won’t harm the engine anymore then convention oils…
 

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So who made that guy the expert? Like I said before his site is the ONLY site I have seen anyone ever post regarding a hard break in. I would trust the people who designed and built the engine before I trust some guy on the internet. Now if I had a bike that I rode once in a while and only wanted performance out of it I might try it but in a car that I plan on putting many miles on I would rather break it in like recommended in the owner's manual.

BTW, I am running Amsoil in my STi. I used to be a Mobil 1 user and am now running Amsoil. Don't know if there is that big of a difference for someone to use one or the other in a street car other than the extended drain intervals that Amsoil recommends. One thing I did notice after switching from regular oil, I am consistently getting around 50 more miles per tank of gas.
 

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Did you use conventional oil during your break-in or synthetic and/or when did you switch to synthetic?

I’ve read that Amsoil change intervals range from 15,000K to 50,000K depending on the viscosity of the particular lube and in conjunction with an Amsoil filter. I guess Amsoil cleanliness like any other oil would depend heavily on the amount of debris that enters the oil during the combustion process and metal fragments from contact and wear. I don’t know why they have such long recommended usage periods.

Did anyone catch the part about… metal fragments wearing off… not being caught by the oil filter… heating up and bonding to other engine internals? Sounds like an engine horror movie to me. I do agree that an extra early oil change would cure this symptom.

In regards to the madman’s article, I’m relatively neutral. From what I got out of it, his performance/longevity gains were directly linked to proper ring sealing. From a strictly technical standpoint he stated sound mechanical/physical reasons that make perfect sense.

From what my dad taught me, engines needed that easy break-in period to help tight tolerance parts ease into placement. However I believe that this old perception is old hat, with new forging/casting techniques and CNC machines that can mill within hundreds of thousands of an inch no such extra easing is needed. I’m not suggesting that a new car should be revved the piss out of and beat on.

Something more disturbing comes to mind now; recently my dad told me how shocked he was on how new engines can get so many miles per rebuild. He told me days of old when the oil sucked and blocks needed new guts after a hundred thou or so… but then again he drove a 70’s GTO Judge and could fill a tank for 3 bucks…
 

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Yes I used conventional oil. I still think that is the best for break in. I had my first oil change at the 1k mile mark with regular oil and then again at the 3k mile mark. Then I switched to Amsoil oil and filter at the 6k mile mark. As far as break in I still trust the owner's manual recommendation over 1 person on the internet.
 
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