grand am's in the cold- oil and stuff [Archive] - GrandAmGT.com Forum

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carsarecool
12-14-2004, 10:18 PM
well, i posted a while back on what different kinds of oil are better for different climates, but i just switched from Mobil 1 5w to 0w-30 since il be out in the western part of the state for school and upstate is pretty #&^$ cold anyway- i was worried about it being too thin but it runs fine, real smooth- just wondering what you northern NY, michigan and especially canada guys use (if anything different) for oil- the best you can get around here is mobil 1, ive heard amsoil is real good too (dumb question)- they have bottles of oil that say "red line" on them and are 7.49 a quart but doesnt say "amsoil" at all, is that what that is? also anybodys car sound like its coming out of a junkyard through a pothole field with sandpaper on the brakes when you first cold start it? even on flat pavement the suspension(not sure what part) makes a ton of clunks and pops and my brakes grind like metal on metal- their fairly new too, and everything sounds fine after the car warms up. i know its a GA and not a luxury car, but any weather below 40 degrees F and im almost afraid to drive it...

intence
12-14-2004, 10:22 PM
I don't have much experience with the GA in the cold, but I did live up north for while, and the best advice I have is to make sure you let the car warm up before driving it. I used to always run 5w30 dino oil in the winter, but would start the car, and let it idle for a bit before even shifting it into reverse or drive. Give the fluids time to circulate, warm up, etc. Also make sure your cooland mixture is good, so that it holds up to the cold weather.

mcgrady
12-14-2004, 10:39 PM
Mobil 1 5w30 more than meets the need for cold startup where you live. It remains pourable to -54C (-65F). With Mobil 1 5w30 in it, my old Sunfire GT would fire up immediately even at -35C without being plugged in.

Cold weather noise happens with every car. Lexus, Acura whatever it doesn't matter.

In cold weather, start the car and let it idle for 45-60 seconds and then go on your way taking it easy till the car fully warms up. Letting it sit at idle to warm up is hard on the engine and wastes fuel.

atc3434
12-14-2004, 10:46 PM
Letting it sit at idle to warm up is hard on the engine and wastes fuel.

Hows that hard on the engine? Driving an engine that isn't warmed up sure is hard on it. Heat up components too fast, with a load on them, and you've got a combination that will defintley shorten engine life.

mcgrady
12-15-2004, 08:29 AM
The faster you get your engine to normal operating temperature, the better it is for it. That doesn't mean starting your car and flooring it to make it warm. Once the engine oil circulates and the idle starts to drop (normally within a minute or two when really cold) then the car can be driven in an easy manner to make it warm up faster.

In my case, I wait till the piston slap can no longer be heard. LOL.

digitalquirk
12-15-2004, 08:33 AM
My rule of thumb is, if the windows are cleared of frost, then the engine has warmed up enough. I think there's more of a danger of driving a car with the windows frosted up than there is of ruining the engine.

Infernall
12-16-2004, 11:51 AM
My 2001 Grand Am SE is the first car i've owned that had a block heater. What is generally the rule of thumb for using a block heater?

I live in Windsor, Ont and the temperatures right now range from 5C to -15C in the morning. Should I be leaving the block heater plugged in all night?

Also, I am using 5w30 Oil. What are the advantages and drawbacks of switching to Synthetic? If I do switch to synthetic, is it just normally done at my next oil change? (Next week)

My car is approaching 100,000km and I would just like to know what I need to do for the winter months. I am getting a complete tune-up next week, new plugs, wires, etc.

Thanks guys.

Mike Jung
12-16-2004, 10:43 PM
My 2001 Grand Am SE is the first car i've owned that had a block heater. What is generally the rule of thumb for using a block heater?

I live in Windsor, Ont and the temperatures right now range from 5C to -15C in the morning. Should I be leaving the block heater plugged in all night?

Also, I am using 5w30 Oil. What are the advantages and drawbacks of switching to Synthetic? If I do switch to synthetic, is it just normally done at my next oil change? (Next week)...
I believe it is good idea to plug in the block heater any time it is like below -10C outside over-night.
Yes, you leave the block heater plugged in all night.
But go buy a outdoor timer for the block heater that plugs into the wall outlet.
This way you can save some electricity by using a timer.
I set the timer for about 4-hours before leaving in the morning.


Using a synthetic motor oil in the winter time:
The motor oil will not freeze/gel as easily (synthetic motor oil has a lower cold-cranking temperature limit).
The engine will start easier when cold.

If you are going to use synthetic motor oil, I sugguest going over to Walmart & picking-up 4.4L bottle of Mobil 1 5W30 (or Mobil 1 0W30 for the winter in 1L bottles, if available in your area) for next oil change.
Myself I am switching from Mobil 1 10W30 (for summer) / 5W30 (for the winter) to German Castrol Syntec 0W30 to use year-around on my next oil change.

Mike Jung
12-16-2004, 10:51 PM
...ive heard amsoil is real good too (dumb question)- they have bottles of oil that say "red line" on them and are 7.49 a quart but doesnt say "amsoil" at all, is that what that is?...
Amsoil & Red Line synthetic motor oil are 2-different products/companies.

Check Out:
http://www.amsoil.com (just say away from the XL-7500 series hydro-cracked oil, not real PAO-based synthetic motor oil)

http://www.redlineoil.com (polyol ester basestock synthetic motor oil)

Pvt_Murphy
12-16-2004, 11:07 PM
I used Redline in my GA, It's good oil, you can change it much less frequently (6-9k miles) and on the dino it adds 4-8hp. Noticible difference. In NY I use 5W30 for winter just to be safe. You can get away w/ 10W30 too. However, if you can get Mobile 1 in bulk it comes out realy cheap and it's a very good oil too.

scotiez
12-17-2004, 04:49 AM
I use Mobil one 5W-30 year around here. The temps in North Dakota can get to -30 below zero at times, at that temp i always warm my car up before driving it. Letting your car idle to warm up does not hurt your engine. Engine start up is what damages the engine not the idleing, thats why i use Moble one. Moble one stays flowable at cold temps where dyno oil becomes thick and takes a while to get to all parts in your engine causing damage.

As for all the weird noises, all cars makes noises when its that cold out.