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Things appear to be quite different since I last bought a new vehicle. Back in the day, it was customary to drive a new vehicle about 1,000 miles or so then have the first service done. The oil and filter were changed and other items checked. It was considered a good idea to have the oil and filter changed at that 1,000 mile mark since there was thought to be the most wear in the beginning until parts were broken in.

Now, the salesman tells me there is no special break-in procedure. My first oil change is free and I am not to take the vehicle in until the oil life monitor shows that the oil is due for change. This might be several thousand miles, depending on driving conditions/habits. I am wondering if this is the proper procedure these days. If it is, OK, but I want to be sure. Salesmen and even service advisors are not always right.

I do not want to do anything to affect the warranty. Nevertheless, can there be any harm in changing oil earlier and more frequently than recommended? In the past, after first oil change, I went about 5,000 miles between changes on any vehicle I owned, except for my motorcycle, which was done about every 4,000 miles. I never had an oil related failure of any kind. My old truck had an oil life monitor system and that system usually called for an oil change at around 6,000 miles. So, I did the oil changes a bit more frequently than recommended but it was not an inconvenience to do it more often. Maybe I wasted a bit of money and oil but at least I always had clean oil.

No doubt metallurgy has improved, lubricants have improved, but I wonder about going that far before first oil change on a new engine. Any comments about this?
 

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1. There IS a break-in procedure. It's outlined in the full Owner's Manual. Basically, don't floor it. accelerate suddenly, or tow for the first 600 miles. Don't brake hard for the first 200 miles.

2. Honda advises dealers not to change the oil until the Maintenance Minder prompts for an oil change. For the average driver, this occurs at approximately every 8,500 miles, but will vary depending on how the vehicle is driven.

3. Changing the oil prematurely may extend the time it takes for the engine to reach its peak efficiency and lowest amount of oil consumption.

You won't damage the vehicle by changing the oil early. The only damage is to your pocketbook and the environment.

There are dozens of threads on here and every other forum oversaturated with opinions and experiences about oil change intervals and the type of oil to use. Ridgeline owners on this very forum have exceeded 300,000 miles by changing the oil only when prompted by the Maintenance Minder and using inexpensive, bulk oil from dealerships. Oil analyses of owners' oil have confirmed that Honda's Maintenance Minder is more than adequate.
 

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Thanks for your post, zroger 73. I saw nothing about break-in in the owner's "guide" but I just found that "manual" on line. The manual is much better than the abbreviated guide.

I have always taken it easy on a new vehicle. I guess some things such as avoiding sudden acceleration, hard braking, etc. never change.

I will wait for the oil monitor to tell me to change oil for the first time. Of course, I will check oil level regularly to be aware of consumption.
 

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Bill, I am going back about 30 years or more when it was common to have "break-in" oil in a new engine. I remember an old Datsun pickup that had to be serviced at the 1,000 mile mark. I think my Ranger was the same. Since I have not had to buy a new vehicle for a long time, I was not sure if this break-in procedure was still in existence or had been changed.
 

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If I am reading you correctly, zroger73, Honda initially installs a different "break-in" oil?

Bill
Honda doesn't use "break-in" oil - they use the same Honda-branded oil that is sold in quarts at dealers except it comes from a tank instead of a plastic jug.

The factory fill will have a high moly content, but that doesn't come from the oil. Instead, it is a leftover component from the assembly lube that is used to protect the moving parts before the engine is filled with oil and started for the very first time after which the moly has no further function.
 

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This new school of thought of relying on the Maintenance Minder is going to take some getting used to for an old-school person, such as myself, who likes to plan out their vehicular maintenance.

Bill
 

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This new school of thought of relying on the Maintenance Minder is going to take some getting used to for an old-school person, such as myself, who likes to plan out their vehicular maintenance.

Bill
Then your life has just been simplified. "Plan" to change your oil when the Maintenance Minder tells you. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #10
This new school of thought of relying on the Maintenance Minder is going to take some getting used to for an old-school person, such as myself, who likes to plan out their vehicular maintenance.

Bill
No kidding. I wonder why such systems are necessary. I guess in the modern age people are less apt to be aware of the maintenance schedule than "old school" guys. Today, many do not have the time or inclination to attempt a maintenance action. We were taught these things in places like shop class and such. Not anymore. So, the mental awareness is gone, as well as the ability and/or desire to do some things for yourself.
 

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Then your life has just been simplified. "Plan" to change your oil when the Maintenance Minder tells you. :)
Yea, oil is the only item that the Maintenance Minder shares ongoing condition, what about coordinating the other recommended maintenance that will just " pop up" with no prior warning? I can see a revolving door coming with the service department!

Bill
 

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I’m not even going to wade into the oil discussion. I did swap mine out for the reasons you stated, at 1100 miles. But that’s about all I want to speak about it since I don’t want to get into a 2 page quote fest.

I will comment on break in. As zroger said, don’t floor it. For the first 1000 miles don’t floor it, and never let the RPM’s sit at the same place. That means constant (mild) acceleration, or deceleration, just vary the RPM’s constantly. You can leave it at the same RPM’s for 5 seconds or something, it just means to remember to vary them some, and don’t use the cruise control.

After a few hundred miles of taking it easy on the brakes.....I would find a safe place to do some panic stops to finish bedding in the rotors. 50 or 60 mph, then full stop, full pressure. I feel like it’s part of the bed in process but more importantly it’s training the trainer, you the driver, on what the full power of braking force can do for you if you have a real life panic stop. I do this once a month just for practice with all these people on the road that wanna surf their phone while they drive.

These are my opinions, and not the opinions of Honda Motor Company. They are my opinions only and I do not wish to engage in a 3 page debate about them. :)
 

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With the exception of a minority of owners, I think that on the most part I can make it simple by stating just drive your Ridgeline like you normally do and you will be just fine? Would that be a fair recommendation?

Bill
 

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This new school of thought of relying on the Maintenance Minder is going to take some getting used to for an old-school person, such as myself, who likes to plan out their vehicular maintenance.

Bill
I also struggled with the maintenance minder after being used to scheduled maintenance for many years, both privately and commercially, in my line of work. I finally made the adjustment when I got my 2nd Honda with the MM. On both my 06 Pilot and 08 Ridge, we typically get around 6000-7000 mile OCIs. When the 15% alert comes up, we have about 1000 miles to plan for the maintenance, which I find to work just fine.

I normally take my OCI down to 0% and often a few hundred miles past. There is typically associated maintenance to be done in conjunction with the oil/filter change... such as tranny fluid, rear diff fluid, engine and cabin air filters, transfer assembly fluid...etc. Sometimes I get off easy and it's just a simple oil change. ;)

Here's what Honda has to say about the first oil change (and they haven't changed this since it was published to the best of my knowledge). Also, there are those who will tell you to change it early and those who say to keep the factory fill in. I'm not aware of anyone having any issues because they followed either line of thought. So take that for what it's worth.

397783
RL oil factory fill 2006.08 s.news.png
 

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No kidding. I wonder why such systems are necessary. I guess in the modern age people are less apt to be aware of the maintenance schedule than "old school" guys. Today, many do not have the time or inclination to attempt a maintenance action. We were taught these things in places like shop class and such. Not anymore. So, the mental awareness is gone, as well as the ability and/or desire to do some things for yourself.
Honda's Maintenance Minder:

1. Helps ensure drivers perform the appropriate maintenance at the appraise time by prompting them what to do and when to do it which helps reduce maintenance neglect.

2. Groups other maintenance items together with the nearest oil change so you can get everything take care of in one service visit.

3. Calculates the useful life of the engine oil based on actual driving conditions so you're performing maintenance only when it needs to be done and not at some preset mileage-only based interval that is often premature (wasteful) or late (harmful). The system assumes the use of minimum-quality oil with some old oil remaining and a margin for error.

Mileage-only based intervals have been obsolete over two decades since the advent of oil life monitoring systems.

As we transition to electric vehicles in the coming decades, maintenance will become extremely limited.

With the exception of a minority of owners, I think that on the most part I can make it simple by stating just drive your Ridgeline like you normally do and you will be just fine? Would that be a fair recommendation?

Bill
Sounds good to me. Most vehicles have already seen full-throttle acceleration to redline and hard stops during the factory test loop then again by dealer employees and test drivers.
 

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Thanks for your post, zroger 73. I saw nothing about break-in in the owner's "guide" but I just found that "manual" on line. The manual is much better than the abbreviated guide.

I have always taken it easy on a new vehicle. I guess some things such as avoiding sudden acceleration, hard braking, etc. never change.

I will wait for the oil monitor to tell me to change oil for the first time. Of course, I will check oil level regularly to be aware of consumption.
JM, if you bought a new vehicle, go on-line to Honda and order a complete "set: of written manuals...for free!
 

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Things appear to be quite different since I last bought a new vehicle. Back in the day, it was customary to drive a new vehicle about 1,000 miles or so then have the first service done. The oil and filter were changed and other items checked. It was considered a good idea to have the oil and filter changed at that 1,000 mile mark since there was thought to be the most wear in the beginning until parts were broken in.

Now, the salesman tells me there is no special break-in procedure. My first oil change is free and I am not to take the vehicle in until the oil life monitor shows that the oil is due for change. This might be several thousand miles, depending on driving conditions/habits. I am wondering if this is the proper procedure these days. If it is, OK, but I want to be sure. Salesmen and even service advisors are not always right.

I do not want to do anything to affect the warranty. Nevertheless, can there be any harm in changing oil earlier and more frequently than recommended? In the past, after first oil change, I went about 5,000 miles between changes on any vehicle I owned, except for my motorcycle, which was done about every 4,000 miles. I never had an oil related failure of any kind. My old truck had an oil life monitor system and that system usually called for an oil change at around 6,000 miles. So, I did the oil changes a bit more frequently than recommended but it was not an inconvenience to do it more often. Maybe I wasted a bit of money and oil but at least I always had clean oil.

No doubt metallurgy has improved, lubricants have improved, but I wonder about going that far before first oil change on a new engine. Any comments about this?
I'm going to stir the pot here. Has anyone read about "Motoman's" recommended break-in procedure?
In some respects it makes a lot of sense. In others, it flies right in the face of reason. I am not suggesting that you try this - I am just putting it out there for conversation's sake. Rather than posting a link directly to his page, I am linking to a quote with follow-up discussion.

 

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I'm going to stir the pot here. Has anyone read about "Motoman's" recommended break-in procedure?
In some respects it makes a lot of sense. In others, it flies right in the face of reason. I am not suggesting that you try this - I am just putting it out there for conversation's sake. Rather than posting a link directly to his page, I am linking to a quote with follow-up discussion.

It’s been debated for many, many years. You won’t get a concrete answer one way or another. I am friends with a number of mechanics, an ex AMA tuner/crew chief. I’ve asked them all about this and each one said that method is fine for a race engine, and that would be a preferred method, but not on their private car for daily use.
 

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It’s been debated for many, many years. You won’t get a concrete answer one way or another. I am friends with a number of mechanics, an ex AMA tuner/crew chief. I’ve asked them all about this and each one said that method is fine for a race engine, and that would be a preferred method, but not on their private car for daily use.
Sounds like what my daddy used to tell me... don't do as I do... do as I say! ;)
 

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This new school of thought of relying on the Maintenance Minder is going to take some getting used to for an old-school person, such as myself, who likes to plan out their vehicular maintenance.

Bill
I keep a book and record everything in it including what MM reminders come up and what services I actually did at which miles and so on. I include stuff like fuel ups and headlight bulb changes. So you can totally still plan out the maintenance. In the first 10-20k miles, you'll learn what the MM recommends for your change intervals, and nearest those intervals there are typical maintenance items that will pop up with the codes. My intervals are about 9500miles so I plan for those items accordingly based on what I expect to pop up. There is a thread on here somewhere with reported MM code sequences, but it may vary because OCI's will pop up for some every 5k, while for others 10k, but the code for stuff like rear diff will show up nearest the programmed interval... of I think I 15 then 30k there afterwards. Additionally, I think the number of old school people has long dwindled or there is an over-representation on how many of them actually did routine vehicle maintenance on schedule. I'm in my 30's and the vast majority of my friends parents did zero of their own car maintenance and I knew of nobody other than those in our family to keep a record book. Of course... "old" is relative and perhaps we kept books because most my friend's parents were 10-20 years younger than mine and also drove cars about that many years younger as well. lol

As an interesting aside, when cleaning up boxes of horded ancient documents, I found the new owner guide for my grandpa's 50's era bel air... in which it recommended oil change and first service at the dealer at the 300 mile interval!
 
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