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  1. #11
    Jose Luis
    Saab Addict jlrSAAB's Avatar
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    I change the oil engine every two years (1srt, 27000kms; 2nd, 41000Kms) and the ride is good. (few cold starts, low mileage most of the ride by highway). summer car.

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  2. #12
    Saab Fan
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    Northern California, 2010 9-3
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    Quote Originally Posted by CarSnaab View Post
    I'm curious about what people think of getting the first oil change done sooner than recommended. I did a search and didn't seem to find anything on this. I've always heard that you should get the first change done sooner than usual to get rid of any machining residues or shavings left behind. In this case, I'd probably do it around 3500 miles. I've also heard that new engine manufacturing processes have made this obsolete. So what's everyone's opinion on this?

    Oil changes sound easy on the 2.0T, so I would happily change this myself prior to the scheduled change done by the dealer. Any drawbacks to this? I doubt it will affect when the service indicator will turn on.

    Thanks!
    I am very glad someone brought up the subject of post “break-in” oil changes. I feel these are the most important of the initial maintenance procedures. I have been doing this for years on every car I have ever owned. We have a new 2010 9-3 in our family fleet and so far it has 800 miles on it. It is true that modern CNC machining practices have greatly helped the quality of automotive engines in the past 20 years but their still is a significant amount of break in that takes place in the first 5000 miles. It used to be the cylinders and piston rings that needed the most attention to proper break in procedures. The new tight machining tolerances and better motor oils have illuminated most of that. But…the big area of break in is in the valve guides. Modern valve guides are made of a very hard silicone bronze base alloy with other metals added in small amounts to make up these hard working units. All inside dimensions of these guides are machined concentrically then the perfectly round valve stem is fitted to this guide during engine assembly. The truth about valve guides is that they do not stay concentric during initial engine operation. These guides wear to a slight oblong shape at both top and bottom of the guide and the valve stem remains perfectly round. So…this very small reshaping process during break in produces very fine but very hard flakes of silicone bronze circulating through the oil system. True…it is mostly picked up by the oil filter but it has to pass through oil pump and pressure relief system before it reaches the filter. In the past 10 years I have done initial oil changes on a BMW 325I, Ford F-150, Volvo V70, Subaru Forester, and an Audi TT. At changes at 2000 and 5000 miles I found a significant amount of silicone bronze from valve guides on all of these vehicles. I find this metal in mostly the oil filter chamber and filter media pleats but also from the oil drained from the sump that the filter missed.

    I know to a lot of you this sounds rather “OCD” of me but it stems from years of piston engine aircraft operation. Initial oil filter evaluations are always done on new and rebuilt aircraft engines and also the oil filters are evaluated every 100 hours there after.

    Thanx for listening and enjoy your new Saabs.

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    Last edited by nordwulf; 17 January 2011 at 19:30. Reason: Adjusted font and size

  3. #13
    Saab Fan
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    Northern California, 2010 9-3
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    Good morning all. Sorry for the mistake yesterday. It is "silicon bronze" not "silicone bronze".

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  4. #14
    Jose Luis
    Saab Addict jlrSAAB's Avatar
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    welcome ajaxman55,

    by the way, I am not sure and may someone have visited an engine car factory, to confirm than the engines are tested in a bench probe, for hours, for functionality and clean the burrs residues, before the engines are shipped to the cars-makers.

    what I mean,
    - the engine is already cleaned and ready to ride from the first day after production.

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  5. #15
    Bluepred's Avatar
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    Perhaps I missed it...but what about what filter to use as part of the FAQ.

    I am very new to the Saab world and am not sure when the oil was last changed so I am somewhat anxious to do it and get a fresh start. Car is at 44000 miles and still under warranty until 8/31.

    This is the first car I have owned requiring premium gas and synthetic oil...so all pretty new to me.

    Thanks everyone.

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  6. #16
    Saab Fan
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    03' 9-3 SS Linear--gone, 06' 9-3 SC Aero--gone, 09' 9-3 SS Aero Auto--yeah
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bluepred View Post
    Perhaps I missed it...but what about what filter to use as part of the FAQ.

    I am very new to the Saab world and am not sure when the oil was last changed so I am somewhat anxious to do it and get a fresh start. Car is at 44000 miles and still under warranty until 8/31.

    This is the first car I have owned requiring premium gas and synthetic oil...so all pretty new to me.

    Thanks everyone.
    Well especially for the V6 use the OEM filter. The filter in many cases is more important than the oil. There are special designs to them that the aftermarket companies don't use. If you don't want to use your dealer you can buy online.

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  7. #17
    Dave T.
    Super Moderator Dave T's Avatar
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    1999 9-3SE (2013-2015), 2005 9-3 (2005-2013), 1990 900 (1990-2003)
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    In 2003, GM had a specification numbered GM-LL-A-025. In Europe, there are many oils that meet that specification. In the U.S., few list it. Mobil 1 0W-40 is one of the few that does. Pennzoil has an extremely hard to find European Formula Ultra (may not be the exact name) that does, as well as Total and a few others.

    Saab says to use an ACEA A3 oil if one cannot find LL-A-025.

    Replying to Anthony (immediately above), I would wait a few months to change the oil. I don't think there's a need to change it after only 100 miles. Maybe change it late summer or after 4-6,000 miles. If one really like to change the oil, why not wait 2-3,000 mi.?

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  8. #18
    Saab Fan
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    Northern California, 2010 9-3
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    Oils that meet Saab's specs

    The oils that are easily available in the USA that meet the GM-LL-A-025 specs for Saabs are:

    • Castrol Syntec European Formula SAE 0W-30
    • Mobil 1 SAE 0W-40
    • Pennzoil Platinum European Formula Ultra SAE 5W-30
    • Valvoline SynPower SAE 5W-30
    I hope this helps.
    I just changed the oil in the new Saab 9-3 after 2500 miles. And yes...lots of bronze in the oil and aluminum casting chips in the pleats of the oil filter. So, it is your call if your wish to change this early in the cars life. This is about normal for most cars but in my mind I like to change at at 2500 and 5000 to clean the engine out.

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  9. #19
    Saab Fan
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    03' 9-3 SS Linear--gone, 06' 9-3 SC Aero--gone, 09' 9-3 SS Aero Auto--yeah
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    Quote Originally Posted by ajaxman55 View Post
    The oils that are easily available in the USA that meet the GM-LL-A-025 specs for Saabs are:


    • Castrol Syntec European Formula SAE 0W-30
    • Mobil 1 SAE 0W-40
    • Pennzoil Platinum European Formula Ultra SAE 5W-30
    • Valvoline SynPower SAE 5W-30

    I hope this helps.
    I just changed the oil in the new Saab 9-3 after 2500 miles. And yes...lots of bronze in the oil and aluminum casting chips in the pleats of the oil filter. So, it is your call if your wish to change this early in the cars life. This is about normal for most cars but in my mind I like to change at at 2500 and 5000 to clean the engine out.
    If you're doing UOA's you'll find the engine continues to break in for quite a while--up to 10-12,000 miles. With your new car I'd just follow the free service now which will be about in about 7-8,000 miles. And did you use the proper oil and oem filter? You don't want the dealer saying something like you used the wrong filter, etc. as they can since the car does come with free maintenance so be careful if you do your own service while under warranty.

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  10. #20
    Saab Fan
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    Yes, not a problem. Factory OEM filter and the same oil the dealer uses, Mobil1 0w-40. And the engine will break in for that long but the initial oil changes clean out the first rash of metal. The free services come at about 10,000 miles so no problem taking it there for the services provided.
    I only use factory filters on all my cars. Saving money in this area is a fools game. Recently I sold a beautiful Volvo to a good friend that I had owned since new. It has pained me to see the cut rate maintenance parts he is buying thinking he is doing good. I have offered to buy the car back so I don't have to view the slow decline of it's performance and hear about it. Moral of this story: Don't sell a well maintained great car to a good friend only to have to listen to the abuse it receives over the rest of it's tortured life. Sell that car to a non related party knowing you are selling them the best possible car available and be done with it. I am also witnessing a similar situation on a very well maintained Subaru given to a son going to college.....but....that is a different story, That is also what makes our hair grey.

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