Too long between drinks
I have recently bought an awesome VW Golf R, but I’m a bit worried about the oil. I have always been a bit particular when it comes to oil changes. With all my previous new cars, I have changed the oil and filters at least three times before the first scheduled dealer service at 1000km to make sure any new engine swarf has been removed. With the Golf, I have been advised not to change the oil at all and wait for the first dealer service at 15,000km because the oil has ‘‘runin’’ additives in it. Otherwise it will burn oil. Is this true? Or, is it possible to buy more of the additive so I can change the oil and filter myself before the first service? I do not want to have all that swarf floating around in my oil, possibly doing more damage to the internals. And I don’t believe any oil, no matter how expensive it is, lasts for 15,000km.
Bruce Edwards, email Like you I believe the extended oil change intervals being recommended by all carmakers today are too long and not good for the health of engines. I believe it’s best to change the oil frequently, say
LIGHT’S ON BUT . . .
The SRS airbag warning light in my 2011 Mitsubishi Triton stays on continually. It has been back to my local dealer four times to have it fixed as I really do want my airbags working when required. The last time it went back was two days ago and it didn’t even last the drive home before it came on and stayed on. The dealer said Mitsubishi would be replacing the wiring harness but it doesn’t have any at the moment. The dealer has been told to just apply the fix it has been doing until the harnesses are available. I find this ludicrous. This has been going on for more than six months. Three months ago I was involved in an accident with an impact speed of about 40 km/h and the airbags did not deploy. At the time the SRS airbag light was not on. When I asked the dealer what impact speed should set off the airbags he said he couldn’t tell me as he had no idea and I should ask Mitsubishi. I have no faith in this car, or in Mitsubishi. I cannot just sell the car as it is leased and there would be a financial penalty for doing so. I purchased and paid for a car with airbags as a prime safety feature and right now nobody can assure me they will work when required.
David Moore, email
You’re perfectly entitled to expect the airbags to work, and Mitsubishi must address the problem to ensure they do work as they’re designed to do. Ask the dealer for a full report on the problem and how it intends fixing it. Most importantly, ask it for a timetable of when it will be fixed, and request a letter from Mitsubishi stating your car is safe to drive. If it won’t provide you with that letter, demand a replacement car until yours is fixed.
BURNING ISSUE I
Re the oil burning in the V6 Commodore. From my every 5000km, to keep the oil fresh. We contacted VW for an answer, but what we got wasn’t very useful. The response:
‘‘ Volkswagen-approved oil is used in the vehicles from new. Volkswagen does not advise changing the oil until 15,000km or 1 year.’’ I would be loath to recommend changing the oil before the first service because doing that would give VW an excuse to void your warranty should you have problems with the engine. Perhaps the best would be to wait until after the 15,000km service and then go to more frequent oil changes.
Filter tip: AGolf R owner believes oil changes should occur before 15,000km