Fuel/Oil Dilution Issue Overblown ?

  1. rraayy3

    rraayy3 Senior Member

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    I use premium Exxon gas, full synthetic oil, and very rarely drive less than 10-15 minutes in order to let the engine/oil warm up. Is the fuel dilution issue overblown based on a few cases or something to seriously worry about?

    I absolutely love my hatch sport and plan on having it 5+ years - can't decide if this is an issue to simply monitor and continue doing what I already do or trade the car in [paid in full, owned] and just lease a newer model and avoid the headaches.

    Civic Hatch Sport literally is the perfect car for what I'm looking for as a daily - hopefully this isn't that big of an issue. The car does seem "too good to be true".
     
  2. IDriveACivic

    IDriveACivic Senior Member

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    I don't think anyone (even Honda) knows for certain the severity and frequency of the problem. For discussions sake, I hope everyone resort to actual news releases and corporate statements, as opposed to anecdotes.

    As far as the Canadian market is concerned, Honda Canada has acknowledged the issue exists: http://hondanews.ca/en/news/release...Oil-Levels-in-Certain-Honda-Vehicles--UPDATE3

    [Anecdote below]
    When I took in my car for an oil change this month, I asked the service adviser about the issue. He said that he hasn't seen anyone bringing in their vehicle (Civic or CRV) to repair yet. :dunno: Was he deflecting/lying? I don't have much of a case because my car seems fine (the weather in my region is also very mild; rarely dips below freezing temperature).
     
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  3. Justinus

    Justinus Senior Member

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    I think its pretty easy to determine if you meet the risk factors for the dilution issue:

    1) Do you live somewhere that is commonly below freezing?
    2) Do you frequently allow your car to idle to warm and defrost/defog before driving?
    3) Do you commonly make short trips (under 15-20 minutes)?

    1 is mostly where you live, but if you park in a heated or underground garage where its never below freezing, that's a mitigating factor

    2 is easily remedied by making sure you don't idle it too long. 30-45 seconds for the idle to drop to ~1200 is all you need to wait.

    3 can be mitigated by going on longer drives (1 hour +) regularly, such as on the weekends or monthly.
     
  4. hondatom

    hondatom Member

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    ...and perhaps driving in a lower gear after starting to warm it up faster?
     
  5. Green82

    Green82 Senior Member

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    I idle my car 30-40+ minutes almost daily and i dont have any issuses with dilution
     
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  6. Hondaman_MI

    Hondaman_MI Senior Member

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    Dude you need to enjoy your car. Anxiety breeds anxiety. Don’t trade your Civic because of people panicking online. I was worried when I first found out about the issue. But, if it’s not affecting performance why worry. Unless you are one of the few that are stalling, just monitor your oil level like any other car.
     
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  7. Justinus

    Justinus Senior Member

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    It's specifically idling the car on a cold start in cold weather, combined with not driving the car long enough to evaporate the fuel back out of the oil.

    I assume you aren't starting your car in below freezing weather, allowing it to idle 30-40 minutes, then turning it back off.

    Idling after the engine is at full operating temp does not contribute. I specified idling to warm the engine before driving because that is the common habit - starting or remote starting a vehicle and allowing it to idle 5-10 or more minutes before driving.
     
  8. OP
    rraayy3

    rraayy3 Senior Member

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    Why idle a car for 30+ minutes ?

    Sounds like an absurd waste of gas / pollution ...

    (I’m not panic trading in, simply asking because the more I look into it the more it seems like a few isolated incidents were blown out of proportion)

    I was bummed when I first heard about it, because this car is literally perfect otherwise for me. I’ve had it a year and I still do double takes at it parked. Beautiful car, 35 mpg mixed, storage, and so f’n fun to drive when I feel like not being “practical”.

    I also never bought a car, only leased ... but after 2 test drives bought it paid in full, just wanna make sure I make it last as long as I want it to. Thanks all, this forum has been a godsend
     
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  9. parshisa

    parshisa Senior Member

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    Enjoy it. With your setup (premium gasoline+frequent unt OCI) you won’t see it at all. 99.99% guaranteed
     
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  10. Green82

    Green82 Senior Member

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    its because i get to work early to get a good parking spot if its cold outside i will idle the car that long to stay warm before i go inside
     
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  11. Captaindicki

    Captaindicki Senior Member

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    This is BS engineering. A car should not have any issues, weather it’s driven 6 minutes or 60min, in cold or hot weather. You shouldn’t need to take out a checklist before every run. Sometimes we need to drive only a mile down the road, and that should be perfectly fine.
    Avoid short distance drives...my ass!
     
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  12. David Harper

    David Harper Senior Member

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    this is (in general) why I bought the n.a. 2.0. Not that I knew about this fuel dilution thing, but just that the idea of a little engine being turbocharged to make maximum HP didn't really work for me.
     
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  13. Gruber

    Gruber Senior Member

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    #13 Gruber, Nov 15, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2018
    What do you mean by "should be"? Because you wish it and you will throw a fit if it's otherwise?

    It has never been fine to drive most of the time a mile or two before letting the car to cool down, with any ICE. I will not show as increasing oil level with most non DI cars, but it may show as engine wear - don't doubt it. This style of driving is called "severe driving conditions" for any car ever made and it calls for shortened OCI. You won't get as long life from any engine if you only drive short drives.

    Anyone with an ICE (not electric) motor, whether DI or not, who drives mostly short drives should (and this is a real "should" this time) change their oil more often. No need to worry about some millimeters up or down on the dipstick, and the "oil dilution issue" solved.

    If anybody gets extremely high oil levels, this would be a failure of the MM system to order an oil change early enough. Maybe the only thing that Honda needs to do is to fix the MM so it detects properly short distance driving.
     
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  14. joecin

    joecin Senior Member

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    #14 joecin, Nov 15, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2018
    Short trips and changing oil more often is one thing but a new vehicle but gas getting into the oil in amounts that are being reported is not good.
    You can't make excuses for Honda on this bad engineering issues with CR-V and Civic models in cold climates.
     
  15. Design

    Design Senior Member

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    We have half a million powertrains in circulation and almost zero documented cases of "extreme" dilution. In fact, the stalling hasn't even been confirmed to be caused by dilution at all. Overall, the evidence is severely lacking.

    Some dilution is to be expected; and the MM factors extreme conditions that could result in a loss of sheer protection. Hence, why some owners get to 15% oil life within 3K.

    At this point it's way overblown, IMHO.
     
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