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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, all,
I just got a 2021 Forester and the day after I picked it up, I had to make an unexpected trip from PA to Alabama and back, over 2,000 miles.
The maintenance schedule calls for oil change 6 months or 6,000 miles. I'm wondering if I shouldn't change the oil at 3,000 because I put it under duress right out of the gate? Then I would change it again at 6,000. Thoughts?

Also, the owners manual states that if the oil is low and you add some, if synthetic 0W-20 is not available, you can use conventional 5W-30. I don't profess to know anything about new technology or mechanics, but in my experience, you were not to mix synthetic with conventional. I take it that that is not the case?

On another note, I need seat covers. The OEM Subaru parts sites offer a rear seat cover (not very attractive, but I'd get it if nothing else is available), but nothing for the front seats. Can anyone point me to seat covers, front and rear, that fit well and do not cost an arm and a leg? (Preferably under $250).

Thanks.
Ginn301
 

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1999 A/T - 235,000 mi. WA state
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890 Posts
Hi, all,
I just got a 2021 Forester and the day after I picked it up, I had to make an unexpected trip from PA to Alabama and back, over 2,000 miles.
The maintenance schedule calls for oil change 6 months or 6,000 miles. I'm wondering if I shouldn't change the oil at 3,000 because I put it under duress right out of the gate? Then I would change it again at 6,000. Thoughts?
You never damage an engine by filling it with fresh clean oil - so sounds like a plan!

I changed mine, new, at 700, again 1500 miles later and then regular intervals. Doesn't burn oil at 235,000.
 

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2017 Foz 2.5i CVT
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2,162 Posts
It's certainly your option to change the oil early and won't hurt anything. But I would say that 2000 miles on a long trip would be very easy on engine oil with the CVT. What's worse is doing 2000 miles over a long winter with lots of short trips and cold starts. A long drive will evaporate any fuel and moisture out of the oil. New engines don't make much "shrapnel" any more with the fine machining and cleaning processes used when they build an engine.

Oils seem to be largely compatible these days; there is a continuum of non-syn, syn blend, and full syn oils and I have not seen any recommendations for many years that advises against mixing them. Some oil "geeks" even blend different oils to get what they hope is a mix of all their desirable characteristics. Our '17 Foz has never needed any oil between changes, so it's been a non-question, but in my old '09, which used some oil, I would top off with whatever open bottle I had in the garage (but never lighter weight than the 5W30 required in that engine). I think of it the same as mixing fuel from different stations (or different octane ratings).

No help with seat covers; just make sure the front seats have tear-out seams for the side airbags. I think they make "bikini" seat covers which cover only the face of the seat and those would be the safest "sure thing" to keep the safety stuff unimpeded.
 

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2019 Forester Touring
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1,358 Posts
“Also, the owners manual states that if the oil is low and you add some, if synthetic 0W-20 is not available, you can use conventional 5W-30. I don't profess to know anything about new technology or mechanics, but in my experience, you were not to mix synthetic with conventional. I take it that that is not the case?”

100% of the time, running low on oil will always do more damage than mixing similar weight oils, or running a slightly heavier-weight oil.
 

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2001 Forester S, 4EAT
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I would change oil according to owner's manual schedule. That 2000 mile trip was probably the best way to break-in that engine and I would not be concerned about the need to change it sooner vs the manual's schedule.
 

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2008 LL Bean (4EAT)
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4,996 Posts
... the owners manual states that if the oil is low and you add some, if synthetic 0W-20 is not available, you can use conventional 5W-30. I don't profess to know anything about new technology or mechanics, but in my experience, you were not to mix synthetic with conventional. I take it that that is not the case?...
Yes, that is not the case. Feel free to mix any oil you want in your crankcase. It is most important that there be enough oil. But oil mixtures will not give whatever advantages you were hoping for from your intended oil. Like Mobil 1 mixed with conventional will not perform like straight Mobil 1.
 

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2007 Forester Sports XT 4EAT
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@ginn301 welcome to the forum from Oregon!

Please complete your "Public Profile"! Not completing your Public Profile could result in your thread(s) being closed... locked or your thread post(s) being deleted!
Bobby...

['07 FSXT Member Journal] ['03 X Member Journal]
 

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2001 Forester S, 4EAT
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2,923 Posts
An example of how well made engines are today vs 70's and 80's. My 2001 Forester S had it's first oil change at 3000 miles from 5w-30 to 15-50 because I was pulling a trailer from Philadelphia, PA to Austin, TX and as per owners manual I needed any oil with xw-50. The vehicle is now being driven by my 20 year old son in college, it now has 222,600 miles and still running strong. So I am skeptical of suggestions such as changing oil at 500 miles, 1500 miles to drain out shrapnel. If today's engines were truly shrapnel prone, we would not have vehicles surpassing 200,000+ mile mark. I can see engines from 70's and 80's producing shrapnel and not making it past 100,000 mile mark.....
 

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2019 Sport CVT
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798 Posts
On another note, I need seat covers. The OEM Subaru parts sites offer a rear seat cover (not very attractive, but I'd get it if nothing else is available), but nothing for the front seats. Can anyone point me to seat covers, front and rear, that fit well and do not cost an arm and a leg? (Preferably under $250).

Thanks.
Ginn301
The custom made wet okole neoprene seat covers are awesome. I have bought them fur 3 different cars.
 

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'14 Forester XT Touring
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757 Posts
You can change your oil when ever you want to. I'm on your side if you want to change it at 3k miles. You pretty much just completed the brake-in period.

Mixing oils, zero problem. Any oil is better than no oil. People that used to say mixing oils where....not the sharpest tool in box, or they where just oil nazis about it. I'll prefer the latter, but different strokes for different folks.

Then again, just because the owners manual said its fine, doesn't mean you have to do it all the time. That is for pure emergency situations. Just like driving on your spare. Yes you can drive on it for days, but it wasn't meant for it.

As for seat covers, other people can chime in on that one.
 

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2017 Forester XT Touring EyeSight
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722 Posts
The only caution I've ever heard about mixing of conventional and synthetic oils is that if you're depending on the performance qualities of synthetic oil, such as in high performance driving with high oil temperatures, the mixed oil won't quite live up to those requirements. But your car specifies synthetic oil for an entirely separate reason - 0W-20 is in it only for fuel economy optimization, and it's impossible for oil refiners to produce 0W-20 oils except by synthetic processes. There is no such thing as conventional 0W-20. Nothing will go wrong with your car with some 5W-30 in it except for an infinitesimal loss of mpg. The story is different for us Turbo owners - there are lots of 5W-30 conventional oils, but we can't use them, we need synthetic 5W-30, because of the temperature and chemical environment inside our engines. (And I agree with the comments above, a 2,000 mile trip at legal freeway speeds sounds to me like a very good, not bad, way to break-in a car)
 

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2017 Forester XT Touring EyeSight
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an idle side thought - possibly the fear of mixing oil types is a mal-remembered residue from reading about brake fluid?? DOT5 silicone brake fluid absolutely must not be combined with other types of brake fluid, because it will produce a "salad dressing" type of unmixed fluids which attracts water condensation at the boundaries between fluids, which is corrosive.
 

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2019 Forester Sport Lineartronic® CVT
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351 Posts
ginn301 ... With the CVT, a few hills, steady speed does not mean steady unchanging engine rpm, so that trip was of no harm. Good break in involves varying loads and rpms, which the CVT did as you worked traffic passing, etc ... trip was not harmful.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Hi, all,
I just got a 2021 Forester and the day after I picked it up, I had to make an unexpected trip from PA to Alabama and back, over 2,000 miles.
The maintenance schedule calls for oil change 6 months or 6,000 miles. I'm wondering if I shouldn't change the oil at 3,000 because I put it under duress right out of the gate? Then I would change it again at 6,000. Thoughts?

Also, the owners manual states that if the oil is low and you add some, if synthetic 0W-20 is not available, you can use conventional 5W-30. I don't profess to know anything about new technology or mechanics, but in my experience, you were not to mix synthetic with conventional. I take it that that is not the case?

On another note, I need seat covers. The OEM Subaru parts sites offer a rear seat cover (not very attractive, but I'd get it if nothing else is available), but nothing for the front seats. Can anyone point me to seat covers, front and rear, that fit well and do not cost an arm and a leg? (Preferably under $250).

Thanks.
Ginn301
Thank you, everyone, for putting my mind at ease about my oil questions. You are all so helpful! I am happy to learn that my trip might actually have been a good thing, not the bad thing I feared.
I think I will go ahead and change the oil, since it can't hurt, and follow the maintenance schedule from here on out.
As for the seat covers, I looked at the Wet Okole, but they are WAY beyond my price range. I'll keep looking.
Again, thanks, everyone for your replys.
 

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2019 Crosstrek 2018 Forester XT
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Mix and match all you want
 

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2019 base metallic charcoal
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I have saddleman seat covers, they are a canvas kind of material, I am happy with them, and they are on the lower end of the price spectrum.
 

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2015 Forester
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I don't think your long trip would be detrimental as long as you followed the break in instructions (usually vary your speed and don't go too fast for the first few hundred miles).
I bought a new Dodge PU in the fall of '93. Drove it around for town for maybe 100 miles, then took it about 600 miles back to where I lived. Didn't really do the complete recommended break in and it ran great, got great MPG, no issues. Granted, that's a story of 1.
 

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Thank you, everyone, for putting my mind at ease about my oil questions. You are all so helpful! I am happy to learn that my trip might actually have been a good thing, not the bad thing I feared.
I think I will go ahead and change the oil, since it can't hurt, and follow the maintenance schedule from here on out.
As for the seat covers, I looked at the Wet Okole, but they are WAY beyond my price range. I'll keep looking.
Again, thanks, everyone for your replys.
Regarding seat covers... I went with Coverking Neoprene (not NeoSupreme) through Costco. The fit is great and the price through Costco is excellent, especially if you buy front and back. And they are quite comfortable even in summer heat. They've been on for 8 months and I took them off the other day for inspection and no evidence of weird residue/transfer onto the original seatc over fabric.
 

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2015 ; 2.5i ; 15,000 Miles (I drive a lot less than I used to !!!!)
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144 Posts
Hi, all,
I just got a 2021 Forester and the day after I picked it up, I had to make an unexpected trip from PA to Alabama and back, over 2,000 miles.
The maintenance schedule calls for oil change 6 months or 6,000 miles. I'm wondering if I shouldn't change the oil at 3,000 because I put it under duress right out of the gate? Then I would change it again at 6,000. Thoughts?

Also, the owners manual states that if the oil is low and you add some, if synthetic 0W-20 is not available, you can use conventional 5W-30. I don't profess to know anything about new technology or mechanics, but in my experience, you were not to mix synthetic with conventional. I take it that that is not the case?

On another note, I need seat covers. The OEM Subaru parts sites offer a rear seat cover (not very attractive, but I'd get it if nothing else is available), but nothing for the front seats. Can anyone point me to seat covers, front and rear, that fit well and do not cost an arm and a leg? (Preferably under $250).

Thanks.
Ginn301
That first oil change is to get production crud out of the motor; and in my estimation should occure within ~500-miles ... IMHO; after that go to regular service scheduling.
 

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Hi, all,
I just got a 2021 Forester and the day after I picked it up, I had to make an unexpected trip from PA to Alabama and back, over 2,000 miles.
The maintenance schedule calls for oil change 6 months or 6,000 miles. I'm wondering if I shouldn't change the oil at 3,000 because I put it under duress right out of the gate? Then I would change it again at 6,000. Thoughts?

Also, the owners manual states that if the oil is low and you add some, if synthetic 0W-20 is not available, you can use conventional 5W-30. I don't profess to know anything about new technology or mechanics, but in my experience, you were not to mix synthetic with conventional. I take it that that is not the case?

On another note, I need seat covers. The OEM Subaru parts sites offer a rear seat cover (not very attractive, but I'd get it if nothing else is available), but nothing for the front seats. Can anyone point me to seat covers, front and rear, that fit well and do not cost an arm and a leg? (Preferably under $250).

Thanks.
Ginn301
I am not sure about front seat covers but we have the Subaru rear one..... and I love it.. we have a dog that sheds profusely and it vacuums easily and well.
 
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