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GMC Yukon XL Normal Oil Usage?

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  • No it is not NORMAL! I have a 2007 GMC Yukon XL that i have owned for 5 years. Prior to then I had a 2003 problem free Suburban for 5 years. At about 30k miles my car began burning about a quart of oil every 1100 miles. Every month the oil warning message comes on, and I have to either bring it in to the dealership to be topped off, or put oil in myself. I just called GMC to complain today, even though it has been this way for 18 months, and 18k miles. The dealer has told me since day 1 that GM continues to say that this is within the "normal" range. I will see how GM will handle it from here. I am not too hopeful based on all these forum replies...
  • Hi Christina,

    My case number is 71-994747469. I just opened it last Thursday. I am hoping for a positive outcome. I know the dealer is tired of seeing me every 30 days.
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Posts: 4,169
    notnormal,
    Thank you, your agent is working on your case. It looks like they are waiting to speak with the service manager. Please keep working with your agent. Please update me when you hear anything. Feel free to email me. I will monitor the case for you.
    Christina
    GM Customer Service
  • skiracerskiracer Posts: 2
    edited October 2011
  • The best thing I did was contact GM directly. They then worked with the daealer who found bulletin # 10-06-01-008B that applied to the problem. They added an oil deflector, and we will check the consumption again in 1000 miles. No idea why the dealer didn't contact GM the first 12 times I brought it in. We will see if it is fixed in a month or so... please make sure and contact GM to open a case file!
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Posts: 4,169
    notnormal,
    Very good advice; reporting the concern to GM also helps us track the concerns. Yes having the work done at the dealer leaves a paper trail with what work has been done, but it doesn't officially report the concern. I am unsure why your dealer did not contact GM, but thank you for taking initiative and contacting them! Please keep me updated on your situation! :)
    Christina
    GM Customer Service
  • beasstbeasst Posts: 9
    edited October 2011
    I had the DEFLECTOR installed into my 07 Yuke and guess what? You will never guess? Go ahead and guess? THE LIGHT IS BACK ON AGAIN! This is terrible!

    I called GM and the dealer to report the issue again this morning. I have another appointment to bring the vehicle in this week.

    I wonder what the next FIX is??? Anybody have an idea...
  • Beasst,

    Just to let you know. I had to go through the deflector, it does not work. They also replaced the PVC at the same time. Then they replace my heads, then they finally replace my rings and that worked, but I now have smoke come out of the tailpipe, but it does not use oil. Crazy. They should just replace the engine on these. They would have saved thousands on my engine oil issue by just replacing the engine. Instead they just threw money at it until it stopped. About double what it should have been. Good luck to you.
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Posts: 4,169
    Beasst,
    I’m sorry that another concern seems to have arisen for you. If Customer Assistance can help you work with your dealer towards resolving this, please email Christina with your name, contact information, VIN, and dealer name.

    Best,
    Sarah
    GM Customer Service
  • Thanks Sarah, So I recieved a call today saying that the vehicle was on a half quart low, no leaks, and that I sould have the oil changed every 3-4 months even if I dont drive the vehicle that much. O_o .....Ummm I live in the city so I dont have to drive far when I do go out.

    I am sorry but I find it hard to believe it was ONLY half a quart low. the consumer can not be there to see the oil come out of the engine and we can not be there to see if GM is over filling the oil either!

    I honestly dont like this at all.
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,655
    edited November 2011
    :sick:

    Ok I read through this thread and I have a few questions for everyone that is involved in it.

    The first one is "Why do engines have a dipstick?"

    The second one is, "Why did GM decide to add an oil level monitoring system that would alert you when your oil level needed checked?"

    The third question is when you fail to use the distick routinely and you fail to understand/recognize that ALL ENGINES USE OIL, what do you think is left in the crankcase when you do finally take your car in for servicing, all of the oil that it started out with the last time that it was serviced?"

    This might be the last question, and maybe it won't but, "What do you suppose the result will be if you try and try and try to fix something that isn't broken?"

    Taking the last question first, the result of any attempt to fix something that isn't actually broken is dissapointment because as in this case oil consumption unless it is genuinely excessive is normal and not a sign that any repairs needed to be performed. In fact, for what it's worth this entire thread only serves to prove that any attempt to fix something that isn't broken only results in helping convince the customer that it must truly be a problem and the consumer then believes they have proof because asin this case GM tried to fix it. Did anyone here ever mathematically try and figure out just how much oil per combustion event an engine actually uses whe it consumes a quart in 1000 miles?

    With a 6 cylinder engine running at 2000 rpm, at 60 mph you have 6000 combustion events in one mile. Take that times 1000 and you now have 6,000,000 combustion events. Divide one quart of oil up into 6,000,000 parts and you have .000000166 quarts of oil used per combustion event. This oil is used to lubricate the piston rings and the valve guides. Without lubrication those components will fail so the contention that some other engine didn't (doesn't) use oil is actually false. But why then do some engines need to have oil added and others appear to not? There are a number of factors at play, and short distance driving where the engine oil normally does not reach full operating temperature actually allows contaminants to be collected and suspended in the oil making it's volume actually increase. Pit that against normal useage, and you now have an oil level that doesn't change, however in reality that isn't just the oil you started out with showing up on the dipstick, that is if you ever routinely looked at it. We often see consumers who normally only use their cars around town, and have several thousand miles on their oil decide to take the car on a trip, only to find out at some point during the trip, their car that "never used oil" is suddenly low and they get in a panic when what happened is the contaminates got to boil off and allowed the real oil level to be displayed. Again, it's normal in spite of what anyone else wants to tell you, or what you want to believe.

    As I read through this thread I envisioned tens of thousands of dollars in wasted effort and resources with shops trying to remedy a problem that only existed in a perception, and not reality. One poster commented that he got rid of his GM and bought a Nissan. About the only difference is that car won't have an oil level minder system, so of course no light will come on when the oil does get low (and it will). Except now he won't know, because without the light he probably won't check it and by the time he has his oil changes done will likely be seriously low on oil, and I'll bet he will do this over and over again. Then when he trades the car in, the second owner will get to deal with the first owners neglect when an engine problem surfaces but who want's to bet Nissan would actually get the blame.

    In closing, engines use oil, IT IS NORMAL. When an engine uses enough oil to produce visible smoke, and to foul spark plugs and cause engine performance issues, then and only then is it not normal and a repair would be indicated.

    By the way, a quart in 500 miles would only be .00000032 quarts per combustion event. As a vapor you cannot even smell .000009 or roughly thirty times as much. A quart in 5000 miles would be .000000032. quarts per combustion event. Seriously try and imagine attempting to fix something that is beyond your capability to see, smell, or feel, and thats why all the repair attempts failed, none of those engines were broken.
  • Dear Beasst,

    Since this problem obviously doesn't effect you why would you bother wasting your time (unless your time is of no value) with that long rambling? An engine that is consuming an excessive amount of oil often needs to be replaced. Perhaps because we pay $40k plus for these vehicles we would like to take care of a problem before we have to pay to replace the engine. Thank goodness GM doesn't take your position on this subject or they would have haf to go BK long beofre they did.
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,655
    With longer oil change intervals that manufacturers are going to, even with the great advances in the technology of the oils, and the fact that the engineers are designing some margine for error into the cars with larger capacity the need for vehicle owners to regularly check and maintain their engine oil levels is more important today than it has ever been. Many "Consumer Experts" sit on the sidelines of threads like this one where consumers are having issues with oil consumption and turn around and try and treat mechanics as if we are doing something wrong by taking steps to assist the consumers in preventing a major engine failure.

    Oil consumption, so long as it does not cause an engine performance problem is normal. The funny part is when you go to the dealership, if someone would try and explain that to any of the parties involved in this thread, they risk having to deal with a bad CSI (Customer Satisfaction Index report). In essence, the mechanic tries to explain why engine oil useage is normal, and or acceptable, and gets punished for not only being honest but for being properly trained and correct because the consumers perception is contrary to reality in this case.

    It's almost as if there are people involved who actually want the customers to not take care of their cars, suffer a major failure after the warranty so that the choice of simply replacing the car becomes more attractive. When consumers listen to the advice of real master mechanics, and maintain their cars correctly, we make them last for 250,000 to 300,000 (15 to 20 years) with ease today. Now that of course means someone doesn't get to build as many cars, and another person doesn't get to sell as many as they might want to. Consumer experts themselves don't get to have as much to write about when quality servicing gets to take place. Yea, it really makes you wonder if they are much happier if you the consumer don't have access to people who have the training and desire to help you get the most out of your vehicle.
  • I purchased my Yukon XL from my employer (bank) where it was used as a company vehicle. When I bought the vehicle, my boss told me it used about a quart of oil every 1,000 miles. He had taken it to the local dealership on numerous occasions and they told him it was normal for that type of vehicle. I am now over 100,000 miles and it is STILL using a quart of oil every 1,000. Obviously it is outside of any warranty, but the known problem should still be on the vehicle history at the dealership. After scanning through a similar thread, it appears as though there is a fix to the problem. Do I have any recourse? Can you help me?
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,655
    Your situation is not an indiction that anything is wrong, and that's the point I'm really trying to make. You will still need to change the oil and filter when it's due. Plus you need to regularly check and add oil as required. What you will find is the engine is not in any kind of trouble from this and will perform just fine. Make sure you are using the correct oil for your car, which will be a 5W30 that now displays the dexos label on the front of the bottle. From there, keep posting to this thread every two to three months with updates. Other owners who can be urged to do the same will help everyone else see that as long as they are diligent, they will not encounter a failure due to lubrication issues. Remember as long as it isn't going through enough oil to foul the spark plugs, and cause a performance problem, it actually isn't broken.

    Imagine that it could cost three thousand to five thousand dollars to "try" and make a difference. How much oil would that amount of money buy? For reference lets say the oil costs $8.00 a quart. Even at $4000 for the repair your looking at some five hundred quarts. At a quart per thousand miles, wold mean that your truck would have over 1/2 a million miles on it before you would spend that kind of money. As a mechanic who makes a living fixing cars, my advice would not be to tear this apart and try and fix anything, just get used to lifting the hood, and top off the fluids as required and it will just keep on going!
  • I understand your concern, however I do stand by the dealership's conclusions. If I can be of assistance, even by looking into safety recalls on your vehicle, we're available to you via email. Send me your name/user name and the last 8 of your VIN and we'd be happy to inform you.

    Best,
    Sarah
    GM Customer Service
  • I to have a 2007 Yukon XL and it has a excessive oil use problem, about 2 quarts per 1200 miles. Also a elect. problem, its left me stranded in the snow with my 3 small children and other numerous times. I have been going through all the steps. But no one can find the problem. By reading up on this all over the internet, do you mean to tell me GM isnt going to stand behind their cars and call this a RECALL really, this is a joke… My family and I have been GM customers for a very long time, and we have never had these problems. I want my car fixed or I want a new one I'm sure along with everyone else. My next step is calling the news station to get the word out and taking legal action. I did not sign up for this, it didnt state on the sticker when I bought this yukon:

    THIS VEHICLE BURN'S EXCESSIVE AMOUNTS OF OIL, BUT THIS IS NORMAL, AND YOU NEED TO PUT A BATTERY IN IT EVERY YEAR... what a joke...GM own up to this you made a mistake and you need to fix this. This is getting really old.
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,655
    Not only is in in fact normal for engines to use oil, it actually has a bright side!

    The additional oil replenishes additives that would by use normally wear out. I know you approximated your oil useage, and consider it excessive. Are you experiencing any failure of the spark plugs causing misfires? Do you have visible smoke from the tailpipe? If both of those are NO, then consider that your engine is better off with the adding of oil than someone else who is not. Thier additive packages can easily wear out and they simply keep on driving, while yours are constantly renewed. Besides that, you may ask why do some people never have to add oil? A lot of that comes down to the fact that they might not drive ther car far enough each time they start it up to boil off contaminants that will naturally collect in the oil, this is quite commonly unburned fuel and water vapor. In otherwords, they actually don't have the same volume of oil in their crankcase that they started with because it's diluted with combustion by-products. If they would be 3000-4000 miles from their last service and then decided to take an extended trip, they would suddenly find their oil level dropping dramatically. When the contaminants boil off, the true volume of oil that they have left gets dsiplayed.

    Now about the battery. How far do you drive each time you start the car? On average is it less than five miles? Combine that with defrosters, headlights and who knows what all drawing power and the alternator simply may be doing all that it is designed to, and there just isn't enough recharge going back into the battery to keep it at full charge. That condition kills batteries, and there is nothing that we can do about it. If you simply don't drive far enough to recharge the battery each time you start the car, it's going to die.

    Another possiblity is you have a parasitic drain always pulling on the battery while the car is turned off. Overtime that can also weaken a battery and cause a short lifespan. No matter what the cause, it sounds like a little more testing is required by someone with not only the training and experience to do so, but they also must know the history for your car so that they are aware that there is an aggravating conditon weakening the battery.
  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 41,990
    2 quarts per 1200 miles would drive me crazy. Occasionally I'll have to add a half quart between 5,000 mile changes on my '97 Subaru and that bugs me.

    I have a '99 minivan that does a lot of the 5 mile trips, with a road trip thrown in every few months. My last big road trip in September covered 5,000 miles and the contaminants didn't boil off (or a bunch more were added :) ). The oil level didn't change. I generally check my oil every time I gas up.

    Unless you are doing an oil analysis, you can't really predict the remaining life of your oil or the shortcomings of the additive pack that's in it.

    The van's oil gets changed every 7,500 miles (or longer), as recommended by the manufacturer. I'd have to check my log, but I don't remember ever having to top up the oil, but after 168k miles, I may have forgotten a time or two.

    Moderator
    Minivan fan. Feel free to message or email me - stever@edmunds.com.

  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,655
    Bugging you, and being "broken and needing repaired" are two completely different situations.

    I have a '99 minivan that does a lot of the 5 mile trips, with a road trip thrown in every few months. My last big road trip in September covered 5,000 miles and the contaminants didn't boil off (or a bunch more were added ). The oil level didn't change. I generally check my oil every time I gas up.

    So when was the oil changed? Before, during, or immeadiately afterwards? The issues for the people having oil consumption complaints is often surrounded by the fact that they don't check their oil "generally". They then end up with some small abnormal wear that can contribute to a higher rates of consumption, or some piston ring sticking which again can be a cause. A lot of the potential complaints are because regular service intervals were exceeded, and/or maybe they weren't even using the right products. Ultimately as some wear occurs and more oil than typical has to move in and work harder to protect some of the components that in itself causes a decrease in additional engine wear at the cost of a little oil.

    AS LONG AS they aren't experiencing driveability issues, such as misfires and/or fouling plugs it won't hurt anything and no repairs are required.

    Unless you are doing an oil analysis, you can't really predict the remaining life of your oil or the shortcomings of the additive pack that's in it.

    If you are doing oil analysis you are in fact adding an additional cost to the regular service expenses, which is funny in how that contradicts all of the other advice typically given to consumers.

    The van's oil gets changed every 7,500 miles (or longer), as recommended by the manufacturer. I'd have to check my log, but I don't remember ever having to top up the oil, but after 168k miles, I may have forgotten a time or two.


    168K? Not bad. Talk to me when you get a Ford 5.4l to 300K+ without even having a problem with the timing chain cassetts. That BTW is where you see the first true signs of faulty service, and I'm sure you can find plenty of complaints for a lot of manufacturers about timing chain or guide life. All of those are directly attributed to either the incorrect oil, or improper (excessive) service intervals for THAT owner. No two consumers really use their vehicles exactly the same, and that's one of the good things about onboard maintenance systems.
  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 41,990
    edited November 2011
    Oh sure, make me get my shoes on and tromp through the snow to my detached garage to grab my gas log. :P

    Okay, on 5/18 I changed my oil and filter at 155,062 miles. On 8/8 we left on our trip at 158,819 miles. On 9/10 we got back home and on 9/12 I changed the oil and filter. Mileage was 166,046. So just a few thousand miles over what Nissan recommends. ;)

    I'm usually a bit better than that, although I went 14,000 miles between changes the time before that. I drive them forever but since I don't have a commute, the cars may sit for days between trips, and the miles don't add up that fast. The '97 is just around 88k.

    If I was using a quart of oil every 2,000 miles, that's almost enough for a 4 quart oil change on my van, so I'd be using twice as much oil between scheduled changes. Even though I buy SuperTech at Walmart or whatever is on sale at NAPA, that's still another $10 I'd have to spend.

    I've never done an oil analysis btw, but I think it's a bit irresponsible for the dealers to recommend more frequent oil changes than what the automaker says unless there's a reason, like known gelling in some past Toyota engines. And the only way to really tell how your oil is holding up is with an analysis.

    Back to the original complaint, I know most manufacturers say that using a quart of oil every ~1,000 miles is "normal", but I personally don't think it's acceptable in a typical passenger vehicle.

    Moderator
    Minivan fan. Feel free to message or email me - stever@edmunds.com.

  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,655
    Oh sure, make me get my shoes on and tromp through the snow to my detached garage to grab my gas log

    Hehehehe. Snow? Yea we have had a light dusting here too.

    Okay, on 5/18 I changed my oil and filter at 155,062 miles. On 8/8 we left on our trip at 158,819 miles. On 9/10 we got back home and on 9/12 I changed the oil and filter. Mileage was 166,046. So just a few thousand miles over what Nissan recommends

    Now if someone looked at this and decided based on it that it was OK for them to do the same as you say here, would you be willing to make it right by them if they ended up suffering a breakdown because they ran their car out of oil? A responsible owner would have serviced the car during that trip, JMHO.

    I'm usually a bit better than that, although I went 14,000 miles between changes the time before that. I drive them forever but since I don't have a commute, the cars may sit for days between trips, and the miles don't add up that fast. The '97 is just around 88k.

    The Hyundai in one of the other threads was pushed like this, and it cost her an engine.

    I've never done an oil analysis btw, but I think it's a bit irresponsible to recommend more frequent oil changes than what the automaker says unless there's a reason, like known gelling in some past Toyota engines. And the only way to really tell how your oil is holding up is with an analysis

    So we go from the concern over the expense of $10 for the cheapest oil, to reccommending an oil analysis that costs a touch over $20 and you've never done one? We send out about ten samples a year for various customers, I do it everytime I believe I am servicing a car that is being neglected, or that I suspect a failure is occurring. On one occasion that habit saved me from being the victim from somone who wouldn't accept the idea that their lack of regular maintenence was the cause of their engine failure.

    BTW, the Toyota gelling issue is an oil choice issue. Even more frequent changes if someone isn't using the correct oil (one that controls crankcase acids) doesn't solve the problem.
  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 41,990
    edited November 2011
    We got winter this week. :)

    Somewhere I got the impression that frequently adding oil was a good idea; your comment about "refreshing" the additive pack I think. I think oil is pretty good these days and there's no need to do an analysis unless you suspect issues or you are an oil change hobbyist.

    And the way I heard it, owners said they were blamed for not changing their oil often enough, not for their choice of oil. And I heard that Toyota engines had to be redesigned to slightly enlarge the oil passages. Toyota never admitted fault but settled the lawsuit about it. (pdf link).

    I think people should follow their owner's manual for scheduled maintenance. I don't think people should regularly have to top up their oil between changes.

    Moderator
    Minivan fan. Feel free to message or email me - stever@edmunds.com.

  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,655
    edited November 2011
    Somewhere I got the impression that frequently adding oil was a good idea; your comment about "refreshing" the additive pack I think.

    In a bit of irony for all of those you can find complaining in here, it is in fact a good thing!

    I think oil is pretty good these days and there's no need to do an analysis unless you suspect issues or you are an oil change hobbyist.

    Until you get to the extreme cases like I mentioned, or for fleets, but that's a totally different ball game.

    And the way I heard it, owners said they were blamed for not changing their oil often enough, not for their choice of oil.

    That of course was the classic reason and what everybody assumed, we are always learning new things and today we can look back and see what really happened.

    And I heard that Toyota engines had to be redesigned to slightly enlarge the oil passages.

    They had to deal with some locations that could cause pooling of the oil, however the primary cause was crankcase acid formation.

    Toyota never admitted fault but settled the lawsuit about it.

    It was a problem with the oils not being able to control crankcase acids, in short the acids broke down the oil and caused the sludging. The reduced PCV flow was a contributing factor, Chrysler suffered with similar issues. The solution turns out to be the heated PCV systems we find on cars today.

    I think people should follow their owner's manual for scheduled maintenance.

    Is that consistent with your own description of how you have serviced your car?

    I don't think people should regularly have to top up their oil between changes.

    I think people should think more. :)
  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 41,990
    Is that consistent with your own description of how you have serviced your car?

    Pretty much. I actually read the owner's manual on the van before I bought it to try to avoid any excessive maintenance requirements. My next car is going to have the hood welded shut. ;)

    Moderator
    Minivan fan. Feel free to message or email me - stever@edmunds.com.

  • GM Customer Service,

    I am new to these forms...my first post. Good to see you folks are monitoring these posts and providing responses.

    My wife and I purchased a used 2008 Suburban LT 1500 4x4, 50K miles this past August. Oil change alert hit 15% life remaining this week and the change oil enunciator indicated it was time to take the vehicle in for oil/filter change. This AM (cold northern Virginia) the low oil pressure turn off engine warning came on for my wife. The oil pressure gauge is also fluctuating more than usual from idle to high RPMs. We check the dip stick, it was clean. Added 3 quarts of oil before oil came into the normal range.

    Have an appointment with at the GM dealership in the AM. Have my fingers crossed the engine is not damaged.

    R,
    VB
  • Good afternoon, vic442,

    I am sorry that I'm a few days behind. How did your dealership visit go yesterday?
    Regards,
    Sarah
    GM Customer Service
  • rigitrigit Posts: 1
    GM know it has a problem with its 5.3. TELL your dealer to fix it and that you know about the problem. They are fixing mine right now as of 1-18-2012.
    My Yukon XL is a 2007 purchased it in Dec. 2011
  • gmc76gmc76 Posts: 1
    I have the same issue. We purchased a '08 Yukon XL in November of 2011. The vehicle only had 36k miles on it. After around 2500 miles, the low oil pressure and turn engine off warnings came on unexpectedly. It took three quarts of oil to bring the level up to normal. The engine would smoke periodically on a cold start. Finally today after repeated visits to the dealership to "establish a consumption pattern" we were told that it would be fixed per the service bulletin. After seeing all these posts, I'm concerned as to whether this will rectify the issue. Sarah from GM, if you're still monitoring these posts, could you answer that question? Will this fix it or is a new engine the only remedy?
  • Thank you for your patience in working with your dealership on the consumption tests, and I'm glad to hear that things are moving forward.

    I understand why you are concerned as to whether or not this will resolve the oil consumption issue. While I can't speak to any technical information, our technical service bulletins provide our technicians new service information, including a correction to a specific product problem. They also usually contain repair procedures, information on part numbers and availability, and warranty labor code information. The body of the bulletin will describe the condition, cause, and correction to the problem.

    Would you like to set up a Service Request with us? This would allow us to follow up with you after the repair is done and interact with your dealership to check in on the progress. If the problem is not resolved (which I truly hope and expect that it will be), we can continue to work with you and your dealership. If you're interested in this, please send us an email at the address provided in my profile here (include your name/Edmunds username, phone and address, the last 8 of your VIN and current mileage, and the name of your dealership). My coworker Christina, who answers incoming emails, will direct you further.

    Regards,
    Sarah
    GM Customer Service
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