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Mazda RX-8 Care & Maintenance



  • 4_my_84_my_8 Posts: 10
    hello everyone. i just purchased a 04 "8" and am now a little confused as to what type oil i should be using. i've sworn by synthetic for years but do understand that the "8" is no ordinary automobile. just when i thought i knew everything, now i'm not sure if synthetic oil is the best for my baby? help!
  • slices17slices17 Posts: 35

    Just wondering when you guys replaced your brake pads. I have 35000 miles on my RX-8. About 2 months ago when I brought my car to the Mazda dealership for something else, they told me that I would need new brake pads soon, though they didn't tell me how soon.

    Also, how much did it cost to replace the pads?


  • trispectrispec Posts: 305
    Wow, no response yet. NON synthetic cause synthetic hardens the apex points on the rotors, eventually to cause them to shatter. But from there, Mazda says 5-20 in the US, but there's a huge argument with some folks swearing, with good reason, to use 5-30. What region of the US, northeast, southeast,....? Hotter regions appear to have more problems with damage to the rotors with the thin 5-20 oil.

    5-30 is to thick and blows by into the CAT seemingly causing the CAT to fail sooner the EPA rules allow (80K miles), where as 5-20 burns up before hitting the CAT. That, at least is my simple minded understanding of the situations.

    The other big voices (the ones who really do know) should chime in here soon.
  • 4_my_84_my_8 Posts: 10
    thanks... that does help explain a little more and seems to be the general thing that i've read hear. i live in jacksonville, fl. we do see hot summers and cooler than normal FL winters. it makes sense that the synthetic would hang around longer and that the thinner oil would burn faster... (which is what the engine does by design from my understanding). this is my 3rd auto and i've never had to replace a cat converter on any of them. i got the most miles out of my honda accord before trading it in... 150K. Are cat converters expensive to replace? i'm considering the 5w30 oil but may just stick with the 5w20 as mazda since i plan to be anal about changing the oil every 3k anyway... what do you guys think. i just want to make sure my baby is around for a long, long time.
  • trispectrispec Posts: 305
    When it's really hot, ie 90 plus, don't drive her hard in long stop and go traffic. Of course the AC ain't that strong in stop and go traffic either so you may not want to use her then anyway. On highway trips in the summer drive nice and steady, no high rev passing.
  • 4_my_84_my_8 Posts: 10
    so if i use the mazda required 5w20, keep her nice and steady on hot days and even run the ac more? during the hotter months when im feeling a little frisky, use the thicker oil? also, i picked up a recent copy of MazdaSpeed Magazine and there on page two or three was an rx8 being used to advertise Royal Purple synthetic oil. DO YOU FEEL MY PAIN? what is a responsible owner to do when he wants the best for his baby but then finds that the best may not be the best for her at all. so many race enthusiasts swear by that royal purple synthetic oil.
  • mdw1000mdw1000 Posts: 171 has TONS of threads on this topic. Some people swear by synthetic, others swear by dino. I just figure I'll go with what mazda recommends.
  • finally.. someone that realizes they should just use non synthetic. congrats..your car will now last longer than the stubborn people that are like,'but i always use synthetic and it hasnt failed me yet." they will not be hapy when they take thier car to the dealers and the maintenance says they will need a new motor. then thye will think, well cool, it s on the warranty so i jsut got a new motor for free. ERRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR!!!!!!!!!!!!! WROOOOONG!!!! the second they see there is synthetic oil in that car the warranty is automatically withdrawn from that particular motor and it looks like they jsut paid for the motor themselves. it is simple.............USE NON-SYNTHETIC.
  • 4_my_84_my_8 Posts: 10
    thanks guys. i love the real information that i get from this place. i will not deter... i will use mazda's 5w20 mix. anything to keep my baby running like she should. did i tell you guys that i love this car?
  • mklismklis Posts: 6
    I have an '04 MT with about 35k miles on it. I haven't had any probelms with the car, at least not yet.

    Is the extended warranty offered through Mazda something that I should even consider? Or is it really a waste of money?
  • 4_my_84_my_8 Posts: 10
    i usually get an extended warranty with any used car that i get. honestly, i research the hec out of the 8 through various web postings and read a lot about the experiences other owners were having with their 8's. i purchased an '04 MT with 27K on it a month ago and i opted to get the extended warranty. it was only and extra $10/month added into the payment and it covers me for an additional 3yrs/36K on top of the standard 4 yr/50K that Mazda gave me on the '04 so it's really piece of mind for down the road.
  • I plan on buying (financing) an RX8. But before I do, I want to know how the maintenance is. If I needed an oil change, could I do it myself? If I took it in, will it cost over $50-60 dollars? Or is it like a mercades where everything has to be specially made for the car, oil changes are like $200?
    Is it true that I have to put more oil in every other time I fill put gas in my tank?
  • yes, you COULD do it by yourself, but there is really no need to. i take my car to the mazda dealership every time it is time for an oil change becuase for 1. it is only 29.75 total. #2 they do an entire fluids check and even check the extras like tell you how much your tires have worn and they inspect the car for anything else wrong. with the cost of the oil and oil filter, you are already using up half of what they charge you.but considering you have their knowledge and skills of your unique car put into the maintenance, it is so worth it to pay 30 dollars.. plus you know it is getting done right..... now for the myth that you have to put oil on the car every other tank of gas, that is true.. you wont have to put much in, but you should check it every other tankfull and try to keep it at the full mark. considering you can do this in the same time it takes to full up the tank.... its not wasting any time, but it is so worth it to have that car.. i do kinda suggest that you check out this site or do some research on the rx8 before you by the car though becuase it is different that any other car.... te rx8 likes to be revved and it is actually worse to not rev it than it is to rev it, and so on..... jsut go to this site and read stuff and look around about it...
  • Well, here's another contribution to this discussion. I was at the Mazda dealer yesterday getting my first oil change and took the opportunity to discuss this issue with the Service Manager. He agreed that the 5W20 was not optimal for engine and brought out a container of Motul 8100 Eco-nergy 5W30 100% Synthetic oil. He told me that this oil and the other fluids in this line were used by Mazda to obtain their performance specs for th Rx8. Of course, short term performance measurement and long term care of the engine can be two very different things and when I brought this up he showed me a letter from Mazda Canada endorsing this product for long term use in the rotary engine.

    I also raised with him the issue of seal hardening through use of the synthetic oil and he indicated that in his experience synthetic was easier on seals than conventional oil. I'm no chemist, so what do I know?

    I've noted discussions in this thread relating to weather conditions and the consequent effect on lubrication. While Toronto summers these days have too many days in the mid-30's (mid-90's F) we certainly don't have the consistent heat of the southern states. Perhaps this is a factor in Mazda Canada's endorsement of the synthetic option.

  • jarman1jarman1 Posts: 1
    I have an 04 rx8 6 speed with 91+K miles. My engine blew two days ago. I used only the 5w20 GTX and whatever Mazda put in there. I have learned from a MFG of the RX7 engines that the APEX seals in the RENESIS are 1/2 the thickness of the RX7 specs. My advice is find out whatever you can about keeping the engine cool. I live in N.FL and most of the miles on mine were highway. I did not opt for the extended warranty, but this is a warning to ALL RX8 owners. Change the coolant and oil frequently. There is no reason my engine should have blown at 91K miles and I have a feeling as does the dealer here in Tallahassee that Mazda is going to see most of the RX8 engines go at 90K+ miles. Especially since the APEX seals are 1/2 the thickness of the orginal design. A rebuild from MAZDA will cost you $6100, and it comes with a 12 month 12k mile warranty.
    I love the 8 and the Zoom Zoom, and having owned an RX7 thougth the 8 was great until two days ago!!!
    Be Warned trade it in before you warranty expires or purchase the extended warranty that covers the engine.

    Good Luck to all you 8 owners.

    signed, a soon to be EX 8 owner.....
  • I bought the 2004 RX8 when it first came out and currently have about 29,000 miles. I have been experiencing the car not starting if it sits past three or four days...This have occurred for more than five (5) times now and I have to call roadside assistance to have it towed to the dealer for them to start (decompress the engine) the car. However, they keep telling me that the RX8 is a "FICKLED CAR" and everyone experiences this if they don't start the car for a period of more than three days. I just don't believe it and would like to know if anyone else is experiencing this problem before I tackle this legally with Mazda. I don't want this to be my bill when the warranty is expired. The car have plenty of power in the battery, it appears to be a fuel problem while the engine is trying to turn over...Can anyone provide suggestions or comments on this?
  • I have had only one occurrence of this....I started the car on a cold day and ran it for only about 30 seconds and then shut it off. 15 minutes later it did not start. Otherwise this has not happened. I have a 2004 AT with 32,000 miles. Runs great. I had heard before that the 2004 batteries were under sized and I think my delaer did replace it with a larger model (not positive on that though, would have been awhile back).
  • sorry to hear you having that type problem,I have a 2004 rx8 which have 37,500 mi.I have let the car sit sometimes a week before I start it but have not experience that problem.I bought this car last May with 32,000 there is not a lot miles on this car.
  • i came accross this post bsin on the net i have been workin for mazda for about 4 years now. i read all your posts and i have a few responses. first, is oil it should be checked every 500 miles at most it should be about 1/2 a quart you would be surprised how many people dont, and mazda recommends 5w20 not 30 changing might not hurt but if you live in an area where emission is regulated i fully recommend 5w20, emission standards are different in canada as opposed to here in america so refer only to your owners manual not some dumb sh&t workin behind a counter. second is to the question about starting your car every so often which also refers to the people who have issues with flooding i dont want to make people feel stupid so if you already know cool if not listen to this when your car sits up for a while the oily film inside the rotor housing begins to in a sense wear off if there is no lubrication then the engine will not build up the necessary compression to start the car this is more prone to happen in a automatic as well as engine failure a note if you own an automatic where rpms are kept lower aand the metering pump is not pushing out alot of oil so try to stay in the manumatic option and keep your rpms in the mid range, "constant lower rpms destroy these engines over time". also if your car floods and your out of warrenty dont bring it do the dealer there are a few rare case where this is necessary follow your owners manual they are a few ways to unflood the engine that another day another time type answer
  • mdw1000mdw1000 Posts: 171
    For those of you that need rebuilt engines, check out It is run by some great guys who will build you a great engine. They are also great with any parts you need. They built me a custom differential with a 4.77 gear. I also have their water pump. Better cooling and frees up a few hp.

    They also recommend premixing, espeicially with the ATs. If you want to learn a ton about premixing pros and cons, etc, go to and search on it.
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