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Mazda5 Owners Care & Maintenance



  • eilroseilros Posts: 35
    FWIW, I always change the oil at 2,000 miles.
  • w00000tw00000t Posts: 23
    uuhhh... yeah
  • bobw3bobw3 Posts: 2,997
    "FWIW, I always change the oil at 2,000 miles."

    You must drive in some pretty harsh conditions! I change mine every 5-7000 miles. On my Fit there's maintenance computer that identifies when service is needed. The first one was at 9000 miles and that was the only one I've had so far. But if people want to do more that's fine, even if there's really no need for it under normal driving conditions.

    Funny thing is that while I've never known anyone to have engine problems caused by infrequent oil changes, I have known people having problems with stripped oil plugs and filter threads. My brother had a Subaru with over 250,000 miles on the same engine (car finally rusted out) and he changed the oil about once a year, or about every 15,000 miles. Subaru's have great engines, but I wouldn't recommend that!
  • Hey, all:

    According to my Mazda Full Circle service report, my brake pads are at "yellow", which means about half or slightly more of my brake pads are worn. They do not, necessarily, need to be replaced until I reach "red" status. Anyway, I recently had my tired aligned, but at about 60 mph on the highway I hear, more than I feel, a slight shimmy. Before the alignment, I slightly FELT the shimmy through the steering wheel, but after the alignment, I just hear it - no feeling. So, I think I may need tire balancing, as well.

    In any case, my Full Circle Mazda dealer quoted me a price of $100 for a 4-wheel tire rotation and balancing. They also quoted me a price of $200 for replacing the brake pads in the front, and another $200 for replacing the rear ones. If I want my rotors "shaved", then they would add another $100 to the price of each set of brakes ($200 more for both front and rear). So, getting my tires rotated and balanced, and getting my brake pads change would cost me anywhere from at least $500 to $700 (should I choose to get my rotors shaved). What do you all think of this?

    I, most likely, WON'T get my rotors shaved, since I don't see a need for that. So, it would come out to about $500 plus tax for brake pad service and the tire rotation and balancing. Is that a fair price? Should I shop around? Please advise. Thanks.

    BTW - I have almost 25K miles on my 2006 Mazda 5 (that I bought in July 2005) and my tires are just fine.
  • mdchachimdchachi Posts: 275
    Recently the nighttime lights (buttons) on the audio unit started flickering off and on constantly. It's only the audio portion, not climate or other console buttons. What is this likely to be? A loose connection into the head unit? Or something inside the unit itself?

    Anybody know the procedures for pulling it out to check? This is a 2006 Touring model.

  • whobodymwhobodym Posts: 151
    remember not to monkey with it too much if you want it handled by warrantee claim at the dealership. it's got to be still be covered doesn't it? my own bias would be to implicate the audio unit box electronics but I have no good reason for saying that except a feeling that simple wiring harnesses for lighting systems should have an easy enough time staying put together soundly for 2 years. and for whatever it's worth, our '06 Touring (w/ std 6CD audio system, no satellite or mp3) has never done this. Good luck.
  • mdchachimdchachi Posts: 275
    Good point, I'm not used to having a car under warranty. What is the standard Mazda warranty? I bought the car used but that doesn't matter, right?
  • whobodymwhobodym Posts: 151
    3 years / 4 years ?? It's dark and cold right now and I don't want to go look at the owner's manual in the glove compartment. If you don't have your books to look it up in, write back again and I will go look when I'm feeling less lazy. You're right, the basic manufacturer's new car warrantee is always transferrable to new owners as far as I've ever heard.
  • engine overhting,changed thermosta and radiator.thermostat is now disconnected runfine but no heat inside.can any body help
  • mdchachi,

    have you gotten this fixed or had mazda take a look at it? I seem to be having the same problem. It only happened to me a couple of times, so don't know if I could get mazda to fix it if they can't see it. I just adjusted the dimmer and the problem went away. :confuse:
  • mrbwa1mrbwa1 Posts: 42

    Sounds like 1 of 2 things:

    #1. Bad thermostat. My old Mercury Sable seemed to eat thermostats, ans 1 time I bought the cheapest thermostat and it was bad out of the box. You can test by boiling it in a pot on the kitchen stove to make sure it opens properly. Also, the more expensive thermostats have a small hole to supposedly help with air lock or something to that effect.

    #2. Air in the cooling system. My old Sable also tended to have this problem. I would get no heat unless I drove for like 20 minutes. This can usually be fixed by letting the car idle and squeezing a radiator hose to burp water out with the radiator cap off. You have to be careful, because you won't get all air out until the thermostat opens. Also, when it opens, you tend to get a surge that can overflow out of the radiator cap.

    I ended up having a water pump going bad, letting aid into the system. But I learned that most any car should put out heat in just a few blocks, and it not, there is either a bad thermostat or air in the system.
  • Hi,

    I am currently in the process of purchasing an '08 Mazda5 sport with MT. Since reading the previous threads about the complication in oil filter change, I am wondering if anybody here has sent their 5s to local shop for the services and any experiences on that.

    I have had luck doing that with my previous and current vehicles. So I only save the major maintenance for the dealer.

    By the way, I am located on the peninsula just south of San Francisco. If you happen to be in the same area, where will you go for your 5's autocare?

  • whobodymwhobodym Posts: 151
    Ni Hao, nihao4587 (but that's about the limit of my Mandarin):
    I can't directly answer your question very well, but I have owned a 2006 5 since new, and I have done all the oil changes (7 so far) myself in the driveway. It isn't bad at all once you've seen it before. It helps a lot to remove the big plastic undershield. You are supposed to separately remove the little aluminum drain plug first, but I'm finding that this doesn't want to come out anymore and the whole filter wants to unscrew all at once. This is OK if you have a coffee can ready to catch all the filter oil that will come out. I believe that all current 2.3 Mazdas (6, 5, 3) have had this kind of cartridge filter for at least a few years, so you can be confident that experienced service shops have seen them many times before. Just maybe not the 17 year old they hired last week. It would be an easy question to check in advance, to ask and make sure they know. I am a picky customer, and I have other complaints about the 5, but I'm definitely not disappointed by the oil filter (note, I didn't say I'm not confused, just not disappointed).
  • whobodymwhobodym Posts: 151
    Consider this, if you live in a windy climate. Last winter in a windstorm, my wife had the driver's door yanked out of her hand by a gust of wind, because the door pull hand-hold is slippery and does not allow you to wrap your fingers around it. We did $500 damage to a Honda Civic, smashing its side mirror.
    The hand-hold on the door of the 5 is just a vertical slot you have to pinch between your fingers and thumb, not something you can really grab. I fretted about this all year, and finally decided to do a modification that was suprisingly easy. First, I roughed-up the plastic inside the finger slot with a bit of sandpaper. Then I glued in (epoxy) a 3 inch length of half-round wood, that I made by sawing a dowel in half lengthwise. I used a one-half-inch diameter dowel. Be sure to try out the feel of the dowel in advance before glueing, so you place it at the best depth inside the slot.
    The other half goes in the passenger door, of course. Now, your fingers have something to grab onto, and can hold onto the door better. Because the wood is down in the slot, it is practically invisible. (And fooey on silly Mazda interior designers who didn't think this thru better to begin with!)
  • whobodymwhobodym Posts: 151
    Our 5 is a manual transmission. I have been disappointed since day one (2 years, 26,000 miles ago) by the uneven, slightly delayed response I get from the first 1/8" of gas pedal travel, up above idle. Occasionally, there is an outright complete interruption of engine power for a split second, and it comes back with a lurch, snapping the passengers heads back and forth. I have been to the dealer (Everett WA) several times and on the last visit had a PCM reflash (new software for engine control computer I believe). This almost completely eliminated the big lurches, but there still is a squirrely feeling of uneven, delayed response to my right foot for the first little bit of throttle opening, for the first split second. It is especially noticeable in comparison to our other car, a 1997 Integra GS-R (also manual) which has a flawless, consistent and instantaneous engine response to all throttle openings, large and small. Note, I am talking about ordinary day-in day-out street driving, not wide open throttle. Is this something related to the throttle-by-wire system? The variable valve timing?? Any clues out there?
  • thugusthugus Posts: 3
    Howdy, I am first time poster and long time observer, and a new Mazda5 Grand Touring 2008 owner.

    What you described is exactly the difference between throttle-by-wire vs wire systems. Part of the solution to lower emission and fuel efficiency is to minimize sudden throttle change, and by golly, throttle-by-wire is a great place for manufacturer to do this. It happens in BMW, it happens in Mazda.

    There isn't much you can do other than adapt your driving style. Make sure your engine rpm dropes to the matching car speed before engaging your clutch should minimize upshift jerkiness. As for taking off, you can always try keeping a constant throttle and play with the clutch release to get a smooth start.

    Hope this helps.
  • Hi, whobodym

    Thanks for your greeting in mandarin.

    Since you have an integra, may I ask how would you rate the MT in your 5 against your GSR besides the throttle response inconsistence?

    I drove my friend's prelude (type SH) before only to get the feel of manual trans. Therefore, Mazda5 will be my first manual car, and probably my last one since I cannot afford to buy anything other than minivan due to increasing family size.

    I would really want to enjoy the zoom-zoom provide the 5's manual trans can deliver that.

  • whobodymwhobodym Posts: 151
    comparing all aspects of Mazda 5 vs Integra manual transmissions,
    the Mazda clutch is better. engagement is smoother and less abrupt, and not any heavier pedal effort even though 5 has a bigger torquey-er engine. the Integra has a nicer shift linkage, smoother lighter and more precise. the 5 shift lever feels rubbery and vague in comparison. But overall, both are just fine as MT vehicles, no way would I want an auto, and I say that living in Seattle, a bad traffic hilly city. I think the MT is a good deal in terms of getting good performance out of the 5. Ours climbed I-90 Vantage grade in mid-WA-state last summer at 85mph in 5th with 5 people and cargo box. That sounds better than Consumer Reports saying the auto version "lacks reserve for passing and hills".
  • Thugus:

    I am thinking about buying a 2008 or 2009 Mazda5 Grand Touring, also (depending on how long either my car or my wife's car wants to keep running smoothly). I would be interested to know how your first year goes. Do you think you could provide some periodic updates with things you like or don't like about it? Thanks.
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