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Mitsubishi Outlander Maintenance and Repair



  • fastgstfastgst Posts: 46
    Does anyone know for sure if the factory oil that came with the 3.0 V6 GT model in 2012 is synthetic or dino? A few posts back someone mentioned the factory are changing to synthetic factory fill..

    I am planning to change my own oil but I don't want to put in dino if it has synthetic already in it. On the other hand if it has dino oil I may wait until the 2nd oil change because dino breaks in better.
    For the 4.5 qt capacity in this engine the synthetic isn't too costly at all.
  • costello1costello1 Posts: 60
    Does the 07 have a timing belt or chain??
  • fushigifushigi Chicago suburbsPosts: 1,399
    According to your '07 and my '10 have essentially the same engine, with my '10 being revised for more power.

    My maintenance manual says there is a timing belt and it should be replaced every 105K miles. Edmunds maintenance schedule at agrees and says the '07 needs a timing belt change at 105K miles so that backs up my assertion.

    Your can confirm by calling Mitsu Customer Service at 1-888-MITSU20. Don't call a dealer service dept.; being profit-motivated they might suggest you change it early.
    2017 Infiniti QX60 (me), 2012 Hyundai Elantra (wife)
  • batman47batman47 Posts: 606
    In my previous two-Outlander V6 I have used synthetic oil (Mobil 5W-20). Five-quarts of this oil are about $30 container. Because I am not driving on unpaved roads and not doing up/down scramble maneuver battles which require strong engine involvement, I am now using normal engine oil (not synthetic/semi-synthetic) at a price of $15 (container five-quarts-5W-20).

    My Outlander GT 2012 has at the moment 7,600 miles (I bought it, April 2012). I did the first change of oil at 3,000 miles but I did not change the oil filter. After my return from Halifax (Canada) I will proceed to change the engine oil again + its filter. If I order oil filter in the USA for my car by giving its VIN number I will get a fat filter. The Japanese original oil filter is slim and longer. I did some calculations and the volume of both filters match each other indicating that any of those filters can be used with the Outlander V6. There is also a filter for the Outlander Sport which is slim that also can be fitted to the Outlander V6.

    For frequents changes of oil at 7,500 miles + filter, I think it is sufficient to use normal oil engine (5W-20). I am now using Castrol GTX 5W-20 Superior Deposit Protection at a price of $16. However any oil brand may do the job.

    I think that Mitsubishi is magnifying its saving in constructing this car, so I do not think that the Outlander GT will have synthetic oil in its engine. Equally Mitsubishi is saving money by sending to the USA Mitsubishi cars with poor car paint. You may expect cars manufactured by Mercedes, or Audi, or BMW be sold with synthetic oil but I have serious doubts.

    There is not a clear agreement between experts that synthetic oil is superior to normal oil. In the past I have used synthetic oil because of the requirements of my journeys in isolated areas of the planet, i.e. very hot, very cold weather, dust, and also strong use of the engine power and long journeys at 10-15 miles per hour at the most.
  • fushigifushigi Chicago suburbsPosts: 1,399
    My maintenance regimen is that I use the manufacturer's suggested oil as long as the car is under warranty. I also change the oil & filter according to the maintenance schedule (6 months/7500 miles).

    Once the warranty expires I'll switch to synthetic or a synthetic blend and go probably at least 10K miles with no time limit. My current thinking is to go 7500 miles, have the oil tested by a lab, and estimate extended oil life from the lab report. I'm going to guess that full synthetic will be good for at least 12K miles if I don't subject the car to overly harsh conditions. Considering my harshest abuse to the car is probably driving it in Chicago's cold/snowy winters & hot summers and that I rarely go WOT above 5K RPMs, I think that's reasonable.
    2017 Infiniti QX60 (me), 2012 Hyundai Elantra (wife)
  • fastgstfastgst Posts: 46
    edited July 2012
    re: saving money: I noticed on the 2012 they took out the strut bar and the motion sensor behind the dome light. Well, I heard the motion sensor will false alarm if you leave the sunroof open anyway. The door handle has also changed from sensing your hand touch (ala Lexus) to now only using the same button to lock/unlock. I heard Mitsu claims this is a safer approach, not sure what the true story behind this one.

    Can't blame them too much as it is probably to offset the cost of Tsunami damages. They have always have one of the thinner paint job out there for years now.. Mazda also. Mine doesn't look that thin (reasonable clear coat on diamond white) but I have to get a gauge to measure it.

    However the Outlander MSRP has gone high since the introduction of S-AWC in 2010 and inflation, compared to the original in 2007. Now fully loaded outlanders like mine have a sticker price of $34-$35k.
    Granted it has everything that my previous Lexus had except homelink garage opener. I am quite happy with my outtie with the below invoice price I paid.
    (Also shopped RAV4, RDX, CR-V, CX-5, OUTBACK.)

    As to the oil, my practical driving the engine runs mostly 2000 RPM or lower so I think the dino oil would be quite sufficient. However if you really drive in a performance oriented the engine does have a high redline and why not use synthetic oil, 4.5 qt is not going to break the bank.

    Now if any of you guys know how to take a proper reading on the V6 engine please let me know. I have 1000 miles but I still don't know how to check my oil because the dipstick has oil all over. I think as long as the top hole has oil filled over it should be good.. I think the holes are put there for this purpose.
  • fushigifushigi Chicago suburbsPosts: 1,399
    Bummer about the strut bar; I'd probably go after-market for one or order a 2011 bar if those also fit.

    As to the sensor, I think it's acoustic not motion. On windy days with the sunroof tilted up to vent it would indeed go off; it happened to me a number of times on my '10 GT. And that is a disappointment as venting via the sunroof is a good way to keep the interior heat down on a summer day. Especially since my Outie has the black interior.

    But I thought it was just doing double-duty with the mics for the Bluetooth interface. :confuse:

    If Mitsu goes to a button-press to unlock, they may also be able to use cheaper remotes. Perhaps switch to a passive RFID chip v. the "active" system my '10 has. Consumers should also get longer remote battery life (though the batteries aren't really expensive).

    I, too, have noticed the price creep. Makes me glad I bought when I did. Still, how much of this will change yet again with the plug-in hybrid 2013 model? I also wonder if the Normal plant will get to build some regular Outlanders v. just the Sport.

    I'd say I keep mostly under 3K RPMs for reasonable acceleration & cruise anywhere from 1200-2200. 21.2MPG average over 24K miles.
    2017 Infiniti QX60 (me), 2012 Hyundai Elantra (wife)
  • rcpaxrcpax Posts: 580
    I live in NW indiana area and I never go past 3750mi on my oil. Just a personal preference. I can tell when it's closer to 3K that conventional oil gets really dark. Just make sure your oil is up to the job. I started using Mobil 5000, which is only good up to 5K anyway. Actually the reason you're changing oil every so often is not the oil itself but rather the additives in it getting used up. conventional oil at 3 to 3.5K mi is really not that much. I always go by the mileage and not the time, so with my current drive, that means 2-3 oil changes a year, which is really not that bad.
  • fushigifushigi Chicago suburbsPosts: 1,399
    I don't think anyone should be concerned about using the manufacturer's recommended service intervals. And it's not just Mitsu. Most (if not all) manufacturers have moved to longer oil service intervals. My wife's '12 Elantra says 7500 miles/12 months, for instance.

    Other service intervals are getting longer as well. Back in '99 the Mitsu 3L V6 had a 60K timing belt replacement interval; it's now 105K.

    During warranty I go by time or miles, whichever comes first. Post-warranty I'll go purely by miles. I'm a bit of a stickler for adhering to what's needed to maintain warranty and not giving anyone a good reason to deny a potential claim. I do follow the normal schedule, though, and not the severe. Even though I live in the Chicago suburbs I don't think my driving fits the severe criteria.

    I'm at 32 months of ownership and am just approaching 25K miles so my changes are averaging time-based so far. Two per year.

    In other maintenance news my OEM tires are holding up well; they've got enough tread left for the upcoming winter and then some. I rotate the tires on average with every other oil change. At 16K miles I replaced the air filter with a K&N since they're cheaper over the car's lifetime. Not much else other than the added stuff for the 2 year service.
    2017 Infiniti QX60 (me), 2012 Hyundai Elantra (wife)
  • steverstever Posts: 52,683
    Most (if not all) manufacturers have moved to longer oil service intervals.

    They've been doing that at least a decade longer than us over in Europe.

    You can't tell anything by looking at oil; it's supposed to get dark (often it'll be good and dark within the first 100 miles after an oil change). Get an analysis done if you really think overly frequent oil changes are needed.
  • rcpaxrcpax Posts: 580
    I think I just would like to point out what I said earlier, about the protection your oil provides, which is brand dependent.Like I said, Mobil 5000 is only good for 5K mi. So i guess if you want to do 7K oil changes, then you pick an oil that would offer engine protection that long. So what are you guys using? I have tried pennzoil, and just now switched to mobil.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,683
    edited August 2012
    Sounds like good oil for the CR-V taxis in Barrow Alaska ("severe and low-temperature operating conditions"). Otherwise, why bother? (Mobil Clean 5000)

    I usually run SuperTech from Walmart or whatever is on sale at NAPA when I do my 7,500 changes on my '99 Quest (175,000 miles). I didn't even use "low temp" oil in the Quest when I lived in Anchorage and the Quest lived outside.

    (Hey, just ran out to the garage and checked my gas logs. I'm 4,000 miles overdue on the oil change. Again. ;) )
  • fushigifushigi Chicago suburbsPosts: 1,399
    So what are you guys using?

    Whatever the dealer puts in. In my case that's run-of-the-mill non-synthetic Valvoline. I gave up doing my own maintenance years ago when it got to the point that I couldn't do it for substantially less than the dealer.

    For the after-warranty oil changes on the '99 Galant (3L V6) I used to have I went with Mobil1 purchased in bulk at Sam's Club. I'd give that to the dealer & let them do the labor & provide the filter. The Galant recommended 3K mile intervals as I recall; once I went Mobil1 I upped that to 5K.

    Side note: When the dealer resets the oil minder on my trip computer it resets the countdown timer to a fresh 6 months but on the miles countdown it adds 7500 miles. So it says something like 6 months/16,000 miles. Software bug or lazy service tech?
    2017 Infiniti QX60 (me), 2012 Hyundai Elantra (wife)
  • batman47batman47 Posts: 606
    I have travelled a lot in the USA and I have had the opportunity to talk to many people of different intellectual backgrounds. Through this experience I may say (at this moment in time) that perhaps 10% of people are acquainted with the mechanics of their car (i.e. maintenance/service/care). Some people do not know for example how many cylinders their cars have, or when was the last time the car has received an oil change and so on.

    People just take their car to their local mechanic for change of oil/fluid (steering, ATF, differential, brakes, etc). I do not think there is anything wrong with that. However, garages are business entities and their main concern is to make a profit. You cannot make a profit if you do not reduce costs and that means to put in your engine crap engine oil, low quality oil filter or the wrong filter all together, low quality brake pads, forgetting to use the right torque adjustment, overflow of fluids, or taking short cuts while servicing, or leaving the area dirty or oil dripping, etc. With few exceptions, garages use young people that usually gain experience with your car and save overhead expenses by paying them the minimum salary required by law.

    For example, the Outlander V6 requires the starter circuitry that is just adjacent to the oil filter mouth, to be protected (rug/cloth), while changing the oil filter. Usually oil attacks the wire cover of this circuitry making the device non operative or faulty after a few years of bad oil change services. Not all, but few of these technician over tighten the oil drain plug reducing the life expectation of your oil container that is made from aluminum or over tighten the oil filter to make sure you cannot take it off and therefore forcing you to use the garage services to remove the filter (it happened to me).

    I met a business man in Anacortes who did not know how many cylinders his car had and when asked when was the last time he change the oil, he did not know in spite of the fact that the warning/indicator light was on. This appears to be the tendency and then when the car ceases to operate properly people blame the car manufacturer.

    I think many people are discouraged to do these elementary services because they may not know how to lift the car and make space to go under the car. I have two jacks (Outlander), one for each side of the car. You may use an appropriate ratchet wrench to ease the oil drain plug and also an appropriate oil wrench to ease the oil filter. You also may buy a pair of Rhino ramps and a pair of stands from Walmart to elevate your car. If you want to go this way, elementary tools may be identified in Amazon on line shopping. I bought an 80 mm oil wrench from AutoZone in order to remove oil filters that fit the USA specification (MZ690116, $5.0). Also you may buy a new gasket to replace the old one on your oil drain plug. Remember the Japanese oil filter is slimmer than those sold in the USA from Mitsubishi dealers so it needs a different oil filter wrench diameter (Part # MB991396-01). The best bet is to take the old Japanese oil filter and the new USA oil filter (80 mm, 15 flutes) to Pet Boys or AutoZone or Walmart and request filter wrenches that fit these oil filters. The car section of Walmart has a lot of car service/care stuff, e.g. gloves for oil changes, small container/bucket for used engine oil, etc.

    Two jacks also facilitate the rotation of wheels in your car to comply with the directions given in your Owner’s Manual. You may need to buy a torque wrench (50-120 Nm or lb-ft equivalent) to torque your wheels after rotation (the standard torque value for the Outlander tires are 100-105 Nm).

    I do not remember how much I paid for these filter wrenches (but they are not expensive) but it will last the life of the car and beyond. Four and half quart of engine oil is $16.00 + $5.00 (OEM oil filter + $0.50 (gasket) make a total of $21.50. The cheapest price given to me for a change of oil service was $30.00 - $35.00. A 3/8 inches ratchet is needed. You may order a small set case of ratchets and sockets that will fit your oil drain plug bolt.
  • fastgstfastgst Posts: 46
    Do you mean my outlander comes with a smaller diameter oil filter from Japan,
    and at the parts department sells the US one which is bigger?

    Do you know what oil filter wrench that will aid remove the original oil filter on the outlander GT?
  • batman47batman47 Posts: 606
    The Japanese oil filter fitted in Japan to the GT has specification part# MD360935 which is slimmer to the equivalent US oil filter. The Japanese filter has a diameter of 2.63” while the MZ690116 has a diameter of 3.18”. The high of the MD360935 = 3.50” and the high of the MZ6900116 = 2.50”.
    The ratio is MZ690116/MD360935 = 1.045. Which means both type of filter can be used with the Outlander 3.0L.

    The wrench to easy the Japanese filter is part# MB991396-01 (order from Mitsubishi dealer or SPX Mitsubishi) and the wrench to easy US oil filter can be bought from Pet Boys, AutoZone or Wall Mart. The wrench is 80 mm diameter with 15 flutes.

    I hope this will help.
  • fastgstfastgst Posts: 46
    Thanks.. so I have to buy a special tool to remove the filter first time, then buy another tool to continue service the car using US filters..

    Also do you know the torque spec for the Oil drain plug.
    On my old eclipse it was 29 ft lbs with a new crush washer.

    But I heard these cars now have aluminum oil pan? I would guess the torque spec is 22 ft lbs or so.
  • batman47batman47 Posts: 606

    Oil drain plug torque = 35 N.m
    Oil filter torque = 1 turn (hand) or 14 N.m

    Otherwise you may take your car to Pep Boy or Wall Mart or any local garage for oil change. You may take with you the new oil container, the filter (US filter), and the gasket. You may ask the technician to handle to you the used Japanese filter, keep it as a souvenir. You may be charged $20-$25 for the labor.
  • fastgstfastgst Posts: 46
    Hey Batman,

    Do you have any tips to read the oil level on the V6 engine?

    Do I have to park for many hours before all splashed oil returned to the sump before able to take a clean reading from the dipstick?
  • 20vcq20vcq Posts: 82
    edited August 2012
    I am about to have a set out H&R springs mounted on my '07 Outlander XLS - I have experience with these on Audi other sedans and coupes - - Has anyone done this with their 07 or later Mitsu? Any comments would be appreciated.
  • 20vcq20vcq Posts: 82
    Its all about how you insert it. Turn it so markings are on the oether side - mine its on the left. ;-)
  • batman47batman47 Posts: 606
    After emptying all the oil into the oil pan (4.2 qt, 4.0L) and the old oil filter (0.32 qt, 0.3L) has been taken off, you may add exactly 4.2 qt of 5W-20 oil into the engine after a new oil filter has been fitted. When the car is horizontal (after taking the jacks from the front of the car) wipe the oil stick with a cloth and test the oil level (after running the engine for ½ a minute). Most probably the two holes on the stick will be empty. Start adding 0.10 qt of oil and check the oil stick. Repeat procedure until the first hole is covered with a thin layer of oil. Continue adding more 0.10 of oil and repeat procedure until the second hole is covered with a thin layer of oil.

    You may buy a transparent graduated funnel (1/2 liter or qt) to add oil gradually to the engine. I personally do not add oil to cover the second hole.

    Without any worries I add 4 qt of oil and then start to add oil until it reaches a total of 4.2 qt + 0.32 qt = 4.52 qt.

    Every month I check the engine oil and I am satisfied when the first hole is covered with a thin layer of oil. Never change oil when the engine is fresh.
  • batman47batman47 Posts: 606
    May I ask you why do you want to do this job?
  • fastgstfastgst Posts: 46
    Are you talking about the V6 engine? I thought the handle is like a knob and the end of the dipstick has the 2 holes and no special markings.
  • puncpunc Posts: 2
    When i start the car the engine check light and the ASC off warning lights are displayed and the engine stalls and the rpm is not stable and the car wont accelerate over 50kmph.. tried scanning it and error codes stating throttle control ecu fail and audio can time out comes up,
    please help with some solution for this ...
  • fushigifushigi Chicago suburbsPosts: 1,399
    If you're still under warranty I'd suggest taking it to a dealer. Unless you're not the first owner or have over 100K miles already the powertrain warranty should still be in effect. If you're not the first owner but the car has under 60K miles then warranty is still there. Review the warranty details at

    As far as a diagnosis goes, the ECU is the first place to look since that's what the error codes point to. Also consider the related sensors and the possibility of a tank of bad gas (which might necessitate checking/replacing the fuel filter).
    2017 Infiniti QX60 (me), 2012 Hyundai Elantra (wife)
  • batman47batman47 Posts: 606
    Please replace "transparent graduated funnel" by "transparent graduated jug"
  • evogt11evogt11 Posts: 1
    I had the same problem with AM. It wasn't the antenna. it was the head unit of the radio. I found a used one on e-bay. Rather easy to replace.
  • puncpunc Posts: 2
    i had my vehicle checked from a dealership service center here in sri lanka and they told me that this problem would be solved if the ECU was reprogrammed for which he said that the climate conditions are different so the sensors are faulty, would this be a solution to this problem??
  • It appears that the front suspension of the GT has been modified (stronger sway) to make the strut redundant in a GT. There are, however, aluminum strut tower bar as an option for the 2.0L & 2.4L Outlander sold in Japan (#MZ574483). Nevertheless, this option is not valid for the Outlander 3.0L. So I may said, do not try to fit a strut tower bar onto your Outlander GT.
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