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OK, not sure if it’s the biggest mistake I’ve ever made, but it could be...
Well I just bought a 99 Honda accord from a used car dealership about a month and a half ago. When I got it I decided to change the oil myself like I always have. I thought 4 cyl cars always get 10w30 or at least it’s ok to put that weight oil in. Even after seeing the spec on the oil cap I still put the 10w30 in... I ask a few friends who know about cars and that told me it should be a problem this time, but don’t do it again. You also need to keep in mind I live in NY were it has been 10-35 degrees the last month and a half... about a week ago i decided to check my oil, this is after driving 1,200 miles since the oil change. When I pulled the dip stick NO OIL. WTF. So I thought to myself maybe the car need to be warm to check the oil. Not the case. So I quickly ran to PEP BOYS and got 5w30 to put in.... I drain the old oil and only about 2 1/2 to 3 quarts came out... so it was probably low about 2 quarts....

Here is my problem... recently (the last few days) ive been hearing a tapping when the car is cold, and can still hear it when it is warm but not as bad. I check the oil level since putting in the 5w30 and its ok, that’s after about 300 miles... the car only has 70,000 miles on it and I am worried I really did something wrong...

I also went to Honda today and the mechanic said tapping is normal for Honda in the cold I’m only worried because it does it slightly when it’s warm, but its really not that bad. I’m just worried because I bought the car a little over a month ago.

Some one please give me comfort
 

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valves....

valves ticking (if it is in fact coming from the valvetrain) is a sign that the valve lash is off (the space between the cam and the lifters). you can have a shop adjust this for a small fee if this in fact the case.

also, ticking coming from a cold valvetrain isnt really a problem, although it is if its coming from a warm one...

I cant understand how the engine would consume a THICKER oil faster than a thinner one.... although im not really that familliar with accords I saw this post and it reminded me of my problem. Also, if you have hydraulic lifters (this is common in mazdas, but im not so sure about hondas) the ticking comes from a clogged vent hole type dohickey in the lifter itself. make sure to check if you have hydraulic lifters. if you do, and its ticking, do this:
1) drain the oil, and put in a cheapo filter.
2) next, put in one quart thick oil and three quarts ATF (yes, Automatic Tranny fluid - we want the detergents and cleaning agents present in aTF) assuming its a four quart engine.
3) run the engine for about an hour
4) drain the atf and oil (if you want you can flush it with about a gallon of kerosene, but otherwise just let it drain for awhile)
5) lastly, put the drain plug back in and fill up your engine with your favorite oil and a good quality filter (such as a Honda OEM or Mobil 1)

the tick should be gone - but remember... this will only fix the problem if you have hydraulic lifters.
otherwise, IMO the tick is caused by misadjusted valves, which arent hard to fix.
 
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I live in NY and I always run a thicker oil in the winter. Also, how long have you been running your car to let it "warm up"?
 
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scottie16420 said:
i let it warm up completely before i drive it
It takes about 30-45 minutes of actual driving for your car to warm up fully in these temps. But, it's a good idea to let it "warm up" a bit before you drive it, I always do. Next time you drive for a while, check and see if you're still hearing that "clicking."

But, my mechanic is the one that told me to run a thicker oil in the winter. You wouldn't want to use a synthetic oil, then go back to a non-synthetic oil. But, running a slightly heavier oil will not hurt it.
 

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if your engine is consuming oil, you better check for leaks....try taking out your plug wires from the valve cover and see if your spark plugs are swimming in oil. if they are, then you've got to replace the plug seals.
 

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and if you see the blue smoke out the back you should try replacing the valve seals. i still have to do that to my car...

but a thicker oil is not gonna matter much, as long as it's not crazily out of proportion... at my garage we use 10W-20 for cars that take 5W-20 because it's better for the colder weather. your car will be fine :)
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I check my oil levels again today and they were about 3/4 quart low this is only after about 400 miles of driving. I did replace the 10w30 with 5w30...
I didn’t notice any leaks coming from the oil pan or crank, or any other place on the motor... I didn’t check around the oil filter, but there are no oil stains on my driveway. I pulled the wires and there is no oil in the holes...

One strange thing though. The oil seems very dark for oil that only has been used for 400 miles. Any clues to what is happening

Remember its cold here in NY, does this make a difference??? I always let my car warm up for about 10 min before driving. Even if it was already started a few hours before... could this just be oil being burned in the motor?? No wierd smoke coming from the exhaust either... This is strange; I never expected this from a Honda.....
 

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that much oil that soon is a problem...problem is a used car without records can have hidden problems..... check coolant and see of there is contamination, bad rings on the pistons will consume oil but the plugs may be badly fouled. if there is oil in coolant or coolant in oil, then head is cracked or head gasket is bad.... you need a compression test for the rings.... hondas usually don't consume oil.....the ticking can sometimes be due to a clogged or cheap oil filter.... ticking can also be from oil not getting up to heads.... also should not be that dirty..... also think about your emissions components like the pcv valve or egr valve.... good luck let us know if you find out...
 
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