Yesterday while I was changing the oil in my Ram 2500, I thought about many things. Chief among them is, why am I even doing this? Changing the oil in the Cummins-equipped x500 is a royal pain, mostly due to the placement of the oil filter:
Also is the fact you have 3 gallons of oil coming out of the vehicle, something that makes doing this prohibitive.
- So I did a little cost estimate: the dealer will do it for about $126. You get to drop your vehicle off, or wait for it on a Saturday. Expect to spend 2-3 hours waiting for it. Then you wonder what kind of oil you are getting. For the Ram, they supposedly use Valvoline, a good quality oil but it’s not on the same level as a Mobil 1, Amsoil or Shell Rotella (synthetic).
Changing oil at our on-base Auto Hobby Shop cost me $8 for a lift. I drained three gallons of old Shell Rotella and installed 3 gallons of new Shell Rotella, which cost me $63. I installed a new Fleetguard ($16) oil filter, which by the way, is a better filter than the Mopar filter which Ram will push. Fleetguard makes both of those filters. It took me less than an hour to drain the old oil, swap the filters, clean up (you cannot avoid spilling oil on the floor with the filter placement) and reset of the oil life gauge.
I’ve always had a thing when it comes to oil quality. My suspicions are, Amsoil & Mobil 1 are at the top. Chevron is another superb oil, Valvoline, Havoline, Castrol work well and Pennzoil is about Walmart quality. This list was ingrained when I started driving and had not changed over the past 35 years. This came about due to an experience I had where I took my vehicle in for an oil change, using oil I purchased. They took my oil and put a different oil in my vehicle. If I can’t see them do it, they don’t get to do it.