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My grandson brought my daughters 1999 4 runner car over yesterday and said it needed some oil. I asked if he brought any and you know the answer to that. Found an old quart of conventional and looked at the dip stick- bone dry. Put the quart in and still bone dry. Found a 5 gallon jug of leftover good oil from my last Bimmer change that still had a quart and a half. Poured half that the jug in and still bone dry and the dip stick. Poured the other half in and still nothing on the dip stick. At this point I made sure I was pouring the oil into the engine and holding the correct dip stick. Made a call to my granddaughter who had changed the oil on this car while I was on vacation in Sept. on how much oil she put back into the car. She replied - a quart and a half! I went out and bought some more oil and put over another quart and a half in to get it to the full line. I asked my grandson if it was running okay and he said the only thing he noticed was it started up a little slower than normal. I have to say it must be a testament to the Toyota engineers that that car can run on 1.5 quarts of oil where it needs 5.5 quarts. I'm still a little flabbergasted. BTW, had my granddaughter point to the point in the car manual where it says how much to put back in. She found the correct chart, but said she got confused somehow.
 

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I had a customer with an old Accent who said the car needed a new fan belt. When I got there they all looked fine and when questioned why he said it was noisy. We started it up and just about every moving mechanical part in the engine rattled. He had been driving like that for a week. Checked the oil. Nothing on the stick. Added 4 litres to get it to the mark. That's all they take. It still rattled loudly so I took it for a drive and it slowly got quieter and quieter till all the noises had gone. He drove that car for 2 more years before trading it in. Seems like a good quality oil that has a good boundary layer can do marvelous things.
 

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I've seen people with Kia Rio that replaced oil after 30k miles. Still running great. Depends on how long you get the engine with no oil
 

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It's not a question on how much is needed to run, it's how long will it run with only X amount of oil in it.
 

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often accelerated wear can result, so what may have taken 20k miles with normal oil, takes far less as available oil gets hot and thin, all depends on how long and how driven with oil level low.
 
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