76 yr old lady here . . bought 2000 Jeep Grand Cherokee from a used car dealership in my town. They really are good guys. My question is this. I've had the car for 6 mos. and drove 1800 miles. Yesterday a red light came on dashboard that said check gauges. I didn't notice that any gauges had issues, but car began rat-a-tat-tatting under hood. I drove right over to dealership. he asked me when I had oil changed . Told him I did not have oil change but that I usually did that at 2K miles.
Sticker on windshield said 166+K at last oil change, which is what the mileage shows on my title when I purchased the car. Odometer now reads 168K rounded off, I drove 1800 miles. When he checked the dip stick there was NO oil showing on dip stick . Took almost one gallon oil. Started car up and now rattling is really bad which indicates the engine is shot. Where does the responsibility lie?

  • Welcome to Motor Vehicle Maintenance & Repair! Feb 6, 2018 at 15:21

1 Answer 1


I doubt you want to hear this, but really, the responsibility is yours. You are the owner and maintainer of the vehicle. As the owner, you cannot expect the dealership or manufacturer of the vehicle to check the oil for you, nor any other part of the car. This is incumbent upon you to keep things going and to realize if there is a basic issue with the vehicle. Had you done regular checks of the oil (or took it somewhere to have those checks done), it would have been recognized the oil was lower than it should have been and more oil could have been added. If there's a leak, these can usually be spotted by the tell tale spots on the floor of the garage or driveway, or by looking under the hood to see gunk buildup. If realized sooner, the oil leak or whatever is consuming the oil could have been identified and fixed, which would have precluded this problem in the first place.

If you are not able to do the checks yourself, you should take it every so often to where you get your oil changed to have them check it for you. Maybe you have a relative who could do it for you as well. Really, this is all part of vehicle ownership. I'm definitely sorry your engine is now toast, but unfortunately the fault lies with you in this case.

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