About 1.5 years and 4000 miles ago, I got a oil change at a local shop for my 2006 1.8L Nissan Sentra. Just last weekend I decided to change the oil and filter on it myself and to my dismay the amount of oil that came out was 4.5 quarts -- which alarmed me since the car only takes 3. Presumably this was due to operator error, but what I don't know is if 4.5 quarts was originally put in or if it was 5 and 1/2 quart burned off.

I'm aware that having too much oil is potentially harmful, but now that I've discovered this, how should one proceed going forward? Things I'm currently thinking of are:

  • Check the oil level myself more regularly, to see if it is now burning oil due to any damage done.
  • Ordering a UOA (Used Oil Analysis) kit from blackstone, to see if it reveals any accelerated wear occurred, and to see if they even used the right type of oil (5w-30).
  • Looking at various aftermarket additives, treatments, cleaners etc that may help clean up any carbon deposits.
  • 3
    I think you may have received some bad information. I'm seeing the 2.5L 4-cyl engine as having a 4.23qt oil capacity, without the oil filter. If you add in another .22qt for the filter, that's right at 4.5qt. Apr 26, 2019 at 18:11
  • 2
    Are you sure that another liquid is not getting into the sump?
    – Solar Mike
    Apr 26, 2019 at 18:12
  • I should have included it originally, but the car has a 1.8L engine. Official specs say 2.85 quarts service fill (3.28 for dry fill).
    – Garen
    Apr 26, 2019 at 21:59
  • Solar Mike - No I am not, although the oil that came out did all look like oil and of the right consistency.
    – Garen
    Apr 26, 2019 at 22:00
  • alphazero - I don't think I understand your question. I didn't check the oil level after getting it changed last year, never had a problem with that shop previously (dumb, eh?). Only now that I've discovered this problem last weekend have I thought to start checking more regularly. The car is still on ramps in my garage and hasn't been driven yet since I changed to new oil.
    – Garen
    Apr 26, 2019 at 22:02

1 Answer 1


The 3 points you are mentioning seem to be the correct procedure for this type of incident given that you did not notice any issue.

I'd suggest Mecacyl as an oil additive even though that might be placebo more than anything, I've always been statisfied with that product (especially the fuel additive).

The fact that the oil came at the right consistency is a good sign.

Proceed as you thought, I wouldn't be too worried about driving the car in its current condition.

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