GMC Sierra Owners Manual
For diesel engine vehicles, see “Engine Oil” in the Duramax Diesel Supplement.
To ensure proper engine performance and long life, careful attention must be paid to engine oil.
Following these simple, but important steps will help protect your investment:
• Always use engine oil approved to the proper specification and of the proper viscosity grade. See “Selecting the Right Engine Oil” in this section.
• Check the engine oil level regularly and maintain the proper oil level. See “Checking Engine Oil” and “When to Add Engine Oil” in this section.
• Change the engine oil at the appropriate time. See Engine Oil Life System on page 10‑10.
• Always dispose of engine oil properly. See “What to Do with Used Oil” in this section.
Checking Engine Oil
It is a good idea to check the engine oil level at each fuel fill. In order to get an accurate reading, the vehicle must be on level ground. The engine oil dipstick handle is a yellow loop. See Engine Compartment Overview on page 10‑6 for the location of the engine oil dipstick.
Obtaining an accurate oil level reading is essential:
1. If the engine has been running recently, turn off the engine and allow several minutes for the oil to drain back into the oil pan.
Checking the oil level too soon after engine shutoff will not provide an accurate oil level reading.
2. Pull out the dipstick and clean it with a paper towel or cloth, then push it back in all the way.
Remove it again, keeping the tip down, and check the level.
When to Add Engine Oil
If the oil is below the cross-hatched area at the tip of the dipstick, add 1 L (1 qt) of the recommended oil and then recheck the level. See “Selecting the Right Engine Oil” in this section for an explanation of what kind of oil to use. For engine oil crankcase capacity, see Capacities and Specifications on page 12‑2.
Notice: Do not add too much oil.
Oil levels above or below the acceptable operating range shown on the dipstick are harmful to the engine. If you find that you have an oil level above the operating range, i.e., the engine has so much oil that the oil level gets above the cross-hatched area that shows the proper operating range, the engine could be damaged. You should drain out the excess oil or limit driving of the vehicle and seek a service professional to remove the excess amount of oil.
See Engine Compartment Overview on page 10‑6 for the location of the engine oil fill cap.
Add enough oil to put the level somewhere in the proper operating range. Push the dipstick all the way back in when through.
Selecting the Right Engine Oil
Selecting the right engine oil depends on both the proper oil specification and viscosity grade.
See Recommended Fluids and Lubricants on page 11‑12.
Use and ask for licensed engine oils with the dexos1™ approved certification mark. Engine oils meeting the requirements for the vehicle should have the dexos™1 approved certification mark. This certification mark indicates that the oil has been approved to the dexos1 specification.
Notice: Failure to use the recommended engine oil or equivalent can result in engine damage not covered by the vehicle warranty. Check with your dealer or service provider on whether the oil is approved to the dexos1 specification.
SAE 5W-30 is the best viscosity grade for the vehicle. Do not use other viscosity grade oils such as SAE 10W-30, 10W-40, or 20W-50.
If in an area of extreme cold, where the temperature falls below −20°F (−29°C), an SAE 0W-30 oil should be used. An oil of this viscosity grade will provide easier cold starting for the engine at extremely low temperatures. When selecting an oil of the appropriate viscosity grade, always select an oil that meets the dexos1 specification or equivalent. See “Specification” for more information.
Engine Oil Additives/Engine Oil Flushes
Do not add anything to the oil. The recommended oils with the dexos specification and displaying the dexos certification mark are all that is needed for good performance and engine protection.
Engine oil system flushes are not recommended and could cause engine damage not covered by the vehicle warranty.
What to Do with Used Oil
Used engine oil contains certain elements that can be unhealthy for your skin and could even cause cancer. Do not let used oil stay on your skin for very long. Clean your skin and nails with soap and water, or a good hand cleaner. Wash or properly dispose of clothing or rags containing used engine oil. See the manufacturer's warnings about the use and disposal of oil products.
Used oil can be a threat to the environment. If you change your own oil, be sure to drain all the oil from the filter before disposal. Never dispose of oil by putting it in the trash or pouring it on the ground, into sewers, or into streams or bodies of water. Recycle it by taking it to a place that collects used oil.