DIY Oil Changes on a New Car

I have recently done something outside the realm of my automotive experience thus far: I’ve bought an honest-to-god new car!

I’ve never paid anyone to change my oil before and I’m hoping not to start now, but I’ve also never had a car with the warranty in force. I know in theory there should be no problem with this (Magnuson-Moss and all that) but I’m curious how that really shakes out in the real world.

What particularly concerns me is that I bought a Subaru that has one of their new family of engines in it that apparently occasionally likes to develop oil consumption issues (which admittedly isn’t that different from most of their old engine families, but I digress). Their acceptable oil consumption guideline is 1qt/1200 miles, but apparently they will replace engines for somewhat lower consumption levels at their discretion. So far so good with mine, but I’m concerned that I may miss out on getting a new engine if I show up 30,000 miles down the line with a car that’s eating, say, 1qt/1500 miles and only a stack of NAPA receipts to show for maintenance. Even if they couldn’t legally deny a clear-cut warranty claim, will that greatly color their discretion when it comes to a discretionary repair?

Anyone have any insight into this, especially the dealership-employed dopers? It’s not a lot of money (it calls for 7,500 mile oil changes, so only 5 until it’s out of warranty), but I would rather do them myself.

I’ve changed my own oil and did other maintenance such as air filters on new cars. I kept all the receipts as proof. Fortunately I never had a warranty issue where this has come into play.

New car for me last spring. I changed my own oil last fall. I have the receipts for the oil and the filter. On the filter invoice I wrote the date and mileage at which I changed the oil. That’ll do for me. I’ve followed the same policy over the years with my previous brand-new car and two brand-new motorcycles. I’ve never had to invoke an engine warranty, but I wouldn’t expect trouble just because I did my own maintenance (as long as I actually did do all the required maintenance on schedule, and kept reasonable records).

Keep in mind that it’s not in the dealer’s/manufacturer’s interest to capriciously deny warranty service. Customers talk to other customers, all the moreso now that we have the internet. Once word gets around that a manufacturer will do its goddamndest to avoid honoring a warranty, people will be much less excited about buying cars from that manufacturer.