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It seems that us as Sigforumites are cursed in the task of changing oil on a vehicle. I have heard many stories here of problems occurring during this seemingly innocuous task. Just recently I've seen two threads discussing stuck oil filters and the herculean efforts that were undertook to remedy them.

Then there is the longstanding heated debate of whether it's even worth it to change your own oil as its almost cheaper to pay someone to do it. The other side will argue they won't let any pit jockey touch their ride as they'll surely destroy it.

Well I'm here to say that I am not besieged by any of these trials and tribulations. I've done my own oil changes, and sometimes when I'm pressed for time I'll have someone else do it. I've not had a engine destroyed by someone else, and the worst I've had befall me doing it myself is a little spilled oil.

But that all changed today as I fell victim to the Sigforum oil change curse...

It started out simply enough. I got the filter wrench up there and was apprehensive thinking of the two recent threads about stuck filters, but a moderate twist set it free and I was relieved. That soon changed... Once the filter was free I articulated my wrist to turn it over into the drain pan. Well as we all know oil is slippery... So the filter slipped out of my hand. No big deal it landed right in the drain pan. Well I have one of those fancy drain pans with a reservoir underneath. I'll be damned if that thing isn't bouncier than a kids trampoline. That filter hit that pan bounced about a foot landed and proceeded to roll down the driveway glugging out black used oil the whole way. Mad

I crawled out from under the truck and went to pick up the POS which was now empty having dumped its contents the length of the driveway... I wiped up the big mess, and decided I'd hose the driveway off after I finished.

So next comes the drain plug. Well I know it's 15 mm so I grab my new ratcheting wrench set thinking this will work great on the plug and crawl under the truck. "Lets see here 12,13, 14, 16 mm, wait where is the 15mm"... Apparently this set doesn't include one... No wonder I got it on clearance.

Ok crawled back out got my old 15 mm combo wrench and wiggled back under the truck. Usually I come in from the passengers side as it gives me a better angle on the drain plug. Well the passenger side is an oily mess so I go under the drivers side. Look up and see the drain plug and proceed to remove it. Boy it came out tough and how come no oil is coming out. That's because you just removed another 15mm bolt that wasn't the drain plug. Mad Replace that bolt and locate the drain plug...

I get the drain plug out and had the pan perfectly lined up to not spill a drop. I think to myself "all right, this is turning around". Well that's the thing about irony it often occurs when we get smug.

I went in to grab another rag while the oil drained as the first one was used to clean up the mess from the filter. Coming out of the garage I see the oil still dripping in the catch pan, but wait a minute why is it so full.... oh shit. I forgot to open up the drain in the fancy reservoir pan. Mad Now there's more oil running down the driveway...

Reach in to the fricking oil, remove the drain from the pan, use the rag I just got to collect most of the new oil slick and apologize to the neighbor lady for my profanity laced tirade I just unleashed.

Got the new filter back in, and topped it off without further issue and used up a bottle of Dawn scrubbing the oil off the driveway.

Hope someone can get a good laugh at my expense I'm still unable too.

Si Quaeris Peninsulam Amoenam Circumspice
Posts: 1066 | Location: Ypsilanti, MI | Registered: August 03, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Striker in waiting
Picture of BurtonRW
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You did remember to replace the drain plug, didn't you? Razz

Also, next time, replace it with a Fumoto Valve and save yourself quite a bit of hassle and mess.


I predict that there will be many suggestions and statements about the law made here, and some of them will be spectacularly wrong. - jhe888

Posts: 14762 | Location: Maryland, AA Co. | Registered: March 16, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Run Silent
Run Deep

Picture of Patriot
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As I get older, I find the most simplest tasks getting more difficult...and normally turning into "ordeals"

Pledge allegiance or pack your bag!
The problem with Socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's money. - Margaret Thatcher
Spread my work ethic, not my wealth
Posts: 5638 | Location: South East, Pa | Registered: July 04, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Just chalk it up to "re learning". Big Grin
Posts: 636 | Location: Vermont | Registered: February 11, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Drill Here, Drill Now
Picture of tatortodd
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I have the full oil filter slip too, but fortunately my garage door was closed.

My old Silverado had a horizontal drain plug. When full, oil launched out of it, but as it emptied I had to move the pan. Seriously, an 18" pan had to be moved several times to capture oil. It was always a mess to change. I regret not buying a Fumoto for it.

Ego is the anesthesia that deadens the pain of stupidity

DISCLAIMER: These are the author's own personal views and do not represent the views of the author's employer.
Posts: 15677 | Location: N. Houston, TX | Registered: November 14, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
That's just the
Flomax talking
Picture of GaryBF
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Fumoto: one of mankind's greatest inventions. Just slip on a piece of tubing, open the valve, and drain away; no muss, no fuss.

Posts: 11101 | Location: St. Louis, Missouri | Registered: February 04, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Too soon old,
too late smart
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Originally posted by Patriot:
As I get older, I find the most simplest tasks getting more difficult...and normally turning into "ordeals"

I know exactly how you feel. It's getting harder and harder for me to get up and down. I found a one man vehicle inspection shop that also does oil changes. His prices are reasonable plus I get to watch him work while we swap yarns, etc.
Posts: 3798 | Location: Southern Texas | Registered: May 17, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Funny, I had my Honda up on jacks last weekend to do the front brakes and it is about due for an oil change...I thought about it for about 45 seconds and, based on horror stories I read on here, said fuck it. It will actually cost me less to have the shop down the street do it.

The brakes are a whole different story and would have been much easier had the parts guy given me the correct pads the first time!
Posts: 3324 | Location: Peoria, AZ | Registered: November 07, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of whododat
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Jiffy lube is hiring, just a suggestion...

Escape is not always the safest path.
Posts: 1201 | Location: central nj | Registered: October 29, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Been there, done this exact scenario multiple times. still got the oily tee shirt.
I much prefer when shit goes wrong on an oil change instead of a major repair.
I beat on a ball joint on my wife's old Fusion for 3 days. Had the right tool, a BFH and a torch - nothing seemed to help.
Posts: 2351 | Location: IN | Registered: January 12, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Did you come from behind
that rock, or from under it?

Picture of Audioholic
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Around my house I'm known as the Foil King. If I'm dealing with food aluminum foil is usually involved and if I'm changing oil on a car or motorcycle then it's definitely in use. I fabricate shields/guides from foil so oil spillage from the filter ends up in the pan. It only takes a minute or so to rig up and keeps oil off of hoses, boots, wiring, suspension, etc. To me it's faster than cleaning up the vehicle and/or the driveway afterwards and saves on cleaning supplies. Crumple the foil and chuck it when done. Aluminum foil is cheap and most households have some around.

Another recommendation is avoid changing oil on a windy day. Wink

The worst vehicle I've ever owned to change oil on was a 1995 Thunderbird with a 4.6L V8. You had to snake the filter out between the suspension and crossmember so there was no way to not dump oil all over. After doing that job and cleanup once I said never again. Ordered a filter relocation kit from Summit Racing and mounted it where it was easily accessed. An oil change went from a 20 minute pain-in-the-ass to a ten minute breeze and was well worth the $40 I spent on the kit.

Sic semper libtardis
Posts: 1859 | Location: 10th state | Registered: February 07, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I don't even remember what car it was, but the last time I crawled under a car and saw the nub of the filter peeking out was the last time I tried. I have a widely varied skill set that does NOT include working on cars.
Posts: 13813 | Location: Lexington, KY | Registered: October 15, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of mcrimm
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Filters from Amazon and 5 gallon jugs of Mobil One from Walmart - combined about $25 after rebate. It's just too easy to do it myself and save a bunch of money. So far, I haven't had an incident. So far.

I'm sorry if I hurt you feelings when I called you stupid - I thought you already knew - Unknown
When you have no future, you live in the past. " Sycamore Row" by John Grisham
Liberalism is a failure to find pathways to intelligence in your brain. - David Lawrence
Posts: 1283 | Location: Kalispell Montana & Florida’s Emerald Coast for the Winter | Registered: December 24, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Getting older and forgetting stuff....

I've done my oil 3 or 4 times now. The last time I took the tranny plug out by mistake. As soon as I saw the cherry red glow in the sunlight pouring out....D'OH! They're about a foot apart, and the oil plug is actually on an angle on the side in back of the oil pan...not in sight on the bottom of the oil pan looking from the front.
Posts: 87 | Registered: March 08, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Staring back
from the abyss
Picture of Gustofer
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Originally posted by BurtonRW:
Also, next time, replace it with a Fumoto Valve and save yourself quite a bit of hassle and mess.

I've not seen those before. Just ordered one up from Amazon. Thanks for the tip.


"How dreadful are the curses which Mohammedanism lays on its votaries! Besides the fanatical frenzy, which is as dangerous in a man as hydrophobia in a dog, there is this fearful fatalistic apathy." Winston Churchill
Posts: 14163 | Location: Montana | Registered: November 01, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Only the strong survive
Picture of 41
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Do not want the Fumoto Valve...just another trick for the neighborhood kids to mess up your ride. Mad

"Donald Trump is the grizzly bear in The Revenant. If you get his attention, he’ll be awake, bite your face off, and sit on you.".. Newt Gingrich.

Posts: 10080 | Location: Herndon, VA | Registered: June 11, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I'm going to curse myself here, but I've been pretty lucky in that I've had pretty much run of the mill oil changes here since the first time I tried it, where my first oil pan was 1) too small for my application, and 2) broke open on me and dumped oil all over the floor. Since then I've gotten pretty good at aiming the oil pan and removing the drain plug such that I don't miss anything nor get anything on my hands.

Initially I wanted a Fumoto valve, but the more I think about the parts of town I spend the majority of the average work day in, the more I'm with 41.

"In order to understand recursion, you must first learn the principle of recursion."
Posts: 2592 | Location: Memphis, TN | Registered: August 23, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of henryaz
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It will wash/wear away, as long as you hosed it off. And after a year or so, never appear to have been there. I found this out by inverting a Toyota 2F (inline 6) engine on an engine stand (gravity took over and inverted it a bit quicker than I could handle), and dumping the entire 8 quart sump on the concrete driveway. Hosed it off quickly, and now you cannot see it was ever there. This happened about 7 years ago, but after the first year, the stain was gone.
Posts: 7603 | Location: South Congress AZ | Registered: May 27, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Spread the Disease
Picture of flesheatingvirus
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Originally posted by 41:
Do not want the Fumoto Valve...just another trick for the neighborhood kids to mess up your ride. Mad

Damn. You must have some shit neighborhood kids if you have to worry about something like that. I'd have some cameras up so I could catch and flog the little bastards.


-- Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past me I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain. --
Posts: 14156 | Location: New Mexico | Registered: October 14, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
thin skin can't win
Picture of Georgeair
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Hope someone can get a good laugh at my expense I'm still unable too.

Only had to get as far as the image of the filter rolling perfectly down the drive plugging oil everywhere to LOL. You had to be thinking "SERIOUSLY! How much oil can be in a filter!!!"

You only have integrity once. - imprezaguy02

Posts: 8280 | Location: Madison, MS | Registered: December 10, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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