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#4483452 - 08/09/17 09:02 AM Aftermarket dipstick for 05 Sienna?
paulri Offline


Registered: 08/14/15
Posts: 752
Loc: CA, USA
I have always had a tough time getting a good reading on my Sienna dipstick. Really not sure what the issue is. Yesterday on one side, the oil was 80% up, in between the low and high marks; on the other side, it went a few inches higher than the high mark. Wiped it off and did it again, got the exact same results every time. Finally I just put it back in and gave up. Each time I try to read the oil level on my Sienna, there is something that keeps me from getting a reading that I'm confident is accurate. If the 80% level is the accurate reading, that would mean that after roughly 2500 miles, I would be low by about a third of a quart, so that is very possible.

Anyways, my question---would a different dipstick help me out here (I really have no idea if this would be the case or not)? And if so, are there any suppliers that anyone here would recommend?
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2005 Toyota Sienna LE; 148,000 miles
1998 Honda Civic DX; 197,000 miles

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#4483491 - 08/09/17 09:38 AM Re: Aftermarket dipstick for 05 Sienna? [Re: paulri]
JC1 Offline


Registered: 11/29/08
Posts: 2999
Loc: Oshawa, Ontario Canada
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#4483544 - 08/09/17 10:24 AM Re: Aftermarket dipstick for 05 Sienna? [Re: paulri]
TmanP Offline


Registered: 10/30/15
Posts: 436
Loc: MN
I know exactly what you mean! Ours is the same way. Till the oil has darkened, it's near impossible. Even then, it's very tough. It's a terrible design, but luckily it doesn't burn oil.
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2010 Toyota Sienna 3.5 V6 150,000 mi

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#4483552 - 08/09/17 10:29 AM Re: Aftermarket dipstick for 05 Sienna? [Re: JC1]
paulri Offline


Registered: 08/14/15
Posts: 752
Loc: CA, USA
I watched the video. That deals with oil that is too light to see against the dipstick. Mine is dark brown, but the problem is that on one side it went well over the full mark, and on the other side, it was short of the mark. I could see where the oil level was on each side clearly enough.

Originally Posted By: JC1
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2005 Toyota Sienna LE; 148,000 miles
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#4483561 - 08/09/17 10:39 AM Re: Aftermarket dipstick for 05 Sienna? [Re: paulri]
bubbatime Offline


Registered: 03/18/08
Posts: 5619
Loc: South Florida
I know what you mean. Ive seen that on several cars. I think its just the bad design which wipes oil higher on the dipstick on one side for some reason.

At any rate, this is an easy problem. The side that is lower is the correct oil level. In your case, the 80% side with the oil level between full and add is the correct oil level.
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#4483562 - 08/09/17 10:40 AM Re: Aftermarket dipstick for 05 Sienna? [Re: paulri]
KrisZ Offline


Registered: 12/23/06
Posts: 7456
Loc: Toronto, Canada
Always go with the lower reading as true. Problem solved.
You obviously cannot have two different oil levels on each side of the dipstick, so the higher level is most likely from the dipstick rubbing on the tube and dragging a bit of oil along, hence the higher reading.
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#4483568 - 08/09/17 10:45 AM Re: Aftermarket dipstick for 05 Sienna? [Re: KrisZ]
paulri Offline


Registered: 08/14/15
Posts: 752
Loc: CA, USA
Originally Posted By: KrisZ
You obviously cannot have two different oil levels on each side of the dipstick....


I bet I could if I took a hairpin curve at 90. That would probably really be something to see in my Sienna.

But it ain't gonna happen. eek
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2005 Toyota Sienna LE; 148,000 miles
1998 Honda Civic DX; 197,000 miles

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#4483739 - 08/09/17 01:47 PM Re: Aftermarket dipstick for 05 Sienna? [Re: paulri]
DeafBrad Offline


Registered: 05/10/16
Posts: 236
Loc: WA
Pretty sure the other guys are right about the side with the lowest oil reading is correct. But if it gives you peace of mind, change the oil and put the exact amount the owner's manual calls for. Then look on the dipstick to see which side reads full. Use that side from here on out to tell your dipstick level.
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#4483768 - 08/09/17 02:25 PM Re: Aftermarket dipstick for 05 Sienna? [Re: paulri]
Gokhan Offline


Registered: 12/29/10
Posts: 2987
Loc: Los Angeles, California
No, don't get an aftermarket dipstick. You need to use the OEM.

I have a similar problem with the dipstick for the Toyota Aisin Warner A240L automatic transmission, which is flexible and goes through a curved pipe. ATF never leaks but I need to check it after a fluid change. It's the toughest and most reliable automatic transmission that has ever been built though.

You just need to figure out which side is giving you the correct reading and you will be fine. It shouldn't be that hard to figure out what's really going on.
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1985 Toyota Corolla LE, 4A-LC engine, ~ 270,000 M
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#4483775 - 08/09/17 02:38 PM Re: Aftermarket dipstick for 05 Sienna? [Re: paulri]
mightymousetech Offline


Registered: 04/03/17
Posts: 1443
Loc: Ontario, Canada
The side with the lower level will be the correct one. It is just the stick dragging on the tube causing the false higher reading. The level can not be at the higher side, it would show at least that high on both sides if it was.
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#4483820 - 08/09/17 03:33 PM Re: Aftermarket dipstick for 05 Sienna? [Re: mightymousetech]
Gokhan Offline


Registered: 12/29/10
Posts: 2987
Loc: Los Angeles, California
Originally Posted By: mightymousetech
The side with the lower level will be the correct one. It is just the stick dragging on the tube causing the false higher reading. The level can not be at the higher side, it would show at least that high on both sides if it was.

It make sense. The only way the higher side would be the correct level would be if the other side was wiped off by the tube while pulling the dipstick, but since there is nothing in the tube to wipe off the oil, this can't happen.

So, use the lower reading.
_________________________
1985 Toyota Corolla LE, 4A-LC engine, ~ 270,000 M
Toyota (TGMO) 0W-20 SN synthetic
Mobil 1 EP M1-103 filter, 90430-12031 drain gasket

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