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#4593820 - 12/04/17 10:26 AM My First Oil Change On a Low Slung Car
Virtus_Probi Offline


Registered: 06/25/15
Posts: 3970
Loc: New England
I did the oil/filter for my daughter's '15 Impreza over the weekend and it was quite an eye opener for me.

I have only changed my Forester prior to this and it is pretty easy, I get plenty of clearance just by jacking up one side and then putting jack stands on both sides...hadn't touched my ramps in a while. I tried jacking up one side of the Impreza and didn't have nearly enough room to work, plus the other side didn't seem to come up that much and I wasn't very comfortable with how it looked (maybe my Forester is stiffer and the left/right stay more even?). I busted the ramps out and thought I could get it done then, but it was still quite tight and I was not able to operate my torque wrench very effectively as the drain plug sat at a pretty severe angle. I figured that I could get it off with a shorter wrench, but I really like to use a torque wrench for tightening the plug. To top it all off, I had assumed that the Impreza drain plug would be the same as mine and it wasn't, so I didn't have the right size of crush washer ready to go...I punted and decided to think about things before proceeding.

I was skiing the next day when it hit me that I had a darned oil extractor in the garage! I used it for the change later in the day with no issues.

The bad news is that the drain plug on the Impreza looked pretty bad when I checked to see if I had the right size of socket for it, rounded off somewhat and also gouged a bit. I'm not sure if I'm going to try to deal with that myself or let a dealer take care of it next time it's in for a major service.

Really didn't expect the little car to be such a hassle, guess I've been pretty fortunate with how easy it is to drop the plug on my car.


Edited by Virtus_Probi (12/04/17 10:32 AM)
_________________________
2014 Forester XT, 80500 miles
Last Change;
Valvoline Full Synthetic 5W30 d1G2
Tokyo Roki 15208AA170 filter

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#4593829 - 12/04/17 10:35 AM Re: My First Oil Change On a Low Slung Car [Re: Virtus_Probi]
skyactiv Offline


Registered: 03/02/13
Posts: 4397
Loc: The Midwest
Oh boy
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Wife: 15' Audi A4 quattro 6 speed manual
Me: 13' VW GTI 3 door 6 speed manual

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#4593839 - 12/04/17 10:53 AM Re: My First Oil Change On a Low Slung Car [Re: Virtus_Probi]
dishdude Offline


Registered: 11/14/08
Posts: 8742
Loc: Phoenix
I feel your pain, my Fiat is a challenge to get under too, and there's a belly pan with like 10 bolts that need to come off to access the drain plug. I drove one wheel up on a 2x6 and it gave me enough room to work but it was tight!
_________________________
2018 Challenger SRT

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#4593842 - 12/04/17 10:56 AM Re: My First Oil Change On a Low Slung Car [Re: Virtus_Probi]
andyd Online   content


Registered: 09/25/04
Posts: 7149
Loc: Marshfield , MA
Considering it was the first go round on a new (to you).car. You handled the situation. Hooray for the oil extractor. Now you have an entire OCI to plan the next move. I'm glad I did a little research prior to changing the Camry's oil+ filter.
_________________________
'16 Camry LE STP synth 0w20 and STP filter. the Fridge

1994 Ranger ,the Rat, 5w30 dino, STP filter

'16 Camry SE, Valvoline HM 0w20 and OEM filter
Thick oil is better grin2

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#4593851 - 12/04/17 11:09 AM Re: My First Oil Change On a Low Slung Car [Re: Virtus_Probi]
JoelB Offline


Registered: 06/27/16
Posts: 220
Loc: Minnesota
I will avoid jacking a car up at all costs. I can change both our household cars and my mother's dodge journey just by using my long arms. It certainly isn't the easiest way to do it but I'm paranoid about the jack or jackstands cracking or removing paint and exposing a spot for rust.
_________________________
2018 Nissan Sentra 1.8
Factory fill

2014 Chevy sonic 1.8
Mobil 1 5w30
AcDelco filter

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#4593855 - 12/04/17 11:13 AM Re: My First Oil Change On a Low Slung Car [Re: Virtus_Probi]
fenixguy Offline


Registered: 02/08/17
Posts: 307
Loc: NC
The most fun I had with a low car was a friend's 1990ish Nissan 300Z. They're already a low car and this one was lowered. Had to pull it on some 2x8s just to get a low profile jack under it.
_________________________
'16 Frontier SV 4x4-PP/Nissan OEM
'08 CR-V EX AWD-Valvoline Syn MaxLife/Fram TG
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'00 Civic LX-PYB/Fram UG

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#4593865 - 12/04/17 11:19 AM Re: My First Oil Change On a Low Slung Car [Re: Virtus_Probi]
ARCOgraphite Offline


Registered: 05/17/09
Posts: 11970
Loc: N.H, U.S.A.
Some of the early FB engines came with very soft oil drain bolts that would round off if you used a box wrench - even expertly. I had a long thread with Al in forester dot org about it a while back. Made in china sub- component pan and bolt garbage IIRC.
I had to buy a new drain plug bolt from the dealer and they wouldn't even give it to me for free. The replacement bolt was fine.

Now: Was the '15 impreza head a 17 or a 14mm? Was ther a platic undertray with a small cutout for the DP?

At least the spin on FILTER was on top of the engine!
_________________________
2014 Nissan Rogue S CVT, OC#9 41392mi-QSUD10W30 + M110A CHAMP Filter; 2017 Subaru Crosstrek CVT OC#2 ?? mi-SOA/Idemitsu 0w20 + SOA Filter

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#4593877 - 12/04/17 11:35 AM Re: My First Oil Change On a Low Slung Car [Re: Virtus_Probi]
Danh Offline


Registered: 10/16/10
Posts: 1750
Loc: .
I think the Impreza has a top-mounted oil filter. Why not combine this with an oil extractor (Mityvac, etc) and do the whole thing "topside"? You may not even have to change clothes!

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#4593888 - 12/04/17 11:52 AM Re: My First Oil Change On a Low Slung Car [Re: Virtus_Probi]
Miller88 Offline


Registered: 04/09/08
Posts: 12703
Loc: Onondaga County
I used to have to jack up the focus and get it on stands to do the oil change.

It's awfully geared transmission meant it couldn't climb ramps.

I am spoiled by the F-350 and cherokee.
_________________________
18 Forester 2.5I 6M
00 Jeep Cherokee
01 Ford F-350 XL 4x4 5M

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#4593915 - 12/04/17 12:34 PM Re: My First Oil Change On a Low Slung Car [Re: Virtus_Probi]
old1 Offline


Registered: 01/04/11
Posts: 1001
Loc: Columbus Nebraska
I hate jacking modern cars, and even my 65 mustang. So I built ramps unlike anything you buy. I made them from 2x12 and 3/4 inch plywood, all screwed together with long screws. It is 8 ft long and 12 inches high. EEEAsy to drive up on, and lots of room even for an old fat guy like me. And yes, it is STRONG. It will easily hold twice the weight of any car. If I could post pix here, I could show the construction. They are heavy, but I can drag them around, and stand them on end for storage.
_________________________
2017 Nissan Frontier 4.0 5w30
1965 Mustang 200 c/4 10w30 QS defy
1964 Ford Ranchero 302 c/4 15/40 Delo
1929 ford model A No filters, and 15/40 oil

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#4593925 - 12/04/17 12:46 PM Re: My First Oil Change On a Low Slung Car [Re: ARCOgraphite]
Virtus_Probi Offline


Registered: 06/25/15
Posts: 3970
Loc: New England
Originally Posted By: ARCOgraphite
Some of the early FB engines came with very soft oil drain bolts that would round off if you used a box wrench - even expertly. I had a long thread with Al in forester dot org about it a while back. Made in china sub- component pan and bolt garbage IIRC.
I had to buy a new drain plug bolt from the dealer and they wouldn't even give it to me for free. The replacement bolt was fine.

Now: Was the '15 impreza head a 17 or a 14mm? Was ther a platic undertray with a small cutout for the DP?

At least the spin on FILTER was on top of the engine!


The Impreza had a 17mm head and my Forester is 14mm. I suppose the dimensions of the threaded area might possibly be the same, but I doubt it because I bought a 17mm head plug for my car by accident a few years back and it looked like a totally different deal from my 14mm. There was an undertray with a small port for drain plug access and it was kind of in the way, but I didn't try to take it off because I decided it wasn't the root cause of my problems.

Yep, the filter on top made it such that I didn't really have to get under the car at all. I checked the air filter and I thought it would be a lot easier to crack open the Impreza's air box because there is so much more room around it than in my Forester, but it was still a PITA and a lot of wrestling to get back together. The filter looked nearly pristine.
_________________________
2014 Forester XT, 80500 miles
Last Change;
Valvoline Full Synthetic 5W30 d1G2
Tokyo Roki 15208AA170 filter

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#4593946 - 12/04/17 01:06 PM Re: My First Oil Change On a Low Slung Car [Re: Virtus_Probi]
i_hate_autofraud Online   content


Registered: 05/19/16
Posts: 705
Loc: Canada

"I did the oil/filter for my daughter's '15 Impreza over the weekend and it was quite an eye opener for me."


If it was tough for you, I'd worry how bad a dealer or lube shop would be! Techs are rushed to max and pushed
hard so they make mistakes at your expense!

As a DYI, you'll do a better job and own the results, dealers don't take responsibility at all!

The 'big-time' GM Chevrolet / Corvette dealer in my area screwed up my last under warranty work,
destroyed the oil plug! then replaced it! I wasn't even in for an oil change! What idiots! SAD!

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#4593981 - 12/04/17 01:35 PM Re: My First Oil Change On a Low Slung Car [Re: fenixguy]
aquariuscsm Online   content


Registered: 12/30/06
Posts: 18170
Loc: Dallas,Tx USA
Originally Posted By: fenixguy
The most fun I had with a low car was a friend's 1990ish Nissan 300Z. They're already a low car and this one was lowered. Had to pull it on some 2x8s just to get a low profile jack under it.


Haha yep!! Z32's sit so low they're impossible to get under without ramps. And they sit too low to just drive them up on ramps. I have two pieces of wood,two bricks,and then the ramps. But oil changes are a piece of cake!! Everything is right there in plain sight. I can't do it in about 10 minutes.
_________________________
1996 Nissan 300ZX 5-speed,Arctic Pearl(#175 of 300)
Quaker State Ultimate Durability 10W30
2012 Honda Accord Coupe EX-L 2.4,auto,San Marino Red
Pennzoil Platinum 0W20



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#4593994 - 12/04/17 01:42 PM Re: My First Oil Change On a Low Slung Car [Re: Virtus_Probi]
Merkava_4 Offline


Registered: 01/30/07
Posts: 17501
Loc: Clovis, CA
Wow! You managed to make a simple oil change sound like a complicated engine replacement procedure. grin

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#4593998 - 12/04/17 01:48 PM Re: My First Oil Change On a Low Slung Car [Re: Virtus_Probi]
Chris142 Offline


Registered: 06/05/03
Posts: 16820
Loc: Deplorable in apple valley, ca
I would not be too concerned about using a tq wrench on the bolt. Just snug is fine for this.
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02 Wrangler durablend 10w40
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