Am I Paranoid? Honda J35 Stripped Drain Bolt

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33
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Ohio
Hey folks, I've been lurking this site for a long time and absorbing all the great info, but never had an occasion to post until now. I'm looking for some opinions on whether I'm going to be alright.

A couple days ago while I was changing the oil on our '08 Odyssey (3.5L Honda J35, aluminum block and pan), the drain plug suddenly got loose and left some threads behind when I pulled it out. I blame a combination of the PO taking it to Jiffy Lube type places and age - I've read that the aluminum threads in these Honda pans don't last forever. The plug was pretty stripped, not holding on very well when I tried threading it back in. The threads in the pan seemed a little beat too, but still serviceable. My solution was to get one of those slightly oversized self tapping plugs from the parts store and screw that in since I had to get the van back on the road. It seems to be holding well and isn't leaking any oil after 100 miles or so. Before I installed it, I took a shop towel and tried to clean some of the old metal out of the drain hole/threads.

My question is, could the old plug have left behind metal that will circulate in the oil and score bearings, cause wear, etc? Would the used oil flowing through the drain hole have washed most of the metal out with it? Will the filter be able to catch any bits that were left behind/should I short the interval on the next change just in case? Thanks for your help. I'm thinking it'll be alright but I'm still young and trying to learn about this stuff - I could use some experienced opinions.
 
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1,134
Location
PA
How many miles on the vehicle? I would guess that you are probably fine since you already went 100 miles but maybe that's just my opinion. Really your only other option is to replace the pan. My dad had to replace the pan in his CR-V with near 300K miles on the clock from a stripped plug. He junked it from rust around 310K.
 
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Connecticut
My sister owns a 2003 Acura 3.2TL with a J-series V6. She brought it to a shop who stripped out the threads in the pan, just in time for me to do the next oil change and find it. :mad:

The good news is the threads in the pan extend a bit further than the drain bolt, so if you find a regular bolt with the same thread just a half inch or so longer, you can thread that in with a crush washer and it will fix the issue. As far as metal bits, I wouldn't be worried, anything in there will go through the filter before bearing surfaces.
 

OdysseyTypeR

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33
Location
Ohio
How many miles on the vehicle? I would guess that you are probably fine since you already went 100 miles but maybe that's just my opinion. Really your only other option is to replace the pan. My dad had to replace the pan in his CR-V with near 300K miles on the clock from a stripped plug. He junked it from rust around 310K.
Hey Jayjr,

It's got about 210k on it right now. Has been rock solid other than this, hoping to hold onto it for a while.
 
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OdysseyTypeR

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33
Location
Ohio
My sister owns a 2003 Acura 3.2TL with a J-series V6. She brought it to a shop who stripped out the threads in the pan, just in time for me to do the next oil change and find it. :mad:

The good news is the threads in the pan extend a bit further than the drain bolt, so if you find a regular bolt with the same thread just a half inch or so longer, you can thread that in with a crush washer and it will fix the issue. As far as metal bits, I wouldn't be worried, anything in there will go through the filter before bearing surfaces.
Thanks for the help, Jeepman. My first thought was that the filter would take care of any metal that was left behind, but I wanted to be sure. I already installed an oversized self tapping bolt.
 
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1,134
Location
PA
Funny we were discussing fumoto drain valves and then this post comes up.

Sounds like a candidate for one IMO once you get the threads cleaned up.
If you buy the one for this vehicle, won't it now not fit since he used a self tapping slightly oversized plug? If the new oversized plug holds nice and snug, I'd keep using it until it shows signs of weakness then just get a new pan.
 

OdysseyTypeR

Thread starter
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33
Location
Ohio
Funny we were discussing fumoto drain valves and then this post comes up.

Sounds like a candidate for one IMO once you get the threads cleaned up.
Definitely something to think about. Next time the plug comes out I'll have to check out what the threads look like again.

Edit: Jayjr is right, I'll have to see if there's a size that fits my new, bigger drain hole
 
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JC1

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If you buy the one for this vehicle, won't it now not fit since he used a self tapping slightly oversized plug? If the new oversized plug holds nice and snug, I'd keep using it until it shows signs of weakness then just get a new pan.
Yes if he does an oversized plug then it won't work.
 

BlueOvalFitter

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Lately, there have been several posts here about stripped oil pan drain plugs/drain plug holes. How does someone strip a drain plug/pan hole? I have been changing oil for 40 something years and have NEVER even come close to stripping a pan or plug. How does one do this?
SMH! :rolleyes:
 

OdysseyTypeR

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33
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Ohio
Lately, there have been several posts here about stripped oil pan drain plugs/drain plug holes. How does someone strip a drain plug/pan hole? I have been changing oil for 40 something years and have NEVER even come close to stripping a pan or plug. How does one do this?
SMH! :rolleyes:
BlueOval, I'm honestly not sure. I went to loosen the plug with my little ratchet, just like every other oil change I've done, and it felt really soft - almost fingertight. When I pulled it out, it bought a lot of thread material with it. My guess is that somebody had a habit of using too much torque on it in the past. I've seen some posts on other sites that suggest some of these aluminum Honda pans are a little soft.
 

BlueOvalFitter

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BlueOval, I'm honestly not sure. I went to loosen the plug with my little ratchet, just like every other oil change I've done, and it felt really soft - almost fingertight. When I pulled it out, it bought a lot of thread material with it. My guess is that somebody had a habit of using too much torque on it in the past. I've seen some posts on other sites that suggest some of these aluminum Honda pans are a little soft.
It really doesn't take much torque to tighten a drain plug. I can see your point whereas someone might have put the Gorilla grip on said pan plug and stripped it. But, it really takes someone without ANY common sense to do this.
I sure hope you fixed it. ;)
 
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737
Location
NC
JB weld the plug in. Get a cheap oil evacuator/suction pump from Harbor Freight and take care of future OC that way. With 210K on the odo I doubt it will ever make much of a difference.
 

OdysseyTypeR

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Ohio
It really doesn't take much torque to tighten a drain plug. I can see your point whereas someone might have put the Gorilla grip on said pan plug and stripped it. But, it really takes someone without ANY common sense to do this.
I sure hope you fixed it. ;)
Sad to say, the "tighten it until it loosens" mentality is alive and well, I've found bolts all over this van that were ratcheted down way beyond spec. Maybe the PO had an air wrench he was really fond of or something :unsure: .

The drain plug only calls for like 29 ft/lb if I recall. When I do my changes, I try to torque them just 3/4 turn or so past finger tight.
 

OdysseyTypeR

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33
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Ohio
JB weld the plug in. Get a cheap oil evacuator/suction pump from Harbor Freight and take care of future OC that way. With 210K on the odo I doubt it will ever make much of a difference.
Interesting approach, I didn't think of that. If this oversized bolt starts leaking I may have to think about doing something like that. And if it becomes a real problem a new pan isn't too bad, they're like 70 bucks or so.
 

BlueOvalFitter

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Sad to say, the "tighten it until it loosens" mentality is alive and well, I've found bolts all over this van that were ratcheted down way beyond spec. Maybe the PO had an air wrench he was really fond of or something :unsure: .

The drain plug only calls for like 29 ft/lb if I recall. When I do my changes, I try to torque them just 3/4 turn or so past finger tight.
That's all that's really needed. It's like an oil filter, once it makes contact with the mounting base, all that's needed is an additional 3/4 of a turn.
 
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