Any oil change mistakes?

I did the obvious once, and poured 3 quarts of new oil without the drain plug. I also, on an old 83 tbird, changed the oil and refilled, drove two or three miles, noticing the engine feeling sluggish. Went back home, checked the dipstick only to discover I was way over filled, by about 3 quarts. This model tbird had a "U" shaped oil pan, to clear the tie rod, or steering linkage, with two drain plugs. I only drained out of one. No apparent damage done. Never sure how that oilpan/oil pump pickup worked..... I think I also put slick-50/teflon solids in that tbird...............
 
Messages
670
Location
San Antonio,TX
I over tightened a filter once; made a nice slice right through the gasket. AKA cookie cutter affect. Every since then, I just tighten by hand - although my hand has a mean grip. [Big Grin]
 
Messages
126
Location
kodak, tn
Doing a complete service on my wifes car one evening, I had changed the oil and tranny filter and fluid, fuel filter, plugs, wires, the whole shebang. Ended up breaking a fuel line going into the fuel filter due to corrosion and spent a couple hours trying to find a solution as she needed the car the next morning. [Bang Head] Ended up retrofitting a different fuel filter with high pressure fuel injector hose and clamps. Worked perfectly. During my haste to button everything back up, however, I ended up pouring the tranny fluid through the oil filler dipstick.... [Duh!] Sat there for about 15 minutes trying to figure out what I'd done when the tranny wouldn't engage. At any rate, I finally figured it out, but had to make a late night run to WM to get more oil, filters, and tranny fluid. Moral of the story is to take your time, no matter how little of it you may have. [Cheers!]
 
Messages
289
Location
Winnipeg Manitoba Canada
Was jacking my car up for the first time with a floor jack. P-brake wasn't working. No blocks. This is on gravel, so the jack wouldn't budge. The jack was not secure under the car and as it got higher the car slid backwards off the jack. Put a nice dent in the pan. Fortunately it didn't puncture the pan, just a big, deep dent. Towed the car to a machine shop and they R&R'ed the oil pan, replaced the pump and tube. How's that for a $600 oil change? [Dummy!]
 
Messages
445
Location
Roanoke, Texas
I was working on some electrical issue on a piece of equipment at work. We had a young mechanic that had just started and was working on the unit with me. He had drained the oil and removed the filter and I did not know. I was under the unit working on getting brake lights to work on this thing and had told him to start it up and see if they were working. He did!!! As I lay on my back underneath I look over my left shoulder and there sits the pan full of oil. I start screaming to shut it down. He did. Everyone in our shop thought the unit had fell on me or something. No harm done it only ran for maybe 10 seconds. I just knew we trashed a 4cyl ford industrial motor though.
 
Messages
369
Location
midwest
I usually use Purolator oil filters, this time I used an STP, and I didn't have a cup wrech to fit it when it was time to remomve. So here I am dickering around with a metal loop wrench which is impossible to use on a Chevy Lumina. I never did get that SOB off and in the process, the metal loop wrench handle hit the start contacts and I got zapped so bad it singed the hair off the top of my hand..LOL It hurt too.
 
Messages
188
Location
QCA, IA
Hmm, I think the worst thing I've done is use metal ramps on a very smooth cement surface. One of them slipped when I was driving up, throwing it under the falling car. It dented up the jacking point behind the tire pretty good, but luckly that was it.
 
Messages
1,463
Location
CA
I worked at a oil change place (Valvoline Instant Oil Change in San Diego) when I was 19. We were out of 10W30 or 10W40 bulk so I went to another store for about 15-20gal. I was bored so I switched the gun on their spare bay to gallons (from quarts). Well, I forget to switch it back... I left and about 30 minutes later my boss gets a call from the other store. Turns out one of their monkeys filled a Civic up with 4 GALLONS of oil and proceded to start the engine. Gushed oil out of every seal was all I heard. Now in my defence the pumps click 7 times per quart, 28 times per gallon, I still remember this 10+ years later. Too bad the other monkey forgot.... No, I didn't get canned and I don't know what happened to the other kid. But Valvoline owed someone an engine.
 

JTK

Messages
13,391
Location
Buffalo, NY
Many years ago my brother had an early 1980's ford bronco 4.9L, 4x4. He asked that I change the oil on it for him. I'm underneath, got all the oil drained out, old filter off, ect.. I'm about to thread a new dry PH8A on her (pre BITOG days) and all of a sudden: RRRRR... VRooom! The engine starts with my mellon an inch away from the cooling fan (flex fan no less) & no oil in the sump! I scream SHUT IT OFF! and he kills it laughing.. "Oh I forgot you were under there.. There's a football game on!". He wanted to hear the score on the radio! [Eek!] [Duh!] It is the dumber of my two older brothers. That old I6 never skipped a beat. Didn't even clatter with no oil in it! Needless to say, for the past 20 something years, the keys are kept AWAY from the vehicle I am working on! Joel
 
Messages
15,283
Location
Santa Barbara, CA
when i was at work i grabbed the wrong filter for a hyundai. on our parts number system, the one for a hyundai takes a 70058, i grabbed a 70059. to make it more confusing, our filters also have purolator numbers on them, and the 70058 ends in 59, and the 70059 ends in 60. these filters are identical size, and same threads, just different gaskets. i grabbed the wrong one because A) i looked at the wrong filter, and B) i had a customer talk to me, which btw is one of the most annoying things you can possibly do when someone is working on your car. so anyway, the filter spins on fine and i tighten everything up and fill it with oil. then i start it up and see that the oil light isnt going out, i turn the car off adn see a nice puddle underneath. only other time ive ever screwed up, i again had someone talking to me, and i forgot to put oil back in a lincoln continental 4.6L. started it up and heard the ticking right away and new what happened. after those 2, i ahve a rule that noone is allowed to talk to me while im working on a car. if the owner starts talking i just tell them to please talk to someone else as it throws me off.
 
Messages
1,979
Location
Dallas, TX
A guy I went to high school with had his girlfriend help him change the oil in his Chevelle SS. They were doing his oil change in the high school shop, which had a bulk oil tank full of 10W-30. When it came time to re-fill it, he let his girfriend run the hose, and he went to the bathroom. When he returned, she exclaimed "Done!". He walked over to the engine and saw that she had filled the oil all the way to the top of the valve covers. Yep...it's full!
 
Messages
737
Location
Indiana
Other than forgetting to put the dipstick back in after checking the oil level, I've only had one screw-up (and only leak after an OC). Changing the oil on my '67 Impala with the cartridge oil filter, I forgot to remove the old rubber washer. I installed the new one (making two) and got a large leak on startup. No problems since the advent of spin-ons (or top mounted cartridge on my 528iT).
 
Messages
2,688
Location
Elderly County, Florida
Back in my teenage days, my Dad sends me to the barn to change the oil on one of his tractors. It's the tractor that the kill switch is broken and you shut it off by stalling the engine, (put it in high gear and pop the clutch - hey, it works). It takes eight quarts and uses a cartridge filter that sits sideways on the motor. I drain the oil, remove filter, replace filter, but didn't get it seated properly (unknown to me). After pouring eight quarts of new oil in the motor, I crank the motor which proceeds to spew oil out of the cartridge seat all over the side of the barn. I had it in neutral and of course, it didn't want to go into high gear, (one of those, "if you can't find it, grind it" experiences). By the time I got it in gear and stalled it out, it had puked out all eight quarts. Quickly, I drove to the parts store, bought eight more quarts of oil, (pre stash days), refilled and re-seated the filter. Tractor is still running to this day. Papa never asked about the oil on the wall. And me, I played shut mouth about the whole thing to this day. (Hey, you ain't gonna tell him, are you?)
 
Messages
58
Location
New Orleans
I was changing the oil on my BMW one day, finished everything up, oil plug tight, filter in the canister nice and snug, topped off with 7 quarts of mobil 1. Just back her down the ramps, well, i here and feel something as i come down the ramps, i get out to check, yeah, i rolled over the drain pan with 7 qts of oil in it from my car, oil all over my driveway [Roll Eyes]
 
Messages
3,398
Location
Midwest, Illinois
My dad and I changed the oil in a '62 Dart. I was a child, maybe 5, and remember him saying how important it was to get the filter on right, because it would leak. I remember the red, white, and blue Valvoline cans, and the Fram canister filter. He didn't get the filter gasket in the right spot, and pumped nearly all 5 quarts of Valvoline out on the garage floor. Dad was a lineman for Bell Telephone, and times were tough. Bell was on strike, and funds were limited. He couldn't afford another 5 quarts of Valvoline, so he got the "cheap" Royal Triton; a purple colored oil. He fixed the filter canister, refilled the engine, and my lesson learned was to check, and double check. Dad's gone, but I still double check everything, have a couple of quarts of the RWB Valvo cans in my collection, and an original Fram canister filter. Maybe he's not really gone after all... :-)  -
 
Messages
2,699
Location
Central NY
Quote:
A guy I went to high school with had his girlfriend help him change the oil in his Chevelle SS. They were doing his oil change in the high school shop, which had a bulk oil tank full of 10W-30. When it came time to re-fill it, he let his girfriend run the hose, and he went to the bathroom. When he returned, she exclaimed "Done!". He walked over to the engine and saw that she had filled the oil all the way to the top of the valve covers. Yep...it's full!
 
Messages
973
Location
Geneva
Quote:
I was changing the oil on my BMW one day, finished everything up, oil plug tight, filter in the canister nice and snug, topped off with 7 quarts of mobil 1. Just back her down the ramps, well, i here and feel something as i come down the ramps, i get out to check, yeah, i rolled over the drain pan with 7 qts of oil in it from my car, oil all over my driveway [Roll Eyes]
I still do that every so often.
 
Messages
1,610
Location
SE Pa
Quote:
My dad and I changed the oil in a '62 Dart. I was a child, maybe 5, and remember him saying how important it was to get the filter on right, because it would leak. I remember the red, white, and blue Valvoline cans, and the Fram canister filter. He didn't get the filter gasket in the right spot, and pumped nearly all 5 quarts of Valvoline out on the garage floor. Dad was a lineman for Bell Telephone, and times were tough. Bell was on strike, and funds were limited. He couldn't afford another 5 quarts of Valvoline, so he got the "cheap" Royal Triton; a purple colored oil. He fixed the filter canister, refilled the engine, and my lesson learned was to check, and double check. Dad's gone, but I still double check everything, have a couple of quarts of the RWB Valvo cans in my collection, and an original Fram canister filter. Maybe he's not really gone after all... :-)  -
Oh gosh, I did that once. Was however rather lucky as it was with an old pickup truck that had enough clearance so nothing was damaged and only minor spillage.
 

Kestas

Staff member
Messages
13,952
Location
The Motor City
After 30 years of changing oil, I finally had my first "oops" last year. I filled the oil without putting the drain plug back on. I was distracted by conversation with the car's owner (my girlfriend), who came out to talk to me about the car. She's a trooper, she quick helped me clean up the mess.
 
Messages
17,102
Location
Upper Midwest
Quote:
I was changing the oil on my BMW one day, finished everything up, oil plug tight, filter in the canister nice and snug, topped off with 7 quarts of mobil 1. Just back her down the ramps, well, i here and feel something as i come down the ramps, i get out to check, yeah, i rolled over the drain pan with 7 qts of oil in it from my car, oil all over my driveway [Roll Eyes]
Seems like this is a common one, I did it too. I used to take an empty gallon milk jug and put a funnel into it to catch the used oil. My dad had *just* put in a new blacktop driveway and that's when I backed down off the ramps onto the milk jug/funnel assembly. I didn't know I had done it for a while until I saw the puddle streaming out from underneath the car. That was not good.
 
Top