Benefits of Engine magnetic drain plugs?

Messages
427
Location
SC
I need a new drain plug for my old F150 4.9. The original one has a built in rubber gasket that is starting to degrade. I have looked at the magnetic drain plugs, including the $15 dollar ones that have incredibly strong magnets. How much of a benefit are these things for attracting wear metals? Are they worth it over OEM?
 
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Messages
7,498
Location
North America
Can't hurt! Some may say no benefit since the filter will catch the particles, but IMO every foreign particle you can remove from the oil is a good thing.
 
Messages
8,598
Location
Florida
There have been so many discussions about this, that I recommend using the search command. One neat thing about magnetic plugs is that if there is an engine problem, you will see more metallic junk on the end of the magnet. That would be a huge advantage for many reasons. You could trade in a car while the engine still runs okay, then someone else has to suffer when the engine totally fails.
 
Messages
2,547
Location
IL
If there was a benefit the premium cars would come with it standard. Premium filters would come with magnet attached as well. It also would be advertised as well. The only places you find the magnet drain plugs/filters is aftermarket. I say snake oil. If the magnet was beneficial, the marketing department at Ford/GM/Toyota/Mobil/Purolator/ would at least have a filter line with said magnet. I feel the filtration media is good enough. Surely this has been tested by *somebody* whether GM or Champ Labs.... and nobody has a product line with it, that says something. ...K&N has a nut even welded to their filters, yet no company has came out with a magnet preinstalled on their vehicles. Either it's not effective, it's patent protected, or it simply is all marketing!! Therefore I equate magnets on drain plugs, oil filters, fuel lines, bracelets on your arms as all hokey!
 
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Messages
9,108
Location
Marshfield , MA
Worst metals loose in the oil are not magnetic. I had one in my first BMW. It had fuzz every time I changed oil. Later there peelings from threads. I never had cause to get into the engine, other than timing belts. I retired the car with an untouched drive line at 350K miles. I would use one if I was curious, but I'm not. First do no harm. Magnets fall into that category.
 
Messages
1,019
Location
Va
I have a magnetic plug in the legacy. Have never seen anything on the magnet. It does have a tendency to stick to the oil pan when removing the plug, causing a bit of a mess sometimes. The magnet is pretty strong!
 
Messages
1,686
Location
VA
It certainly wouldn't hurt, but I have no proof of whether it would affect engine life. It could catch big pieces to warn you that something is wrong, though. Every one I have ever seen had some fuzz on it at oil change time. The OEM plug in my Chevy 5.3 has a magnetic tip and built-in gasket, by the way.
 
Messages
1,723
Location
Virginia
I just installed one on my car earlier today. I also have a magnet that goes on the oil filter that I've used for years. Both of them have magnets that are very strong, but I doubt they do anything that the oil filter wouldn't already do. Really the only reason I have them is because I got them for cheap, and I figured that even if they were just snake-oil they wouldn't mess anything up. Plus, my transmission and differentials came with magnetic drain plugs from the manufacturer, (granted the differentials don't have a filter to remove metal particles), which I take to mean that having a magnetic drain plug on the oil plug won't do any harm. If you have to buy a new plug, go ahead and try a magnetic plug. Worse case it does nothing and you spent a couple bucks more then a regular plug.
 
Messages
1,606
Location
Oahu, Hawaii
GM had magnetic drain plugs as OEM for a while. It's beneficial on LS engines, you can tell if the rocker arm trunnion bearings are spitting needle bearings.
 
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