Chunk of metal in oil filter (2004 Cavalier)

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May 1, 2012
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Philadelphia, PA
I have a 2004 Chevy Cavalier with the 2.2L engine. I bought it 2 years ago with 80K miles, and am now up to 107K. Service history before me is unknown, but the car has been great so far; I have done a basic tune-up, front brake pads, a set of tires, and oil changes on a 7000 mile schedule (manual states every 7500 miles or 1 year).

At the last oil change at 106K, I found a piece of metal in the oil filter material (filter is the cartridge type without the metal canister).

The car makes no unusual sounds, and has not driven or sounded any different before or after finding this piece of metal.

It's flimsy, I can bend it by hand. Picture is next to a AA battery for scale.

The old oil always comes out looking used, but not bad (no glitter or flakes, no signs of coolant in the oil, no excessive gas smell), and the car drives fine.

Any ideas, or anything I should be concerned about?
 

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dishdude

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2004 is going to have an Ecotec with the cartridge filter and iirc they don't use metal seam crimps.
 

Bob5150

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I think there's your answer. Otherwise, what can you do ?
Right- there's really nothing to do. I was just a bit shocked to see a large piece of debris from an engine that runs perfectly fine and drains out fairly normal-looking oil at each interval.

It's definitely a beater car- dings and dents and not the best interior, but I'm 2 years in with just basic maintenance, so I am happy with it so far. I was hoping to get 5 years out of it, so I'm nearly halfway there.
 
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Right- there's really nothing to do. I was just a bit shocked to see a large piece of debris from an engine that runs perfectly fine and drains out fairly normal-looking oil at each interval.

It's definitely a beater car- dings and dents and not the best interior, but I'm 2 years in with just basic maintenance, so I am happy with it so far. I was hoping to get 5 years out of it, so I'm nearly halfway there.
If you don't have the glitter oil, you're in good shape.
 
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2004 is going to have an Ecotec with the cartridge filter and iirc they don't use metal seam crimps.
I didn't think they did either, but maybe it depends on the brand. I can't think of a more logical explanation, especially considering where it was found.
 
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So this one is a bit longer than AA battery, but this is the seam crimp. There are a few different styles to the ecotec filter design, and the one you used probably had a slightly shorter media.
 

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Woah…you said chunk of metal and I was expecting a nice nugget. Instead you posted a samurai sword.
 
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It was right there with the filter the whole time and never could have passed through.
Either a part of that filter or from a previous filter and was somehow sticking to the plastic center tube or something and somehow wasn’t noticed by whoever was changing the filter before.
 
Joined
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Messages
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I have a 2004 Chevy Cavalier with the 2.2L engine. I bought it 2 years ago with 80K miles, and am now up to 107K. Service history before me is unknown, but the car has been great so far; I have done a basic tune-up, front brake pads, a set of tires, and oil changes on a 7000 mile schedule (manual states every 7500 miles or 1 year).

At the last oil change at 106K, I found a piece of metal in the oil filter material (filter is the cartridge type without the metal canister).

The car makes no unusual sounds, and has not driven or sounded any different before or after finding this piece of metal.

It's flimsy, I can bend it by hand. Picture is next to a AA battery for scale.

The old oil always comes out looking used, but not bad (no glitter or flakes, no signs of coolant in the oil, no excessive gas smell), and the car drives fine.

Any ideas, or anything I should be concerned about?
xg9972-3.jpg
 
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