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Old 06-15-2005, 11:13 PM   #1
Tiger
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Question Need advice on oil drain plug gasket...

Last week, I received a free oil change from the Saturn dealership. During the week I noticed a puddle of fluid under my car. I thought it was just some oil left on the frame from the oil change, but with further inspection, it was fresh oil. I cleaned the puddle, and oil kept dripping when parked. I had warranty replacement of transmission seals done today, and the dealership replaced my oil drain plug. The service advisor said it was the aftermarket drain plug I purchased from Napa that was the problem. The gasket was bad, and the Saturn drain plug gasket would not fit that aftermarket plug. So, I have a new Saturn OEM plug. How often do I need to change the gasket on the drain plug to prevent leaks? I was going to pick up an extra gasket, but it was over $2.00 at this dealership. I have seen aftermarket gaskets at Advance Auto much cheaper. Will the ones at Advance work, or do I have to use an OEM gasket? If so, how often do you change the gasket on your drain plug, and where do you get ones that work at a reasonable price? Thanks in advance.

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Old 06-15-2005, 11:18 PM   #2
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Default Re: Need advice on oil drain plug gasket...

The one on my 97' SL2 is the OEM original. Frought with cracks, splits etc... it has yet to do more than very occasionally drip. I have no plans to change it anytime soon.

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Old 06-16-2005, 01:37 AM   #3
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Default Re: Need advice on oil drain plug gasket...

Thanks Wolfman for the practical advice. I have a feeling they were in a rush when doing my "free" oil change. When things are done in a rush, things tend to happen. I have had no problems with leaks before that, and looking back, have only had problems with one drain plug leaking in the past 29 years. I stripped the drain plug out on my Pinto (inexperience).

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Old 06-16-2005, 05:26 AM   #4
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Default Re: Need advice on oil drain plug gasket...

When I first got my '97 SC1 I bought a magnetic oil drain plug but its gasket leaked a bit. I was afraid to tighten it too much for fear of stripping the threads and so I reinstalled the OEM. I've changed its gasket 2x.


A year ago I had my automatic tranny oil flushed and replaced and and an oil change. I then noticed oil on the carport. I fixed it with cardboard—on the floor of the carport The next oil changed I asked the dude to replace the oil plug gasket. And it still dripped, still only a small amount. The next oil change I took it to another place and they reported that my tyranny was leaking. I took it in to the local GM service dept and for $85 they told me that the transmission oil flush guy didn't tighten the transmission oil filter, ergo the leak all this time. That's what I get for getting old and too lazy to get under my own car.


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Old 06-16-2005, 05:50 AM   #5
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Default Re: Need advice on oil drain plug gasket...

When I was a monk, I lived with a retired man called Bob. Besides stories of being on a bomber plane in WWII, he used to say often, "Something for nothing, no way!". I think of my "free" oil change. I ended up having to pay $4.40 for a drain plug. Kerry, I hear you! Besides lack of money, part of my motivation for doing simple repairs myself is attention to detail. I have had repairs that needed to be done two are three times until I attempted to repair it myself. It is interesting that the repairs I have done myself have held. Also, I can't use my age as an excuse to avoid doing it myself. Thanks for the info.

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Old 06-16-2005, 06:15 AM   #6
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Default Re: Need advice on oil drain plug gasket...

Most welcome,

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Old 06-16-2005, 06:17 AM   #7
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Default Re: Need advice on oil drain plug gasket...

I changed my oil this past week and my gasket was all chewed up as well. Went to Saturn of Greenville, S.C. and the parts guy gave me two for free. Pretty nice of him, especially now that I see that over 2.00 charge per gasket that Tiger posted.

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Old 06-16-2005, 06:34 AM   #8
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Default Re: Need advice on oil drain plug gasket...

I'm glad I read this thread because from now on I'll just instruct the lube dude to change the gasket if if looks too shabby—and to save the old one for me so that I see how bad it was

Kerry

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Old 06-16-2005, 10:49 AM   #9
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Default Re: Need advice on oil drain plug gasket...

96 SL1, still got the original. no leaks

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Old 06-16-2005, 10:53 AM   #10
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Default Re: Need advice on oil drain plug gasket...

Mine has been replaced with some RTV smeared on the place where the gasket should be....was like that when i bought the car and does not leak one bit...i've got no intention of changing it

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Old 06-16-2005, 12:35 PM   #11
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Default Re: Need advice on oil drain plug gasket...

Quote:
How often do I need to change the gasket on the drain plug to prevent leaks? I was going to pick up an extra gasket, but it was over $2.00 at this dealership. I have seen aftermarket gaskets at Advance Auto much cheaper.
replace them when they get too chewy or torn up to seal. every other oil change or so. whoa... TWO DOLLARS. c'mon now.

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Old 06-16-2005, 12:50 PM   #12
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Default Re: Need advice on oil drain plug gasket...

Why not simply pick up a Fumoto oil pan drain valve..

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> 95 SL 2 = 653,369 Miles 40.4 MPG, as of 5/20/11. My manual Radiator Fan Switch, courtesy of Wolfman's patient installation guidance, continues to be.......invaluable < The car was retired

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Old 06-16-2005, 04:20 PM   #13
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Default Re: Need advice on oil drain plug gasket...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Luke
Why not simply pick up a Fumoto oil pan drain valve..
Umm...that sounds like a trick question...let me think? I like the flow of hot gushing oil running down my arm? No, then it must be the cost of the Fumoto Valve. Last I checked it was about $25, and could not justify the cost verses convenience, since I drive 12,000 miles a year in my car. I could see where you would really benefit from one Luke..

Quote:
whoa... TWO DOLLARS. c'mon now.
That is a nicer version of what I thought. Actually, the Service Advisor said they cost about 65 cents. The parts guy quoted $2.20, and showed me one. So, I know it was the right part. My dealership is on some very expensive real estate. It is a newer building. Nice waiting area. Nice leather seats. My guess is their overhead is very high. Also, the new gasket was a grey color, not black. Maybe it was made of a more durable material, thus increasing the cost.

I saw the gasket was a little chewed up on my old drain plug, so maybe it was time for it to go after a year of changes. What I don't understand is how some people have the original gasket? Are you doing something different to make it last? It seems that replacing it every other oil change is too often, unless it looks really bad.

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Old 06-16-2005, 04:51 PM   #14
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Default Re: Need advice on oil drain plug gasket...

Quote:
> Tiger <
> it was about $25, and could not justify the cost verses convenience, since I drive 12,000 miles a year in my car.<
Point well made, however, I went so far as t add it to my wife's Buick, and she drives less than 6,000 miles a year. It may not benefit her, but it surely benefit's me (the one who has to affect the work).

...
> 95 SL 2 = 653,369 Miles 40.4 MPG, as of 5/20/11. My manual Radiator Fan Switch, courtesy of Wolfman's patient installation guidance, continues to be.......invaluable < The car was retired

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Old 06-16-2005, 05:00 PM   #15
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Default Re: Need advice on oil drain plug gasket...

Actually, when my finances get straightened out, I may get one. Things are tight right now, so the budget makes the decisions. If I had a wife, she would make the decisions. I imagine you are tired of draining oil, and messing with drain plugs at this point.

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Old 06-16-2005, 05:01 PM   #16
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Default Re: Need advice on oil drain plug gasket...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Luke
she drives less than 6,000 miles a year.
Wow Luke you two are surely the odd couple!

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Old 06-16-2005, 05:07 PM   #17
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Default Re: Need advice on oil drain plug gasket...

Quote:
Originally Posted by wolfman
The one on my 97' SL2 is the OEM original. Frought with cracks, splits etc... it has yet to do more than very occasionally drip. I have no plans to change it anytime soon.
mine is to

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Old 06-17-2005, 10:35 AM   #18
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Default Re: Need advice on oil drain plug gasket...

Replaced mine at 25k, due to small tear that started in original
one. Must be one of the cheapest parts you can buy for a Saturn:

P/N 21007240 - .72

With gaskets at .72, holding oil at $4.99 qt., I bought a spare, just in case!

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Old 06-17-2005, 11:24 AM   #19
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Default Re: Need advice on oil drain plug gasket...

Where do you get them for .72 cents?

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Old 06-17-2005, 08:13 PM   #20
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Default Re: Need advice on oil drain plug gasket...

Saturn delaer (Toledo)... . Also stopped into another retailer (Ann Arbor,
I think) and the parts guy gave me 3-4 for free. I guess for less than a
buck it's not worth doing the paperwork on it.

And amazingly enough, when I did my 2k oil change today, I noticed
that I tore up the inner edge of the gasket. Nice to have a spare on
hand!

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