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Old 05-24-2003, 08:29 PM   #1
zborgerd
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Default Change your own oil? I have a question.

Tomorrow I am going to change my ION's oil. My Saturn dealership wants more than $30 for an oil change, and I'm a penny-pincher. So I have a question...

Is the oil drain bolt easily accessible without raising the front end of the car? I looked under the car, and all I saw was one bolt that looked anything remotely like an oil pan bolt. Problem is, I can't get under it far enough to see under the car. I'd have to take it to my dad's to lift the front end on wheel ramps to see if it was in the back of the engine.

So, can anyone tell me the location of the drain bolt? The manual doesn't seem to document this. I just want to know what to expect when I go to change it tomorrow. Most older vehicles have had them in plain-as-day locations. This doesn't seem to be the case.
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Old 05-24-2003, 08:43 PM   #2
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I had a look under mine and I am guessing that the only bolt you see is it. I think it looks funny cause the "pan" isn't a steel one like the old cars is it is a cast "Structural" pan. I might be wrong tho, I havn't had the car on ramps yet to do mine. Sooon tho.
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Old 05-26-2003, 12:36 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally posted by Millhouse
I had a look under mine and I am guessing that the only bolt you see is it. I think it looks funny cause the "pan" isn't a steel one like the old cars is it is a cast "Structural" pan. I might be wrong tho, I havn't had the car on ramps yet to do mine. Sooon tho.
Ok. I found it today. It was the easiest oil change I have ever done.

You can't see the oil drain bolt from the front of the car. It's easiest to find it by turning your wheels to the right, and peering in under the car fromt the driver's side wheel well. In the middle of the engine, you'll see the oil pan. The bolt is actually on the back of the pan. From the wheel well, it's in the back right corner. From the front of the car, it's the back left. If it's cold, you can actually feel back there with your hand to find it.

I removed the oil filter with a crescent wrench because I didn't have a socket with me at the time that was large enough. It must be done carefully though, so the cap isn't damaged. The manual suggests the use of a 32 mm (1 1/4 inch) socket. Really, the cap isn't on all that tight, so there's no need to really torque it down. You probably don't need to use a torque wrench if you make a note of how tight it was when you pulled it off. It's pretty cool. The filter comes out attatched to the cap. Just snap the old one off and snap a new one on.

I removed the drain bolt with a 15 mm wrench. Worked like a charm. I added roughly 5 quarts, which put it slightly above the max line on the dipstick by 2 or 3 mm. The book notes that 5 mm is safe either way (above or below the line).

Let me know if you have any questions.
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Old 05-26-2003, 11:06 AM   #4
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I worry about that plastic filter cap...seems like it would be very easy to over tighten...I think it only gets like 15 ft pd or something
 
Old 05-26-2003, 11:57 AM   #5
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Originally posted by silverblueL200
I worry about that plastic filter cap...seems like it would be very easy to over tighten...I think it only gets like 15 ft pd or something
True, but I'm sure it's not too costly to replace. I thought I had a torque wrench somewhere. Parhaps I should invest in one.
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Old 05-26-2003, 04:04 PM   #6
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15ft pds isn't very tight. I would just say "snug" with a normal hand wrench would be fine. Like zborgerd said it wasn't on tight to begin with.
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Old 05-27-2003, 10:04 AM   #7
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I DID overtighten and crack it and boy it made a mess. It ws cheap to replace but I think the part really ought to be made of metal.
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