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Old 06-07-2015, 10:07 AM   #1
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Cool Do You Jack Up Driver's Side to Get More Oil Out?

By jacking up the driver's side you can get a few more ounces of oil to drain out. I've proven this by draining without jacking, then jacking up the driver's side and quite a bit more oil came out.

Who all does this?
If you haven't done this before, are you going to do this now that you saw this?

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Old 06-07-2015, 11:30 AM   #2
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Default Re: Do You Jack Up Driver's Side to Get More Oil Out?

I'm going to file this away as a possibly useful piece of information for the future, but I probably won't jack my car.

I use ramps when I change the oil, which makes jacking a little awkward. In fact, I don't actually keep a hydraulic jack at the place where I change oil. Plus, with oil consumption running at about 1500 MPQ, I tend not to worry about a few ounces of old oil left in the crankcase.

It might be different if my engine had a serious sludging problem, but I don't think it does since the previous owner faithfully observed a 3,000-mile change interval (albeit at lube shops that use dino oil). The only skipped oil change during my ownership was during a 6,750-mile trip to California when I had no realistic means of changing the oil myself or vetting lube shop work before driving hundreds of miles. (If I had to do it over again, I would have changed the oil myself before setting out on the road trip, so I could use a synthetic oil good enough to support an extended drain interval. I would also use an extra-long filter and systematic 200 mL overfilling to buy about 600 miles of driving distance before the oil level dipped below nominal crankcase capacity.)
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Old 06-07-2015, 11:32 AM   #3
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Default Re: Do You Jack Up Driver's Side to Get More Oil Out?

Yup; MT drain, too.
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Old 06-07-2015, 11:34 AM   #4
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Default Re: Do You Jack Up Driver's Side to Get More Oil Out?

I set the left hand ramp up on a 2X8 platform as they arr Rhino ramps that require a solid support underneath and this tilts to the right rear. This also nicely overflows the little trough on the oil pan so the CV joint, boot, and frame rail gets lubed. Punching a hole in the bottom rear of the filter will solve this though.
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Old 06-07-2015, 12:01 PM   #5
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Default Re: Do You Jack Up Driver's Side to Get More Oil Out?

That is useful advice. I currently do my oil changes on the street in front of my house on just enough of a hill that my SW2 sits level when the front is up on plastic Rhino ramps. So based upon the curvature of the street surface for rain drainage my driver's side is slightly lower.

My across the street neighbors might not appreciate me working on my car in front of their property.

I wonder if jacking the passenger side might also release some additional trapped oil within the engine.

Maybe rocking the car is another trick?
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Old 06-07-2015, 12:08 PM   #6
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Default Re: Do You Jack Up Driver's Side to Get More Oil Out?

I have ALWAYS just reached under the car from the front to drain the oil. Being 6', 185 Lbs. allows me to do that.

But, this last time I grabbed my floor jack and put it under AFTER the oil stopped dripping and
I was surprised how much more came out!

I shouldda edited it -- It was more than a "few ounces".....
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Old 06-07-2015, 01:23 PM   #7
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Default Re: Do You Jack Up Driver's Side to Get More Oil Out?

Quote:
Originally Posted by OldNuc View Post
I set the left hand ramp up on a 2X8 platform as they arr Rhino ramps that require a solid support underneath and this tilts to the right rear. This also nicely overflows the little trough on the oil pan so the CV joint, boot, and frame rail gets lubed. Punching a hole in the bottom rear of the filter will solve this though.
I have tried using a cut-down oil bottle to intercept oil spill from the filter mount and the drip rail, without success. The drip rail sits slightly under the top of the shaft housing that is just under the filter, and there is only a very small air gap between the filter body and a blockout in the rear splash shield that is designed to accommodate the filter. This makes it very hard to seat a cut-down oil bottle on either the shaft housing or the splash shield (or both) without having oil run down the side of the oil pan or losing the working room that is necessary to loosen the filter with pliers.

So far, the only way of using a cut-down bottle I have found that works (sort of) is to seat it on the cradle rail, where it intercepts all of the oil that drips off the shaft housing and funnels it into a drain pan.

My gym buddy, who owns both a 1993 and a 1995, tells me that he can loosen the filter on the 1993 simply by reaching behind the front passenger wheel, but has to use ramps on the 1995. The implication is that the rear splash shield was redesigned between those years. I think this happened between 1993 and 1994 since, while I can touch the back of the filter by reaching behind the wheel, I cannot wrap my fingers around it and grasp it.
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Old 06-07-2015, 03:47 PM   #8
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Default Re: Do You Jack Up Driver's Side to Get More Oil Out?

According to the book all splash shields swap 91-02 with the exception that there is an alternate early version for the 91-early 94 but the later design is backward compatible.
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Old 06-09-2015, 01:52 AM   #9
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Default Re: Do You Jack Up Driver's Side to Get More Oil Out?

I can change the oil on my 1995 easily without jacking it up. Turn the wheel to the left and reach behind the wheel.

I will do my oil changes with my passengers side higher from now on. Thanks!
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Old 06-09-2015, 03:32 AM   #10
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Default Re: Do You Jack Up Driver's Side to Get More Oil Out?

Quote:
Originally Posted by dummo View Post
That is useful advice. I currently do my oil changes on the street in front of my house on just enough of a hill that my SW2 sits level when the front is up on plastic Rhino ramps. So based upon the curvature of the street surface for rain drainage my driver's side is slightly lower.
Hey, you and I seem to use the exact same method.
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Old 06-09-2015, 07:47 AM   #11
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Default Re: Do You Jack Up Driver's Side to Get More Oil Out?

Quote:
Originally Posted by dude33333 View Post

I will do my oil changes with my passengers side higher from now on. Thanks!
It's the higher driver's side.
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Old 06-09-2015, 08:22 AM   #12
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Default Re: Do You Jack Up Driver's Side to Get More Oil Out?

Quote:
Originally Posted by OldNuc View Post
According to the book all splash shields swap 91-02 with the exception that there is an alternate early version for the 91-early 94 but the later design is backward compatible.
The 91 to early 94 used a soft flexible rubber flap that clipped to the metal on the cradle. On my former 93 SW2 the clip frequently came loose and the fender liner flapped against the wheel at highway speeds and made quite a racket. I'd have to stop and reattach it every so often.
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Old 06-09-2015, 08:33 AM   #13
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Default Re: Do You Jack Up Driver's Side to Get More Oil Out?

The 95+ shields will fit and function all years.
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Old 06-15-2015, 12:10 PM   #14
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Default Re: Do You Jack Up Driver's Side to Get More Oil Out?

I remove the RF wheel to do oil changes. Once the plug is out, I remove the jack stand and let the jack all the way down so that the passenger side is lower than the driver's side. Same effect - different approach.
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Old 09-12-2015, 09:44 PM   #15
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Default Re: Do You Jack Up Driver's Side to Get More Oil Out?

Changed the oil out on my street today as usual using Rhino Ramps and remembered this thread. I did try to jack up the drivers side which did yield a bit more pan oil but I wasn't able to get any positive tilt from the pan as indicated by the magnetic level. next time I will use my driveway since the tilt of the street works against me.

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Old 09-13-2015, 02:39 PM   #16
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Default Re: Do You Jack Up Driver's Side to Get More Oil Out?

Question: I will be doing an oil change in a few weeks. I have always replaced the filter through the wheel well. I want to do it this time from under the car on my back. Is the filter easily reachable that way, i never even looked.
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Old 09-14-2015, 06:53 AM   #17
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Default Re: Do You Jack Up Driver's Side to Get More Oil Out?

^^^^ It is reachable. The only way I've ever done it. I use a rubber strap wrench and the clearance for wrench rotation is roughly 10 degrees between 9 and 10 o'clock. The streets are less traveled after everyone gets to work.
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Old 09-14-2015, 11:38 AM   #18
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Default Re: Do You Jack Up Driver's Side to Get More Oil Out?

The filter is reachable from below and that is also the only way I have ever tried to do it. The difficulty comes from trying to loosen it without using ramps or otherwise lifting the front of the car--this is where splash shield configuration matters.

The main advantage to being able to do a full oil change with all four wheels on the ground is the ability to observe the specified drain interval strictly while on a long road trip that spans multiple drain intervals. I used to do this with a 1986 Nissan Maxima: on the course of a 10,000-mile roadtrip I would do an oil change every 3,000 miles as part of an overnight stop, generally in a motel parking lot. (It is not cool to drip oil onto a campsite.)

However, I don't think it is as practical as it once was, chiefly because motels and apartment complexes now tend to have rules against DIY car work in their parking lots that they enforce strictly, and very few publicly funded hazmat disposal points will accept used motor oil from out-of-towners. Even with the ability to do the oil change unmolested and dispose of the old oil promptly, it is an enormous hassle to carry the necessary equipment in a car trunk with other luggage and camping equipment in a way that protects them from fouling with old oil.

The Maxima had just barely enough room in its trunk for oil change equipment and supplies (including new oil, new filter, cap-type wrench, tools, paper towels, bin liners, and combined drain pan/bottle in a kitty litter tray) as well as luggage and camping kit. The Saturn has even less room.

Nowadays, for a very long roadtrip, I think I would just do an oil and filter change immediately before departure and use a filter and oil that are capable of supporting a very long drain interval. A Saturn that burns little to no oil and runs quite happily on Rotella T6 with a budget extra-long filter for a 3,000-mile OCI should do quite well with Amsoil Series 3000 HDDO and a Wix 51516XP filter for up to 7,000 miles, the main constraint on OCI being the filter (the oil itself can go for probably double that, especially with mostly highway miles).

For a trip up to Alaska, it might also be prudent to find a rental DIY garage in Anchorage or Fairbanks.
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Old 09-14-2015, 12:56 PM   #19
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Default Re: Do You Jack Up Driver's Side to Get More Oil Out?

I change mine through the passenger's side wheel well. I remove the tire and splash shield to access the filter and use as a jacking point the front subframe cup behind the passenger tire.

When the oil is mostly finished draining, I lower the jack just a wee bit to get some more used oil out.
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Old 09-14-2015, 03:15 PM   #20
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Default Re: Do You Jack Up Driver's Side to Get More Oil Out?

I use dummo's street with ramps method, though my earlier post states that the driver's side is lower, but it's actually the passenger side that's slightly lower due to the crown of the road.

Interesting conundrum for the 10,000 mile road trip. This would be a great case for our nationwide network of Saturn fans. If I ever drove that much, I'd probably take my oil and filter and find an independent repair shop to change with my stuff. I did that last winter at home when we had snow up to out eyeballs and I'd have to get under the car in a mash of snow, slush and salt. If one of my fellow Saturnfans wasn't available nearby, I'd try to find a reasonable, recommended shop to do it.
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