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Discussion Starter #1
Im coming up on the time for my second oil change.

My first oil changed I went to the dealer and they had me waiting 3 hours, untill I went outside and saw my car parked and told them it was finished, god knows how long it was sitting there :(

So needless to say Im dreading another experience like that, also I have my frankencar intake which I dont wont them to see and use against me im the future if there is a problem.

So I was thinking of changing the oil myself, I would use a Nissan OEM filter and Mobil 1.

I have been searching and my question that I have is :

Is it really neccessary to torque the oil pan drain plug?

I heard some people talking about replacing the washer, Is this the washer that is on the drain plug?
Is it important to replace it everytime?

And is it easyer to use a set of ramps in the front of the car?

Is the oil filter hard to get to?

thanks
 

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Shift_This
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It isn't necassary to change the crush washer, but your asking for trouble down the line if you don't. Besides when you buy the oil filters it should come with a new one. Yes it's the one on the drain plug. And chances are if you took it to the dealership you probably have the original one on there. When you take it off look to see if there's black paint on it, if there is it's the original one.
I don't torque my oil plug. I tighten it pretty good but I don't torque it.
And yes it's a whole lot easier if you use ramps.
And the oil filter is a joke to get to, not hard at all.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks alot,

You answered all my questions.
When I pick up the filter at nissan I will make sure I get a new washer.

I guess torqing the the drain plug isnt important as long as its tight, I do not own a torq wrench.

Now I have to decide where im going to bring my Alti for tire rotations....hmmm I dont want my rims scratched up!

Would be a pain in the a** to do myself
 

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Shift_lefty
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tire rotation is more of a pain in the ass since you need 5 tires to do it. I jack up the back on one side put the spare on, bring the car down then jack the other side up changing both on that side. You have to do this since you should switch sides of the car for one set. I take the backs and criss cross them to the fronts, then take the fronts and go straight back.

You do need a torque wrench for this. 80-85 ft/lbs of torque, and recheck the torque after 25-50 miles.

For oil changes I use two blocks of wood about 1 1/2 thick and drive the car on to them. Allows you to easily slide a oil catch under the oil pan. Go to the dealer buy 5 filters and 5 drain plug rings and you'll always have them near by.

For the filter turn the steering wheel all the way to the right and you can access the filter pretty easily. Just be away the filter dumps out on the suspension arm which is a pain in the ass. I usually cover it with newspaper to make it easier to clean up.

I believe it's worth your time to do these things your self. Oil can be changed in 20-30 minutes, tire rotation 30-40 minutes. I would go out and purchase good rolling floor jacks and tire chocks if your going to do the tire rotation. Make sure you get the correct type head for the floor jack otherwise you'll crush your jack points.
 

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If I recall, you use a 14mm box wrench to get the plug off. I change my crush washer about every 4 oil changes (I do a lot of driving in the winter so I change my oil every month). I don't use my ramps to get under the car, what I do is use my floor jack and put it under the passanger side (on the sub-structure) and raise the car a few inches. This allows easy access to the pan and filter. I had an adjustable filter wrench so I use that to loosen the filter. I leave the plastic inner fender piece on when I change the filter but I do turn the wheel all the way to the right. About the hardest thing to do is figure out if there is the correct amount of oil in the car! That useless dipstick gets you every time.
 

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A lot of good points were posted here, so take the best and go with what works for you.

1) I, too, use the OEM Nissan filter and Mobil 1 when I change my oil.

2) Yes, you should torque the drainplug to 26 pounds/feet which is right in the middle of the recommended range. Get a torque wrench.. you'll need it for a number of things.

3) I replace the drainplug washer with every oil change. And the OEM filter does not come with one.. the parts person will either give you one or sell you one. Make sure you get it.

4) I use the plastic composite ramps when I change my oil and it's a breeze. I do not have to turn the wheels or do anything special except for removing the plastic inner wheel well liner which takes all of maybe 2-3 minutes.

5) The filter is so easy to get to, it's ridiculous. I can change the oil in my Alty V6 in 20 minutes. Hell, it take 5+ minutes to get all of the stuff out in my driveway, so the work is really 15 minutes.


As far as rotating your tires, do as snolden suggests. I have two floor jacks and I do mine in my garage. Takes me about 45 minutes since I take my time and do it right and inspect things while the wheels are off. I do front-to-back-to-front. Piece of cake.

Changing the oil on this car is one of the easiest I have ever had to do. It's a no-brainer.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I think I need to seperate torq wrenches, I need one for the drain plug and probably a big heavy duty one for the tires??

Or do they have 1 that does everything?
 

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Abstraxx said:
I think I need to seperate torq wrenches, I need one for the drain plug and probably a big heavy duty one for the tires??

Or do they have 1 that does everything?
You'll only need one torque wrench. One that has a range of 10 to 100 lb-ft. Use 26 for the oil drain plug and 80-85 for the wheel lug nuts.
I got mine at Home Depot-Husky is the brand if I remember correctly-for around 60 bucks. A torque wrench is a must-have in my oppinion. If you'll buy one, make sure that you do not drop it on the floor(must be recalibrated if you do) and always bring it down to the minimum setting and it will serve you for a very long time.
H.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Damn $60.00 is alot for a wrench....I buy alot of tools but Now I know why I dont own one yet.
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)

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I have a very expensive torque wrench that a friend gave me for replacing the head gasket on his car but using a torque wrench to tighten the oil drain plug is beyond me. My first oil change was done at the shop and probably my next change will be done by me. As far as a torque wrench to tighten the drain plug, I have not seen any mechanic do this. Not saying it's not a good idea but from experience, I have never encountered any problems. I usually finger tighten it and give a half a turn with a wrench preferably the box end or a socket. Never leaks!
 

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Hey Abstraxx ....

Abstraxx said:
I do not want to come across as snobysh or arrogant but those that you have listed from Ebay are rather on the "junk" style-I bet 1000 to 1 they are made in Taiwan or even worse China and they REALLY look the part-just by looking at them you notice that the quality isn't there; you can get a similar one, brand new and one that you can look at before you buy, at your local Autozone or Pepboys, so i would suggest you don't get it from Ebay. You see, the crux of the problem is that this wrench MUST be a precision instrument, and I can assure you those in those pictures do not look like one. I have no qualms about buying some other "dumb" tools-hammer, screwdriver, etc that were made in Taiwan, but I would rather have my torque wrench made in USA. But do not take my word for it: go to Autozone first and check them out, then go to Lowes/Home Depot/Sears and see if there is any difference. Put this way: if you keep your car till 150k miles and you buy a $60 wrench that you will ONLY use for the oil drain plug, then your cost is an additional $1.2 for each oil change!!! But now let me ask you this: do you or will you only own/have one car??? Will you use this only for the engine oil plug??? How about the spark plugs, transmission oil plug, wheel lug nuts, etc, etc...Have you ever had to change an oil pan because of a stripped-due to overtightening- drain plug???? The pan itself will be around $100, not to mention the labor. Well, I'll let you decide...:)
H.
 

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I have an older torque wrench from sears which has that pointer. I was in pep boys some time ago and noticed that they had micro-adjustable wrenches (both flavors 1/4 and 1/2 inch) and they were about $15 +/- each. Needless to say, they are not the $200 wrenches but they work fine and more importantly, they appear to be calabrated correctly. The only fault I have with them is the click when you hit the desired torque is not as loud as other ones I have tried. As far as using a torque wrench for the drain plug, I don't and I have never had a problem.
 

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JerryJ said:
I have a very expensive torque wrench that a friend gave me for replacing the head gasket on his car but using a torque wrench to tighten the oil drain plug is beyond me. My first oil change was done at the shop and probably my next change will be done by me. As far as a torque wrench to tighten the drain plug, I have not seen any mechanic do this. Not saying it's not a good idea but from experience, I have never encountered any problems. I usually finger tighten it and give a half a turn with a wrench preferably the box end or a socket. Never leaks!
If you are able to runt that crush washer down with your fingers...you are a better man than I;)
 

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I know you all are going to balk at this post, but I have my oil changed at
.

They do a fully synthetic oil change with Mobil-1 for $30 flat. I always bring them a Nissan oil filter and they take $2 off for supplying your own filter.

I found that a case of Mobil 1 at Wal-Mart is about $27 after tax, so for ONE DOLLAR MORE, someone else gets dirty, drags the oil away for you and you can go play in the electronics or toy department while they are doing the change.

Plus, at my Wal-mart oil change center, they have guys there with some pretty souped up rice burners with turbo additions, etc. I am pretty confident they know how to drain and fill!
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I had a 89 camaro before I just got my Alti, I did most of the repairs myself and honestly never used a torq wrench, I use to change the oil and I never striped the drainplug screw, I also changed the sparkplugs and never had a problem, Also did tire rotations without a torq wrench ( thats probably the only thing that is really important to torq) But I never had a problem,

But I care about my ALti alot more, So I want to do everything perfectly,
I would be using it just for the drain plug and I guess tire rotations.......

I hear you guys about the cheap tools, I dont buy cheap tools, But $60.00 is kinda alot to spend on 1 torque wrench, But I guess I will have too.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Homedepot has 2 torque wrenches on there website

Both are HUSKY Brand Lifetime warranty:


3/4" Click style 10 - 100 pounds $54.00

the other


1/2 Click style 25- 250 pounds $59.00

Which one should I get?

Also does anyone know what size socket i need for the lug nuts?
 

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Pull drain plug out.
Replace drain plug with Fram Sure Drain, SD-3.
Put drain plug in package that Sure Drain came in along with drain hose.
No more wrench to take drain plug, no more crush rings and no more torquing the drain plug.
Works great.

Also I have used my prototype filter splash guard so you don't have to wipe the frame off from the oil that has drained on it. The first design worked good, but this next design is half of a Mobil 1 container and I will post pictures when it is successful.
 

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Re: tire rotation

snolden said:
you only have to rotate front to back. rotating side to side for one set is good but not required. with my directional tires i can't so i don't need to rotate side to side
Great point I left that out about the directional tires. IMO, if you going to go through the hassle of rotating tires, you should consider swapping sides as it helps wear the tires uniformly. Then again I'm cheap so I try and squeeze every last tenth of a mile out of my tires!!
 
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