Car Mechanics (UK)

TYP­I­CAL PROB­LEMS

- Belgium · Iceland · Alfa Romeo Automobiles · Alfa Romeo 147 · Volkswagen Golf Mk4

1 SEIZED SUMP PLUG If the sump plug is dam­aged or can­not be un­done, you may have to re­sort to ex­tract­ing the oil through the dip­stick tube. A me­chan­i­cal or air-fed pump can be used.

2 LEAKY SUMP PLUG If the oil drips from the en­gine’s sump plug are leav­ing a trail of blotches along your drive­way, the thread which the sump plug is wound into may be dam­aged and can of­ten be re­paired with a Heli­coil. This is where a new thread is in­serted into the hole for the sump plug. DIY Heli­coil kits are avail­able and some ma­chine shops of­fer this ser­vice.

3 GROUND CLEAR­ANCE If you’re drain­ing the en­gine oil on your drive­way (ie, with­out a ramp or in­spec­tion pit) you’ll need a drain bowl or con­tainer that’s shal­low enough to fit underneath your ve­hi­cle. If the ride height is low, col­lect some lengths of wood to drive all four wheels onto and in­crease the clear­ance.

4 OIL FIL­TER AC­CESS Some en­gine parts may need to be taken off to ac­cess and re­move an oil fil­ter. On an Alfa Romeo 147 V6, for ex­am­ple, part of the ex­haust sys­tem has to be de­tached. In most cases, a steady bar, mount­ing bracket or piece of trim may be in the way.

5 TOO TIGHT An over­tight­ened sump drain plug or spin-on fil­ter has the po­ten­tial to be a dis­as­ter (see Step 1 for deal­ing with a sump plug). For a spin-on fil­ter, you may have to crush and grip the body with water pump pli­ers.

6 CAUGHT IN­SIDE A CAN­IS­TER An oil fil­ter con­tained in­side a can­is­ter or hous­ing can be prob­lem­atic, es­pe­cially if part of the old fil­ter is still in­side, caus­ing the new fil­ter to be­come crushed and twisted. Make sure ev­ery­thing is re­moved from in­side the can­is­ter or hous­ing be­fore fitting the new fil­ter.

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