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Have any of you used any sort of hand-actuated fluid pump to suction motor oil out through a dip stick tube? There are devices that work with air compressors to suck out by venturi action, but I don't own a compressor. Youtube shows homemade versions using vacuum cleaners and catch containers...

Here is one I found at Advance Auto Parts, $15.
https://shop.advanceautoparts.com/p/performance-tools-multi-use-pump-w1145/7071094-P?searchTerm=Part+%23W1145

And here is a cheapie 12v unit from Amazon that seems to have dubious ratings, but the concept seems solid.
https://www.amazon.com/Extractor-Electric-Change-Diesel-Complete/dp/B00N117WMO/ref=sr_1_14?s=automotive&ie=UTF8&qid=1508719399&sr=1-14&keywords=12V electrical+oil+extractor+pump

Any other options? I don't want to spend a bunch of cash just for changing oil on 2 cars. My Kia is pretty simple for changing the oil and filter. The Spider, well, as we know it is relatively more labor intensive, and I have done it myself twice.

I'm open to thoughts and ideas, as I'm sure others would be, too. Thanks.

Steve.
 

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I have seen a few posts on using pumps as a method of changing your oil. In my opinion this is not a preferred practice. when changing oil, you are not just changing the engine's lubricant, you are conducting a inspection of the underside of the car. from beneath, you can see a leaking main seal, a leaking transmission, a leaking hydraulic system. you are also able to inspect the boots on your suspension components. everyone sees the door ding scrape on the bumper and crack in the windshield, but rarely see the deteriorating tie rod end boot. it would be my suggestion to take the time and do an oil change the old way and get to know the underside of your car. and while you are down there, install a magnetic drain plug, it will give you an insight to your engine's health.
 

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I use a Mityvac, they are a little pricy, but it works well and seems to pull all of the oil out of the pan.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0002SR7TC/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o03_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

(Mine is an older model)

Some would say that you are better off draining the oil, but I used to drain every other oil change and I saw no difference in the oil and no sludge in the pan.

I believe that modern oils and filters do a good job removing particulates and preventing sludge. If you use a quality oil and change the oil and filter in accordance with the manufacturers instructions, drawing the oil out through the dipstick tube is fine.

I hope I didn't open a can of worms...
 

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I use a Mityvac, they are a little pricy, but it works well and seems to pull all of the oil out of the pan.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0002SR7TC/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o03_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

(Mine is an older model)

Some would say that you are better off draining the oil, but I used to drain every other oil change and I saw no difference in the oil and no sludge in the pan.

I believe that modern oils and filters do a good job removing particulates and preventing sludge. If you use a quality oil and change the oil and filter in accordance with the manufacturers instructions, drawing the oil out through the dipstick tube is fine.

I hope I didn't open a can of worms...
That is the one I use as well. I haven't even mentioned it here in the forums because of that "can". So I won't offer an opinion, there are a lot of tests and research online about it. Thus why I bought mine. Sure is a lot easier...
 

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The racing boat people use these pumps. They have more invested in just one of those engines than the cost of our cars so despite the advantages of getting "down under" I think it's effective.
Best regards
Pete
 

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Discussion Starter #8

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The racing boat people use these pumps. They have more invested in just one of those engines than the cost of our cars so despite the advantages of getting "down under" I think it's effective.
Best regards
Pete
Yes, for my jet boat I'd have to literally lift the engine out of the body to get the oil changed from underneath. For that, I do the oil change topside. But I also change the oil much more often than the typical "every 3 months or 3000 miles". And I do other specific things, like run the engine, shut it off, and do the oil change RIGHT AWAY so metal particles don't have a chance to settle. In all my vehicles, race or street, I do the oil change bottomside. And not only that, but I use magnetic drain plugs in all my vehicles, too. Ever been REALLY dirty (like out in the garden dirty) and taken a bath, and seen the sediment left behind in the tub? Think about how much worse that would be if you just stuck a hose straight down to the tub through a long pipe and sucked out the old bathwater from one corner of the tub. There would be A LOT of sediment left. Same goes for an engine oil pan. The metal particles are heavy, so unless something guides them out (like warm sticky motor oil) those particles are just going to stay put and accumulate with time and wear. It's far better for the engine to drain the oil through the plug, inspect the magnet on the plug, see the oil (spotty as if there's water in it), feel it (gritty), smell it (sweet like coolant), etc. It's more work, but doing it the best way can catch a small problem before it gets big and leaves you stranded.

If you opt for the "good enough for government work" method, at least keep some clear or white plastic handy, and put a few drops of used oil on it, and just take a quick look and smell, to make sure nothing's out of the ordinary.
 

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Yes, for my jet boat I'd have to literally lift the engine out of the body to get the oil changed from underneath. For that, I do the oil change topside. But I also change the oil much more often than the typical "every 3 months or 3000 miles".e

If you opt for the "good enough for government work" method, at least keep some clear or white plastic handy, and put a few drops of used oil on it, and just take a quick look and smell, to make sure nothing's out of the ordinary.
I am a DIY'er and want simple effective maintenance, and many other people on youtube don't agree with your opinion on bottom side oil changes vs top side. (bottom side has cons too).

Oil changes on the factory schedule will be equally effective using either method for typical drivers. You apparently race your cars in competition: Different situation from me and probably others.
Top side oil changes like you do for you boat, is the reason I do a top side oil change on my spider, it's convenient and effective. I also think you do the look and smell test you mention above with both methods.
I'll stick with top side oil changes. Sorry.:|
 

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generally speaking, the racing boat argument, for the argument of a short cut to changing the oil is not really a great argument for me. typically someone who has a racing boat is displaying the fact they have the money for one. replacement of a power pack is all but a second thought for these people. the amount of run time on a racing engine is measured in hours or seasons. when I was younger, a friend had a sand dragster. the engine was rebuilt each season if not earlier (there were failures). but we are speaking of a vehicle which is for many here our main means of conveyance to work. these cars longevity is marked in decades and hundreds of thousands on miles and tens of thousands of hours of run time. it just seems to me if want to be a responsible owner and if you do your own work, the short cut of vacuuming the oil out of the engine is counterproductive at best. you might as well take your car to the local 5 minute oil change place and be done with it. if you have read all of the oil type threads and everyone is so concerned with getting the exact specified oil versus an oil which is the same viscosity, it would seem people are looking to do the right thing. why would someone wish to use this as a shortcut rather than taking an hour every 3000 to 5000 miles to do an old fashioned oil change?
 

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generally speaking, the racing boat argument, for the argument of a short cut to changing the oil is not really a great argument for me. typically someone who has a racing boat is displaying the fact they have the money for one. replacement of a power pack is all but a second thought for these people. the amount of run time on a racing engine is measured in hours or seasons. when I was younger, a friend had a sand dragster. the engine was rebuilt each season if not earlier (there were failures). but we are speaking of a vehicle which is for many here our main means of conveyance to work. these cars longevity is marked in decades and hundreds of thousands on miles and tens of thousands of hours of run time. it just seems to me if want to be a responsible owner and if you do your own work, the short cut of vacuuming the oil out of the engine is counterproductive at best. you might as well take your car to the local 5 minute oil change place and be done with it. if you have read all of the oil type threads and everyone is so concerned with getting the exact specified oil versus an oil which is the same viscosity, it would seem people are looking to do the right thing. why would someone wish to use this as a shortcut rather than taking an hour every 3000 to 5000 miles to do an old fashioned oil change?
Here are a few points to consider.

- Dealers charge an exorbitant amount for an oil change. The one by me charges $90. I can get three oil changes worth of better oil than they use for that price.
- The top down oil changes remove all but a few teaspoons of oil; effectively all of it. The argument that some oil is left behind is moot. The amount is negligible and inconsequential.
- Some will claim that debris or residue ends up at the bottom of the engine. That is simply not the case with synthetic oils serviced at appropriate intervals.
- I do a better job at it with more attention to detail than the entry level tech tasked with changing oil at the dealership.
- The drain plug is annoyingly placed at the front, which means you can't just raise the front of the car (or drive the front wheels on ramps); you have to have the car either completely level, or raise all 4 corners. Using this top down oil change method makes the oil change process much simpler.

Aside from the expense of purchasing a good top down oil change pump, I see no benefit to draining the oil the old fashioned way over the top down way.
 

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why would someone wish to use this as a shortcut rather than taking an hour every 3000 to 5000 miles to do an old fashioned oil change?
For me:


1. I don't feel very safe under a car on ramps or stands. It's uncomfortable to work and the chances of being crushed are not zero.


2. Removing the oil from the top is not necessarily "worse" then draining from below. Some people who know things about cars think it's better. Most think there is little difference in the quality of the fluid exchange. And it's a car, not the space shuttle...
 

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One of the reasons I'd question a 'top down' oil change is how you know you are getting to the bottom of the sump? Of course, if it does, then I can't see the difference between that and a bottom drain, particularly with modern oils/cars and the particulate non-issue.

If you do oil changes regularly, leaving a quarter cup or so in the sump would even be a non-issue, I would think.

Having said all that, I'll still do bottom oil changes; my truck has the filter on the bottom, so I have to get under it, anyway. For this car, the extra 5-10 minutes isn't a big deal.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
used the Topsider vacuum pump today

I bought the Topsider vacuum pump at Northern Tool yesterday. Do I doubt it's ability to work as advertised? Nope, worked like a champ. But...

-Put the car on the ramps, Steve, just in case you need to drain from the bottom. (Nope, didn't do that, even though I thought of it.)
-Check the oil level on the dipstick before starting anything, just to make sure of my current oil level. (Nope, didn't do that, either. Dumba$$.)

The Topsider is a nice unit. It uses a 2-gallon steel can, the vacuum pump is a metal-bodied pump, and the hose and other fittings seem of good quality. The instruction sheet is clear and thorough, the advice of a bit of soapy water to assemble the hose sections together is a good idea.

The two instructions THOU SHALL OBEY are: 1- not over-tightening the pump or the suction tube to the can, each uses a rubber gasket to maintain a seal on their respective spouts of the can. Hand-snug only, don't reef on the caps or you will distort the gasket and lose suction; 2- proper operation of the vacuum pump.

Once I got the can under a vacuum, the oil very quickly began to draw from the sump. There is plenty of tube length to have the can sit on the floor with this car, but do check that your inserted hose remains inserted fully down the dipstick tube. The instruction suggest putting marker ticks on the hose to help judge the depth of the inserted tube. You will feel the tube bump into the bottom of the oil pan, then I lifted the hose a wee tiny bit, if even a 1/16". When the tube started sucking mostly air, I pulled the vacuum pump handle about 5 more times and wiggled the hose around in the dipstick hole to assure myself that I'd gotten all that I could.

I transferred the contents of the Topsider can into an empty 5-quart oil jug. Huh, there are only 3 quarts of oil in my oil jug.

-Think, Steve. The last time you changed the oil, getting the oil level to the top of the hatch mark section of the dipstick resulted in only about 3.75 quarts of oil, with a filter change, being put in. Oil level has been at the top of the hatch at each check over time.

Okay, the oil filter will be saturated, that may account for a couple ounces, maybe. I used a turkey baster to suck the standing oil from the bottom of the oil filter housing, that was several ounces, too. Catch can! Checked, it, the catch can was as dry as a bone. Darn it, I wish I would have put the car on the ramps, then I could have gotten under there and pulled the drain plug to see what else might drain out. Oh, well...

Upon refilling, with a new filter, 3 quarts brought the oil level to full on the dipstick. Then I started the car and let it run for a few minutes. After shutting it off, I let it rest of about 10 minutes and checked the dipstick. I was down half way in the hatch mark zone. I put in another 1/2 quart, that brought it to full on the dipstick. I went for a 30 minute drive to get the fresh oil through the system and to draw the Seafoam I'd put in the gas tank up through the fuel lines. Rechecking the oil level after returning put showed the oil level at the top of the hatched area of the dipstick.

3-3/4 quarts to full at my last oil change, which was a traditional drain plug draining with filter replacement. 3-1/2 quarts to full this time. The same brand/model filter was used each time. So, I conclude that I may have left about 1 cup (1/4 qt.) of old oil in the system. I'm using the recommended Pennzoil in my engine, good oil to begin with. The oil I drained had just shy of 3000 miles on it, nowhere near worn out, by all expectations, and not used in a hooligan manner! Therefore, I am not worried about the 8oz of old oil that may still be in my engine. It is thoroughly mixed with over 3 quarts of fresh oil, and it is flowing through a new filter.

Last tip, hang the vacuum tube from up high afterward to allow it to drain fully.

This oil change was for my winter shut down, the car is now in hibernation for the next several months. Next oil change, around mid-summer 2018, I will perform the same oil change process, but this time I'll correct for the mistakes I made this time so I can watch for certain that how much that came out is what I'd put it to begin with. Car on ramps, dipstick check beforehand, and maybe pull the drain plug after the suction removal anyway, to see the effectiveness of the suction system. I don't doubt the Topsider vacuum unit at all- it sucked out all the oil that was in the presence of the vacuum tube. I doubt what I did, just a bit, and the shape of the car's oil pan. Stay tuned for next summer...

Steve.



Just follow the instructions, and all will be well.


They suggest making a tick mark on the tube the same length of the dipstick insertion length, to help gauge the insertion depth of the suction tube down the dipstick hole.


Imprecise 1-inch marks upstream of the heavy tick mark, to help gauge the insertion of the suction tube into the dipstick hole. The tube inserted about 2 inches past the heavy tick mark when it hit the bottom of the oil pan. The heavy tick mark on the right shows the full insertion length of the dipstick. The large can cap came with its own rubber gasket. The small cap did not. Don't know if I received an extra gasket, or if I was shorted an extra gasket.


Can sitting on cardboard, just in case a fitting started leaking, which it did not.


Rag under the tubing joint, just in case it started weeping, which it did not.


Yes, there is oil to the bottom of the jug. The bottom area was a bit thick and opaque, but I'd just emtied it before filling with this old oil. And there was no water sucked from the engine.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Mods, if you feel my post of last night would be best posted in the DIY/How-to list, please let me know, I'm fine with that.

Steve.
 

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Thanks, XR. Please see the reply I put up just a minute ago.

Steve.
 

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This method seems like a lot of work. I think I'll just drain from the bottom. LOL.
 
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