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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 10-12-2008, 11:27 AM Thread Starter
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Oil Drain Plug/Washer

I like everyone else found that the oil drain plugs are set up at Mitsubishi by some retired sumo yokozuna; getting the plug out without raising the car to get enough wrench and breaker bar (and pipe!) swing room is a trial. After my first oil change I set it up reasonably snug with the original washer and without the breaker bar - much less than original. At my second oil change I found it again as tight as the first time! I really am uncomfortable with that much strain on the threads of the cast aluminum sump.

As I have previously reported, I took a new OEM plug washer to my local Mitsu dealer. The service manager examined it and said, no, it isn't a standard Mitsu part, and no, he didn't consider it a single-use crush washer**. It is a quite hard form (or alloy) of copper and doesn't even scratch easily with a steel scribe. This would be one application where a squishy crush washer would be appropriate to give a good seal without straining the aluminum.

For anyone searching for a softer washer, the dimensions of the OEM as measured with a vernier caliper are: O.D. 31.8mm; I.D. 22.7mm; 1.2mm thick. Of the three dimensions I would judge the I.D. and thickness the most critical - the thickness as it is involved with properly positioning the pickup screen in the sump.

** Actually, I don't know how "crush washer" came into the W451 lexicon.
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 10-12-2008, 12:31 PM
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Maybe M-B knew something when they didn't put a drain plug on the 450s? Anyway, will have the second oil change done on a lift where there's plenty of room for the longer handles to break it loose. Don't understand why it tightens up again - maybe the aluminum/steel combo reacting to heating? Anyway, would a softer washer help the situation while sealing as effectively? Inquiring minds, etc.
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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 10-12-2008, 01:14 PM
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I believe the alternate cycles of heating/cooling are resulting in the plug tightening up. BTW, if you overtighten a bolt/plug, you need to replace it.

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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 10-12-2008, 01:42 PM
 
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No sump plug

My smart roadster and the older 450's don't have a drain plug at all, so you can't do a DIY oil change, you have to take your car to a smart specialist that has the sucky thing that they put down the dipstick hole to suck out the old engine oil.
Looks like they have changed it for the 451.
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 10-12-2008, 01:55 PM
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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 10-12-2008, 05:02 PM
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what about putting a dab of never siege on the plug?
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 10-12-2008, 05:15 PM
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I've looked in every catalog...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Old smart View Post
I like everyone else found that the oil drain plugs are set up at Mitsubishi by some retired sumo yokozuna; getting the plug out without raising the car to get enough wrench and breaker bar (and pipe!) swing room is a trial. After my first oil change I set it up reasonably snug with the original washer and without the breaker bar - much less than original. At my second oil change I found it again as tight as the first time! I really am uncomfortable with that much strain on the threads of the cast aluminum sump.

As I have previously reported, I took a new OEM plug washer to my local Mitsu dealer. The service manager examined it and said, no, it isn't a standard Mitsu part, and no, he didn't consider it a single-use crush washer**. It is a quite hard form (or alloy) of copper and doesn't even scratch easily with a steel scribe. This would be one application where a squishy crush washer would be appropriate to give a good seal without straining the aluminum.

For anyone searching for a softer washer, the dimensions of the OEM as measured with a vernier caliper are: O.D. 31.8mm; I.D. 22.7mm; 1.2mm thick. Of the three dimensions I would judge the I.D. and thickness the most critical - the thickness as it is involved with properly positioning the pickup screen in the sump.

** Actually, I don't know how "crush washer" came into the W451 lexicon.
I know of to look in for a soft aluminum or copper washer to replace this one and none of them have that size. (.875"ID X 1.25" OD)I also considered purchasing tube stock with near ID/OD sizing and couldn't find that either. I would part off a couple dozen on a lathe with ease if I could find the raw stock to make them out of.
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 10-12-2008, 05:17 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by headless View Post
My smart roadster and the older 450's don't have a drain plug at all, so you can't do a DIY oil change, you have to take your car to a smart specialist that has the sucky thing that they put down the dipstick hole to suck out the old engine oil.
Looks like they have changed it for the 451.
The auxiliary diesel in my sailboat is like many marine installations (no space under the engine to drain oil (except illegally into the bilge). We routinely use a hand-pumped vacuum extractor through the dipstick hole, widely available at any marine supply outlet, including those in the UK.
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 10-12-2008, 05:26 PM
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hahhaha lol try getting it off after you lower the vehicle. This is definatly fun!
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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 10-12-2008, 05:32 PM Thread Starter
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Stock

Quote:
Originally Posted by jonnysan View Post
I know of to look in for a soft aluminum or copper washer to replace this one and none of them have that size. (.875"ID X 1.25" OD)I also considered purchasing tube stock with near ID/OD sizing and couldn't find that either. I would part off a couple dozen on a lathe with ease if I could find the raw stock to make them out of.
If there is annealed copper tube stock anywhere, it will be at McMaster-Carr (McMaster-Carr), but I think it will be tough to part-off 1mm+ (0.047"+) sections.
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