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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ever since I got my new jobs I've had no time to work on my truck including changing the oil. The company provides a guy that changes oil on Fridays while you work so I bit the bullet and did it. THE GUY LEFT THE DRAIN PLUG LOOSE AND IT EVENTUALLY FELL OFF. i only noticed because, after i drove home, i parked for a couple minutes and when i came out there was an enormous puddle underneath my truck.

So here is the question. I probably drove on it for 3-4 miles on about 1/3 - 1/4 oil. what are the chances there is permanent damage? also, the company agreed to pay for an inspection and any required repairs... what kind of tests should i do? since they are paying for it, im just going to take it to the dealer. its an 04 v6 using mobile one with about 25k on it. thanks for any info you guys could give me.
 

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If it didnt make any noise I would say it should be fine. As long as you didnt drive it too far or run it hard. The main concern would be one losing the plug, 2 getting oil on your truck and 3 getting dirt/dust/grime in the hole while it was off.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
thanks for the input. when i called the company they drove out immediately to fix it armed with a new drain plug, filter, oil, flush, and some oil cleaner. they did an engine flush then added new oil, filter, and drain plug so i think im covered on those points. he also was under the truck for a good hour cleaning up the resulting oil on the undercarriage.

engine sounds fine (but i only have basic automotive knowledge so my idea of fine could be way off), although i did hear a big clank (but i assume that was just the drain plug falling off while driving). i swear the truck feels like it has less power... but that could just be in my head. i cant even turn my stereo on now because im paranoid and always listening to the engine.

has anyone ever driven their car with little/no oil for a couple of miles?
 

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I think that you will be ok. when you stopped you still had some oil in it so there was oil moving around in there. I had something like that happen to my mother in law. She had an oil change done at a lube and tune place and they did not put oil back in the motor after doing the oil change. :eek: after driving 30 miles the car got hot so she pulled over and found that there was no oil in it. She called them and they drove out and filled it with oil where she pulled over. The car is still running and she has had no problems with the motor. and she only puts the cheep oil in the car :rolleyes: I think you will be fine.
 

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I've run a 22R-E with the dipstick reading almost no oil. Oil is adhesive so it will stick to the engine internals even if the pan is drained. The main reason for oil quantity is heat removal, ie the oil flows through the engine and pulls heat. When is dumps back into the pan it cools off.

I just bought this: http://www.lubricationspecialist.co...x?fileid=105&gclid=CIz0zNXT_ooCFQUKIgodcjiGGg

I'm going to install it the next time I change my oil.
 

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If your oil light didn't come on, you're probably fine(assuming your oil pressure idiot light is functioning properly, in many cases it doesn't). I bet your plug fell out very close to your house and didn't have enough time to drain completely and have the engine run with noi oil pressure. Did you see a trail of oil leading up to your driveway?
 

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i agree that if you had a big puddle after it was parked,you shouldnt have engine damage.but to clear your concience, have the dealer do a full performance check on your truck.imho.your comp. seems to be bending backwards to help you out,props to them.good luck!
 

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Agree with above. If you start using oil or the engine starts making noise the you will have a problem. Keep an eye to the level and the color of your exhaust gases. Get something in writting from your company to document what happen for future referances incase of problems down the road.
 

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I got my oil changed once and on the way home notice smoke pouring out the back of my truck...they had cross threaded the oil filter and it was blowing out oil like crazy. I lost a lot of oil but there was no resulting damage so you should be fine.

The manager of the shop personally drove out to my house, changed the oil again right then and there with a new filter, cleaned off my undercarriage, cleaned up the driveway, and gave me a coupon for a free oil change my next time there. It's definately nice when owners stand behind their business like that.
 

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fuck that shit. i change my own oil so i know its done right. ive heard way more horror stories than good ones about those places.same kind of thing happened to my dad.
 

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How long is the oil trail leading to your driveway? How much pissed out in the driveway. Did you hear any knocking, did the temp guage go up, did the idiot light turn on, have you found the old plug? Seems like you drove it soft on the way home, so you probably didn't do much damage. My opinion is that if at least a couple of quarts leaked out in your driveway, you didn't lose oil pressure and most likely did no damage.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
mojavegold said:
How long is the oil trail leading to your driveway? How much pissed out in the driveway. Did you hear any knocking, did the temp guage go up, did the idiot light turn on, have you found the old plug? Seems like you drove it soft on the way home, so you probably didn't do much damage. My opinion is that if at least a couple of quarts leaked out in your driveway, you didn't lose oil pressure and most likely did no damage.
i did drive it pretty softly (gas just hit $3.10 and im trying to conserve). i dont know how long the trail was because it was too long to track.... i didnt hear any knocking, didnt have light turn on, i wasnt especially paying attention to the oil temp. i dont know how much spilled out when i parked (it was in a restaurant parking lot). i parked it at home for maybe 30 minutes before leaving to the restaurant. when i got home there was a small puddle in my driveway (indicating it had been leaking but not nearly as fast as at the restaurant.

i think the drain plug fell out halfway to the restaurant... so i never found it. hopefully you are right and there is no damage.

are there any specific tests i should ask the dealer to do? i figure since the oil change company agreed to pay for the inspection. i would get it checked out just in case. i dont want to gouge him and do every test under the sun, just whatever i need to make sure that my truck is ok.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
badmoonrising said:
fuck that shit. i change my own oil so i know its done right. ive heard way more horror stories than good ones about those places.same kind of thing happened to my dad.
yeah i know... i usually do my own too. but i recently moved... got a new job... and have no time or place to do it. i have a small apt driveway which doesnt allow oil changes and they dont allow it on the street either. i used to drive back to my hometown to do it... but thats a little inconvenient too. i guess ill just drive it to a buddy's house to do it next time.
 

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tsunami982 said:
I wasnt especially paying attention to the oil temp
The temperature gauge in the truck actually measures coolant temperature, not oil temperature. Unless you've put in some sort of aftermarket sender and gauge, you can't get a specific reading on just oil temperature... although coolant temperature should probably give you a good idea of what's going on in general in the motor, assuming your waterpump is functional.


tsunami982 said:
are there any specific tests i should ask the dealer to do? i figure since the oil change company agreed to pay for the inspection. i would get it checked out just in case. i dont want to gouge him and do every test under the sun, just whatever i need to make sure that my truck is ok.
You could have someone do a compression/leakdown test to make sure you're motor is in spec and the pistons/cylinders are each within a reasonable delta of one another in terms of compression. You could also maybe do a used oil analysis after a few weeks to make sure there aren't any abnormal readings of lead or silver in the oil. Other than that, definitely check your oil level every few days and make sure it's not burning off a significant amount of oil(could be a sign of worn rings) or smoking out the tailpipe. I'd pay attention to the sound of your motor too and make sure you don't hear any weird ticking noises coming from the top of the motor. If you did indeed run the motor on no or low oil, there's a good chance that there may have been some additional valvetrain wear which could cause lifter noise at the time when the drain plug was out, and if it was bad enough.. possibly even some additional noise now.
 

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I bet it will be fine, but you might as well get it checked out if they are paying for it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
17874 said:
I bet it will be fine, but you might as well get it checked out if they are paying for it.
exactly. i dont want my engine to crap out on me a couple months from now and REALLLY regret not getting it checked out... especially since im not paying for the inspection.

but again... does anyone have any suggestions as to what tests i should have done?
 

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Easiest check: pull the oil filter off and cut it open, look for metal particles, bits and peices of bearing material. Put a magnetic drain plug in the pan, run the motor for a couple of days, pull the plug and look for metal. I used to do this on my race cars and you would be surprized what an oil filter will tell you. Hope this helps.
 

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tsunami982 said:
...any suggestions as to what tests i should have done?
At a minimum, have a compression check done. Also listen for any abnormal noises while driving. If you are very concerned, have a valve clearance check done.

Other than that, periodically monitor your oil level to make sure it is not going down faster than normal, and maybe get a used-oil analysis done just before your next change.

Those would be the tests.
 

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Agree with the others, if you never lost oil pressure then no damage should have been done. You're not seized, so that's good! Don't think there's a great test to tell if you ran low on pressure for a few minutes...

I'm in San Diego. Guess I'll never use any of those mobile guys! LOL
 
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