Stuck Oil Pan (2006 Highlander 3.3L V6) - Toyota Nation Forum : Toyota Car and Truck Forums
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post #1 of 12 Old 04-14-2019, 09:24 PM Thread Starter
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Stuck Oil Pan (2006 Highlander 3.3L V6)

I am such a freaking dork...

I am supposed to be about eight states away (most of 'em are small :-)) on Friday. I'm towing a trailer and the HL is my only tow vehicle.

I had the bright idea today to buy a pneumatic needle scaler at Harbor Freight. Never had one of these before. Hot damn is that thing the nuts for cleaning up all that scaly underbody stuff (before I prime/paint or apply anti-corrosion stuff)!

While under the car I noticed oil on the oil pan. WTF. I changed oil yesterday. There was what I thought was atf on the outside of the pan from a recent power steering return line leak (since fixed). I cleaned it off while doing the oil change. The pan is rusty on the passenger side and I guess I assumed that the scale there had prevented me from getting all the atf off. And I've got my new tool in my hand, what am I gonna do? Duh. Seconds later I have a much cleaner, descaled and LEAKING oil pan. I drained the oil, got all the fasteners off, but OMG, how the hell am I supposed to break that sealant? I tried a bunch of things in a gentle, moderate, conservative fashion. I don't think any gentle, moderate, conservative approach is gonna work. Suggestions (based on experience, please)? Some kind of plastic putty knife sort of thing, maybe? I see potential for damage here.

I abandoned the effort due to impending darkness and rain. Screwed the fasteners back in, cleaned the pan up with brake cleaner and covered the rusty area with JB weld (gotta use that goop up somehow). The JB weld might (50/50) cover me for a couple of weeks here, which would be sweet. If not, I might have to bite the bullet and take this one to a pro, which I am certain I am going to be annoyed about ($$$). I'm certain I can do this... I'd just really like to be taught how to do it correctly.

Last edited by Ralph Spoilsport; 04-14-2019 at 09:49 PM.
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post #2 of 12 Old 04-14-2019, 09:40 PM
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what car?
what year?
miles?


I went through that hell with a 1996 Camry 3.0L 175,000 miles.


IT WAS HARD AS HELL.


I had to use a chisel (you think I'm kidding but I got the Home Depot slender one for ~ $6) and a BUCK KNIFE.


First have on hand a replacement pan gasket and spray glue, Autozone. Of course, first remove the dozen or so 10mm bolts, be careful cuz one or two of them are STUDS but simply resemble bolts and you can inadvertently screw out the studs, which would create more work for you later:


I'm guessing after you finally succeed, you won't be in the mood for work of the needless variety.



Once you get the tip of that buck knife in there, wang on it with a rubber mallet a bunch of times.


Once you get about 1 cm of the knife in there (super hard) suddenly it gets 20x easier, prying back and forth a bit and you only have to work another 10 min or so. A bayonet would probably also work.



After you get the pan off the first time, it will never be like that again. It'll come off lickety-split, though you do first have to remove the residual gooey glue gasket with sand paper, carb spray, etc. Even a razorblade. You must really take extra care to get it immaculate, even shiny.



You will be amazed at the volume of sludgey mess cemented onto the pan bottom.


I recommend having a gallon or so of diesel fluid or gasoline to speed the cleaning process --saved tons of work..!


After I did it myself, now I know why pro fixers treat that job like it's a ton of work:


Because IT IS.



You might also get a bunch of cheap Ebay magnets to supplement the bottom of the pan, which generally feature 3 or so of them --probably not enough, IMO.


Once you spray glue and emplace the replacement gasket, immediately place your 10 bolts back into their holes while the glue dries with the pan still off, thusly assuring the gasket glues onto the pan in exactly the orientation needed once you're (awkwardly from underneath) attempting to re-bolt the pan back into place.
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post #3 of 12 Old 04-14-2019, 09:41 PM
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Do NOT overtighten the bolts after re-mounting the pan:


Just hand tight and then maybe 1.5 turns only.



It's really easy to snap those bolts or strip the threading.
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post #4 of 12 Old 04-14-2019, 09:45 PM
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Whoops!


Last time:


After you get that b*tch off, you'll see the oil uptake tube. It features a screened UFO thingy that can get coated with varnish or fouled with boogers.


Disconnect tube, swish around a LOT in your pan of gas or diesel fuel.


Pour gas down it, note how later it swishes out of the tube more easily --you're gradually de-fouling it.


Hold it up to the light and give that screen a good eye-f*cking; you want all squares to be totally free of varnish coating; maybe poke something in there, like a bamboo skewer to make sure.
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post #5 of 12 Old 04-14-2019, 09:52 PM
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Get a stout trim tool. Harbor Freight has a kit for a few bucks. Take the thick one (the package I bought are blue) and tap it into the seam. You should be able to break the seal. Once you do you will have some leverage. Avoid a metal tool if you can as you may scour the engine side, which would not be good. At all. Better to damage the pan as you can get a new one of those easily. Angle the tool downward toward the pan, not upward toward the engine just to be safe.

Is this the engine oil pan or the tranny pan? You mentioned ATF so got confused there.

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'09 Camry SE 2.4L (2AZ-FE)
'97 Tacoma XL 4x4 Ext Cab 2.7L (3RZ-FE) - Manual
'97 Ford Explorer XLT V6 SOHC 4.0L 4x4

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post #6 of 12 Old 04-14-2019, 09:56 PM Thread Starter
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Topic edited with vehicle/engine description (doh!).

Thanks for reply. Man... I guess my first impression was right on... holy hell.
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post #7 of 12 Old 04-14-2019, 10:01 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SFCamry View Post
Get a stout trim tool. Harbor Freight has a kit for a few bucks. Take the thick one (the package I bought are blue) and tap it into the seam. You should be able to break the seal. Once you do you will have some leverage. Avoid a metal tool if you can as you may scour the engine side, which would not be good. At all. Better to damage the pan as you can get a new one of those easily. Angle the tool downward toward the pan, not upward toward the engine just to be safe.

Is this the engine oil pan or the tranny pan? You mentioned ATF so got confused there.
This is the oil pan. ATF reference was power steering fluid from earlier leak which I thought was source of oil. Turns out source of oil was leak in oil pan itself. Oil pan is getting replaced due to pin hole leak.

Harbor Freight: this kit https://www.harborfreight.com/5-piec...set-67021.html ?
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post #8 of 12 Old 04-14-2019, 10:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ralph Spoilsport View Post
This is the oil pan. ATF reference was power steering fluid from earlier leak which I thought was source of oil. Turns out source of oil was leak in oil pan itself. Oil pan is getting replaced due to pin hole leak.

Harbor Freight: this kit https://www.harborfreight.com/5-piec...set-67021.html ?
That's the one. The tip of the Buck knife can work, but you must be very, very careful as that will gouge the engine side almost like cutting butter. I think gaijin666 was thinking ATF pan as you don't put magnets in your oil pan. Be sure to get all the old gasket material off both sides (pan and engine). Even a small bump left can cause a leak.

Since you are changing the oil pan anyway, you can be aggressive with it. Again, angle downwards toward it as you don't care if it deforms a bit. You won't scour the engine side with plastic. You could place the tip of a flat head screwdriver on the lip of the pan, pointing down, and pop it with a hammer, again since you are tossing it anyway.

Camry Mod

THIS

'15 4Runner SR5 (1GR-FE)
'09 Camry SE 2.4L (2AZ-FE)
'97 Tacoma XL 4x4 Ext Cab 2.7L (3RZ-FE) - Manual
'97 Ford Explorer XLT V6 SOHC 4.0L 4x4

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post #9 of 12 Old 04-15-2019, 11:04 AM Thread Starter
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Monday update... JB Weld repair did the trick, what a lovely surprise. Wonder how long that might last?
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post #10 of 12 Old 04-15-2019, 11:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ralph Spoilsport View Post
Monday update... JB Weld repair did the trick, what a lovely surprise. Wonder how long that might last?

Might last a long time, who knows. I would keep a constant eye on the level until you do swap out the pan, especially on a long trip. Murphy's Law will have it fail in the middle of nowhere on a long trip when you can't replace it or get to a place to buy more oil. I'd stash a 5 quart jug in the trunk.

Camry Mod

THIS

'15 4Runner SR5 (1GR-FE)
'09 Camry SE 2.4L (2AZ-FE)
'97 Tacoma XL 4x4 Ext Cab 2.7L (3RZ-FE) - Manual
'97 Ford Explorer XLT V6 SOHC 4.0L 4x4

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post #11 of 12 Old 04-15-2019, 03:14 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SFCamry View Post
Might last a long time, who knows. I would keep a constant eye on the level until you do swap out the pan, especially on a long trip. Murphy's Law will have it fail in the middle of nowhere on a long trip when you can't replace it or get to a place to buy more oil. I'd stash a 5 quart jug in the trunk.
Found an OEM Toyota oil pan at Amazon for $135. This falls within my peace of mind threshold, so replacement is a done deal. However, I'm really much better on a never-done-this-before job when not under time pressure, so the plan is to leave the patched pan in place for my road trip... but take the new pan & sealant (& 5qt jug of oil) along. That way if it does crap out in E. Bumble---k I've got the part and just need a guy with good hands and a lift.
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post #12 of 12 Old 04-15-2019, 04:17 PM
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you could also take along some extra jb weld, brake clean, and oil for a quick patch to avoid doing the job in a parking lot somewhere. Jb weld is pretty good though, you might get over a year out of that patch. I would still replace at my convenience when i got back, like you said.
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