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Discussion Starter #1
Has anyone come across a procedure for properly torquing down an oil filter? I'm sure most of us are familiar with the pictorial depictions on the side of the oil filter showing how the can must be spun on before it gets an additional 1/3 or 1/4 turn once it's seated.
But, other than doing it by feel, is anyone aware of a proper torquing technique or a gadget that would help with that? I know that the dealer has no idea. I once spent nearly half an hour trying to remove the filter off my HEMI. The dealer had torqued the filter on so tight that I almost had to use a hammer and chisel to get the thing to spin off. Inversely, my father-in-law lost an engine when one of his contractor trucks ground to a halt due to the filter spinning off after a tech at a Jiffy Lube left the filter on too loose.
Any ideas? :shrug03:
 

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I tighten by hand with a rubber glove on, and then another 1/2 turn or so with the wrench.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I tighten by hand with a rubber glove on, and then another 1/2 turn or so with the wrench.
Half turn from what point? When you first sense resistance; from when the filter is fully seated? If you wanted to, could you torque the filter further from the point where you usually leave it?
 

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I hand tighten only - as tight as I can get it, been doing it for 30 years - no problems.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
So, it seems as if it's a feel thing. I can't find a definitive answer from manufacturers or users, but I believe I've a solution.

I came up with a way of knowing exactly when to stop torquing down the oil filter. I hired a professional patent researcher to do a domestic and international patent search and he turned-up nothing like I came up with, so it's all ahead with the filing.

It is a simple modification and I'm in talks with a firm to file for a patent in the very near future. I can't disclose more right now, but I'll let you all know more just as soon as I have legal protection for my idea. I hope it it'll be available for purchase in 24 to 36 months.
 

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So, it seems as if it's a feel thing. I can't find a definitive answer from manufacturers or users, but I believe I've a solution.

I came up with a way of knowing exactly when to stop torquing down the oil filter. I hired a professional patent researcher to do a domestic and international patent search and he turned-up nothing like I came up with, so it's all ahead with the filing.

It is a simple modification and I'm in talks with a firm to file for a patent in the very near future. I can't disclose more right now, but I'll let you all know more just as soon as I have legal protection for my idea. I hope it it'll be available for purchase in 24 to 36 months.
If patent includes a hand tightening, with a Hulk like grunt at the end, I'll have to have my lawyers get involved :)

Seriously though, I work in the computer field, and because of a need for a server room I came up with an GENIUS cable fastener back in the day, spent a few thousand (goes REAL quick) on Patent Searches and attorneys only to find that a large corp had something sorta similar patented, but never brought to market. This was probably because after their market research there just wasn't a REAL demand for it. I'd really think about that before you spend LOTS of money to develop ANOTHER SPECIALTY tool that maybe only a few people have a need for.

On the other hand, if you get rich off your idea, I can be that negative guy in your autobiography that gave you the motivation to get your tool into every mans garage. (that didn't sound right).

Nevertheless, good luck.
 

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It's an oil filter...

Put some oil on the o-ring, hand tighten until it's snug.

If you're getting a workout trying to tighten it, you're putting it on too tight.
If you're using a wrench to tighten it, you're putting it on too tight.

Too loose --> you'll see it dripping (but you'd seriously have to try to put it on too loose...)
Too tight --> you may not be able to get it back off without destroying the filer. I've seen this many times at the shop.
 

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I liked the old days when you put the filter inside a metal canaster and tightened a 5/8th bolt. But the drawback was you had to clean the canaster each time for a good filter change. Even better was pre 1950's? when most cars didn't have oil filters.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Too tight --> you may not be able to get it back off without destroying the filer. I've seen this many times at the shop.
That's what my idea avoids. The "too loose" part isn't an issue. Quick change places over tighten regularly. I suspect it's to avoid liability issues.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
If patent includes a hand tightening, with a Hulk like grunt at the end, I'll have to have my lawyers get involved :)

Seriously though, I work in the computer field, and because of a need for a server room I came up with an GENIUS cable fastener back in the day, spent a few thousand (goes REAL quick) on Patent Searches and attorneys only to find that a large corp had something sorta similar patented, but never brought to market. This was probably because after their market research there just wasn't a REAL demand for it. I'd really think about that before you spend LOTS of money to develop ANOTHER SPECIALTY tool that maybe only a few people have a need for.

On the other hand, if you get rich off your idea, I can be that negative guy in your autobiography that gave you the motivation to get your tool into every mans garage. (that didn't sound right).

Nevertheless, good luck.
LOL! Thanks, JerrWood. I'll definitely keep you all informed.
PS: You're right; this is going to cost me a pile of shekels, so it had better work!
 

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That's what my idea avoids. The "too loose" part isn't an issue. Quick change places over tighten regularly. I suspect it's to avoid liability issues.
It's not to avoid liability issues. Quick change places generally employ new/young "mechanics" (in quotes because i don't consider them actual mechanics) who are either still in vo-tech or newly graduated. Most of these "mechanics" are unfortunately kids who didn't like high-school and decided to go the vo-tech route to get out of class, and have very little ambition.

Most of the time the stuck filters are from these guys tightening them as hard as they can, and not bothering to put oil on the o-ring.

It's sad, but the automotive profession is flooded with employees like this. It's also not limited to quick-lube places.... they're at dealerships and any other shop. Hence its important to find a tech you like, and keep going to that individual. I was fortunate to work at a shop where we always had 2 or 3 solid techs.... all of us would have our own pile of "tickets" of return customers requesting us to work on their vehicles.

With that said, while I hope your idea/tool works, here's why I think it'll be a waste of effort.
1) The low-ambition mechanic that over tightens filters doesn't care. These guys don't even buy their own wrenches... i doubt they'll be spending money for a specialty tool to put oil filters on.
2) The qualified tech that doesn't over tighten filters, well, already knows how to put filters on properly. He's not going to buy the tool either.

Good luck regardless :icon_cheers:
 

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I might add to Matt's post that if you do your own oil changes, you can be smart enough to do them correctly. If you go to the quick lube or dealership regularly, let them fight with the over-tightened filter that they put in the last time!
 

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Discussion Starter #19
1) The low-ambition mechanic that over tightens filters doesn't care. These guys don't even buy their own wrenches... i doubt they'll be spending money for a specialty tool to put oil filters on.
2) The qualified tech that doesn't over tighten filters, well, already knows how to put filters on properly. He's not going to buy the tool either.

Good luck regardless :icon_cheers:
Very valid points and as soon as I can, I'll tell you how I addressed the issues you raise.
 

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Can't say im not intrigued. I've installed literally thousands of oil filters and never had one leak or one get stuck from being too tight.... so other than paying a good tech to use your tool, or selling it to customers to bring to a shop with them, i'm really curious to see what you have in mind!

I have had customers bring in quality torque wrenches for their wheels because they weren't confident in the shop tools being calibrated to their liking.
 
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