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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I think I mentioned elsewhere on the forum that I paid for somebody else to do my oil change for the first time in around 35 years of owning cars. I decided it was time and I was going to enjoy the convenience of not having to mess with it myself. This was the second oil change done by my dealer but the first one I had to pay for. All was well, got it done and went on my way perfectly happy and not even feeling too bad about the $66 price.

That was yesterday. Today I am under the hood doing some battery voltage checks and I see this:



Really? I don't know if that is old oil that wasn't cleaned up from when the filter was removed or new oil leaking. When I first saw it in the daylight it looked very dark and I assumed it was old oil, but when I took the picture I had a flashlight on it and it looks fairly clean. Then again the dirty oil that came out likely wasn't all that dirty so I don't know. I'm not sure which would bother me more. I think I could be pretty forgiving if this was just a freak thing and I have a leak from the new filter. Stuff happens. But if that is old oil that was just left there I can't see any excuse.

I had a hard time leaving it there and shutting the hood. My first instinct was to clean it out so I can check after running it again to see if it is leaking. But then it would be gone and if there isn't a leak then there isn't anything left for them to look at when I bring it back in to complain. Maybe I am overly picky but I can't imagine leaving something like that on a customer vehicle.
 

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2008 Outback 2.5
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Wow!
Is this where the oil filters are with the 2017 Outbacks. REALLY upside down where the only way to remove it is to let the oil spill downward?

This has got to be crazier than the "ring of fire" on the Gen 3's or where you have to remove the wheel and splashguard to get to the filter which spills oil directly onto the car's frame (other mfr cars).

Right next to the belts?
 

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2012 OB , 2017 Impreza
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Wow!
Is this where the oil filters are with the 2017 Outbacks. REALLY upside down where the only way to remove it is to let the oil spill downward?

This has got to be crazier than the "ring of fire" on the Gen 3's or where you have to remove the wheel and splashguard to get to the filter which spills oil directly onto the car's frame (other mfr cars).

Right next to the belts?
You forgot to mention the GEN4 Outbacks where you have to remove front wheel and pull down the plastic wheelwhell to change headlight bulb.
 

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2013 Outback, 2.5i Limited w/ Moonroof
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I would also be irritated. It takes me 10 seconds to wipe out the catch tray of any oil or debris. It seems lazy that they didn't also do that for you. Perhaps they forgot. But how do you miss that when you are about to spin on the new filter?

Wow!
Is this where the oil filters are with the 2017 Outbacks. REALLY upside down where the only way to remove it is to let the oil spill downward?
I love this design. It is absolutely the most convenient arrangement for oil changes that I have ever had experience with in my 45 years of doing my own auto maintenance. If the filter ADBV is working correctly, almost no oil drips into the catch tray. Even if it does, it is all captured in the catch tray. A lot better design than my Olds Alero where the filter is on a downward angle, and oil runs down the front of the engine and drips onto the top of a cross member. Or other cars that I have had where the filter is horizontal.

Frankly, in six years since Subaru has went with this design on the FB25, yours are the only negative comments I have ever seen or heard in regards to this design.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I would also be irritated. It takes me 10 seconds to wipe out the catch tray of any oil or debris. It seems lazy that they didn't also do that for you. Perhaps they forgot. But how do you miss that when you are about to spin on the new filter?
I think that is what bugs me the most. Did they even wipe off the surface where the filter gasket seals?
 

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2008 Outback 2.5
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Frankly, in six years since Subaru has went with this design on the FB25, yours are the only negative comments I have ever seen or heard in regards to this design.
I knew there had to be a logical reason for positioning the oil filter this way. I suppose that if you let the oil drain for long enough, there will be little or no oil left in the filter when you unscrew it. It certainly is in a convenient position. Even though the filter in my Gen 3 is surrounded by red hot exhaust shielding, there is enough clearance under the car to never need a jack when changing the oil and filter.

Oil filter placement tends to be an afterthought with most cars and I had to believe Subaru did this intentionally. Thanks for the explanation. It just seemed counter-intuitive.
 

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Well, I found that changing the filter on my '01 OB 2.5 was a really messy job - as soon as I unscrewed the filter, a ton of oil poured out, all over my arm. First car that I've ever seen that!
 

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I knew there had to be a logical reason for positioning the oil filter this way. I suppose that if you let the oil drain for long enough, there will be little or no oil left in the filter when you unscrew it. It certainly is in a convenient position. Even though the filter in my Gen 3 is surrounded by red hot exhaust shielding, there is enough clearance under the car to never need a jack when changing the oil and filter.

Oil filter placement tends to be an afterthought with most cars and I had to believe Subaru did this intentionally. Thanks for the explanation. It just seemed counter-intuitive.
I drove a VW Diesel over 160K miles and NEVER removed the oil-drain plug. (and the 12 zipscrews holding the bottom engine-cover on) With an oil-sucker-pump, doing a 'topside' oil-change is trivial and dripless.
 

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2008 Outback 2.5
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Well, I found that changing the filter on my '01 OB 2.5 was a really messy job - as soon as I unscrewed the filter, a ton of oil poured out, all over my arm. First car that I've ever seen that!
After letting the car cool and draining the oil, I use a wrench tool to loosen the filter then take a 2-liter plastic soda bottle with the top half cut off to finish unscrewing the filter. All the oil is caught by the bottle and no spills.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
And now that they gave me reason to pick apart their oil change, if they are going to charge me for 6 quarts of oil and itemize it on the invoice shouldn't I get to take the remaining .9 quarts of oil with me?
 

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2008 Outback 2.5i, 2009 Forrester 2.5 sohc
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I would call the Service Manager, explain the issue, that you dont know if the filter o-ring failed or the tech did sloppy work and ask for a new filter to be installed. I good dealer won't argue over $5.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I would call the Service Manager, explain the issue, that you dont know if the filter o-ring failed or the tech did sloppy work and ask for a new filter to be installed. I good dealer won't argue over $5.
It hadn't even entered my mind that they might push back at all as far as fixing it. I think a new filter would be the quickest and easiest way to clean it up but if they think they can get rid of the mess without replacing it I'm okay with that. That's assuming it isn't leaking of course. But they better not leave any behind that continues to weep out around the edge of the filter or I will bring it back every week until my next oil change.
 

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2008 Outback 2.5i, 2009 Forrester 2.5 sohc
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@;
It hadn't even entered my mind that they might push back at all as far as fixing it. I think a new filter would be the quickest and easiest way to clean it up but if they think they can get rid of the mess without replacing it I'm okay with that. That's assuming it isn't leaking of course. But they better not leave any behind that continues to weep out around the edge of the filter or I will bring it back every week until my next oil change.
You have an almost new car, they won't argue, ask for a new filter.
 

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2016 3.6 Limited with ES
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I think I mentioned elsewhere on the forum that I paid for somebody else to do my oil change for the first time in around 35 years of owning cars. I decided it was time and I was going to enjoy the convenience of not having to mess with it myself. This was the second oil change done by my dealer but the first one I had to pay for. All was well, got it done and went on my way perfectly happy and not even feeling too bad about the $66 price.

That was yesterday. Today I am under the hood doing some battery voltage checks and I see this:



Really? I don't know if that is old oil that wasn't cleaned up from when the filter was removed or new oil leaking. When I first saw it in the daylight it looked very dark and I assumed it was old oil, but when I took the picture I had a flashlight on it and it looks fairly clean. Then again the dirty oil that came out likely wasn't all that dirty so I don't know. I'm not sure which would bother me more. I think I could be pretty forgiving if this was just a freak thing and I have a leak from the new filter. Stuff happens. But if that is old oil that was just left there I can't see any excuse.

I had a hard time leaving it there and shutting the hood. My first instinct was to clean it out so I can check after running it again to see if it is leaking. But then it would be gone and if there isn't a leak then there isn't anything left for them to look at when I bring it back in to complain. Maybe I am overly picky but I can't imagine leaving something like that on a customer vehicle.
Be thankful the tech could read English and put the engine filter on the engine instead of in the air box or cabin filter. But for the painted words there's no telling where he might have put it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Well, problem solved. I stopped in after work and they got me in right away to fix the issue. It didn't appear to be a leak but rather old oil that just wasn't cleaned up. I didn't actually watch to see if they took the filter off but the service manager seemed to think that was going to be the easiest way to get it clean. If they did take it off they put the same one back on and I am okay with that as long as I don't have any leaks. There was one little spot of oil left that I pointed out but in the end I called it good enough when I saw the setup.

This isn't a picture of my engine but one I pulled off the internet. The only remaining oil I could see on mine was in the little dimple shown by the arrow. I was a little mad at first that there was still oil in there but in reality I think that little bit of oil is probably left there most of the time during oil changes. It was probably there when I had my first free oil change done and I didn't notice it then. Now that I am aware of it I will probably be out there with a Q-tip cleaning it up but decided they had done an acceptable job. As long as I don't see any more oil around the filter in the coming days and weeks I am happy.

 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
And now that they gave me reason to pick apart their oil change, if they are going to charge me for 6 quarts of oil and itemize it on the invoice shouldn't I get to take the remaining .9 quarts of oil with me?
Almost forgot about this. I probably got myself flagged in their system as being "That Guy" but I couldn't keep myself from bringing this up. Clearly this was a question nobody is supposed to ask but my logic was sound and they tossed it back and forth and passed the buck to the part department who said that is just the way they have always billed it. They agreed that even though they are using bulk oil in the shop it is the same as if they had to open that sixth 1-quart bottle and that since I paid for that extra nine-tenths of a quart that by rights I should get to take it.

In the end I left with a full quart of 0W-20 Subaru Oil from the parts department. I'm not feeling this as a big victory though and I just hope I didn't ruffle too many feathers. Funny that I am the first person in the history of this dealer doing oil changes that has ever asked about this though. :rolleyes:

All they really need to do to fix this on their end is to put the oil on the invoice as a total quantity item instead of billing it out as six individual quarts. As it is they even put the part number for the one-quart bottles on the invoice even though they are using bulk oil out of a tank.
 
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