My Stuck Oil Drain Plug Experience - AND MY RECOMMENDED BREAKTHROUGH SOLUTION
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Thread: My Stuck Oil Drain Plug Experience - AND MY RECOMMENDED BREAKTHROUGH SOLUTION

  1. #1
    Junior Member yiotta's Avatar
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    My Stuck Oil Drain Plug Experience - AND MY RECOMMENDED BREAKTHROUGH SOLUTION

    Hey all,
    It was pouring rain when I got home last night on my TW so after getting out of my rain suit and putting on some garage clothes I set out to change my oil. Mind you, I have had my TW since new in 1997 but the poor thing only has 2k miles on it because I have several bikes and hobbies. Anyways, I have change the oil twice before and yesterday mistakenly thought 'It's an oil change, how hard can it be' because I forgot about that damn, stubborn oil drain plug. I always use a torque wrench when I have the values and I'm sure I did the 43 nm / 31 ft/lbs on my other changes. I put the 6 point 19mm on the 18" breaker and gave it a push, then a bigger one then almost knocked the bike over. WTF? I put a chock under my rear wheel but got the same result, sans knocking the bike over. Then, I tried TW200forum. Read some guys needed a impact gun. So, I tried my cordless and it did nothing. I hooked up my air compressor and tried that but new something wasn't right so I immediately stopped. I had to pry the socket off and my cover bolt is now marred from an ill fitting socket / less than perfect alignment/technique. I do not recommend using an impact gun on that bolt. There are many users on this forum that stripped the 19mm on the cover and had to resort to cave man mechanics to get the damn thing off. Very create cave men I might add as I now know a few ways to attempt to get the cover off were I to ruin my cover.

    OK, so how am I going to get this damn thing off the bike? I grabbed my trusty 18" breaker bar with socket and made sure I could get good purchase on the bolt in it's current condition and I felt it was still good. I tried once again to move it and the plug wouldn't budge. I grabbed a 3' hunk of iron pipe I have for these times, got that set up on the breaker but still no go.

    It is difficult to apply pressure to the wrench while making absolutely certain the socket stays square on the cover bolt. At this point I was about to consider it a two person job.

    But wait, my own crazy idea surfaced. I set my breaker with iron pipe at 9:00 position, made damn sure I had the socket on there nice and square, then, as I lay with my feet at the front wheel, swung my left leg, bent at 45 degrees up, over and onto the bar. I began to apply pressure and POP...the cover came loose. The rest of the oil change went well. I added the 1 qt of Mobil1 Racing 4T. I started the bike, cracked the bleed screw and oil seeped past the threads (Is this sufficient?). Shut the bike down and added the .16 qt as per the manual bringing it to 1.1 qt (1 qt 5 fl oz) to my bike and it sits at the top fill line.
    Drove my 30 mile commute to work at 65 without issue.

    So, What I learned is:
    1. Always remember that many times nothing is as easy as you think.
    2. Even though it may be uncomfortable and time consuming, ALWAYS make sure the socket is squarely on the nut or risk rounding it off and the ensuing caveman wrenching.
    3. Don't use a impact gun on your bike...I know better
    4. Apply anti-seize to the drain cap threads before re-installing to prevent future stuck drain plugs.


    That's it. I can't believe I typed all that for a silly oil change. I think I'll order up a new drain plug and gasket for the next oil change before I put it away for the winter.
    TW-Brian and Ken like this.

  2. #2
    Senior Member TW_in_BC's Avatar
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    I've used my impact driver on more than one occasion...
    Try to put a "bit" of anti-seize on the threads and on the O-ring.

    I've also used an air hose (5-10 PSI) to "cool" the drain plug, while the rest of the engine remains hot...
    Ken likes this.
    2008 TW200
    Southwest corner of BC Canada

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  3. #3
    Senior Member TW-Brian's Avatar
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    I take pride in being a caveman mechanic !

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  5. #4
    Senior Member jeepster09's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TW-Brian View Post
    I take pride in being a caveman mechanic !

    Good job!

    tw brian on forum.jpg
    GOF, TW-Brian, admiral and 2 others like this.
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  6. #5
    Senior Member RockyTFS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by yiotta View Post
    I started the bike, cracked the bleed screw and oil seeped past the threads (Is this sufficient?)......
    Yes, but it's better to remove it entirely then turn it back in one turn....the seep will be more obvious. Be careful not to torque it more than 1/8 turn past snug. As for the oil drain plug, use 29 ft./lbs instead of 31 and it will come off easily next time.
    Rocky
    2018 TW200
    2014 BMW R1200GS LC

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