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Discussion Starter #1
Yesterday I decided to change the oil on my bike since the clutch had kind of a chatter to it. The oil in the bike looked fairly new, but who knows what the previous owner had in there. I used an OEM Yamaha oil filter (the one in there was the same, so that's good.)



But when I tried the pull the drain plug it was stuck, as if someone had installed it with an impact wrench! I put a six point 19mm socket on it and kept it square, but the plug went from looking like new to this:









I probably applied over 100 ft/lb of torque to get it to come loose. I sprayed CRC freeze off on it, smacked the socket with a hammer first, etc... Because I didn't want to round the ends off. But it just would not come loose. Finally it did come loose though and I got it out.



I didn't install it very tightly because I want it to come off again.



Is this common? Does the o-ring freeze to the case or what? I have dealt with similarly shaped Honda valve tappet covers getting dry welded to the heads of those bikes.



Is there any good way to prevent this from happening or did the previous owner just happen to be an angry gorilla?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I don't think my plug was seized at the threads. I think the 'hat' part was stuck to the engine case by the rubber o-ring. I put grease on the rubber ring.. I was just curious if it's common for them to tighten up between oil changes.
 

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I don't think my plug was seized at the threads. I think the 'hat' part was stuck to the engine case by the rubber o-ring. I put grease on the rubber ring.. I was just curious if it's common for them to tighten up between oil changes.


Only if your oil changes are 5 years apart!




I lowered the torque value to 28 from 31 ft/lbs and haven't had any difficulty since. Probably ought to slap a new O-ring in there every five years.



And clean the flange and O-ring, even a tiny bit of very fine grit will cause problems at the next change.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
What's weird is that before I tried to remove it, it wasn't distorted as if someone had over-tightened it.



Good to know that it's not a common issue! Hopefully it'll come out easier the next time I need to get in there.
 

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Hopefully it'll come out easier the next time I need to get in there.


From the looks of your plug after removal, I'd get a new one. That's going to make it rather likely to bugger completely next removal, then you will have to resort to hammer and chisel.
 

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I have had a similar experience on my TW. My bolt end was pretty rounded off last time I had changed oil and I was hesitant to put it back on, but I was riding the next morning and didn't have any other options. It was already a little buggered up from previous oil changes (I think the shop that did one of my oil changes didn't follow torque specs). I was unable to get it off this last time without quite a bit of work.

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I initially attempted to file the edges down some, but I think the metal was already too weakened and just rounded back even worse. I ended up getting some bolt extractor sockets, and hammered on an 11/16th (after the rounding and the filing down that was the best fit) and it popped off. I also realize that the gear shift foot level is slightly in the way to get direct and clean access to the oil plug. I plan on simply removing that from now on to ensure it isn't tweaking the angle at all, ensuring to keep my replacement oil cap in better condition.

With that said, the recommended Yamaha 43n/m torque spec seems waaaaaay too tight for this plug. I put it closer to 30 this last time (honestly even that seems a bit tight... maybe because of the spring?)—I had intended on putting some anti-seize on there as well, but forgot :(

Anyways, I recommend removing the shift lever and ensure you're using a 6pt or similar socket vs. 12pt in general for removing the oil cap for maintenance. Also, get yourself a set of bolt extraction sockets just incase and a backup oil cap ;)
 

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Those are some toasted drain plug stories!
I think this is a common problem , perhaps often associated with an over-compressed O-ring that allows the soft zinc alloy plug's flange to contact the aluminum case half.
A more frequent replacement of the O-ring coupled with not over-tightening might reduce the frequency of drain plug replacement.
I like a little anti-seize on the threads, o-ring and flange too.
 
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I am painfully reminded of my first and last "professional" oil change ever. I worked right next door to that big blue mega box store, and their tire shop/oil change shop was 50 feet from where I parked the Suburban 5 days per week. I thought I was getting at the stage in life where I could pay the extra $2 or $3 dollars to have someone change my oil the easy way, where nobody has to lay on a sheet to cardboard.

After work I stopped in to pay the bill and pick up the Burb. There was an $8 charge for the special drain plug they had to put in because the original drain plug had been crossthreaded. I just stepped away and said "give me a minute" and hopped on the cell phone and called the store. I asked for the duty manager of the day and waited very little time til the ole guy answered. I told him I was a customer in the auto shop and asked if he could meet me there.

I explained the problem and asked if he could have the technician who did the work put my rig on the pit so he could show us both what the problem was. It happened.

The "technician" pointed to the new oversized drain plug and explained that the old drain plug was crossthreaded and leaking. I asked where all that leaking oil had gone. The duty manager immediately noticed my meaning. I had almost 200,000 miles on this rig and it was dry as a bone. I told them both that I am the guy who had changed it every 5,000 miles and we all know it wasn't leaking when it came in today because all this dust and mud is dry. I also said that they don't have to worry about pleasing a customer because I would not be coming back.

The duty manager offered to remove all charges. I said I'd pay for the oil and filter, just like I always have if he'd remove the sloppy labor and the drain plug charge. I then said I'd haul them to small claims court over whatever the GMC dealer charged to install a new oil pan if that weaselly little "technician" didn't hang his head and say he was sorry. He did, and for the remaining 100,000 miles, that Suburban leaked from the drain plug.

I learned a lesson that I already knew. Do it yourself and fix it if it is going to be a problem.

PS... I am on my 3rd Suburban and still love them for what they do best... everything.
 

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I wonder, why such a high torque value for a plug with an o ring that would stay put and seal well with 5 to 10 lb torque let alone over 30? Maybe to sell such plugs? Anyone know what they are worth??

In my non expert opinion it is the plug on the engine case (too tight) and not the threads which is causing it to bind like that. In cases like this I always whack the ratchet handle with a hammer to crack the bolt or cap etc. loose rather than just reefing on the wrench by hand. I've had pretty good luck. That's the principle of an impact wrench. All that threaded plug does is squash that rubber o ring and seal a hole - and for that reason I personally don't tighten them up so tight, just snug, no more.

Paddy
 

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" squash that rubber" -right Paddy, well said.
We want case-to-rubber O-ring -to-plug contact to make a good seal without excessive trouble causing instalation torque.
 

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I have wondered if the heating and cooling cycles cause the plug to tighten.

It seems if I tighten the plug and then try to remove it there is no problem but if I go for several rides (heating and cooling cycles) and then try to loosen it the plug is very tight.
 
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