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Discussion Starter #1
I noticed my Supra has a small leak from the oil pan drain plug. I changed my oil yesterday and the threads are stripped on the pan. The bolt will begin to tighten, then slip. Not good at all.

I read a similar thread below. Do I really re-thread the hole with a tap? I thought I should chase the thread with a thread-chaser but am confused now:

http://www.supraforums.com/forum/showthread.php?t=19791

Can I do this on the car, or is there a huge risk of metal-shavings being left behind? If this is a questionable repair then I would just install a new oil pan. I would also be repairing this on ramps since I have no access to a lift...

I am not very experienced with this kind of problem so any help/advice is appreciated. Thanks..
 

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Whether or not it can be cleaned up with a tap (aka thread-chaser) depends a lot on how much it's been stripped. The more times you try to tighten it down only to get to that 'stripping' threshold, the more damage there is to the threads and the less likely a tap can fix it up.

There is also the concern about metal shavings. While it's never good to have metal shavings in the oil, the bottom of the oil pan is probably the safest spot.

If you opt to try cleaning it up with a tap, I'd also recommend getting a magnetic drain plug to help isolate the metal shavings there and reduce the chance of them getting sucked into the oil pump.

But if this were my car, I'd take the time to simply get a new lower oil pan. The last time I checked, the lower pan by itself was ~$110 through Curt - confirm that with Curt @ Elmhurst though. While that option stands to be $60-80 more expensive than trying the tap & new drain bolt method, I think that $60-80 buys some excellent peace of mind - it's 100% guaranteed to solve the problem, no new metal shavings will be introduced into the system, and you won't have to worry about those threads failing every time you change the oil.

Peace of mind is everything when it comes to being able to truly enjoy a Supra :)

Hope that helps!


Edit: You can change the lower pan if you're flatbacking it on ramps - Just have plenty of rags handy & clean the new lower pan and the upper pans gasket surfaces before you begin.
Carefully apply the silicone (FIPG if you have it) in the pattern as described in the Toyota Manual when you replace the pan (make the bead on the inside edge of the bolt holes, and return to a centerline bead in between the bolt holes). Too much or too little, or beading it in the wrong places risks a leak of course. I've had good success with making a bead about as wide as a pea and about 1-1.5mm thick, but depending on the silicone you use that may or may not be the best. Also remember to let the silicone bead 'tack up' for the recommended time before bolting it to the bottom of the motor, if the silicone you use calls for that sort of thing.
Perhaps some others guys will have some additional input, I think that pretty much covers it.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
OK, thanks all.

New pan it is.
 

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I stripped mine out too. Damn pan is really thin. Dealership helicoiled it for me and has been holding up for over a yr now. I plan to replace the pan when the motor comes out though.
 

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Blood for Blood
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good idea just getting a new pan....
 

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I welded a nut to the back of the pan where the original drain hole. just make sure that you have the drain bolt in and tight. Its to make sure that the back bolt is nice and flush. If you dont have it flush your drain bolt might never seal. Make sure you have a clean area to weld and make sure you get in there with a grinder and make sure that the slag is gone and nothing will break off. I havent had one nit of trouble. I also used a thinner nut and I not drain the car with the car leaning a little to one side to make sure I get all of the oil. I will just be replacing with a whole new pan once the engine is out again. Like people say, its better to have the piece of mind of having a new pan.
 

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Or you can remove the pan from the engine and re-thread it and clean it out really good . This way you don't get any metal shavings inside . When your done bolt it back to the engine.
 

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Better to have the piece of mind and do it right.
 

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I welded a nut to the back of the pan where the original drain hole.
This is a very good and inexpensive repair option if done properly...
 

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Couple years back, I had an oil change from toyota.. The next day, i noticed a leak..Took it back to the dealer and they changed the whole oil pan...for free!
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I didn't have the time or space to change this pan out. A tiny garage in a Seattle townhouse is no good, lol!

I instead took my car to Steve Ishii's new shop in Bellevue. Ishii's Motor Industries. They changed the pan, did a compression/leakdown on my newly broken in motor, changed out my dirty brake/clutch fluids, fixed the coolant leak on my #1 turbo line, all for a very good price and very quickly. When they were done, they even washed, vacuumed my car for free. Very pleased there is a good shop to take Supras to in Bellevue. I would recommend!!
 
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