atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,

#4148: I hate Fram oil filters

So I said today that I had to change the oil in Mrs. Fungus' car.


I bought a 5-qt jug of oil at Meijer a couple of weeks ago, along with a Fram filter. "I don't like Fram filters, but this one is just a filter cartridge and shouldn't have the issue with the anti-drainback valve not working that made me swear off Fram oil filters lo these many years ago."

What a mistake that was.

Everything went normally--removing Toyota's STUPID f-ing filter housing. What the fuck, may I ask, is wrong with using a spin-on filter? The location of the filter housing is not anything special; a spin-on filter would work perfectly there. But no; Toyota has made a commitment to some stupid shitty thing or another, meaning no spin-on filter for you, bitch. Argh etc.

...but that was a bridge we crossed last year, and the filter housing came off easily. I got the oil drained from the crankcase and everything went just fine. Reassembly was the reverse of assembly, right?

Started car, and then heard this odd little flatulent noise come from the engine compartment. You know that noise it makes when you have bad gut malf and you pass gas and liquid at the same time? It was like that.

That is not a good and proper noise, I thought, and shut off the engine. Dreading what I would find I got out of the car and looked under the engine and--sure enough--there was a nice big four-quart puddle of fresh 5w20 under the car. And I said many bad words.

It turns out that the o-ring that came with the Fram oil filter was too damned big. When I put it on, it rolled right out of the ring land and onto the outside of the filter housing, where it won't seal anything against any significant pressure.

I went to Advance Auto, and got an oil-change deal for $25 with tax: a PUROLATOR filter and five quarts of 5w20. And everything went together exactly the way it was supposed to, and when Mrs. Fungus started her car there were no leaks.

Before I added fresh oil again but after getting the oil filter on, I corrected the exhaust rattle the car has developed. It sounded like "heat shield" to me and my investigation under the car--I already had it up on jack stands to put the oil filter in AGAIN!--revealed that the exhaust heat shield at the back of the car had fallen off two of its three mounting bolts. Metal fatigue.

I repaired it with a time-hononred remedy: I got a coat hanger, cut off the hook, and wired that bitch back in place. It shouldn't go anywhere, at least until the coat hanger rusts out.

So after the car was refilled and off the jack stands, I turned my attention to the third garage project of the day.

My desk chair (new just a handful of years ago!) is falling apart, and I've decided never to buy this brand ever again because of it. But I haven't got any money for furniture right now, so I have to make do, and generally speaking I really don't mind all that much. Today I leaned over in my chair and crack something gave way under my butt, and when I pulled it apart I saw that the mounting flange which secures the base to the chair itself had cracked.

"No problem!" Thought I. "This is annoying, but I have a welder!" I even knew what I had to do: use the die grinder to clean paint and rust off the metal, exposing the crack; then make with the old flux core. Clean up the weld with the die grinder, maybe hit it with a little paint, and presto! There was only one minor issue with this plan.

I don't really know how to weld.

I've seen it done on TV countless times, and I've read several "how-to" manuals on the subject, but I have no training whatsoever. No one has ever sat down with me and my flux-core welder and said, "Okay, doofus, if you want to make anything approximating a decent weld with this junk, first you have to...."

I pick a wire feed speed by guess and by gosh, and then run the wire tip over the joint between the two pieces of metal I'm trying to weld, and hope for the best. The results are less than stunning; tonight's effort was probably the most pathetic-looking excuse for a shitty-ass cold weld I've ever had the misfortune of seeing. It seems to be reasonably solid (I put the chair back together and am now sitting on it. My other alternative is a milk crate) but God alone knows how long it'll actually hold.

And before I take it to someone who knows what he's doing, I'm going to have to spend a lot of time cleaning this shit off. I'm too embarassed to let anyone see it.

On the plus side, at least I know that I don't know how to weld. I'm not out in my garage trying to build a go kart or a dune buggy or something with my craptastic lack of welding ability, thinking that I'm John f-ing Henry or something. (No, wait, he was a driller. Never mind.)

Still, it made me feel manly. I guess that'll have to do.


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