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Dipstick


NeilAvensisT
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Morning all; strange question this, but here we go. I did an oil change yesterday (1.8 TR Petrol) and, for the life of me, cannot get a good reading on the dipstick which I am confident with. I use the manufacturers stated capacity from the handbook, so know I have got the right amount in there. I have tried dipping the dipstick and wiping over and over and over? Anyone else had this? I did my Wife's Mini yesterday as well, first dip if that one, perfect accurate indication, happy. Thanks.

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Yes, I have had the same problem after doing oil changes. I have the same engine and have documented my oil changes on this forum. I think the issue is the oil being so light (0w/20), and having to wait for it to settle in the sump. My procedure when doing oil and filter change is to fill the the correct amount, wait about 10 to 15 minutes, start the engine to let it idle briefly to get the oil to circulate, then switch off. Wait another 15 minutes, then check the dipstick by wiping and replace, wait a couple of minutes, then pull the dipstick to check the level. If I can't get a clear reading due to oil smearing, I will wait until the next day, regardless if I drive the car or not. Then I will check the oil level first thing.
The Valvematic engine seems to be good with oil consumption, and I hardly need to top up between oil changes. It doesn't get dark either, and since I use my car a lot less in recent times, the oil even more cleaner between changes.
So long as you put in the correct amount of oil, you should be fine.   

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Same here, but I learned that when you re checking you need to look for one continuing oil mark on the dipstick and where it ends there is your correct oil level, anything above is just residual marks from the tube. For cleanest oil level readings, best to park at level ground if possible and check your oil level next day, just pull out the dipstick and read straight away without wiping it first. 👍

B6B4CBBF-E3C3-458D-BCF2-4DE3B96C0B51.jpeg

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Thanks all, glad it isn't just me. Whilst I am an (enthusiastic) amateur mechanic, I have serviced all my cars, all my life (in my mid 50's now), so have a pretty good grasp on the basics. I have had, literally, dozens of cars over the years and have never come across this before, to this extent. My previous car was a 2.0d Jaguar X type and you had to dip, wipe, dip, wipe (no sniggering in the back there!) over and over again, but, eventually, when the tube cleared, you could get a good, honest reading. I tried and tried yesterday, to the point that my neighbours must have thought "he's lost it (again)". No joy. Tried again today, again, no joy. As mentioned above, the oil is now so clean you can hardly see it on there in any case. Hey ho, live and learn!

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Last question please. I bought a filter removal tool (see below), following guidance here, but, when I offered it up to the housing it didn't seem to fit? It is advertised for 1.8 and 2.0 engines? There was also a silver clip on the side of the filter housing. Does that have to be removed? I just did an oil change without the filter for the time being, until I know what's what, didn't want to butcher something; life experience has taught me to ask first!  Thanks.

 

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/192416293705

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11 hours ago, NeilAvensisT said:

Thanks all, glad it isn't just me. Whilst I am an (enthusiastic) amateur mechanic, I have serviced all my cars, all my life (in my mid 50's now), so have a pretty good grasp on the basics. I have had, literally, dozens of cars over the years and have never come across this before, to this extent. My previous car was a 2.0d Jaguar X type and you had to dip, wipe, dip, wipe (no sniggering in the back there!) over and over again, but, eventually, when the tube cleared, you could get a good, honest reading. I tried and tried yesterday, to the point that my neighbours must have thought "he's lost it (again)". No joy. Tried again today, again, no joy. As mentioned above, the oil is now so clean you can hardly see it on there in any case. Hey ho, live and learn!

Neil, being in your mid 50's is nothing. I am 59, though a lot of people who know me think I am younger. I thought I would do less car DIY, which is true with my current Avensis - routine servicing. I have done more on my brothers Renault people carrier complete front suspension replacement, service his wife's Micra and replaced front headlights, and remove a broken wheel stud. I have also helped a friend fix his Honda Jazz and his old gen 2 Prius wheel bearing. I am learning more car stuff than before. I even service and repair my bikes - I do more cycling these days and just cracked 6,000 miles in a calendar year. 
Learning never stops.  

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6 minutes ago, NeilAvensisT said:

Last question please. I bought a filter removal tool (see below), following guidance here, but, when I offered it up to the housing it didn't seem to fit? It is advertised for 1.8 and 2.0 engines? There was also a silver clip on the side of the filter housing. Does that have to be removed? I just did an oil change without the filter for the time being, until I know what's what, didn't want to butcher something; life experience has taught me to ask first!  Thanks.

 

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/192416293705

It should work. I have a generic Toyota oil tool that I have owned for 6 years. So long as the inside of the Draper filter looks like the image below you are all good. 

 

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I am the same, I have 2 children (not kids, grown up's but I still call them kids 🙂 ) and service/repair their cars every time they are home, I do my elderly parents car, my wife's car.....the list goes on and on. Only the fairly basic stuff these days mind you. Clutches and the like on the modern stuff go to an excellent local garage I know. I have an old classic Ford which I tinker with (tinker= I have done pretty much everything on that, engines/gearboxes out, clutches the lot!), but thats another story!

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6 minutes ago, Konrad C said:

It should work. I have a generic Toyota oil tool that I have owned for 6 years. So long as the inside of the Draper filter looks like the image below you are all good. 

 

Thanks, perhaps I was just a bit too tentative. Is the silver clip just a retainer, to stop it unwinding when the car is being driven? Do you 'unclip' that before undoing the filter housing? Sorry if that sounds a basic question, but not come across one like that before? Thanks

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I checked the mileage on my Avensis and it is on 98,000 miles. The car has lived up to the previous Mk1 Avensis I owned, plus expectations and a couple of disappointments - nothing is perfect. 

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2 minutes ago, NeilAvensisT said:

Thanks, perhaps I was just a bit too tentative. Is the silver clip just a retainer, to stop it unwinding when the car is being driven? Do you 'unclip' that before undoing the filter housing? Sorry if that sounds a basic question, but not come across one like that before? Thanks

Yes, that what the clip is there for. Toyota have been using this oil filter design on cars in other markets, before the Avensis Mk3. 

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2 hours ago, NeilAvensisT said:

Last question please. I bought a filter removal tool (see below), following guidance here, but, when I offered it up to the housing it didn't seem to fit? It is advertised for 1.8 and 2.0 engines? There was also a silver clip on the side of the filter housing. Does that have to be removed? I just did an oil change without the filter for the time being, until I know what's what, didn't want to butcher something; life experience has taught me to ask first!  Thanks.

 

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/192416293705

This draper doesn’t fit 1.8 engines and best to return or sell it back on eBay, I went through that game years ago. The circumference lip is to large and can not fit properly on the filter housing, perhaps may fit some other models , diesel etc. 

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20 hours ago, TonyHSD said:

This draper doesn’t fit 1.8 engines and best to return or sell it back on eBay, I went through that game years ago. The circumference lip is to large and can not fit properly on the filter housing, perhaps may fit some other models , diesel etc. 

Tony, thanks, it did seem too big when I tried it, but I thought it was just me. Any ones/links you would recommend please that fit the 1.8cc? 

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2 hours ago, NeilAvensisT said:

Tony, thanks, it did seem too big when I tried it, but I thought it was just me. Any ones/links you would recommend please that fit the 1.8cc? 

Hi, 

I am using this particular one https://www.amazon.co.uk/DEDC-Flutes-Compatible-Corolla-Highlander/dp/B01MRWJVDI/ref=sr_1_9?crid=3NDQCQWY5LY1M&keywords=prius+oil+filter+removal+tool&qid=1643106765&quartzVehicle=111-11837&replacementKeywords=oil+filter+removal+tool&sprefix=Prius+oil%2Caps%2C171&sr=8-9 I had also a silver one but they seems the same 👍

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The wife's fiat with it's beige plastic dipstick can be challenging when the oil is clean and fresh. Toyota dipsticks are wonderful by comparison.

Here's an old fitters trick: give the end of the dipstick a good clean and then rub a bit of chalk on it. Works best when the measuring sector has some cross hatching stamped into it.

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21 minutes ago, Catlover said:

and what does the chalk prove useful for.

Porosity. Something for the oil to stick and soak into, which makes it easier to see. TBH I don't really know, but it works! 😂 Came in very handy working in food manufacturing premises, where edible oils are used, which also happen to be colourless.

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I don't know why Toyota still hasn't added some cross-hatching to make the oil easier to see, or just steal some of Ford's dipsticks - Those are one thing Ford do much better!

 

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I'm in the same boat. Of all the cars i've ever owned the Yaris is the hardest to get a good read on the dipstick. I've tried cold dip and hot dip and no real joy.

So, for the first time in my life i've resorted too "it's ok, unless a warning light comes on".

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14 hours ago, Cyker said:

I don't know why Toyota still hasn't added some cross-hatching to make the oil easier to see, or just steal some of Ford's dipsticks - Those are one thing Ford do much better!

 

The cross hatching may help, but the oil seems to everywhere on the dipstick, even above the 'MAX' mark.  

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The 1NZ-FE engines with plastic dipsticks have crosshatching. 

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3 hours ago, Konrad C said:

The cross hatching may help, but the oil seems to everywhere on the dipstick, even above the 'MAX' mark.  

I couldn't agree more with the oil being everywhere. Lots of useful posts and photos above, thanks all, glad it wasn't just me!

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Yeah, for some reason Toyotas seem to be very prone to smear when using the dipstick. The crosshatching just makes it easier to see the oil is actually there (On mine, after a fresh change, the oil is practically invisible on the stick unless I hold it to the light at the right angle, which usually results in it dripping on something! :laugh: )

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hi,

I'am glad this is not just me with this problem. I've just collected my Avensis from annual service and was going to confirm the oil was changed and correct amount filled in as stated in the paperwork. And... I couldn't read it... It almoust looked like if they had filled too much oil as the oil smear reached about 10mm over the max mark. But the paperwork states they filled 3.7l of oil.. I will check it again tomorrow morning.

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