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Discussion Starter #1
So I'm tracing back that there may have been an oil leak on my Challenger since 02/02/2011. It was imminently obvious as of yesterday (more than just drops, but not as far as an actual puddle). So I drop it off at the dealer for the night. Prior instances of official work done on the car was at the dealer in Jan for the steering rack warranty replacement and oil change in the Dec 2010. Everything has been running great and no signs of any problems whatsoever until the oil thing this week.

This morning, they report that the oil is leaking from the filter which appears to have been punctured in such a way that suggests that somebody used one of those claw tools for that type of operation. That is where the mystery is.

You wouldn't use a claw tool to install a filter, so I have no reason to suspect this came from the oil change in Dec. There really no reason the dealer would even have to touch the oil filter (let alone use a claw tool) in Jan for steering rack and hoses operation, right? So what else in the world is left for plausible explanation?

Does it even make sense that some nefarious perp would even bother to tamper with my car by crawling underneath it as it is parked, opening up underside panels to access the oil filter, clawing the filter, and then putting everything back together on the bottom nice and neat (dealer reports that the underside appeared exactly nominal with no sign of tampering)?

So that just leaves the dealer who checked out the source of the leak...and that makes no sense that they would purposely claw the filter and suggest it was tampered with by "somebody".

Anybody got any ideas on this one? :werd:
 

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I suspect the new filter was never properly seated. I bet they tried to use the '08-and-earlier style 5.7 HEMI filter with standard threads. As long as it didn't strip anything I think you should be okay with a new, proper metric-threaded filter.

Do yourself a favor and perform your own oil changes (unless you're physically unable to).
 

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If it was me I would toss it back in the dealers lap as they were the last ones to touch the car. Do to the fact that you have to take the belly pan off to access the filter.
 

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I had the same oil leak (not a clawed filter) but none-the-less and oil filter leak that was caused by a dealer's oil change in Amarillo, TX. I personally did the investigation and my filter was barely hand tight. I installed the next one myself. As i will do for all future installations.
 

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Given the circumstances you gave it sounds to me like it pretty much had to be the last oil change or the steering rack change. Can't imagine someone taking apart the covers just to mess with you. Wonder does anyone have the procedure for the steering rack replacement? I'd be curious if it involves removing the filter in one of those steps.
 

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The oil change experts did the damage. You say there is no reason to use the claw when installing it, that don't mean they didn't do it. I have seen allot dummer thing's happen.
 

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I could see the filter being clawed if they were trying to put the wrong one on. Again, Eagle HEMI = metric threads. Pre Eagle HEMI = standard threads.
 

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Do you think the last mechanic under the car could have tried to remove the filter for some reason and left the scars? Maybe they weren't successful and just left it in for fear of getting yelled at. Now that it surfaced with a leak it's the finger pointing as to who did it.
:werd: :scratchhead:
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Here's the problem with the scenario of malfeasance at the steering rack dealer or latest oil change shop...the leaking oil should have been evident a loooong time ago, if that were the case, not just 1 week ago. The oil change happened about 2.5 months ago, and the steering rack operation happened 1 month ago. Seeing as how badly it was dribbling out yesterday, there's just no way I could have gone 1-2 mos like that and not be aware of an oil issue, right?
 

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Not necessarily, it may have done just enough damage to not leak and it finally gave way to the pressure. Not really trying to throw anyone under the buss but it's very unlikely that someone crawled under the car in the dead of night, pulled out a filter claw and tried to damage the filter. I just don't see that happening, or at least as a malicious act goes. It's more likely for someone to drop sugar in the tank or to slice the tires, I would not crawl under the car so the owner could potentially drag me out by my ankles.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I agree that the incidental vandal scenario just doesn't add up. It just seems even more implausible that a filter could be so poorly installed and still give 2.5 months of utterly trouble free operation. Literally, I did an oil check that Fri (cuz I had time to kill) before I was even aware that oil was leaking, and the level was absolutely nominal up to that point.

This one seems it will go down in the books of weird, unexplained incidents.
 

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About 99.9% chance the last person to change the oil pierced or near pierced the filter making it good and tight. Went to leaking on you..and a line tech caught what the lube tech/light line tech did.

Can be a perilous thing having your oil changed for you...if a lube tech did the change..or if an overworked line tech did the change after working on the rack and pinion..that's the most likely scenerio...

If somebody was going to sabotoge your car..you would walk out one morning to knifed tires..or cut brake lines..or some-such crap.

A dozen different dealership scenerios could explain the pierced filter deal....a tech may have tried to screw that particular filter on the wrong car..took it back to parts and got the right filter..then your the next person in with the right car for the damaged filter..out the pre-damaged filter goes to spin onto your car. Or most probably..the tech just used his filter pliers..or channel-locs to snug up the filter..inadvertantly damaging it...may have been leaking since the git-go..but not as much..then cracked and got worse..or whatever.
 

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This has happened to me twice in the last three oil changes i have had. The first time I noticed oil leaking i took back to the dealer and they looked at it and said the seal on the filter was bad, okay maybe so. They changed my oil for free and I had no problem. The next one I had no problem either, so then I get it changed again and sure enough after about a month or so it starts leaking again. I take it back they look at it and they tell me the filter was not tightened enough and tell me that the guy that did my oil change was fired for the very same reason because they were having several of the issues. So take it what its worth, it just seems odd to me that this could happen twice in three oil changes.
 

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What filter was it? The Mopar filter? or ????
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Just to clarify a few things, when I had the oil changed 2 mos ago, I supplied my own filter and oil. I'm reasonably sure the filter was in brand new shape. I'm also reasonably sure the techs were not overworked. It's a shop with very little traffic, as they are just waiting for something to do, whenever I show up (that's why I keep going back...and I have a history of 2 completely successful oil changes with them prior to this one). They do not seem disgruntled, at all...actually, a little buzzed to see me back with my Challenger. I'm literally standing right above the guy in the bay as I talk away and they work on it. That's how "close" we are. So I'm not especially inclined to suspect faulty work from them.

The filter I brought them was an STP (I know, lame brand, but it was one of those weeks where I could not count on my life to walk into any shop for anything and chancing they had the thing in stock I was looking for...in this case, a Mobil 1 filter). So anyway, it is now replaced with a Mopar filter.

I saved the damaged filter for later reference, should I happen through that part of Orange Co., again. I don't expect they would have much to say about it, as I remain unconvinced they had anything to do with it, in the first place (but I could be wrong...that's just where my hunch is, right now).
 

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I had this happen to me too.

Went for an oil change at a Penzoil and they found oil had leaked all over the belly pan. The tech told me the old filter was barely finger tight.

When I confronted the dealer who did the previous oil change they denied any wrong doing but cleaned the undercarriage and told me to come back in 1,000 to check for "leaks".
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I guess a follow-up is in order between me and the oil change shop...eventually. They are 85 mi away, at this point, so I'm not inclined to rush down there just to scream at them over an oil filter.
 

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....so the dealer didn't do the oil change? Was this "shop" your typical lube/oil/filter chain (i.e. Jiffy Lube, etc.)? If so, I wouldn't be surprised if they did use a tool to try and tighten the filter.
 
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