Oil Level on Fiat Ducato 2012 150 Multijet 2.3D (1 Viewer)

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OldAgeTravellers

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Hi all, have just done an oil & filter replacement, all very straightforward apart from not having a 12mm Allen Key for the sump plug, so I had to grind a 13mm one down.
The book says 5.9ltr with a filter change so I put 5lt in and it appears to be over full. I used Titan GT1 which is very clear in colour and very difficult to see on the dipstick and it does seem to smear on the dipstick to give an unclear reading. I have heard that it is as bad to be over full as under full so any tips to be sure it is ok. The oil light goes off immediately after starting. Also any ideas on how much oil from bottom mark on the dipstick to the top one?
As a supplemental question, I started getting the engine symbol coming up on the panel, anybody know what is the usual reason for this. I have heard that even an inadequate seal on the fuel filler cap can do it.
Thanks for any suggestions.
Steve
 

Deneb

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5.4 litres with a filter change should keep the oil level a little below maximum, which is where you ideally want it to be. Not teaching granny to suck eggs, but did you actually run the engine for a short time after refilling, otherwise you won't have filled the new filter and the indicated level in the sump will be artificially high?

Range between min and max is about 1 litre (as stated in the owners handbook)

Warning lamp will require a diagnostic reading to determine any fault codes. There could literally be hundreds of causes, but are you saying it has come on immediately after the oil change, or is it an unrelated question?
 
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OldAgeTravellers

OldAgeTravellers

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Thanks @Deneb yes I ran the engine for about 5 minutes to fill the filter. The trouble is the oil is so clear and there is no definite level, just a smear. I have just measured the oil which came out and it is about 4.5 ltr and that includes the contents of the fuel filter probably about a quarter of a litre it was half way up the dipstick before emptying. Thanks for the amount between max & min, I looked through the book but must have missed it. By that, 5lt should be at the min level but it is definitely higher than that which is very confusing.
No the light had come on after stopping and often does after stopping after a run but usually clears after a bit. The last time I had to clear it I was in a ferry line and the engine started in limp mode so I was unable to check the numbers. I will have a look to see if any are recorded this time.
Steve
 

Deneb

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Although Fiat state the engine and filter capacity as 5.9 litres, many if not all FP dealers use 5.4 litres as the refill quantity following an oil change, because 5.9 litres leads to an overfull indication on the dipstick. 5.9 litres may well be design capacity, but in reality you will never get all the oil out of an engine unless you dismantle and clean it.

I agree the oil level is very difficult to see on the dipstick. I wipe it so that it is completely clean and dry, reinsert and withdraw it slowly. I usually find that although the oil has smeared up the dipstick on one side, if you turn it over the other side is often much clearer. The only way to clearly see the oil on it is I find to look for its reflection against a light source, which is why I make sure the dipstick is completely clean and dry before reinserting it to take a reading ;)
 

Techno

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The oil will go black very quickly re check after a good run

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I'm having the same problem and not sure if I've over filled it
The dip stick is pretty useless with clean oil. You can some times get a reading just on the side but all the rest of the blade is smeared pulling it out the hole.
At the moment the van is on a bit of a slope so I'm not able to get a true reading until its in the road.
I can wait.
 

mike mcglynn

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Put some chalk on the dipstick we used to do that when measuring large oiltanks after filling.
 

Duck Truck

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I did an oil and filter change too
Who the hell in their right mind makes a dip stick of blued metal

Like finding a black cat in a cellar at midnight

My oil went black almost immediately after the oil change
I part filled my filter befor screwing it on
 
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My oil went black almost immediately after the oil change

I think that's common for all diesels. Within miles. It's not an indicator or oil condition like it would be in a petrol engine. I've no idea why diesel engines blacken the oil so quickly.

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Deneb

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They operate at higher compression than petrol engines which increases the amount of soot that becomes suspended in the oil, plus you will never drain all the old oil out, so that mixes with the new oil almost immediately. The oil in my current Ducato doesn't go anywhere near as black or as quickly as some older diesels I've driven though. The lower viscocity of modern oils doesn't help. They're nearly as transparent as water!
 
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OldAgeTravellers

OldAgeTravellers

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Thanks all, at least I am not the only one finding it difficult to see the level on a black dipstick. If 5.4lt is the recommended fill then there should be no damage with only 5lt. Actually I left it all day today so that all the oil could drain from the dipstick tube and I got the slight impression that the level was halfway between the marks so there must have been quite a bit left in the engine. Actually the sump with a flat bottom is not very well designed. My last van, a Sprinter had a sloping bottom so all the oil drained properly regardless of the level of the vehicle. Which seems daft when Fiat issues such dire warnings of the consequences if we don't use their own very expensive oil.
Steve
 
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Audi dipsticks are the same struggle to see. Try folding some clean kitchen roll and placing the dipstick on it after dipping. You can see where the oil bleeds into the paper to get the level
 
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I thought the common method was to remove the dipstick, wipe off the excess oil with kitchen roll, dip the stick and then remove it again. It's then relatively easy to see to what level the stick has been wetted when it's been wiped clean first... no? I've not had an issue with my old Audi or the Ducato.
 

Trikeman

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Hi,
Just a little tip - I have always (all vehicles I’ve owned) removed the dipstick, clean off oil and lightly paint oil level area with ‘tipex’ and let dry. As it’s white, and remains white, no probs with seeing level in the light or dark.
The tipex doesn’t come off - marked internal engine bolts on truck engines during torque setting and it’s still there on rebuild years after.
Hope it helps.

Trikeman. :xThumb:

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OldAgeTravellers

OldAgeTravellers

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"OH YES IT IS"....... Thanks to the @Trikeman suggestion above, I didn't like the idea of Tippex which is a bit chalky so used some acrylic white paint which dried quickly and it was very easy to see the oil level. Which was about 6mm below the max mark after adding only 5lt of fresh oil, so the bad sump design means that nearly 1lt of old oil is still left in the engine. Almost worth going back to the old days of using flushing oil.
Out of interest, the air filter top is held with screws which had rusted rather than the more usual spring clips. When I finally got them out I found about "5 KITCHEN ROLL SHEETS" balled up inside the air filter and right down in the air inlet pipe, which may be the reason for my engine management light keep coming on for no apparent reason. The last service was done when I bought the van, by a so called "Fiat Professional" garage which I think justifies my reasons for doing my own servicing. Luckily I bought an "Endoscope Camera" from Lidl a few months back so I can today investigate just how much has been sucked along the pipe!
Anybody who does their own servicing, have you found a solution to the "full service history" so many people seem to rely on. I have even thought of having a rubber stamp made up to stamp the book with rather than just filling it in as "Own Service" as I usually do.
Steve
 

Deneb

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Replace the air filter box screws with equivalent size stainless steel screws and add a smear of anti-seize to the threads, before you eventually find that the original screws have rusted so badly that you can't get them out.

If you intend buying a new van every 2 or 3 years, or whilst still in warranty, you probably have little option other than dealer/garage servicing. After that, or if you intend keeping the van several years, I don't think a full service history means anything. It might be used as a reason to reduce the value on a trade in, but if the dealer can't use that as an excuse they'll come up with something else.

I keep a record of everything I do to my vehicles, and all receipts for parts etc. I'd much rather see a similar wad of paper if buying a used vehicle than a stamp or set of invoices declaring that the vehicle had been carelessly serviced by the dealers newest untrained monkey!

In all honesty though, I go more by visual inspection than any bit of paper.
 

Techno

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Replace the air filter box screws with equivalent size stainless steel screws and add a smear of anti-seize to the threads, before you eventually find that the original screws have rusted so badly that you can't get them out.

If you intend buying a new van every 2 or 3 years, or whilst still in warranty, you probably have little option other than dealer/garage servicing. After that, or if you intend keeping the van several years, I don't think a full service history means anything. It might be used as a reason to reduce the value on a trade in, but if the dealer can't use that as an excuse they'll come up with something else.

I keep a record of everything I do to my vehicles, and all receipts for parts etc. I'd much rather see a similar wad of paper if buying a used vehicle than a stamp or set of invoices declaring that the vehicle had been carelessly serviced by the dealers newest untrained monkey!

In all honesty though, I go more by visual inspection than any bit of paper.
https://www.motorhomefun.co.uk/forum/threads/x250-air-filter-housing-fix.82422/
 
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so the bad sump design means that nearly 1lt of old oil is still left in the engine.
Raise the van on the opposite side to the drain plug .
I have even thought of having a rubber stamp made up to stamp the book
That's the idea. You occasionally get the sets in Lidl or Aldi¡s

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OldAgeTravellers

OldAgeTravellers

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Raise the van on the opposite side to the drain plug.
Unfortunately it is a flat bottomed sump with the plug in the middle Gus, very silly design. It only needs a slight "V" shape sloping to one side and everything would drain regardless of whether the van is level. Leaving 15% of the old oil is crazy.
Steve
 
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So don’t using flushing oil in it or you’ll be leaving 15% of that in it !
I use a bit of clean writing paper,(or a clean dry finger longways on the end of the stick)
As stated the capacity given by fiat is for a dry fill on a new engine, there will be oil laying in the camshaft gallery , oil galleries etc on a used one.
On a dry fill on a new engine or rebuild ,best practice is to crank it over without starting until the oil light goes out, not just start it up like after an oil change as all the valve gear etc will be dry of oil. Putting some clean oil in the filter is a good plan as is filling a new diesel filter with clean diesel if the design allows it.
(To save on too much cranking)
(But not tipping the contents of the old one into it like I caught one of my mechanics doing !)
 
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The fact all the oil doesn’t come out justifies regular oil changes to me, and definitely not any flushing oil.

The sheets of paper found in the air filter housing is also known to me, and is due to people leaving it on the slam panel, whilst servicing, and then starting the engine. So it gets sucked through slam panel vent, into air filter

My MoHo was serviced for selling. This gave me a leaking diesel filter and
6E26427B-69AA-4938-9649-B7150179EBE4.jpeg
 
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OldAgeTravellers

OldAgeTravellers

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The fact all the oil doesn’t come out justifies regular oil changes to me, and definitely not any flushing oil.

The sheets of paper found in the air filter housing is also known to me, and is due to people leaving it on the slam panel, whilst servicing, and then starting the engine. So it gets sucked through slam panel vent, into air filter

My MoHo was serviced for selling. This gave me a leaking diesel filter and View attachment 270751
Yes mine was very similar except it also had about 5 sheets balled up inside the filter so I spent about two hours yesterday removing the air pipes to check nothing had been sucked through. which luckily all was ok and the air flow meter was clear.
NOW, anybody know how to get these clips back together? It's easy when there is a lot of room but here I am standing on a stool reaching down inside a Hymer "A" class tiny bonnet and there is only room for one hand and I can't get my head in at the same time to look. I know there is probably a special tool, but in rural South of France, forget it! Still time is cheap when retired.:xsad: Somebody is surely to have found a way.
Steve
AirFlowMeterClip.jpg
 
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OldAgeTravellers

OldAgeTravellers

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Thanks to Andy; @Techno for the suggestion to use Hex head roofing screws on the Air Filter, I couldn't get 4mm ones without buying a 100 box with little chance of using them all so got some 5.5mm which work fine.
As for getting the existing screws out two of which were totally ruined, I bought a small set of "Easy Out's" in Lidl a while back, and they are fantastic. With the appropriate size in a screwdriver the screw can be slowly worked out. They have saved a fortune so far for about €4. As you can see the bottom two screws are totally "Bu**er'd" and the other two not much better.
Steve
SetOfEasyOutAndScrews.jpg

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Deleted member 57092

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There is a special tool for those spring clips but woodworking pincers will do it as will a pair or wire cutters it you can get to it from the side.
Otherwise replace them with jubilee type hose clips
 
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Deleted member 57092

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As for the screws
Having got them out you can now cut a slot in the head with a hacksaw so that you can use an ordinary slot head screwdriver to get them out next time.
 
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OldAgeTravellers

OldAgeTravellers

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There is a special tool for those spring clips but woodworking pincers will do it as will a pair or wire cutters it you can get to it from the side.
Otherwise replace them with jubilee type hose clips
Thanks I thought about Pincers as the best possibility but mine have gone AWAL at the moment, I will have to clear up my workshop.:xsad: Any Jubillee clips I can find are too wide, these fit in a narrow channel. When there is space they are easy, but thanks for the suggestions.
Steve
 
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OldAgeTravellers

OldAgeTravellers

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As for the screws
Having got them out you can now cut a slot in the head with a hacksaw so that you can use an ordinary slot head screwdriver to get them out next time.
I was going to do that but Andy's suggestion for the Hex headed roofing screws is a much better and permanent solution. The slots I am sure would have only been temporary I think. Hex heads is what Fiat should have done in the first place.
Steve
 
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Deleted member 57092

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Bit of a bodge but you could join two smaller (so narrower) jubilee clips together if you undo them all the way then screw them back into each other.
You could make a tool for your existing clips out of an old pair of pliers if you have access to a grinder though.

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