by Pat Goss
Back in the day, changing oil in a car was a pretty simple operation that anybody could do. But today, that is all changing. You see, on a car today you usually have an air dam underneath the car that needs to be removed, lots of screws and clips, and so on. In addition to that, once you get the oil drained and put everything back together underneath the car, you need to be able to get oil back in the engine. Well, back in the day, all that required was a basic funnel; but on modern cars, that really doesn’t work anymore. You see, most oil filler caps have threads on them; they thread into the valve cover. Now, in order to get oil back in without spilling it all over the engine, making a giant mess, manufacturers are recommending that you use funnels like we have here. Now, these come in a variety of different sizes and shapes like various makes and models of cars, but what makes them particular is right here – this portion right here is threaded to match the threads in the valve cover of a particular automobile. It has an ‘o’ ring, or in the case of the red one, it has a gasket, so that when you tighten it into the valve cover, it does not leak. Now, that means you can pour the oil in, the funnel is not going to fall out, you’re not going to have any spilled oil – no issues at all. I recommend if you have a late model car see if you can find one of these that fits your car.
But here’s something, now this could save you some money on a lot of cars – just a simple paper funnel; now, what am I talking about here? Well, inside many valve covers, if we try to use any kind of a conventional funnel – put it in, it doesn’t go any place. There is actually, in this valve cover, a piece of tin down there; now that tin is a baffle, and if we look at the back side of it, we see that it covers the whole inside of the valve cover. And what it does, is it prevents the crank case breather system – you call it a PCV. It prevents that from sucking oil out of the engine and burning it. Well, if you damage that, you’ll end up with a car that burns oil. So, you want to make sure that you’re very very careful to never damage the baffle if your car has it. So, the proper funnel makes all the difference. And if you have a question or comment, drop me a line, right here at MotorWeek.