: oil change and coolant change this friday



GreenMachine
06-21-06, 09:07 PM
Decided that on friday I'm going to change the coolant and oil in my Northstar.

Is there anything I should look out for in the coolant change process? I've read the threads about it over and over but I'd like to see if anyone has a "retual" or a "check list" they go threw when changing the oil, and when the did their coolant change.

I'm planning on using either mobil 1 10w-30 full synthetic or the Kendall 10w-30 with seal max (figured them seals could use some help and from what I read its a pretty good additive package) for the oil and the Prestone GM certified dexcool.

From what I gather I need the following:
7.5 Quarts of 10w-30 Oil and a good quality oil filter (probibly will be NAPA brand filter or AC Delco or Mobil brand based on cost)

10.68 Quarts of 50/50 water to Dexcool mix and 6 of the GM sealant supplement tablets.

Now everyone says distilled, so would that mean the purified water I can get at the supermarket in the gallon jugs would work or is water from the hose just fine?

Ranger
06-21-06, 09:36 PM
Tap water will work, but it introduces lime, calcium, iron, etc, etc. A gallon of distilled water from the grocery store is less than $1.00.

Be sure to put the tabs in the radiator hose, not the surge tank.

You won't get all the coolant out, but to help get the most out, get a shop vac and stick the nozzle in the surge tank. Reverse the hose so that it blows rather than sucks. ;) Seal the opening with a rag. That will get some additional coolant out of the engine.

GreenMachine
06-21-06, 09:44 PM
thanks for the tips, might have some pictures but will certainly post how it went.

white97deville
06-21-06, 09:44 PM
Distilled water is normally right next to the purified water in the grocery store. The label looks the same but upon close inspection a few of the words are different.

Synthetic oils have smaller molecules and will you will get a little more seepage around your gaskets and seals from using them. There are not many fans of synthetic on this board for use in the Northstar engines. It's been covered many times in other threads....do a search and you will find info.

My personal opinion is that I wouldn't use an oil marketed as helping your seals. I just changed the oil in my Nstar and used Valvoline dino oil. Spend the xtra $$$ if you just wish to for your peace of mind....just don't expect too much from it.

white97deville
06-21-06, 09:47 PM
If it is time for a new thermostat, then you have the perfect opportunity to replace it while the cooling system is evacuated without wasting any Dexcool.

GreenMachine
06-21-06, 09:48 PM
My thermostat seems to report accurately, is there anyway to tell if its ready to go?

Ranger
06-21-06, 10:07 PM
Nope.

white97deville
06-21-06, 10:12 PM
My thermostat seems to report accurately, is there anyway to tell if its ready to go?

GM, the thermostat I referred to is in your water pump housing. It does not give a reading. It controls water flow through your engine/cooling system by opening/closing a valve based on the temp of the coolant. I've changed quite a few but seldom do they give any prior warning before going out.

A new one from the local Dallas parts house cost me $12.99. The dealership cost may be higher.

GreenMachine
06-21-06, 10:44 PM
GM, the thermostat I referred to is in your water pump housing. It does not give a reading. It controls water flow through your engine/cooling system by opening/closing a valve based on the temp of the coolant. I've changed quite a few but seldom do they give any prior warning before going out.

A new one from the local Dallas parts house cost me $12.99. The dealership cost may be higher.

Well just had a new pump and housing put on the car this winter, guesing the dealership probibly wouldn't have been nice enough to throw that on too :P

JimHare
06-22-06, 06:33 AM
Well just had a new pump and housing put on the car this winter, guesing the dealership probibly wouldn't have been nice enough to throw that on too :P

Most dealerships wouldn't put a new valve cap on without invoicing it... :)

JohnnyO
06-22-06, 08:31 AM
I use Mobil 1 in ours and I've never had a leak. If you get a NAPA filter, get the Gold and not the Silver or NASCAR filters. The Gold is the best of the three for only a few bucks more. AC is a perfectly fine filter. I've used the Mobil 1 filter a few times and I've always had a lot of trouble getting them to thread on, so I quit using them.

GreenMachine
06-22-06, 02:14 PM
Alright all ready for the change tommorow. I have two 5 quart jugs of Castrol GTX High Mileage (price was right) one Fram Oil Filter, 3 jugs of Prestone 50/50 ready to go dexcool, one package of the tablets (6 included) and two funnels (buy one get one :))

JohnnyO
06-22-06, 02:50 PM
one Fram Oil Filter

:eek: :eek: :eek:

:rant2: Can you take it back and get an AC?
:thepan: Good gawd man, have you learned nothing from the Internet?

:stirpot:

clarkz71
06-22-06, 03:47 PM
I'd only install a FRAM filter if I was stuck in the desert with no chance of survival.:tisk:

Ranger
06-22-06, 05:05 PM
Alright all ready for the change tommorow. I have two 5 quart jugs of Castrol GTX High Mileage (price was right) one Fram Oil Filter, 3 jugs of Prestone 50/50 ready to go dexcool, one package of the tablets (6 included) and two funnels (buy one get one :))
:eek: :tisk: Nuff said.

GreenMachine
06-22-06, 09:17 PM
yeah the flashy sign talking about racing and stuff made me believe they were a decent brand (and the salesclerk who was very knowledgeable about oil said it was a good filter).......thought hey what a bargain....then (since I have never heard of them) decided to do a search 5 mins ago and instantly knew what I would find in reply to my post :(

EDBSO
06-22-06, 10:46 PM
10.68 Quarts of 50/50 water to Dexcool mix and 6 of the GM sealant supplement tablets.

When I flushed mine I used the concentrated antifreeze Zerex G-06 and I found that after draining all the reverse osmosis water out of it I could barely get 6 quarts of Antifreeze back into it. There evidently was that much water left in the bottom of the block and rad. If I was using premix then I would have been left with a 25% mix not the required 50%.

Short of picking the car up and shaking it I don't know how to get all the water out.

Oerhaps my experience was unique?

zonie77
06-23-06, 12:11 AM
A few years ago Consumer reports rated the Fram oil filters as the best.

Independent testing...not an Amsoil web site.

And I'm not starting a war so don't get you pants in a knot. I use Fram's and have not had a problem. Use whatever you want.

clarkz71
06-23-06, 05:05 AM
Here's some info on Fram. The AC Delco has 312 sq in of filter area. The Fram only has 193 sq in.

Fram Extra Guard PH8A
http://minimopar.knizefamily.net/images/filter-fram1.gifThis filter cartridge has a small outside diameter with a rather low filter element surface area (193 sqin), and features cardboard end caps that are glued in place. The rubber anti-drainback valve seals the rough metal backplate to the cardboard end cap and easily leaks, causing dirty oil to drain back into the pan. If you have a noisy valve train at startup, this filter is likely the cause. The bypass valves are plastic and are sometimes not molded correctly, which allows them to leak. The backplate has smaller and fewer oil inlet holes, which may restrict flow.
The telltale signs for a Fram Extra Guard are: It has 8 small holes for the oil inlet and a thin, cheap looking backplate, and is currently stamped with a "2Y". There are 5 very small crimps holding the gasket in place. If you look into the center hole all the way to the top of the filter, you will see a kind of "button" in the end cap of the cartridge (which looks like it's made of metal from there). This is the plastic bypass valve.

JohnnyO
06-23-06, 08:46 AM
A Fram won't necessarily blow up your engine but it's weaker and has less filter area, and better filters are available for the same money (AC) or less (SuperTech).

GreenMachine
06-23-06, 08:52 AM
well I figure why the hell chance it, AC Delco is going in, FRAM can be CRAMed up the walmart guys butt.

From what I understand (after reading alot from differant sites) FRAM was good as little as a few years ago but then for one reason or another they became cheap quality and not on par, may it be the other filters got better and left fram behind or if they took a step backward I don't know.

JohnnyO
06-23-06, 09:22 AM
Basically the best oil filters can be summed up thusly: AC, Motorcraft, Purolator Pure ONE, and Wix/NAPA Gold (same thing). Serious top-shelf stuff is Baldwin, Mobil 1, and K&N. As I mentioned earlier, I've had problems getting Mobil 1 filters, only, to thread onto the Caddys. The Mobil 1 and K&N filters have synthetic filter media which allows uniform pore size as opposed to paper elements which do not, a much thicker can (just pick one up), but they cost a lot more too. Also the new Autolite filters popping up at Wal-Mart are just re-labeled Frams.:tisk: If Fram is the only convenient filter to buy, then get a Tough Guard and not the regular.
IMO the best combination if you want to really run the OLM down to zero is Mobil 1 oil and a K&N filter.

JimHare
06-23-06, 05:15 PM
Just thought I'd add that, if you're changing the filter on a Northstar, invest in one of those "filter-end cap" changing wrenches. Because of the placement of the filter right up betwixt some crossmember and other engine thingummybobs, it's nearly impossible to get a standard type "strap" wrench on them. The caps fit right over the end of the filter and can be turned with a standard socket wrench. Much easier.

Remember not to OVERTIGHTEN - hand tighten down till it's snug, then maybe 1/4th to 1/2 turn again.

Remember to fill the filter with oil - it'll take just a bit less than half a quart. Pour some in, let it sit to permeate the material, pour a little more in, wait, etc.....

Just be careful you don't tip the thing over before you thread it onto the post...and be careful about cross threading..if it don't spin on real easy-like, back off and make sure it's on right...

Then drop in the rest of the can you used to fill the filter, and six more quarts and you're good to go....

....

and Yes, I realise that's only 7 quarts, but it's easier than leaving a half quart lying around, and as our Esteemed Guru once said, half a quart low is better than half a quart overfilled....

Just check it again when you hit 90% oil life.

GreenMachine
06-23-06, 06:24 PM
Alright a morning plan turned into an afternoon chore but got it done.

That valve to open the bottom of the radiator is a pain in the ass to turn, I ended up just removing the hoses and blowing out all the dexcool.....lets just say that was VERY messy and only about a gallon went into my bucket and the rest all over the driveway. None of us big handed guys could get that little SOB to turn. Quickly the lovely northstar was called names it shouldn't have been while we tried (and scraped) our hands trying to get to that sucker. I did however remember before putting the hoses back on to put in the tablets, I put 3 in the lower hose and 3 in the upper hose. Seemed like a good idea.

I always will always continue to hate the clamps that simply clamp rather than have the easy to undo screws. So those were replaced with the stainless steel screw-on clamps rather than the "fit pliars in a confined space" clamps.

The oil change was the easy part, luckily I did indeed have the tool to take out the oil filter. Filled here up with the instructed 7.5. I had two 5 quart jugs so 5 plus 2.5 (or half the other one) gives me a total of 7.5 :) The hardest part was removing the oil pan drain screw. The guys who did the oil change last time decided to really make that baby tight, took ALOT of force to take it off.

Pictures from the "event" my friend and I put on in the driveway, just glad I wont have to do this for another 5 years/100,000 miles which ever occurs first. Plus I know whats in the car, that it was done right, and with quality parts.

The lineup of products used in todays fluid liberation and change:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v348/BigEd2006/98deville/coolant-oil-change004.jpg

....fram is just simply there to show that is shorter and has much less filter area than the AC Delco I picked up from the dealer for just under 6 bucks after uncle sam got his cut. Almost 9% tax here in Erie County, NY

Here's the Northstar knowing it will get some attention today:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v348/BigEd2006/98deville/coolant-oil-change001.jpg

Look how nice and clean the work area is...........click to enlarge pictures:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v348/BigEd2006/98deville/th_coolant-oil-change011.jpg (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v348/BigEd2006/98deville/coolant-oil-change011.jpg) http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v348/BigEd2006/98deville/th_coolant-oil-change008.jpg (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v348/BigEd2006/98deville/coolant-oil-change008.jpg) http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v348/BigEd2006/98deville/th_coolant-oil-change007.jpg (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v348/BigEd2006/98deville/coolant-oil-change007.jpg) http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v348/BigEd2006/98deville/th_coolant-oil-change006.jpg (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v348/BigEd2006/98deville/coolant-oil-change006.jpg)


Thanks for the help and advice fellas!

EDBSO
06-23-06, 07:19 PM
Nice job.

Just curious, how much Prestone did you get back in?

http://www.pureoil.com/images/pureoil_home_sub1_pic.gif

another great filter.

GreenMachine
06-23-06, 08:50 PM
2 gallons in (pretty surprised it was 2 exactly so not all out but most important thing is that its been rejuvinated and the sealant tabs are in), which works out nice since its always good to carry an extra bottle in ones trunk :)

clarkz71
06-24-06, 05:36 AM
Nice job. I'll bet the real work was cleaning up after.

GreenMachine
06-24-06, 10:47 AM
Nice job. I'll bet the real work was cleaning up after.

I got lucky and a thunderstorm came threw and did a nice job of cleaning it up....now I just have to borrow a pressure washer to get the rest of the oil marks out (who knew that dexcool when combined with oil on the ground actually helps wash it away.... :))

I should also mention that at one point I wasn't thinking cleary and decided to try and cyphon the coolant out...well it worked sorta but I found out dexcool has a sweetish taste. Just blowing it out worked ALOT better.

Ranger
06-25-06, 08:06 PM
I got lucky and a thunderstorm came threw and did a nice job of cleaning it up....now I just have to borrow a pressure washer to get the rest of the oil marks out (who knew that dexcool when combined with oil on the ground actually helps wash it away.... :))

I should also mention that at one point I wasn't thinking cleary and decided to try and cyphon the coolant out...well it worked sorta but I found out dexcool has a sweetish taste. Just blowing it out worked ALOT better.
All antifreeze does. Remember that for the next time you are not sure what kind of fluid is on the garage floor. Just don't make a habit of it, and no more than a dab on the tip of your tounge.