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Old 06-02-2013, 04:38 PM   #1
xdnbc
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Question Oil level on dipstick keeps changing

My 2007 STI oil level keeps changing as per my dipstick. Last week, I checked my oil level after car was sitting for 3 days and the dipstick showed NO oil. I put 1 liter in and it read barely over the Low level. I ran the engine for a few minutes, then let it sit for about 5 minutes. The oil level was below L, so I put another liter in. It read full then [5/10/2013]. and I checked it again on 5/16/2013 and it was just at full.
Since I was worried about this loss of 2 liters, and could not find any pools of oil under my car or blue smoke from exhaust, I checked the oil level 1 week later [5/26/2013].
Now it reads way over full- about 2 liters maybe?. Checked it again today [6/2/2013] and again the level is still about 2 liters over.
I am only driving at low RPMs in the city lately because I don't want to foam the oil [Castrol synthetic].

6/5/2013: Finally brought it to a garage I trust and they took out 1/4 liter of oil. After that, It read full after sitting for 60 minutes in the same position I always park my car in [in my garage]. I checked it again today and it read Full- car was not used since yesterday. They said that it is possible that my car is burning a little bit of oil and that is why it needed some oil since I changed it last month. However, I don't think that is the problem. I will keep checking the dipstick after car has been sitting for a day, and also after 5 minutes of use and while the oil is still hot.
BTW: I will NOT take the rubber oil ring off- it doesn't impede the dipstick at all. And BTW2: I have had this car since 2007 and never had this difficulty before. Very confusing.
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Last edited by xdnbc; 06-06-2013 at 07:56 PM.
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Old 06-02-2013, 05:07 PM   #2
Radar
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Measure while the engine is at running temp and after a couple minutes of turning it off. The level while the oil is hot should be close to the full mark. Filling right up to the full mark while the car has been sitting (the oil is cold and has drained into the sump) means you risk overfilling.
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Old 06-02-2013, 05:24 PM   #3
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Measure the oil while it's warm, and take the rubber o-ring off the dipstick. That will give you the most accurate reading.
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Old 06-02-2013, 10:02 PM   #4
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Just do it the same way every time, turn it into a ritual. I personally purposely park my car at work on a flat surface and check my oil before I start it to go to lunch. If you do it the same every single time and check it often you'll get consistent readings, and you CAN take the o ring off the dipstick because that makes it harder to read, also only pay attention to the side with writing on it.
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Old 06-03-2013, 11:42 PM   #5
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dump all the oil and filter

take 5l....and fill the filter....install
pour the remainder in the motor

drive 8k klicks and repeat
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Old 06-03-2013, 11:43 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by danny_d19 View Post
Measure the oil while it's warm, and take the rubber o-ring off the dipstick. That will give you the most accurate reading.


people who post such stupid things make me
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Old 06-04-2013, 01:30 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Scotty View Post


people who post such stupid things make me
huh? Never go full potato.



Quote:
Originally Posted by KillerBMotorsport View Post
Factory Service Manual...



Also, because the o-ring in the dipstick can cause the oil level to go down in the pan's dipstick tube it may read inaccurately. I workaround is to remove the dipstick's o-ring to check the level. Just be sure to put the o-ring back after.
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Old 06-04-2013, 01:39 AM   #8
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stupid people dont know how to properly read oil levels

this is hylarryous

and you do NOT have to check the oil level when the engine is 'warm'

maybe people should really READ what things say and not just interpret them as they wish
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Old 06-04-2013, 01:43 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by danny_d19 View Post
huh? Never go full potato.
oh yeah...

i was posting pages outta the factory manual since long before you got here sonny boi
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Old 06-04-2013, 07:32 AM   #10
HinshawWRX
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Take the o-ring off the dipstick to read the level? Full potato.
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Old 06-04-2013, 11:26 AM   #11
BeastianSTI
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That was a good laugh lol. But as mentioned, just follow the Subaru manual for anything specification related (tq specs, procedures for checking fluids, etc).

Good luck!
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Old 06-04-2013, 11:30 AM   #12
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xdnbc, by any chance was your car parked on the right side of the street when it read low, and on the left side of the street when it read high?
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Old 06-04-2013, 12:18 PM   #13
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OP, i would listen to what Killer B says over anyone else in this thread.
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Old 06-04-2013, 12:49 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Scotty View Post
stupid people dont know how to properly read oil levels

this is hylarryous

and you do NOT have to check the oil level when the engine is 'warm'

maybe people should really READ what things say and not just interpret them as they wish
No one said you HAVE to, it's just a suggestion. Plus it's also in the manual.

Take your own advice and don't interpret what I/we are typing, sonny boi
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Old 06-04-2013, 12:52 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by danny_d19 View Post
No one said you HAVE to, it's just a suggestion. Plus it's also in the manual.

Take your own advice and don't interpret what I/we are typing, sonny boi
POPCORN
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Old 06-05-2013, 06:12 PM   #16
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I don't have anywhere flat to check it, so I always check at the gas station when the engine is warm, oil is warm and will run back quick to the oil pan.

I like to keep the level near F and the notch.
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Old 06-05-2013, 06:27 PM   #17
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Uncle Scotty continues to be as helpful as ever.

My readings are all over the place as well. I've been able to get the most consistent readings by parking the car on a flat surface (obviously) and checking the oil level 10-15 minutes after parking the car.
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Old 06-06-2013, 12:42 PM   #18
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Mine is insanely sensitive to the flatness of the ground. I can check the oil and have it be at the bottom of the dipstick. Push the car to the other end of my driveway without starting it and have it be at the full line. And my driveway appears flat.
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Old 06-06-2013, 02:33 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leafy View Post
Mine is insanely sensitive to the flatness of the ground. I can check the oil and have it be at the bottom of the dipstick. Push the car to the other end of my driveway without starting it and have it be at the full line. And my driveway appears flat.
Yes, exactly. These cars are a pain to get an accurate and consistent reading on. If it's even slightly on an incline it'll read low ime.
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Old 06-06-2013, 04:47 PM   #20
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It's because the dipstick doesn't go into the pan, and it goes in at an angle.
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Old 06-06-2013, 05:32 PM   #21
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Checking oil when the car is on a flat surface has been the rule as long as people have been checking oil ... This is nothing new.

While I will agree that the Subaru dipstick is a bit harder to read than some others .. the amount of problems people on this forum seem to have with them is comical.

Flat surface, wipe dipstick, re insert, remove and look at level. It truly is that simple.
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Old 06-06-2013, 05:36 PM   #22
Leafy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GrumpyPitbull View Post
Flat surface, wipe dipstick, re insert, remove and look at level. It truly is that simple.
When you say it that way it is. But that leaves out the part of needing surveyors tools accurate to 0.0001* of incline in order to find a flat surface to check to oil on to get anything resembling an accurate reading.
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Old 06-06-2013, 09:46 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leafy View Post

When you say it that way it is. But that leaves out the part of needing surveyors tools accurate to 0.0001* of incline in order to find a flat surface to check to oil on to get anything resembling an accurate reading.
Haha .... You should do that and post a pic of it in this thread.
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Old 06-13-2013, 01:48 AM   #24
xdnbc
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Thanks for all the strange and possibly humorous advice.
Since I always park my car in the same garage, in the same location of it, and facing the same way; I don't understand why I get drastically different readings on my dipstick. It really does vary from overfull to less than the E mark. I generally check the oil level after the car has been sitting for at least 24 hours, so all the oil should be in the oil pan.

Also- the garage I took it to measured my level as .25 liters too full and took that out so it read exactly F to them. I have got 3 of my last readings approximately at the F level [+/- about .5 liters] and I am accepting that for now.
But I am not happy that the readings change so much.
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