I have a 2012 Ram 1500. I had my oil changed at the dealership and decided to pull the oil stick three days later to check my oil. When I did, I discovered that the oil stick “tube” was disconnected from my engine block and just dangling. I took it back to the dealership to have them look at it and they said that the casting had broke on the engine block that holds the oil stick tube to the block. The mechanic I spoke with said the only legitimate fix would be to replace the engine block. I’ve been going back and forth with the dealership and Chrysler power train warranty for the past three weeks, as they will not replace the engine block because none of the internal working components of the engine have been compromised. They are only willing to apply epoxy to the tube and casting to hold it in place. My opinion is that this is a bandaid fix for a wound that may bleed out after my warranty is over in 6 months. Am I out of line, or is this a legitimate long-term solution?
They probably want to use something like this.
When the surfaces are prepared correctly, and the stuff cures, it’s like steel.
One other option would be to have an expert welder repair the block. It’s not a stressed area, so building it up and reworking it to accept the dip stick tube could work. I’d do this long before ever considering block replacement.
I agree with @Tester, but only up to a point. I would use a two part epoxy resin like J-B Weld, but I would look for one that says on the package that it is deigned for use in high temperature applications. This particular product listing doesn’t mention high temperatures.
Chances are that if a car dealership plans to use a product like this one, they plan to use one that is made for high temperature use, but it doesn’t hurt to be sure.
I’ll go against the grain here . . .
You say you still have another 6 months of powertrain warranty
I would fight tooth and nail to get the dealership to replace that block
That’s what warranty is for, and that’s why you’ve brought your truck to the dealership, versus somewhere else
It’s not your fault this happened
I would escalate this to the Chrysler regional manager and keep good notes of names, times and places. Make it clear you bought your truck, because you believe Chrysler’s products are high quality. Also make it clear that if they don’t do right by you, your next new truck will not be a Dodge. You might also mention if they do right by you, you’ll be sure to recommend the dealership and Dodge trucks to your friends and relatives. It cuts both ways.
If you don’t get satisfaction by the time your powertrain warranty has expired, then I would consider an alternative repair
+1 to @db4690 Absolutely agree! This is unacceptable and Chrysler should make it right under warranty.
It couldn’t hurt to try, but I wouldn’t stress myself out over it. In the grand scheme of things, I try to only fight “tooth and nail” for things that are really important, and this doesn’t strike me as something worth stressing out over.
Well, I partially agree that it’s only worth it up to a point
But what if an alternative repair doesn’t work?
What if there’s a crack, which keeps spreading?
I’m wondering what would cause this problem in the first place. Not like it’s a stressed area. Wouldn’t hurt to get an independent look at it by a good mechanic. ‘You need a new block, and you’re paying for it’ is an easy out for the dealer.
Could it have somehow been a weak casting, and it took quite awhile for this problem to arise?
I’m thinking it might be a cast iron block
But if it’s an aluminum block, I feel the best solution would be to find a very good welder
But that’s only AFTER playing all your cards with mopar corporate and not getting nowhere
The tube wasn’t cast with the block, it is an add-on. If the suggested fix is to drill out the old tube still stick to the block and epoxy another tube into the remaining hole, then it might be a reasonable fix.
Rather than welding or an adhesive, brazing might work. With brazing, neither the block nor the tube will melt, but an alloy that will join to both is melted and wicks into the small gap between the tube and the block. The brazed joint contains none of the brazing alloy after the job is done. It goes into forming an alloy with the tube metal and block metal. If any of the alloy is left over, it is a soldered join instead. Soldering is OK too if the alloy used doesn’t melt during normal engine operations. Clearly, a lead-tin alloy that most folks associate with soldering won’t work since it melts at a low temperature.
“The tube wasn’t cast with the block . . .”
It’s safe to say WE know that
The engine oil dipstick tube is probably stamped steel
And the block is either cast iron or cast aluminum
I like some of your solutions, though
Sometimes stating the obvious is useful.
Without actually seeing the problem I can’t say for sure. But I’d be disinclined to replace an engine block for something minor, and for which there is a reasonable work-a-round. Replacing an engine block is a complicated procedure. It’s really something best done at the manufacturer when the car is being built. It’s possible for a shop to do of course, but if not done correctly, could introduce a host of problems you don’t now have, and definitely don’t want. Suggest to focus on risk management here. Don’t let the desire for perfect outweigh the need for adequate.
the Band Aid approach sounds reasonable to me, I mean a new engine block seems like overkill, sure it is not the perfect solution, but “Stuff that works” is where we can end up sometimes.
I never met a band aid fix that I didn’t like. You should have seen the wild clutch slave installation I did on an 87 Mazda pickup. Hoo boy that was a real band aid that never failed. At least it was a Mazda part.
Like texases, I wonder how in the world someone managed to break a cast iron block even if a dipstick or the tube was horribly manhandled.
If they’re the only ones who have been involved in the oil changes then my opinion is that you should pursue a warranty replacement. Contact Chrysler’s regional office and politely but firmly state the case why. They will balk of course.
If anyone else has been involved with the oil changes in the past then you may be out of luck and it’s time to consider an adhesive such as JB Weld.
If it can be accessed somewhat it may be possible for a good welder tack it in place