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DipStick Left Out- HELP!

Hi all,
I went in for my 60,000 mile tune up to the same dealership we’ve always gone to. We have gotten all the recommended repairs and stayed on top of maintenance like nobody’s business and we’ve stayed at the dealership to get all of the certified parts and repairs. HOWEVER, on Monday like I said before, we took it to the same dealership for my tune up and new brake pads. Yesterday, I realized that my dipstick was still sitting up with my wipers… I looked under the hood and didn’t see any visible oil but my stepdad and I then checked and my oil was low. The tube was also visibly super dirty and I’m worried that it gunked up my engine that we’ve babied as I’ve driven in rain, wind, dust, and snow since then. I took my car to the dealership and they said they’d fix it for free if they determined that it was their fault and they would pay for rental fees for a rental car. I was wondering if you had any tips on what specifically to make sure they do to fix this and get things back to being as good as new without being taken advantage of.

can you please explain this…

They put my dipstick up in the tray with my windshield wipers to change my oil and never put it back in the tube. I didn’t think to make sure my dipstick was back where it should be because I’ve never had any problems with this place.

There would not be enough stuff to enter your engine through the dip stick tube to measure. I would suggest from now on to at least check your oil level the morning after an oil change and then once a week. The dealer is treating you fairly and will have documented the problem. Just how low was the oil level?

Thank you! I’l definitely check from now on, I’ve learned my lesson! I wasn’t sure if there was anything I need to make sure they did when they fixed it. I’m not sure, I was trying to understand what my stepdad was doing when he was checking the dipstick so I can know for myself since I’ve moved away but from what I could tell, it was beneath both of the little holes on the dipstick, does that make sense at all?

Here is what you need to know. Check oil before starting car so you will get a true reading. If car has been driven and you check then there will still be oil that has not drained back to oil pan and it could read low. Have the dealer show you where the high and low marks are on the stick. I would almost bet you did not have a low oil problem.

I doubt that your oil was contaminated in that period of time, even in those conditions. Regardless, I think the dealer should give you a free oil change now for your peace of mind. That, along with written documentation of what happened, should be good enough.

As for the low oil, you said that no oil came out of the tube, so that means they didn’t properly fill the oil. As others have already mentioned, it’s a very good idea to check the oil yourself immediately after an oil change. Even the best places make mistakes and this could save your engine someday.

Thanks, I left my car off for 60 seconds before checking like the manual said to do but I’ll definitely have them show me for future reference. I also have Triple A but would like to know these things myself so I can fix and prevent them!

If anything got in thru the dipstick tube it would be filtered out by the oil filter. it’s very unlikely you have anything to worry about.

Thank you! Do you think I should have them replace the filter?

I wouldn’t.

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There’s absolutely no danger to the engine. The tube is well protected by the hood and surrounding hardware AND crankcases normally operate under slight pressure, which is why the Positive Crankcase Ventilation system is necessary. The tube does not have vacuum at its entry. Any airborne stuff would be prevented from going into the tube by the crankcase pressure. If any did, it would be removed by the oil filter before being circulated through the engine. In short, you have multiple levels of protection against anything entering the fill tube.

I always make it a practice to double check everything when any work is done to my car, including oil changes. And I do my own work… including oil changes! I believe it’s a really good habit to get into and I highly recommend it. :relaxed:

You should check your oil level after every oil change before you leave the place that did it.
Even if your car doesn’t burn any oil you should check your oil once a month. If you do it on the first, it is easy to remember. If you are an a long multi day trip you should check your oil every morning before you start your car.
No manufacturer will honor an engine warranty if your engine has no oil in it no matter how often you had it changed.