Engine seized up after oil change 4 days prior



How to find the leak if there is one?
I recommend a kit that uses an ultraviolet sensitive dye designed to find oil leaks. It comes with a UV light (blacklight), is added to the oil (you gotta refill it anyway) and makes the telltale trace of an oil leak light up like a lava flow in the night.

Regarding how it might have happened, all I can suggest is that I always double check all my work and oil level after I change my oil and then check it one or more times every day in the days immediately succeeding the oil change… just in case I screwed up. I’m human. I’ve screwed up before. Knowing what I’m doing does not prevent screwing up. But assuming I CAN screw up can prevent a screwup from turning into a disaster. :smile:


[quote=“the_same_mountainbik, post:21, topic:100284, full:true”]
How to find the leak if there is one?
I recommend a kit that uses an ultraviolet sensitive dye designed to find oil leaks. It comes with a UV light (blacklight), is added to the oil (you gotta refill it anyway) and makes the telltale trace of an oil leak light up like a lava flow in the night.
[/quote]I think that ship has not only sailed, but has sunk. That motor is seized, according to the OP.


In court?
Do you expect the OP to sue himself, or did you not read the details about the OP having changed the oil himself?


And, although there had to have been a leak–whether or not it was detected by the OP’s mechanic–it is all water under the bridge at this point in view of the fact that the engine seized, and that the last person to work on that engine was the OP.


Yeah, I missed that one. Oops.


I have often threatened to sue myself for poor workmanship. Usually though I just yell at myself instead or send myself a letter of complaint. It doesn’t seem to do much good though. Workmanship has not improved and delays are constant.

I also suspect a leak somewhere. I like the cracked filter idea or maybe the old gasket stuck, or the oil cooler line got a leak in it, or the sending unit. Any of those can dump a large quantity of oil in a short period of time and wouldn’t necessarily leave much of a trace of oil. Especially if the car was not driven fast so that it wasn’t splashed all over the underside. Would be nice to know though.


Note that I asked the OP 3 days ago if the underside of the vehicle was closely inspected for a leak. No response. I’d say he’s probably too embarrassed to reply.


Like I said since I watched my dad dump four quarts of oil on the driveway in 1958, I’m super careful to do the mental check list myself ever since. If I don’t specifically remember tightening the plug, etc. I crawl back under just to make sure. I’ve even done it a couple days later when I couldn’t remember whether I had done it or not in a hurry. It really is not just the fast lube guys that error.

Probably told it before but every spring I’m in charge of doing the servicing on the cabin mowers and blower. A couple years ago I was being rushed because my BIL wanted to start cutting the grass. I handed off the push mower to him and he started mowing when I noticed the full container of new oil I had failed to put in. It only ran for about 5 minutes and no harms seemed to have been done but it does happen to the best of us. That’s why I prefer to work alone.


Once again, no help from this critic, bent on closing down interest in this thread.
Knee jerk thought/reactions abound.




A little advice to the OP: If you do replace the motor, use the proper weight oil, which I believe is 5w-30. GM started warning people not to use 10w-40 a ling time ago.


Yep, most people that have lost interest in a subject, just don’t respond anymore. Me? I’m still waiting for the guy to come back with what actually happened.


[quote=“baldridge11, post:1, topic:100284, full:true”]
I own a 99 gmc sonoma. I changed my oil with Castrol 10W-40. Then four days later I’m stopped at a traffic light and to my surprise I have to kick myself down a hill. No oil is in my vehicle at all.[/quote]
Did you drive the truck after the oil change or not until 4 days later.

[quote=“baldridge11, post:1, topic:100284, full:true”]
No sign of leaks. My mechanic can’t even pinpoint how the oil escaped.[/quote]

If 4.5 quarts of oil leaked out there will be evidence of where leaked from. You need a mechanic who is not visually challenged.

Bad? How? Self vaporizing maybe?

Yes, you are.


for what its worth I had a 57 Plymouth fury it ran out of oil after a couple miles , it went into the transmission .


There is no oil that is so bad that it disappears**!** Your mechanic (or he/she who thinks they are) obviously either forgot to put the new oil in the engine, or neglected to replace the bolt on the oil pan, or replaced it loosely and it came off, letting all the oil pour out.
That happened to a friend of mine years ago and she got a new engine out of it–free from the shop that did it (or, rather, failed to do it right). Get your receipt and go back to that shop/garage ASAP and tell them what happened. If they do not ofer to repair any and ll damage, explain to them that you already consulted your cousin about this and that cousin also happens to be a lawyer. Your lawyer/cousin told you that you should sue them if they refuse to do the necessary work to return your vehicle to the condition it was in when you first brought it to them. If they still refuse, then you will definitely have to see a lawyer.
I don’t know what book value on your 99 GMC is, but if it’s under about $5,000 then you might want to pursue it in small claims court. That’s if you don’t have the bucks to put out for a lawyer. However, keep in min that, when it comes to law suits, most lawyers will forgo payment until the case has been settled. They then deduct their percentage from the settlement amount. And don’t forget to mention all the peripheral things it affected in your life–the stress, the loss of work due to inability to commute there and back. The monetary problems you had from unpaid bills because you lost work time. You’d have to have some type of proof for a lot of those, but the ‘emotional distress’ is not usually a have-to-prove thing unless it’s long-term. And don’t be shy. Tell them how your girlfriend of five years almost left you (or DID leave you) because of this and how you were constantly fighting because you couldn’t go to events, or make it to appointments, or even food shopping (as long as you don 't live in an apartment on top of a supermarket).
Good luck.That’s a really crappy thing to happen. Lucky you weren’t in some remote place or wilderness at the time. I once drove a car at 60-plus miles per hour for 75 miles into NY City with zero lug nuts on one of my wheels after a tire rotation. The idiot who thought he should work with cars, forgot to replace the lugs on the last tire. When I went back to tell them and the manager looked it up on the computer he saw who did the work. Apparently that guy had done similar things before and, needless to say, he lost his job. I felt bad but I could very well have lost my life! 60 or 65 mph for 75 miles with one tire un-attached is not recommended by most safety authorities, if you catch my drift. I didn’t sue but I probably should have. You could have lost your life too. What if the engine had seized while you were merging onto a highway? The cars behind you would all have been accelerating and would have rear-ended you.That might have been serious or fatal!
If you start to feel badly when talking to them, think about that. Hard! Think about all the things and all the people that would have been affected by it if it did happen, because it could have happened.
Again, good luck.


Um, he changed his own oil…


Relax, man . . . :raised_hand:


The OP should sue himself for engine damage, mental anguish and loss of consortium.


Me thinks that is impossible.


As what’s her name used to say on Saturday Night Live, “Oh, never mind”. Suing yourself can get expensive. (Roseanne Roseannadanna)