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Crooked Mechanic????

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New User

Nov 19, 2007, 5:06 PM

Post #1 of 6 (843 views)
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I have a 2001 Subaru Outback, 144,000 miles, has always gotten synthetic oil and premium gas, runs perfectly. I took it to the mechanic today to get an inspection, and I figured I'd have him change the oil too because it's been 3,000 miles. I come back an hour later, after the synthetic oil change, and the engine is making a loud rattling sound. The shady mechanic says that he wants to flush out the synthetic and put extra heavy oil in and he thinks that might fix it. I told him no, paid him the $125! and left with my engine rattling away. What should I do?

Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator

Nov 19, 2007, 5:52 PM

Post #2 of 6 (834 views)
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I like synthetics but there is almost no detectable difference in the way they sound or run. What happened here if the car was fine when you brought it in? Is this an oil problem like rattle or perhaps some loose something? Something's wrong with this picture,

Long retired now

New User

Nov 19, 2007, 6:10 PM

Post #3 of 6 (833 views)
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The mechanic said the sound started right after the oil change. It sounds kind of like a rattling in the engine, like something is loose. He said something about a chain or a valve. What could he have done? What can I do?

Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator

Nov 20, 2007, 1:54 AM

Post #4 of 6 (825 views)
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I'm kind of reading between the lines with this. Sounds like you have maintained this car with services and products on time and then with this oil change this noise/rattle shows up and the suggestion of using heavy oil sounds like this is an old worn out motor and that would cover the problem for a while. An engine doesn't just up and wear out like that. You do have some miles on it but expected wear on internal engine parts should be minimal if cared for all along the way.

Is the oil pressure behaving in this? Have timing belt(s) and other routine things been kept up with?

This could be just bad luck and the engine has troubles but again they don't usually just surprise you like that and it would be more likely that something is externally loose. Can you tell the difference between a mechanical engine noise like a valve train item vs another type noise? If not get it checked like yesterday!

Were you there when the oil was changed? Did something go wrong like forgetting to put oil back in it or way too much? I'm not able to blame someone for messing it up but it is just too fishy for this the way it happened and the suggestion that was made.

Get another opinion on this at once. It's YOUR engine at stake,

Long retired now


Nov 20, 2007, 11:19 AM

Post #5 of 6 (821 views)
Re: Crooked Mechanic???? [In reply to] Sign In


Is it possible the mechanic used motor flush during this oil change?

The motor flush does wonders in cleaning an engine, BUT in older cars with high miles the oil buildup blocks little cracks and sometimes keep the engine quiet. Were putting engine flush in strips out this buildup and that may be a major factor here.

Also I wonder what oil they used? I use to use heavy oil in my car since it has high miles (236,000 and climbing) but have been using amsoil for the past 3 years.

Hmmm... (on another note)
Here's an idea, if we could record some engine sounds and make a page for them. This way people could say my car sounds like sound #3. And it would help us clear things up.

(This post was edited by carjunky on Nov 20, 2007, 11:23 AM)

Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator

Nov 20, 2007, 11:58 AM

Post #6 of 6 (818 views)
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Interesting thought on the motor flush. I would never use that. I have bought cars that were sludged and was willing to even replace the engine but have been able to get them clean, clean clean by just changing the oil with like 5-30 sythetic $$ and real often like every 500 miles and they have cleaned up!

Motor flush is too fast and is only something to consider when a problem demonstrates itself. This car was seemingly in for a routine change?? Using ATF in a troubled car works well but I wouldn't leave it in for long. The sludge can move so fast it plugs things (oil ports) up and it's all over after that.

Interesting about a noise/sound system that folks could click on. An assortment of squeeks, rattles, thunks, squeels, grinding etc. could be interesting,

Long retired now

Crooked Mechanic????

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