06 Sonata oil change experience

Well, I just changed my oil for the first time at 2500 miles. I used Castrol 5W-20 dino oil and will switch to Mobil 1 at 5,000 miles. I want to ensure a good break-in first although 2500 probably was enough.
The oil change wasn't too bad. It was a little tricky getting the beast up on the ramps with standard shift and that light switch that Hyundai calls a throttle. The worst part was the snow squall that blew in when I was about halfway finished! Oh the joys of northern PA in February.
The drain plug was really torqued in from the factory and made a snap when it let go, but I was glad to see a steel oil pan (at least it looks and sounds like steel) as I hate drain plugs that are threaded directly into aluminum. Draining the oil was relatively easy and there was easy access.
The oil filter is a different story. Whoever decided to put all of these stupid covers over the top and bottom of the engine should be hung by their finger nails. I couldn't loosen the filter by hand and I don't have an end cap style filter wrench, just the "strap" style. I couldn't get my arm into the available space from the top. I barely could fit it up through the hole in the splash shield. However, I finally got the filter loose. Putting the new one on was fairly painless although it is hard to get your hands up through the hole to tighten it. I've always been able to apply plenty of torque by hand, but I always have had better access than the Sonata provides. I'm pretty sure I got the requisite 4/5ths turn and it doesn't leak so hopefully it is tight enough. I'll have to invest in an end cap style wrench for future use.
Other than the filter, not too bad of a job. The oil filler cap was also way overtightened and was hard to get loose since it is recessed into the engine cover like the dipstick is. I may remove that cover and save it for when I sell the car. I don't think it serves any real function beyond window dressing and makes checking the oil level a PITA.
Matt
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Unfortunately, this has become all-too-common.
It almost seems like designing an oil filter into the engine is an after-thought on cars like these, with little planning given to factors like easy accessibility.
The engines and cars where that detail has been paid attention to are pretty obvious. They are also few and far between.
Sometimes, you can find one bolt on one splash cover that you can take off and make the job a lot easier. After you've done a couple oil changes and are comfortable, you can see.
Tom Wenndt

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Rev. Tom Wenndt wrote:

Yes, this is true on many vehicles. I've found my two Chrysler minivans to be pretty maintenance friendly. The only exception was the air filter on my 96 minivan. It was a bear to even find the first time, but fortunately the air intake was located such that very little dirt got ingested. I only replaced it once and that was around the 100K mile mark. Even then, it wasn't all that dirty. Fortunately, Chrysler redesigned the intake system on my 03 minivan and it is now very accessible. The oil filter is also a piece of cake to get at.
Now, the oil filter on my 94 K1500 is something else. It is hard to reach from the bottom and drains right on top of the front driveshaft u-joint. At least that u-joint will never rust... :-)

I didn't study it as I was in the wind and snow, but it appeared to be held on by several screws and it didn't look like removing it was a 5 minute job. And the access hole for the filter suggests that Hyundai didn't plan for it to be removed for oil changes.
Matt
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Next time you are under it think in terms of it being on a lift. The leverage angles are different than when we lay on the ground. On my Accent it was also easy to drop the bottom plastic cover. A couple of bolts don't mean much when you have the right airtool sitting there.
BTW, the covers under the engine are probably for airflow. I remember reading an article from one of Smoky Yunick's crew once. Nobody could figure out why his cars were faster than the competition. Turns out in the shop they spent more time on their side or roof than on the tires. The even built specialty cradles so they could work on airflow under the chassis. Figured it bought them 5-10 mph in the racing circuit. With today's cars convert to mpg on the sticker.
wrote:

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