My filter wrench is the end type and also doesn't quite fit the filter. It
slips so I took a piece of rubber tubing and laid it across the wrench and
then pressed it against the filter. Off it came!!!! It just needed a
little shim to fit that wierd size filter. Is this a scheme to lock us into
the dealer? I have a whole shelf of filter wrenches collected over the
years and none fit it.....
You know, the first time I replace a filter, I need a wrench. Whether it is
a new car, or one put on by a dealership, a fast lube place or whatever,
they are all on VERY tight.
But after that, I tighten it the way the directions tell me to - and ONLY by
hand. Funny thing is, after that, unless it is so buried I can't get my
hand on it, I can always remove all my filters by hand - I don't need a
wrench and none of them have ever leaked, felt loose, or come off.
So if you got if off the first time, your troubles may be over - IF you're
tightening it the way you're supposed to, and can get your hand on the
I also tighten mine only by hand (2/3 to 1 turn as specified by the
particular filter), but after 5,000 miles I still usually need a wrench
to remove them. The gasket seems to attach to the engine block pretty
well after 5,000 miles of heat and vibration.
For the 4 cyl Sonata, the filter is up inside the engine compartment and the
only access is through a hole in the plastic windage cover below the engine.
You need the wrench even if the filter is torqued normally. In my case, a
small twist is all that was needed to loosen it after I got the wrench to
'grip' with the rubber helper strip.
I know that some people have pilloried Fram filters in this group. But that
is why I continue to use Fram Tough Guard on all my cars. That black
coating they put on the end of their filters makes it so simple to loosen by
hand - IF you can get to it.
My daughter has an older Geo Prizm, where the filter is virtually IN the
exhaust manifold. There I have to let the engine almost completely cool,
even if I do try to use a wrench or I will have slightly burned knuckles for
a few days.
In the Winter (like it is now), I actually prefer the engine warm, as my oil
changing station is just an unheated garage, and the warmth keeps me from
freezing. In Summer, I put the vehicle up on ramps, and just let it sit
there for a minimum of two hours, while I go do something else.
But if you have the grippiness of the Fram, the filter is accessible, and
you changed the filter last time, and tightened it the way you're supposed
to, give it a whirl. For years, I had just by nature used a wrench, and now
just recently I've learned that I don't have to.
Correct me if I'm wrong, Tom, but IIRC, it is stated on both on the package
of a new filter wrench and in the owner's manual that a filter wrench is
supposed to be used ONLY for loosening, NEVER for tightening.
The way they make those filters anymore, I would be afraid of putting a
small puncture in one if I used a wrench to tighten it. I will occasionally
do that when I have to loosen one using a wrench, after it was put on at the
dealership or fast oil change people.
To me, that is a HUGE no-no.
No, no, no, no, no - I did get what you said. But I get the impression that
there are more than a few people (and maybe a few of those fast oil change
places) that must be using a wrench to tighten those things.
I asked you that question, because you clearly are one of the people that
But how come the ones who "get it" are never the ones working at these
Sorry for the misunderstanding. It is hardly the first time my inability to
communicate what I want to say properly has not come through.
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