How to Replace a Dipstick Tubeby Jim Stewart
A dipstick is an instrument made of metal that is used to measure the amount of fluid in your car. It is found near the engine block in a tube called the dipstick tube. Occasionally these tubes crack, develop rust or wear or break and need to be replaced. This is a repair that requires very little previous automotive work experience and easy-to-find items. Save yourself the headache of going to an automotive center and do this job yourself.
Park your car and let the engine cool down. Open the hood of your car so you can access the engine well.
Locate your dipstick in the engine well. It is near the exhaust manifold and has a large ring, which you would pull on to remove it from the tube.
Take out the bolts holding the dipstick tube in place using a wrench. The bolts will release a bracket, which you will be able to slide up and off the tube.
Take the dipstick out of the tube by grasping the ring and pulling it out of the car. Locate the compression clips holding the tube onto the oil container below.
Press both of the clips down to release them and insert a small piece of plastic or other material in the gap to wedge the clips into the open position.
Stuff paper towels into the tube and grip the tube with pliers. Pull the tube directly upward until it releases from the car.
Push the new dipstick tube into the same position as the old one. Make sure the clips snap into place.
Put the bracket back onto the tube and secure it with the removed bolts. Return the dipstick to the tube.
- The paper towels will help prevent any small parts from falling down through the tubes, so don't skip this step.
Things You'll Need
- Small piece of plastic
- Paper towels
- New dipstick tube
- Do not exert extreme force when removing the bolts or you may snap the tube within the bracket.
Based in Princeton, N.J., Jim Stewart has been writing travel- and business-related articles since 1987. His work has appeared in “Inc.” and “Business 2.0” magazines and online at Wired. Stewart received the John Goldenberg Award in 2007. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from The Ohio State University in Ohio.