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Old 15-12-07
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forgot to replace oil cap, should I worry???

Morning - went to check the oil last night and had forgotten to replace the cap the last time....must have been about 3/4 weeks ago, probably done about 500/600 miles in that time. Should I worry about any damage to the engine - dust getting in etc???

Now need to find the cap maybe trapped on the tray underneath. Have stuck a plastic one on from the petrol station in the meantime

Cheers all
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Old 15-12-07
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Re: forgot to replace oil cap, should I worry???

Jeez, is that for real?

1st thing, check your dipstick for any oil left!

2nd, there must be a hell of a mess under your bonnet, there will have been oil spraying all over the shop!
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Old 15-12-07
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Re: forgot to replace oil cap, should I worry???

As long as you not ran engine dry it'll be just cosmettic damage..........make sure rain water hasn't got in and turned whats left of oil creamy.
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Old 15-12-07
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Re: forgot to replace oil cap, should I worry???

Your very lucky you never had a fire under there!!!! personally i would change whats left and put fresh oil in as whats left of the old oil could now be contaminated....
best to put a few £'s worth of new oil in than a big ££££ rebuild!
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Old 15-12-07
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Re: forgot to replace oil cap, should I worry???

I know...nightmare....

its weird there's no mess under the bonnet at all and I check the oil regularly... also can't believe I left the cap off anyway, would it have come off another way??

Oil on dipstick was just below min level mark when I checked...am I going to be ok??
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Old 15-12-07
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Crazed Re: forgot to replace oil cap, should I worry???

Originally Posted by george123 View Post
I know...nightmare....

its weird there's no mess under the bonnet at all and I check the oil regularly... also can't believe I left the cap off anyway, would it have come off another way??

Oil on dipstick was just below min level mark when I checked...am I going to be ok??


....when I say 'I check the oil regularly' I mean there was definitely oil in there to come out!!!

....by the way just filled it right up with Selenia

....what a knobbb I am
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Old 15-12-07
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Re: forgot to replace oil cap, should I worry???

Originally Posted by george123 View Post
I know...nightmare....

its weird there's no mess under the bonnet at all and I check the oil regularly... also can't believe I left the cap off anyway, would it have come off another way??

Oil on dipstick was just below min level mark when I checked...am I going to be ok??
Oil below minimum level mark!! Mate i think your engine might have suffered terminal damage. I dont want to rain on your parade but are the V6's able to take oil that low. If it was a twinspark it would be knackered.
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Old 15-12-07
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Re: forgot to replace oil cap, should I worry???

Oil level will be fine short term. I wouldn't mind betting you've not leftthe cap off. On the V6's the caps have metal securers on the underneath and the look fragile to me. The seal on ours isn't that great either. Perhaps it broke off. If it did though, what happened to the metal tab
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Old 15-12-07
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Re: forgot to replace oil cap, should I worry???

Originally Posted by Squadrone Rosso View Post
Oil level will be fine short term. I wouldn't mind betting you've not leftthe cap off. On the V6's the caps have metal securers on the underneath and the look fragile to me. The seal on ours isn't that great either. Perhaps it broke off. If it did though, what happened to the metal tab


Probably did leave the cap off, can't believe it would have broken off

Putting oil in is a nightmare..by the time you put a funnel in, put in oil, take out funnel, stop it dripping everywhere.....you forget to put the cap back on (well I do anyway)

what are the signs of any damage to the engine due to low oil??
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Old 15-12-07
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Re: forgot to replace oil cap, should I worry???

It happened to me on my GTV. The cap unscrewed itself on a motorway journey so make sure you do it up very tight in future. Mine left an almighty mess and thankfully we had stopped off at a Services so we noticed it otherwise there could have been a fire I'm sure. First thing I did was top it up to get us home and then got the oil changed asap.
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Old 15-12-07
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Re: forgot to replace oil cap, should I worry???

If she sounds the same, i.e. no untoward nasty noises with normal driving, you should be ok? For re-assurance, get a Alfa V6 er' locally, who knows his stuff, to check it out for you?:
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Old 15-12-07
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Re: forgot to replace oil cap, should I worry???

If it's just below the min it will be OK. Agreed, oil into a V6 is a pain. I always use ZX1 metal treatment in our cars juts in case oild soes go low & as a proven friction reducer.
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Old 15-12-07
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Re: forgot to replace oil cap, should I worry???

Have seen V12 Meteor engines a bit short of oil with little or no problems, so long as the pump pick-up is still submerged in oil in the sump. :

Last edited by zulu ferret; 15-12-07 at 09:38.
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Old 15-12-07
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Re: forgot to replace oil cap, should I worry???

Originally Posted by george123 View Post
by the way just filled it right up with Selenia
how much did it take to bring to max

Originally Posted by george123 View Post
what are the signs of any damage to the engine due to low oil??
smoke from the exhaust (blue) very pronounced knocking or rattling!
metal to metal surfaces suffer first (cams, crank, little end brgs) all require oil pressure to stop wear....
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Old 15-12-07
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Re: forgot to replace oil cap, should I worry???

....just had another look under the bonnet..

Yep, can now see some big oil stains on the undertray plus a few oil spots on the inside of bonnet above where the oil filler is but nothing more than that. Nothing on the engine itself. Maybe this means is happened recently so cap could have unscrewed itself rather than me forgetting to put it back on 3/4 weeks ago....

My car has always been one of the GTAs which doesn't use much oil so hopefully this will work in my favour.

Will get it looked at this week, have a good indie nearby
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Old 15-12-07
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Not Happy Re: forgot to replace oil cap, should I worry???

Originally Posted by alfaspence View Post
how much did it take to bring to max

put in about 1 and a bit litres, which has taken it a bit over the max mark...not my day

smoke from the exhaust (blue) very pronounced knocking or rattling!
metal to metal surfaces suffer first (cams, crank, little end brgs) all require oil pressure to stop wear....
thankfully none of that so far... no blue smoke and nothing sounds different
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Old 15-12-07
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Re: forgot to replace oil cap, should I worry???

[QUOTE=george123;1457350]thankfully none of that so far... no blue smoke and nothing sounds different[/QUOTE



by the way...put in 1 and a bit litres which has taken it above max mark on dipstick
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Old 15-12-07
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Re: forgot to replace oil cap, should I worry???

if it took 2 ltrs or less to bring to the max mark, you are safe! (i know how much oil it takes to cover the oil pickup)
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Old 15-12-07
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Re: forgot to replace oil cap, should I worry???

Originally Posted by george123 View Post
by the way...put in 1 and a bit litres which has taken it above max mark on dipstick
you are definatly safe then.... its usually only 1 ltr between min and max

consider this as a lucky escape
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Old 15-12-07
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Re: forgot to replace oil cap, should I worry???

Definitive answer from A S, so there you are, keep smiling.:
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Old 15-12-07
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Re: forgot to replace oil cap, should I worry???

ZX1 metal treatement

ZX1 Metal treatment (flash Site)

Used this stuff for years. It really is good
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Old 15-12-07
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Re: forgot to replace oil cap, should I worry???

Originally Posted by alfaspence View Post
if it took 2 ltrs or less to bring to the max mark, you are safe! (i know how much oil it takes to cover the oil pickup)

thanks for that, definitely a litre and a bit max.
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Old 15-12-07
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Re: forgot to replace oil cap, should I worry???

You use 250 ML in a 3.2 engine. Available from Halfords
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Old 15-12-07
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Re: forgot to replace oil cap, should I worry???

guys...many thanks for all the great advice!!

feeling a bit better than at 7am this morning...keeping fingers crossed anyway!!
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Old 15-12-07
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Re: forgot to replace oil cap, should I worry???

Originally Posted by george123 View Post
....just had another look under the bonnet..

Yep, can now see some big oil stains on the undertray plus a few oil spots on the inside of bonnet above where the oil filler is but nothing more than that. Nothing on the engine itself. Maybe this means is happened recently so cap could have unscrewed itself rather than me forgetting to put it back on 3/4 weeks ago....

My car has always been one of the GTAs which doesn't use much oil so hopefully this will work in my favour.

Will get it looked at this week, have a good indie nearby

What condition was the cap in - on my (admittedly older) 164 the heat had caused the cap plastic to crack over time - it's conceivable a big enough piece could crack off to allow the cap to loosen & fall off.

Think I'd go with the advice to do an oil change anyway - it's realtively cheap & can't do any harm. If your concerned about damage, you might want to check the oil for grit/ metal fragments, but from your description of the oil marks in the engine bay I'd guess the cap's not been off for long.

Sounds like you've had a lucky escape anyway


My days of not taking you seriously are definitely coming to a middle
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