How To Remove Stuck Oil Drain Plug – 5 Easy Ways – (2024)

How To Remove Stuck Oil Drain Plug

An oil drain Plug is what will keep engine oil inside the oil pan. And time over time, you will need to change the oil in your engine.

Sometimes you will find out your oil drain plug is stuck and can’t normally open as you would wish. If this happens to your car, don’t panic.

There are simple ways to remove a stuck oil drain plug. In this article, we will share with you tested and straightforward ways to remove stuck oil drain.

Let’s get started.

oil drain plug
Source: reddit@GreaseGeek

How To Quickly Remove Stuck Oil Drain Plug

To remove a stuck oil drain plug, you can try using penetrating oil, tapping gently with a hammer, or using a strap wrench to grip and turn it counterclockwise. If these methods do not work, a bolt extractor tool may be necessary. Use caution and follow proper safety procedures when attempting to remove a stuck oil drain plug.

Why Does Your Oil Drain Plug Get Stuck?

There two main reasons why your Oil Drain plug gets stuck. Each of these reasons will dictate the procedure and method that you would use to remove your stuck oil drain plug. The reasons are sludge and overtightening.


Sludge is the main reason your oil drain will get stuck. It simply creates a formation around the oil drain plug and makes it difficult to remove.

Primarily, the sludge form because the oil inside your engine is beyond the time it should be exchanged. As a result, the oil oxidizes when exposed to high temperatures.

When oxidation occurs, the molecules in the engine oil break down. The resulting effects are mixing with combustion dirt – water, metallic particles, carbon, and fuel. The mixture forms a sticky sludge.

Over Tightening

Another reason why your oil drain plug gets stuck is over-tightening. This is common when you take your car for routine maintenance with an under-skilled person.

Mainly when you over tighten, the pitch of the screws is destroyed. And in this case, when you remove your oil drain plug, you should change the whole oil pan.

Simple Ways To Remove Stuck Oil Drain Plugs

The following are simple steps that you should follow if you would wish to remove the oil drain plug when it gets stuck. The procedure applies for both when the oil drain plug gets stuck due to sludge or over-tightening.

1. Let Your Car Warm Up First

The first thing you need to do when removing a stuck oil drain plug is first allowing your car to warm up. You can do this by turning on the vehicle and leaving it idle for some time or else take a short drive.

After the car is warm (not hot), park it on stable ground. Get your hydraulic jack and lift the vehicle above the ground.

Go under the car and locate the drain plug. Once you have found it, remove it. Do this by moving the oil drain plug until clockwise and counterclockwise until it loosens.

2. Use A Lubricate or Rust Remover

When you inspect your car oil drain plug and find rust around it, first deal with the rust. Get a lubricant and apply it on it. This is a simple step that will give you a magical effect.

A lubricant will dissolve rust and any sludge on the stuck oil drain plug.

In this step, start by spraying oil over the oil drain plug. Wait for a few minutes the oil to take effect before you try to remove the oil drain plug.

After the rust or sludge has dissolved, use a socket wrench or any other tool to remove the plug.

Marvel Mystery Oil is a lubricating oil safe and effective for removing rust and sludge.  It’s mainly used to lubricate and clean carburetors, fuel injectors, reduce and prevent varnish and gum build-up, improve gasoline mileage, and extend the spark plug life.

Key Features

  • Keeps your engine clean from sludge
  • Lubricates upper cylinder for smoother idling
  • Improves MPG, Power, and compression

So, if you are dealing rust or sludge on your oil drain plug, this is the real deal. The marvel mystery oil will help you prevent the problem before it happens. And if your piston rings are already stuck, it will also help you free them and give your car a perfect performance.

And the good news is that Marvel Mystery oil is available on Amazon. All you need to do is order, and it will be delivered to you for your use.

Click here to check the latest price and buy it from Amazon today.

3. Use A Socket Wrench

Socket wrenches are a common tool that every car owner should have. It’s a toll you will find in every automotive maintenance due to its ease of use and flexibility. It’s a multi-purpose tool that you can use do perform different functions with it.

So, get the right socket that fits on your oil drain plug. Using it, try to remove the plug and see if it will work.

Consider getting a socket wrench with a long handle to give you an easy time and extra torque when removing your plug.

If you do not have a socket wrench, you can buy one today. This is a tool that you can’t afford to have.

69 Pieces – EPAuto 1/4” & 3/8” Drive Socket Set with Pear Head Ratchet, is the best you will find in the market. It will give you all the sockets that you would need to open your car. It’s a one-stop solution tool kit for your car.

Source: reddit@iAmJonathanT

Key Features

  • Affordable
  • Durable
  • Easy to store
  • Corrosion-resistant

The kit is available on Amazon. Click here to check the latest price and buy it from Amazon today.

4.Use A Hammer

If Any of the above steps still don’t work, here is a step that will give you better results. Use a hammer to tap on the oil drain plug to loosen it.

However, remember to make the tap light and in a proper way that will loosen it. Be careful not to damage the oil drain plug teeth.

This should only be done when the oil drain plug is over tightened, and all the other methods cannot remove it.

Read Also: How To Time An Engine Without A Timing Light

5. Get Professional Help

We recommend before you get to this step, you try all the above steps. Remember taking your car to a professional to remove the stuck oil drain plug will cost you some money.

It won’t make sense to pay a professional to do a simple task that you could have done on yourself. However, if you have tried every other method and nothing seems to be working, you can settle on this step.

Go to your mechanic and show them the problem. Tell them what you have tried to do and have failed.

Experienced mechanics must have dealt with this problem at some pint. And in no time, they will help you solve this problem.


Will stripped drain plug leak?

A stripped drain plug can leak, as damaged threads may prevent it from sealing tightly. If the leak is minor, you can use a temporary fix like thread sealant, but it’s best to replace the plug or repair the threads for a long-term solution.

Can you drill out oil drain plug?

You can drill out an oil drain plug if it’s stuck or stripped, but it requires caution and skill. Drilling can create metal shavings that contaminate the oil, so ensure you have a plan to catch them and clean the area afterward.

Will a loose oil drain plug fall out?

Yes, a loose oil drain plug will fall out due to vibrations while driving, leading to rapid oil loss, engine damage, and unsafe driving conditions. Always ensure the plug is tightened correctly to avoid such issues.

Parting Shot

Once you have removed your oil drain plug, don’t allow it to get stuck again. If this problem persists, you might damage your oil pan. And that will cost you more money to replace it.

Relevant Resources:

  1. How To Make A Center Console Out Of Wood
  2. Stuck Piston Rings Marvel Mystery Oil
  3. How To Make Car Aux Louder

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