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I'm still in the process of changing my 2009 Nissan Sentra CVT fluid. But now I'm stuck, well, me and the pan bolt are stuck.

I tried the combination wrench but couldn't get enough leverage. Took the ratchet and socket out, used a hollow metal tube as leverage and all I could get was the poor ratchet broken in pieces.

The bolt is a 19mm with a metal washer underneath it:

The arrow marks the bolt

I don't want to heat the thing up, since the pan is full of flammable oil.

Any help will be immensely apreciated!

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I finally dit it. I tried the penetrating fluid but with no avail. I figured I needed more torque, but did not want to damage another ratchet. So I went ahead and welded the broken rachet head and also welded a 2 foot long tube to the end of the old ratchet. With this makeshift breaker bar I managed to apply enough torque to loosen the bold.

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    It is possible that the combined effect of the penetrating fluid and the extra torque from the breaker bar is to be thanked. This is how I ended up removing my rusted-on brake caliper bolts. – alexw Jul 30 '15 at 23:01
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I assume you have tried to spray loads of penetrating fluid on it?

Otherwise, from the sound of it, I wouldn't count on getting the bolt out without heat so at this point it would be best to drop the whole oilpan so you can work on it separately.

It will be messy and sucks to do but like you said it shouldn't be done with oil in there.

  • I didn't try the penetrating fluid because the bolt sits upside down. I'll give it a try anyway. – aldux Jul 20 '15 at 16:59
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Two things:

  • Ensure you are trying to turn it the right way. (ie: righty tighty [clockwise] lefty loosey [counter-clockwise]) Seeing as how the vehicle is upside down to you (since you are underneath), it's easy to get turned around and applying torque in the wrong direction.
  • Put your combination wrench back on the nut and hit the open end with a hammer (in the correct direction, of course). This will act like an impact driver on the plug and hopefully loosen it up.

If either of these methods do not work, heat is your only other recourse. The problem is, the oil in the tranny will absorb most of that heat. There wouldn't be enough oxygen in there to allow it to burn, though you could scorch the fluid. That is an iffy proposition.

EDIT: Also try a pair of vice grips in the same manner, though you'd need to find a replacement after that. Beyond that, there is the option of just removing the pan itself. It would require a new pan gasket, but may be worth it. Easy access since you have it in the air already.

  • I did try hitting the end of the wrench but the bolt's head is very shallow and I couldn't keep the grip on it; it slipped out every time I hit it. – aldux Jul 20 '15 at 17:02
  • @aldux - Check the edit. – Pᴀᴜʟsᴛᴇʀ2 Jul 20 '15 at 18:03
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An impact wrench - even an electric - can do wonderful things. I just had a 10mm with a torx head that I struggled with all afternoon. It just wouldn't come, and got to where the torx teeth were pretty close to stripped out. My brother brought over his impact, and it came off in 10 secs. I have seen the light.

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