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Which valve would you be most interested in trying?

  • Fumoto

    Votes: 24 92.3%
  • SAF-AIR

    Votes: 1 3.8%
  • Aeroquip

    Votes: 1 3.8%

  • Total voters
    26
1 - 20 of 29 Posts

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Premium Member
2009 Outback XT-B 5MT
Joined
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10,409 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hey everyone.

I have been thinking about getting an oil-drain valve in hopes to make oil changes less dramatic, and a little easier to perform.

While I really have no reason to do this (as I change my own oil on a lift), I still feel like it would be a beneficial modification for the times I won't have access to a lift. I also think something like this could be beneficial to others who like to overthink even the simplest of ideas, such as myself.

Subaru oil pans are SO exposed, that even the remote possibility that a valve could open on its own scares me.

I think it would be best to have some responses from actual users that can be seen as an overall enthusiast impression of each type of valve.

Below is a compilation of all valves I have found for quick-draining oil in a Subaru.

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Fumoto Valve



Cost: $23 - $26 plus shipping (QuickOilDrainValve.com - the best way to change oil)

Operation: The method of draining on a Fumoto is to lift a lever, and slide it over. Fumoto actually recommends a special hose clamp to prevent accidental opening under "extreme" conditions.

Concerns: The potential for opening unintentionally.

Reports on BTOG and Nasioc have said that they accumulate debris readily and require frequent cleanings to prevent leaks.

Questions to users of Fumoto valves:

How easy are they to operate?
Do they require significant effort to depress/move the lever?
What is the oil drain pattern like?
What is the oil drain time like?
Any total failures to date (accidental engagement)?
Any leaks?
What would you change about the valve?

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SAF-AIR Valve



Cost: $41 plus shipping (SAF-AIR OIL DRAIN VALVES from Aircraft Spruce)

Operation: Depress blue collar and turn to lock open.

Concerns: It appears that the blue collar is integrated into the valve, and being one large piece, could put it in the way of skid-plates and in position to get bashed when off-road or hitting large road debris.

I have found no reviews of this product as used in the automotive community. In the aero community, this seems to be the gold-standard for drain valves.

Questions to users of SAF-Air valves:

How easy are they to operate?
Do they require significant effort to depress/move the lever?
What is the oil drain pattern like?
What is the oil drain time like?
Any total failures to date (accidental engagement)?
Any leaks?
What would you change about the valve?

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Aeroquip Drain Valve



Cost: ~$50 (need two separate pieces: Aeroquip FBM3132 / FCM3132 (See description for specifications) and Aeroquip FBM3117 / FCM3117 (See description for specifications)

Operation: Simply click female connector over male connector.

Concerns: Multiple pieces. Though having a physical cap to cover the male portion of the valve is a nice touch.

I have found no reviews of anyone using one of these valves on a Subaru, though I have heard talk of people doing it.

Questions to users of Aeroquip valves:

How easy are they to operate?
Do they require significant effort to depress/move the lever?
What is the oil drain pattern like?
What is the oil drain time like?
Any total failures to date (accidental engagement)?
Any leaks?
What would you change about the valve?

Thoughts and opinions? The poll is to judge which valve you would be most interested in trying for yourself.
 

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Premium Member
2004 FSTI automatic
Joined
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2,659 Posts
I run the fumo, and it is a piece of cake to use. I also run a aero/skid plate, so no worries for me of breaking it, as I don't do any "serious" offraod.
My under carriage stays very clean from the large coverage that the Subtle-solutions plate offers.

The lever is very easy to use, no leaks, and fully drains in about 10 min. I honestly don't know what I would change about it...as like you said, the pan is soo exposed, there aren't many options for that spot.
 

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Premium Member
2014 Impreza Ltd CVT
Joined
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3,363 Posts
I have used 4 Fumoto's over the past 10 years. 2 on Subaru's , a Toyota and Ford. All worked or continue to work flawlessly.

On every change, after draining, I always wipe the valve with a clean rag. Not certain if this has added to my satisfaction or not, but I do cleanup on any vehicle I service.

I also think there will be failures, but they are not frequent, nor were they the type that let go all at once.
 

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Premium Member
2008 FSXT 4EAT
Joined
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4,161 Posts
Subaru oil pans are SO exposed, that even the remote possibility that a valve could open on its own scares me.
This worries me too, even though my oil pan is well-protected by a Primitive 3/16" skid plate. I don't think it'd take much (relatively speaking) to cause the skid plate to deflect upward ~1/2" and crush a drain valve. A 'positive' connection will always provide the best protection against leaks.

Just my .02
 

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Administrator
2004 Forester XT Premium 4EAT
Joined
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30,117 Posts
I've had the Fumoto valve on Subed for close to 6 years. Has never been touched by the skidplate or ripped off while off-roading. Sometimes the valve-opening/closing mechanism gets a little gritty with dirt, but it has never leaked so much as a drop of oil. I swear by it.

Questions to users of Fumoto valves:

How easy are they to operate? Piece of cake, one-finger operation.
Do they require significant effort to depress/move the lever? Only if you're trying to move it in the wrong direction (as I sometimes do) - snark.
What is the oil drain pattern like? Clean, thin stream - no nipple or hose needed, unless you're draining into a bottle or something.
What is the oil drain time like? 10-15 mins, although I always let it drain very thoroughly.
Any total failures to date (accidental engagement)? None, accidental engagement is close to impossible.
Any leaks? None.
What would you change about the valve? Nothing... works just as advertised.
 

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Premium Member
2015 XC diesel CVT
Joined
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4,098 Posts
No chance of using a Pela extractor on a gasser Subaru? I can certainly use it on the diesel, but getting the drain probe the whole way to the bottom is not just as easy as a normal engine...
 

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Premium Member
2019 Crosstrek 2018 XT
Joined
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13,917 Posts
This always becomes a p1ssing contest. But for me removing a plug requires about 10 seconds more effort and I get a much better flush. Its a matter pf preference.
 

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Registered
Ah crap.. I'm back with my 05 XS
Joined
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8,535 Posts
MM I use the fumoto now because it makes it a cleaner job (I don't know why, but I have the tendancy to accidently drop my drain plug into the oil pan... butter fingers). But I think I'd undo the fumoto every half a dozen oil changes or so just because I know there has got to be filings in there.

The beauty of the SAF-AIR valve is that even if you depress it, it doesn't leak unless you lock it open. It's basically two levels of protection against accidental release. But yeah, ground clearance would make it hard for us..

Aeroquip .. weren't they at SEMA a few years back? Reminds me of a lot of the couplings used for air tools

 

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Administrator
2018 2.5i Premium CVT
Joined
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18,663 Posts
This thread motivated me to see whether Fram SureDrain had become available in our thread. The answer still appears to be no. There's no mention of the product at all on Fram's site causing me to wonder if they are still making it, but there are Amazon sellers offering a very good price (closeout?) on the ones the don't fit us.
 

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BLUE WASABI, (#2 Info Provider)
2008 SG Model D
Joined
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9,219 Posts
Had a fumoto on my '04 and it worked like a champ. Have one now on my '08 and it works like a champ, too.:biggrin: I could never go back to the standard plug...what a PITA it is to undo and sometimes it would slip out of my hands into the pan and also it is so much messier. Fumoto = easy and clean :icon_wink: The only thing dirty about my oil changes now is the oil filter.

I just make sure that I keep it clean. I never get any oil on the lever so I just make sure to clean the end of the valve outlet. I am anal about keeping my car fairly clean so that is not a big deal.
 

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Registered
none none
Joined
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9,011 Posts
I have a fumoto.

I've probably abused it more than anyone else on the forum. I bashed the underside of my car and the fumoto directly hit a rock. The fumoto had a chunk of metal removed, with no ill effects, no leaks, no issues at all (it took some material off the bottom corner but didn't touch any of the mechanism, if i had the model with the nipple the outcome probably would have been worse).

I've never had to clean it or anything. I take it off once a year to reseat it and make sure there isn't much oil sitting in there (theres only ever a few drops left in the pan).

The only thing I would change would be to make the lever a little thicker instead of just stamped sheet metal, or coat it in rubber etc.
 

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The Modfather
2019 Impreza 5dr Sport - Manual
Joined
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8,097 Posts
I've been using Fumoto valves since 97. I've moved that valve from scooby to scooby and have gotten a few more over the years. Personally I've never had an issue with it. I've never tired any others though so I can't comment on how they compare.
 

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Premium Member
07 Forester XT
Joined
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6,791 Posts
A couple of local guys bought the Aeroquip Drain Valve setup. I was thinking of going that way and waited for feedback. Basicaly it works great but what made me lean away from it was the fact that this design uses a male/female kit, lose the extension and you're SOL. Fumoto is such a simpler design that still works great. I bought mine too late in the season, I"ll install it in the spring.
 

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Fast & Dirty
2009 Forester XT 4 speed auto
Joined
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4,050 Posts
I sold my fumoto valve to Bettysboy because it would not fit with a skid plate on my 09 FXT.

I would love a cleaner oil change process but not worth the risk. I take my FXT off road.

The second one looks good but might be too long. Too bad Subaru put the pan and plug in such a vulnerable position.
 

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Registered
none none
Joined
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9,011 Posts
I sold my fumoto valve to Bettysboy because it would not fit with a skid plate on my 09 FXT.

I would love a cleaner oil change process but not worth the risk. I take my FXT off road.

The second one looks good but might be too long. Too bad Subaru put the pan and plug in such a vulnerable position.
Did you have the one with or without the nipple and did you rotate it so the lever was above the valve? Mine only sticks out a few mm more than the stock plug, my oil filter sticks further down than it.
 

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Registered
2005 Sequoia, V70R auto
Joined
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2,885 Posts
I put on a fumoto on the cars second oil change. It's nippleless and I also have a Subtle skid plate.

How easy are they to operate? Easy, one finger can operate it.
Do they require significant effort to depress/move the lever? Yes, enough to let me sleep at night
What is the oil drain pattern like? Nice smooth stream, like peeing w/o any wind
What is the oil drain time like? Never really timed it, but maybe 3-5 minutes with the valve fully open until it starts to just drip
Any total failures to date (accidental engagement)? nope
Any leaks? nope
What would you change about the valve? Maybe a lower profile version, but my skid plate clears it.
 

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Fast & Dirty
2009 Forester XT 4 speed auto
Joined
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4,050 Posts
Did you have the one with or without the nipple and did you rotate it so the lever was above the valve? Mine only sticks out a few mm more than the stock plug, my oil filter sticks further down than it.
I did try and orient it to fit but did not want compression on the skid plate to push against the fumoto and do damage and thus leak. Simply not worth it.
 

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Registered
2004 FXT / 2020 Outback Onyx XT
Joined
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1,657 Posts
I had a Fumoto on my '03 WRX (18k miles) and the same valve has been on my '04 FXT for 90k miles. I put one on my wife's '99 Outback at the same time and both cars have skidplates.

The only thing that I would change is that it protrudes a little farther into my oil pan than I would like (see Peaty's pics on scoobymods). I'm not sure if they've changed the design since then (not that the couple of ounces remaining in the engine matter). I have three blue Fumoto washers on both valves and always run a few ounces of new oil through the engine before filling.

-Dennis
 

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Registered
08 Audi RS4 6 speed man
Joined
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156 Posts
had the Fumoto on the following cars

03 evo VIII-not one issue
00 2.5rs- again not another issue
03 wrx - since 1 week after purchase not one problem
07 STI- since 3 days after purchase- not one issue
07 forester - 2 days after purchase no issues
 
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