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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-19-2014, 06:51 PM Thread Starter
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Talking Oil Filter Housing Cap Blew Open

I'm posting this because I've never heard of this happing to a Cobalt before. I was driving to work this morning and all of a sudden my oil light came on, so I pulled over to investigate. After popping my hood I see the entire engine covered in oil, and the oil filter cap blown open with the threads still in the housing. Was thinking possible blowby, but not sure. Also, could a bad PCV valve cause this? Has anyone else ever heard of this happening?


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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-19-2014, 07:11 PM
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-19-2014, 07:18 PM Thread Starter
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Never seen this before. You boosted?
Nope, I'm 100% stock with 106k miles.
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-19-2014, 07:20 PM
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Cobalt has no PCV per say, but definitely crank case ventilation problem or cap treads were weakened by a previous crosstread or over tightening. At least you know you "O" ring was good.

---------- Post added at 10:20 PM ---------- Previous post was at 10:19 PM ----------

Was it cold, vent might of iced up?

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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-19-2014, 07:24 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Coby7 View Post
Cobalt has no PCV per say, but definitely crank case ventilation problem or cap treads were weakened by a previous crosstread or over tightening. At least you know you "O" ring was good.

---------- Post added at 10:20 PM ---------- Previous post was at 10:19 PM ----------

Was it cold, vent might of iced up?
It was around 7 degrees Fahrenheit, but I was about 17 miles into my drive when it happened, unless I drove on it for a while. I was really surprised that I didn't hear a popping sound.
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-19-2014, 07:27 PM
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Might have happened on your previous run. Light only came on when oil got low.

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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-19-2014, 08:49 PM
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I've only seen stuff like that when there is a crank case ventilation problem AND the threads were over tightened before causing them to strip a little bit or roll. I have seen that before, just not on a balt.

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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-20-2014, 05:30 AM
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Wow...that's going to be a mess to clean-up...I hate oil as it gets everywhere.

Guessing the cap threads were damaged at some point...probably over-zealous service rep at some point. I had a heck of a time getting the oil filter cap off my daughter's last car (2004 Cavalier) and previous service was done at a "Jiffy Lube." I swear they feel it's best to "air-torque" these oil caps/plugs in place...which is wrong and that could be a reason why your cap blew off. Glad you caught it quick so the motor's probably OK.

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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-21-2014, 07:37 AM Thread Starter
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So today I got a new oil filter cap and tried to see what was wrong with it. I drained all of the oil out of the engine and started it for about 10 seconds to see if I could feel any air pushing through and there was none. I checked the ventilation system and from what I could tell, everything was clear. So I put the new cap oil, filled it with oil, and hoped for the best. After about 35 mins of idling and holding 2,500 RPM revs for a few minutes at a time everything seemed to be working great. I'm not sure if it's something that'll break when I actually put some strain on the engine for a longer period of time, or if it was just a fluke.

If nothing goes wrong, I have a theory as to what could have caused this. The oil had just been changed at Walmart 2 days prior to this happening. As many have mentioned, it could have been overtightened. I think it was overtightened to the point that caused the threads to pull away from the lip of the cap which caused it to crack, then a mixture of that and the single digit temperatures caused it to weaken substantially and eventually break. Just my thoughts, any input is welcomed!
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-21-2014, 08:11 AM
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WalMart? Ummm no surprises there.

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