ATF drain plug removal

Disclaimer: Links on this page pointing to Amazon, eBay and other sites may include affiliate code. If you click them and make a purchase, we may earn a small commission.

ukrkoz

Full Access Member
Joined
Feb 16, 2021
Posts
247
Reaction score
124
Location
Auburn WA
I had exactly same issue with frozen drain plug on my 99 Silverado and, lo and behold, one on my Tahoe is also frozen to the trannie drain pan.
So far, regular socxket don't work. I tried 15mm Griptight socket but, it just angles on the shallow bolt head and slips off. I still ahve some hex left on the bolt and don't want to round it completely.
On Silverado I had to drop pan and drill the plug out, even in a vise it still won't budge.
Anyone knows any tricks to get it out? I have Kobalt bolt extractor kit but, OF COURSE, it does not have size 15 socket.
Before I start ordering sockets or welding nuts onto that drain plug - any suggestions? For reson obvious, I don't want to take torch to it plus, rubber seal in the flange likely will only toast to the pan worse.
Trying to avoid pan removal. Was no fun on Silverado. About the messiest job I had done.
 

OR VietVet

Multnomah Falls
Supporting Member
Military
Joined
Oct 8, 2014
Posts
19,833
Reaction score
33,687
Location
Willamette Valley
If you have air tool access, use an air chisel and a flat blade and can "burp" the blade on the edge of the plug in a reverse direction to break loose. If I came across tuff bolts/nuts when removing, I used to actually tighten a bit first to break loose in the opposite direction and then try to loosen.
 
Last edited:
OP
OP
U

ukrkoz

Full Access Member
Joined
Feb 16, 2021
Posts
247
Reaction score
124
Location
Auburn WA
I have BIG compressor but no air chisel. Also, somehow, I doubt, that will work, as bolt head itself is maybe 8mm or so height. There's not much to catch on.

On a side note... Is there some sort of hex put on 15mm bolt extractor sockets? I looked at l;ike all kits on Amazon, only 2 have 15mm, the rest jumps from 14 to 16, and I laready have that. Hate to buy just one socket for $23... or buy new kit while having half of its sockets already... And, BTW, whatever HFT sells as a bolt extractor kit is junk, socket stripped right away.
 

OR VietVet

Multnomah Falls
Supporting Member
Military
Joined
Oct 8, 2014
Posts
19,833
Reaction score
33,687
Location
Willamette Valley
I have BIG compressor but no air chisel. Also, somehow, I doubt, that will work, as bolt head itself is maybe 8mm or so height. There's not much to catch on.

On a side note... Is there some sort of hex put on 15mm bolt extractor sockets? I looked at l;ike all kits on Amazon, only 2 have 15mm, the rest jumps from 14 to 16, and I laready have that. Hate to buy just one socket for $23... or buy new kit while having half of its sockets already... And, BTW, whatever HFT sells as a bolt extractor kit is junk, socket stripped right away.
You don't air chisel against the head, you burp it against the shoulder under the head. Right on the edge of the shoulder.
 

NoReverseYukon

Full Access Member
Joined
Feb 27, 2019
Posts
574
Reaction score
1,275
Location
NE Wisconsin
Save yourself the headache - drop the pan and install a drain plug that you can remove the next time w/o going thru all this BS. Unless there isn't going to be a next time.
 
OP
OP
U

ukrkoz

Full Access Member
Joined
Feb 16, 2021
Posts
247
Reaction score
124
Location
Auburn WA
Right. And remove half the exhaust along the way? Pan "tail" is pretty much on the exhaust. Been there with my Silverado.
 

j91z28d1

Full Access Member
Joined
Feb 28, 2022
Posts
2,427
Reaction score
2,874
the Irvine brand is pretty good for bolt extractors and available local stores and Amazon. not always the best, but solid for the price and being able to pick them up quick non tool truck stuff

also, I'd just try a good fitting impact 6 point and a good impact. I find a lot of times even long breaker bars just try to twist off thin bolt heads. an impact is straight on with no side loading. also I hit it a few times in both directions on a lower setting before crossing fingers and letting it eat on max.

I've been pretty lucky over the years, but I'm also not up north where life with salt makes every mechanic job 10x worse.
 

j91z28d1

Full Access Member
Joined
Feb 28, 2022
Posts
2,427
Reaction score
2,874
You don't air chisel against the head, you burp it against the shoulder under the head. Right on the edge of the shoulder.

this can definitely work and worth a try, needs to be a sharp chisel and I'd be worried about skipping and slicing thru the pan. try to have some hold something again the pan to protect it as it will probably slip a few times.
 

Forum statistics

Threads
130,456
Posts
1,832,976
Members
94,095
Latest member
Timberalan
Top