Adding A Deep Sump



   I am a firm believer in the value of adding extra oil capacity to your engine.  Extra oil ensures that there is oil at the pick-up tube when your engine really needs it.  Hard cornering, braking and acceleration all can cause your oil to slosh away from the pick-up tube.  A quick moment of oil pump cavitation may not even make your oil light come on but it can begin to damage your engine's wear surfaces.

    To help minimize the possibility, I'm adding a 1.5 qt. deep sump to my new motor.  I picked up this particular one at a VW swap meet for $10.  They can be had new for around $40 and up.

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    The first thing you need to do is carefully remove all 6 of the sump/screen studs.  All of these can be transferred to the oil sump where the sump plate will now reside.  One problem you may run into, is the stud which holds the oil pick-up tube nut on the inside of the case.  If you are about to build up a new engine, place the longer studs in place PRIOR to building the short block.  When installing any of the studs, I always use non-hardening sealant on the threads of the studs prior to installing them in their holes.  Doing this will significantly reduce the chances of having a leak (which these sumps are famous for).

sump-studs-removed.jpg (48435 bytes)             sump-stud.jpg (45245 bytes)             sump-stud2.jpg (54734 bytes)             sump-stud3.jpg (48902 bytes)

    Once the studs are in place, you will need to add a thin layer of the same sealant to the bottom of the engine case sump as well as the opposite mating surface of the deep sump.  Then you need to put a thin layer of sealant on one side of one cardboard gasket.  Place the sealant side of the gasket onto the engine case sump.  Now add another thin layer of sealant to the other side of the gasket.  You're now ready to place the sump up into place.  Once you have the sump seated on the case, get all the nuts started by hand.  I like to use the self-locking (nylock style) nuts since you don't want these to someday come loose.  Then I tighten them in a criss-cross pattern just snugging them a little at a time until it's tight.  About 10 ft. lbs is all that's required.

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    Now you need to install the pick-up tube extension.  This is held in place with a hose clamp.  It's kind of tight in there so you will need to use a wrench.  

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    Once that is good and tight, you're ready to add the screen and close it up.  I use the non-hardening sealant on ALL the sealing surfaces including both sides of all gaskets and the sump screen edges.  

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Another trick is to always USE a NEW sump plate.  Don't be cheap and skimp on a $3 sump plate by using your old warped plate.  That's a sure way to have an oil dripper out in the driveway.

   I've sealed every sump I've run this way and I've never had a sump leak.  You just need to ensure you don't skip a surface or leave gaps in the sealant.

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   I always replace the standard drain plug with a magnetic drain plug.  This little addition will help catch small metallic particles that float around in your oil.  This is especially important for those of you NOT running a full flow oil system with a filter.

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Revised: August 29, 2003 .