PIG’s Form-A-Funnel is a flexible draining tool that can be shaped and molded into a custom drainage channel. There are different sizes and shapes, each with an aluminum alloy core that is encased with thick pliable nitrile rubber.
Back when my wife owned a Jeep Wrangler, changing the oil filter always made a mess. In our particular model, the filter was positioned sideways in a recess in the engine. When changing the filter, oil would run out of the adapter and into the recess. After pooling in the recess, the oil always overflowed down the side of the engine, hitting a crossbar on the way down before landing right onto the exhaust pipe.
I tried cutting up different plastic bottles and jugs for catching the oil, but I never made anything that worked reliably.
Now, I realize that owning a PIG Form-A-Funnel might have saved my bacon. With their flexible draining tool I could have formed a custom channel for the oil to flow out of the recess, around the crossbar, and into right my oil collection pan, saving me the cleanup and the additional oily rags.
The Form-A-Funnel can be formed into many different shapes depending upon your needs. It can even be wrapped into a simple funnel shape. Once you’re done using it, just wipe it down with a wet rag and roll it into a compact burrito for storage. Or, you can also unfold it to store flat.
The inner core of older Form-A-Funnels used to be lead, but now PIG uses an aluminum alloy. Each Form-A-Funnel is 0.094″ thick.
PIG makes the Form-A-Funnel in four different sizes:
- 4.75″ x 9″ Lawn & Garden (TLS706, $10)
- 6.5″ x 14.5″ Automotive 6.5″ x 14.5″ (TLS703, $20)
- 8.625″ x 22″ Heavy-Duty (TLS704, $35)
- 5″ x 29″ Equipment (TLS705, $40)
I found the best prices for two of the models on Amazon. The other two models can be found for less over at Northern Tool. You can also order from PIG directly.
Buy Now(via Amazon).
Buy Now(via Northern Tool)
More Info(via New Pig)
Now I almost want to buy another Jeep so I can try the Form-A-Funnel. Okay, maybe not.
New Pig’s promo video shows many ways that their Form-A-Funnel can be used for fluid transfer, and a couple of other ways they can be used.
This is a REALLY handy accessory. I bought one after making a mess changing the oil in my snowblower and generator. The drain plugs on both are low and right up against the frame, making it almost impossible to get a drain pan underneath them. This thing works great to divert the flow to the proper place, and has saved my garage floor and driveway numerous times.
They have the 6.5″ x 14.5″ older version (lead instead of aluminum inside ) on clearance:
$9.99 (50% off)
Thanks. But for me, by the time they add shipping charges (a total of $17.76 in my case), the discounted older version costs more than the non-discounted newer version on Amazon (total of $12.49).
But it's me!
I was able to find a free shipping code (which memory fails me, sorry) as I could not pass this up. Changing the oil on my 14 year old Subaru Forester is easy, but still messy at the filter since it sits up high in the engine bay. Hopefully this will make it a little less messy. As an aside, the new Outbacks appear to have the filter vertically positioned at the top of the engine, with what appears to be a drain channel in place (from the brief photos I saw, anyway).
I strongly feel that automotive “engineers” and corporate executives should be held criminally responsible for all the engine oil released into the environment by their ignorant negligence. Even if a professional mechanic is careful and cleans up everything with rags, there is still residual oil that gets caught inside frame rails, suspension components, etc. and ends up getting washed off into road drainage, streams, rivers, and oceans. Multiply that by every oil change, every vehicle, for years and years, that’s a lot of oil that fails to make it to the recycling drum.
The mere existence of this product shows us just how bad the problem really is.
I agree that this is a problem, and that corporate america has part of the blame, but I’m not going call it ignorant negligence. It’s cost/risk management. If you actually let the engineers design the vehicles like they want this wouldn’t be a problem, but the vehicles would cost twice as much. They are under very strict cost restraints. Very few people want to pay for features like easily accessible oil filters because they don’t change their own oil.
Sometimes solutions to make the oil filter more accessible turn into a worse problem. Take my old S10. Changing the filter was super easy, just open up an easily accessible panel on the front of the skid plate, you didn’t even have to get on your back. The problem was they basically used an oil filter re-locator kit, There was a recall because the hoses would burst. How many more gallons of oil were released into the environment than having the filter back on the engine?
I reject your “cost twice as much” speculation. For one thing, there are vehicles on the road right now that do not have this problem, and they don’t cost twice as much as comparable vehicles.
@Hang Fire “I strongly feel that automotive “engineers” and corporate executives should be held criminally responsible for all the engine oil released into the environment by their ignorant negligence”.
This is an intellectually brilliant statement.
I have not drained the oil in my motor vehicles for years. I extract it through the dipstick with a MityVac Fluid Extractor.
The direct benefits include:
– Little or no mess
– Easy to transfer into disposal container
– Most filters can be removed afterwards with little to no additional oil drainage
– Low clearance vehicle does not require lifting
– No skip plate or pan removal (assuming oil filter is accessible or oil filter is changed). On one of my vehicles, I remove the filter by cranking the wheels to one extreme and accessing it through the fenderwell.
– No replacement of copper drain plug gasket
– Extracts as much, or more, than through the oil drain plug (Yes, more. I know for a fact on one of my vehicles).
I can easily put my old oil into the new empty oil containers. Try doing that gracefully with a funnel from a full drain pan.
On the Mercedes Benz Service Manual DVD, this is the specified method.
I also use the same method for routine maintenance of the fluids in my transaxle and differentials. Pumping new gear oil into a differential is much easier using this method.
There are many vehicles (including my own) where the oil filter stays full, or nearly full, and spill upon removal. That would be OK as long as it can spill directly down without an intervening vehicle component. Fluid removal with a pump does not solve that problem, I have yet to see a siphon that can reach through the oil pump and empty the filter.
I hear ya. I added it on to an order of a box of blue PIG socks, so they didn’t charge me any (extra) shipping.
It’s one of those tools that you wont use all the time, but when you need it, there is nothing else that will do its job.