Evidently, folks are responding to my controversial post without reading it thoroughly.
I am not opposed to the topsider. My whole point is that oil and crud cling to everything inside the engine and take quite a while to come down to the pan, so it can be extracted either with a topsider or by removing the drain plug.
If you were to topside while hot, then let it sit overnight then topside in the morning, I believe that this would do a pretty good job.
Even if you topside for a few minutes and put everything back together, the fresh oil will dissolve much of this crud that must come out. But, why not get as much out as possible before refilling it.
I noticed a post by a pro tech who indicated that they were seeing sludge in a few engines that have oil changes with dino oil only when the FSS alarm indicates. I have a suspicion about this. I would really be curious to know if these engines are being topsided in the techs bay, after they sat on the lot long enough for the oil to cool off. I contend that if my suspicion is correct, and I have no way of knowing if it is, topsiding these engines as soon as the customer drops them off, may very well pull out extra contaminants that are suspended in the oil, before they have a chance to cling.
roas, provided us some good insight here. He indicated that after topsiding the engine adequately then waiting a period of time, he was able to get a measurable amount of additional oil out. Had he pulled the drain plug, I'm sure that this oil would have come out as well. What he determined was that more oil will come down from above, given the time to do so.
For 90% or more, probably much more, like 98% of the new MB customers. Topsiding the oil when the FSS light says so, will take the engine further than the new MB buyer cares to drive the car. I have no idea how much additional mileage may be capable, by more thorough and frequent oil changes. But I feel very confident that there is additional engine life to be had.
I do believe that used properly and with the right frequency, the topsider has the capability to take your engine as far as my oil change method. What I have great trouble believing, is that a topsider can take out more oil than removing the drain plug and letting it drain for an EXTENDED period of time. There may be a FEW models that have unusually shaped oil pans in which this may be the case. If so, this is almost a nonissue anyway. The important point is not which method gets out the most oil. The point is to drain(or topside) it hot and then continue to get the last bit out. This last bit is the REAL sludge and crud that you really want out of the engine. The alternative, is to change it more often, to dissolve it out with fresh oil more often.
Although I probably did not articulate it very well, I still say that the water test was a waste of time. Again, the issue is not getting the oil that's in the pan, out of the pan. The issue is getting the oil that's sludgy and clinging everywhere out of the engine. You chose your method to do this, either frequent oil changes or thorough, hot oil changes. Your choice. The third choice, of course, is the one that 90+% of the new MB owners chose, enjoy it, then get rid of it.
Again my only personal unscientific data I have to offer, is 380,000 miles out of the same engine using my hot, overnight, frequent drain.
'01 C Class, Six Speed
'84 Euro 240D, manual, 533K miles
'88 300E 5 Speed
'81 300D Daughter's Car
Over 800,000 miles in