Repair & Maintenance
How to Change Your Oil
it up. Use as many quarts of oil
as your manufacturer recommends.
can be dirty job and sometimes a literal pain in the neck, but there's
no getting around it.
101 calls for regularly changing your motor oil and oil filter about
every 3,000 miles (or every 3-4 months) for extending the life of
your car and for keeping it in top running condition.
need for a do-it-yourself oil change
Have all tools and materials ready before you begin.
wrench or metal strap wrench
new oil filter
pan, old gallon jug or milk carton
or old drop cloth to catch any spills
rags or paper
towels for final clean up
running hot or cold?
There are two
schools of thought on whether or not to get the engine hot before
an oil change. Since hot oil drains faster and more efficiently,
some car owners like to rev the engine or drive around the neighborhood
first before they change the oil. Just Note: getting up close
and personal with hot oil can cause serious burns to your hands
or face, so use extra caution if using the hot oil method (not recommended
How to change
car on a flat level surface. If there is enough room to slide
under the car, jack up the car and USE JACKSTANDS as a safety
car is securely supported, crawl under the car to locate the drain
plug near the front of the car. Cover the area with newspaper
or drop cloth to absorb any spills.
pan directly under the plug. With a socket wrench, turn counterclockwise
to loosen the plug, then twist to remove by hand. Allow at least
a half for the oil to drain completely, then replace the plug
using the socket wrench.
the oil filter. Place the oil pan underneath it to catch any oil
remaining inside the filter. Slip the oil filter wrench securely
around the oil filter, and give a tug counterclockwise. Once it's
loosened, twist by hand to remove it.
install the new oil filter, remember to rub some new oil around
the rubber gasket (this will prevent lots of headaches later when
you try to remove it for the next oil change.) Screw the new filter
onto the filter pipe and hand tighten. Give it an extra quarter
turn with the oil filter wrench until it is good and snug, but
not overly tight.
from underneath the car and open the hood. Remove the oil filler
cap. Place funnel inside the hole and fill with as many quarts
of motor oil as your maintenance manual recommends. Once all new
oil has drained into the engine, check the dipstick for an accurate
oil level. Don't forget to replace the oil filler cap!
write down the current date and mileage, as a good reminder for
when to change the oil next time around.
changing car batteries around the Web:
to Change the Oil in Your Car
Often Should You Change Oil?
see -> How
to replace an air filter | How
to change a car battery
to replace a headlight bulb
For informational purposes only. For complete expert advice,
see your car dealership or professional auto mechanic.