How to Change Oil in your Vehicle

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How to Change Oil in your Vehicle

By James Nevins

In the current world that is fast outsourcing all forms of manual labor, the last thing you will think about is going under the vehicle and changing the oil and not unless you are a petrol head would have prior experience in your teens or the inclination to do so. Then there are so many garages and bog box chains who can do the job on your behalf. This is to give you a few tips on what to do when you need or want to do it yourself.

Check the manual

Check the vehicle manual to see what the manufacture says. This includes the mileage to start checking after which could be 3500 to 7000 miles which is good leeway. Take the year, make, model, and engine displacement size and oil type out of the way. You are going to need to get oil (5 quarts) and an oil filter. The car may have a sticker on the inside to tell what type of oil you need. If you are not sure, or cannot find the adequate information on the vehicle, there are online resources to look up the car’s oil type.

Prepare the vehicle and drain the oil

Assuming you have the correct attire and tools, which in this case would be an old towel, rubber gloves, socket wrench, overalls, car jack and oil filter, you may begin. Before you get the vehicle up on a jack, you can run it for a minute to ensure the oil is warm. This is so that it can flow out easier. It is also advisable to find a car jack stand that leaves you and an oil drain pan with enough space under the vehicle. This is to ensure it does not fall on top of you. From here, you can start to drain the oil (Ravenscraft, 2014). Don rubber gloves and use a socket wrench to loosen the drain plug, while unscrewing the rest of the way. You let the vehicle empty completely and use a paper towel to wipe off the underside of the vehicle.

Removing and replacing the oil filter

Upon removing the oil filter, more oil will come out of the vehicle, so the oil pan should be below the oil filter. There are different oil filter types so it is advisable to check the car’s specifications on which oil filters to use. There are some which are made out of paper, while others are self contained units. It is advisable to wear gloves during the entire process. So dab your finger and run some oil along the rim to the new oil filter. Then replace and hand tighten the seal of the oil filter.

Refilling the oil

When everything underneath the car has been sealed then you can refill the oil. Remove the oil cap from the bottom of the car, place a funnel inside the hole and begin pouring oil into the funnel until you have added the specified amount by the owner’s manual. Replace the cap and hand tighten it. After refilling the car, you can take it off the jack and run it. Wait a few minutes then turn it off and check using a dipstick to make sure the levels are where they should be.

Disposing the oil waste

Dumping vehicle motor oil should be done courtesy of auto part stores and some gas stations who will allow you to bring your oil and they will dispose it for you.


Ravenscraft, E. (2014). How to Change Your Car’s Oil.

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