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How To Change Your Oil

Oil changes are something that many drivers neglect, the reason you are instructed to change it every 3,000 miles is because ALL combustion engines consume oil. The average vehicle with @80,000 miles on it can consume 1-3 quarts in 3,000 miles of driving time, even with no leaks. Oil breaks down and burns then turns black, once it turns black it thickens and no longer properly lubricates your bearings, which is vital to a properly running vehicle. To change your oil refer to user manual to get the proper weight and amount required. You will need to purchase the proper amount of oil and the oil filter that goes to your vehicle (they are not universal). The tools you will need for this job are: oil filter tool, lint free rag, drain bucket, jack, jack-stands (or a set of ramps), and the appropriate sized wrench for the oil drain plug.

Remove the filler cap, this allows the oil to drain faster and helps you remember to refill it.

Lift and support your vehicle with properly located jack-stands or ramps.

Place the drain bucket under the engine drain plug and remove the drain plug.

After all the oil has finished draining down to a slow drip or completely, replace the drain plug and tighten to proper torque specifications, you can find torque specs in a service manual or a simple google search for your specific vehicle and engine size.

Place the drain bucket under the oil filter and remove with an oil filter wrench, they make many different types of oil filter removal tools which you can pick up at any auto parts store.

Once the oil has finished draining from the oil filter housing, wipe the housing with a lint free cloth, assure the old oil filter seal has not remained on the housing. Having 2 seals on the oil filter will cause it to leak.

Using the end of your finger, dip it in your used oil and apply it to the seal on the new oil filter, this will ensure that your new seal on your new oil filter seals properly and aids with easy removal next time.

Install the new oil filter, tighten with your hands only, do not use the oil filter tool.

Remove the drain bucket from under your vehicle and lower your vehicle back onto the ground.

You are now ready to refill your vehicle with oil, be sure to fill with the proper amount and weight of oil, this will be specific to your vehicle.

Replace the oil filler cap and check the oil dipstick to assure you have filled it to the proper amount. It should be slightly overfull because the oil filter has not yet been filled. Be sure it is on a level surface when you check fluid levels.

If everything looks good start the engine and let it run for about 30 second to a minute, while it's running look under your vehicle to check for leaks.

It is always a good idea to put an oil change sticker at the top left of your windshield to remind you when to change your oil next which you can get at the auto parts store where you purchase your oil for free.

I hope this guide helps you save a little money on future oil changes!

Wards Mobile Mechanic
Houston, TX
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