Changing Your Oil

Changing your oil frequently is crucial to both the performance and durability of your vehicle.  You should make an effort to change the oil in your vehicle every three months or six thousand miles.  You should expect to spend anywhere from 15 minutes to one hour on your oil change depending on your experience and the structure of your vehicle.

Tools Needed
There are very few tools needed to perform a proper oil change but you need to have all of the required tools to ensure a quick and reliable oil change.  You will need an oil filter wrench, socket wrench, a clean funnel and rags, a large empty sealable container, a pan, protective eye wear, wheel blocks to hold the vehicle in place, a dry and level working area, and a car jack.   The materials you will need for your oil change are a new oil filter and new oil to put into the vehicle.

Prep Work
About ten minutes before you begin the oil change you should start your vehicle and allow the oil to heat up.  Heated oil drains more effectively and will leave less oil residue in your engine and guarantee an optimal oil change. Once the vehicle has been given enough time to warm up, drive your vehicle to the location where you will be doing the oil change. Use the jack to raise your vehicle about six inches off of the ground, place your wheel blocks behind the back wheels to prevent the car from rolling, and set the parking brake for some extra security.

Draining the Oil
Now that you have the vehicle in a supported and secure position it’s time to put on your eye protection gear and drain out that old oil.  When you are climbing under the car bring with you the drain pan, and the wrench you had set aside for the project.  Place your pan underneath the oil plug and turn the wrench counter clockwise until the oil begins pouring into the pan.  Once the oil has completed draining screw the oil plug back into place and slide out from underneath the car bringing the pan with you. Empty the old dirty oil from the oil pan into the large empty container and fasten the lid tightly. 

Changing the Air Filter
Depending on the make and model of your vehicle you will either have to access the oil filter from above or below the vehicle.  Using your oil filter wrench unscrew the oil filter that is attached to your vehicle by turning it counter clockwise until it loosens.  Once the filter is loose remove it while trying to keep it in an upright position as it will still has some oil inside.  Apply a light coating around the gasket of the new filter, insert the filter and tighten it using the oil filter wrench.  Once you have attached the new oil filter unscrew the oil cap located on the engine,  pour in the new oil, and retighten the cap.

When you are performing an oil change follow all of the instructions on the packaging and in your owners manual.  Always ensure that you are wearing proper safety equipment when you are performing an oil change.