How to Change Your Oil in 4 Simple Steps


The engine of your car should operate like a well-oiled machine. So, it’s a no-brainer than an important component in this is healthy oil levels that help to keep all of the components within your car’s engine operating smoothly.

But as the saying goes ”out of sight, out of mind”, so it’s easy to overlook your oil levels or the quality of the oil lubricating your engine. However, this doesn’t mean it’s not imperative to check and change your oil on a regular basis.

And no, you don’t need to take your car to a professional for this simple task! Here’s how it’s done…

Do You Need To Change Your Oil? 3 Top Signs

First thing’s first, it’s worth mentioning that the oil in your car lasts a good while (up to 5,000 miles). However, that depends on the quality of the oil you use and how old your car is. For luxury and exotic cars, such as the ones you can rent at, oil changes are generally a little more frequent.

But what are the top signs to look for that an oil change is imminent?

  • You begin to notice that your car engine sounds louder than usual. This is a sign of low/poor lubrication
  • Your exhaust begins to spew out black smoke
  • When you check the oil, it appears dark and dirty — new/healthy oil is amber in color

Generally, you want to change out your oil before it affects the function of your engine. This way, you can avoid major (and expensive) issues that might crop up down the line.

If you notice that it’s time for an oil change, here’s how to do it:

1. Warm Up Your Car Engine

You don’t want to change the oil of your car when your engine is cold. So, before an oil change make sure to warm up your engine for at least 5-minutes beforehand. However, you don’t want to change the oil when your engine is too hot either.

If you’ve been out for a drive and your engine is hot, let it could down first before changing the oil. Your engine should feel slightly warm when you change the oil and don’t ever leave your car running during an oil change!

2. Drain and Remove the Filter

For this next step, you might need to jack up your car so you can fit underneath it. Once your car jacks are safe and secure, slide underneath your hood area and look for a nut or plug, found on the underside of your engine area. Next, place a jug underneath it and release the plug, allowing the oil to drain out.

Once the engine filter is empty, pop the hood of your car and remove the oil filter cap from your engine. This may require the help of an oil filter wrench. Dispose of the old oil filter and any remaining oil.

3. Add a New Filter

Simply add a new oil filter in place of the old one, and make sure to rub some clean oil on the gasket of the oil filter, too. If you’re unsure of what to do, the new filter packaging should provide instructions on how to replace it.

Once you’ve completed this step, it’s time to replace the drain plug on the underside of your car. Use an adjustable wrench to tighten the plug or nut.

4. Finish the Job by Adding Fresh, New Oil

After you’ve replaced the drain plug and ensured that it’s securely in place, you’re going to add in a new batch of oil to your engine. Using a funnel, pour in a quart of your preferred engine oil. This process requires time and patience to allow the oil to fill your engine.

Replace your engine cover, start up your car and allow the engine to warm through for about 5-minutes. Make sure to check the plug and filter areas for any drips or leaks.

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